In the last couple days I’ve noticed an increasing sense of fear in my approach to my law school dreams.

Am I doing the right thing? There are a lot of things I could be doing with my life. Sure, most of my educational and career choices have led down this path for nearly ten years now, but have they been misguided? A lot of what I’ve done feeds just as well into other careers, and certainly ones that require far less arduous effort and sacrifice.

Is this worth it? I can only go if I get huge scholarships, so the odds are extremely against it even happening. The studying is a sacrifice of time and effort that could be spent with my family and friends or on other things I’d enjoy more, like reading for fun, crocheting, gardening, and other things. With such a slim chance of success, and the sacrifice only paying off in that slim chance, it’s sometimes difficult to proceed.

I don’t know. But I just have to try. Even if I fail, I will always have tried my best, and in failure I’ll learn a great deal, not least of which is that this is not the path for me. If I don’t even try, then I’m letting fear and competition dictate my choices and my life, and that’s not something I’m willing to let happen. I have to be bigger than my fears of failure and humiliation. Sure, I might fail, but there’s no greater failure than not trying.

I know this, and they’re big, impressive, poster-worthy words, but I still find myself stalling, afraid to even start. I’ve read part of the introduction to the one book I’ve bought, and I’m stalling on buying the book I really need because it’s “too expensive” right now (I have the cash on hand for it, but would feel more comfortable spending it after we get paid). I’m not even reading the parts of the book I have right now because I have another book I’d like to finish first for no reason other than stalling on digging into the really tough stuff of the other book. And then there are the preptests in the book I have, but I’m afraid to see just how much work I need to do, just how bad my initial untimed first try at a full lsat preptest goes, that I won’t even let myself attempt it until I’ve read the introduction and some cursory tutorial paragraphs. Which I won’t read until I finish the other book I’ve got, because, you know, read things in order. It’s arbitrary and totally chickenshit, I know.

I will do this. I will at least try. That’s the least I owe myself.

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