Sunday, March 25, 2012


If you hang out on Facebook with me, you already know this. I found out on Tuesday that I got into law school at BYU.
I had an interview Tuesday with the dean of admissions for BYU's law school. I bought a new navy blue pinstripe pencil skirt in an attempt to look lawerly. I sat on the bench outside his office, braiding and unbraiding my fingers, pulling on the joints to release the tension. A girl walked past and told me that I looked nice. She said it like she knew what was about to happen.

After a few minutes of waiting, the dean opened his door and ushered me in. He directed me to a couch, where I obediently sat, but on the edge. Throughout the interview I kept sliding back inch by inch, settling in a little more. He asked me about Northwestern, about MHM, about my dad's practice. He asked where I was from and we had that awkward conversation where he knows one person who used to be from Bountiful before I was from Bountiful. And then he asked me where else I had applied to law school.

I had promised myself that if and when he asked this question, I would be upfront. I only applied to BYU this time around, because I decided to take the LSAT late, and then found out I could apply with less than a month to pull everything together. I told him if I didn't get into BYU this year, I would apply again next year, along with other schools.

And then he told me I got in.

I've had exactly one conversation like that before in my life. It was the morning Reg Gibbons called from NU to tell me I had gotten into the MFA program. I had applied last minute in July, was accepted in August, and moved to Chicago in September.

I didn't tell the dean of admissions that. I thanked him. I may have said "Wow," but I know I thanked him.
I spent years preparing for a PhD program and months preparing applications. I keep muttering to myself that if I had known law school would be this easy, I would have applied years ago.

But that's a lie. I can look at my life and honestly say that there wasn't a time before now when I would have considered or been prepared for law school, or for the life that comes after law school. An MA in English lit was a challenge I could tackle without fear of failing, although I came pretty close. An MFA was difficult, but I did it and I'm more proud of that thesis and a few research papers there than anything I've done in my life to date. If I had chosen law school six or seven years ago, it would have been the past of least resistance. Now I can't think of anything more terrifying or difficult or satisfying to do with my future.

There is the sting and the sadness right now that all of my best laid plans have been abandoned, that getting into law school was so simple when getting into PhD programs were a lesson in working hard for a one-page rejection letter (or worse--the rejection email). But I also know that law school is a blessing, that it will be a new way to think and to write and that I'll come away from it ready to do what I'm supposed to do. When I said I would follow whatever path the Lord had in store for me, I never even thought it would be this one, but I'm ready to walk it.


Anna B said...

byu law is a better place because you are in it! congrats to them and to you a million times over. can i read your mhm thesis?

Maryn said...


Kristen said...

Congratulations again. Well said. Well done.

Jannifer said...

Congrats Sarah! Best of luck to you! Some day if I need a lawyer, I'm going to call you. :)

Lekili said...

The biggest reason this is so fabulous is that you are at peace with it and actually excited! Love it!

heath said...

Congratulations! Interesting the twists and turns that life takes. I'm excited for you!


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