Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Mom diagnosed with Cancer/ admission

z.shilaz.shila Alum Member
edited October 2019 in General 111 karma

So the last 10 days of my life has been a nightmare. My mom was diagnosed with cancer and I spent the last 6 days in the hospital 24/7. My parents don’t speak English so they rely on me for all communications.

I was planning on taking the LSAT on October. But each day, there’s a new task I need to take care of/ besides getting less than 4 hrs of sleep per night.

I’m super drained but at the same time stressed because I graduated June 2018 and am planning to apply this year. I feel like if I postpone for another year, life will happen and I’m fearful of losing motivation/ not getting there.
My score isn’t one I’m proud of. The latest exam I had around a 158. But with everything going on in my life right now, I have been unable to concentrate or focus. I doubt I could push for a higher one til October.

So, my question is: do you guys think I should apply and hope for the best? Hope that an LSAT score addendum would allow for me to explain my current situation or is it best to delay another year?

I pretty much have everything else such as PS, DS, why statements, transcript, resume ready.

As a side note, I had a full time job during the past year + a part-time job + taking care of my parents here and there.
4 months ago I quit my full time to have more time to study and that’s when I was actually able to improve.

What are the drawbacks/ benefits of each scenario?

Anything you guys think or have experienced with would be greatly appreciated!


  • lexxx745lexxx745 Alum Member Sage
    3190 karma

    Do you have a record on score of 158? Or is that your last PT? Also, what is your goal score. To be frank, you wouldnt be able to improve your score much in time for the test, if at all. If anything you should hope to be scoring around what you PT.

    If you are ok with that, then go ahead. If you arent, wait another year and focus on studying. However, if youve been studying since June 2018 and you feel this is your best, then perhaps its time to accept it is.

    Tough situation my friend. The only part I can empathize is my parents also dont speak English. You are in a tough spot but you gotta push through. From what Ive heard, I think waiting until you can really devote and focus on more studying to improve your score to where you want is the best option. Even if it means delaying another cycle, that might have to happen.

  • whatlieswithinmewhatlieswithinme Alum Member
    edited October 2019 53 karma

    I had to write this comment because I was on the exact same page with you last year. My dad was diagnosed with lung cancer and had a surgery, getting a quarter of his lung removed. Even though the surgery went really well and he is very healthy now but at that time it was such a chaos and disaster. My family and I spent days crying. I was about to start studying for the LSAT but I had to stop everything because as you said I had to stay up all night to take care of him at the hospital. Besides lacking of time and energy, my broken heart didn't let me have enough space to study and couldn't focus on anything but his condition. Most of all, I felt really sorry for him and couldn't say to him anymore that I still want to go to law school which gives a huge financial burden to him. But thankfully, as he got better, I was able to get a chance to keep studying and here I am waiting to take the test in October.

    I completely understand how you feel. At that time, I felt like everyone in the world is happy and secure, except for ME. But it would be really weird if you were totally fine and kept working on even though you got that family issue. No one will blame you, and everything will be fine if you go to law school a year later. On the contrary, if you can push yourself to do everything you've planned and that's what you really want, you definitely can do that! Take the test! But one thing I wanna say is, if you feel uneasy to take care of everything and feel burdened and stressed out, it's okay to let them go. You also need to take care of YOURSELF in this hard situation. I think you are doing so well. and thanks for sharing you story. I hope your mom gets well soon.

  • hhhakobianhhhakobian Alum Member
    89 karma

    Ok, I have had no relatives die to cancer (in my lifetime) so perhaps my response won't be accurate. Also I may come off a bit crude in my response but here goes.

    Fuck no. First of all, (again my opinion) family comes first. I don't know exactly what your situation is besides what's been written down, but you obviously have prior commitments and responsibilities. Secondary Education (Especially law school) can be postponed. I know of so many people (myself included) who take gap years or two or even switch careers in mid 30s/40s. So it's never "too late" to be motivated. Law careers are in any case very invested so you really shouldn't go into it unless you're devoted to your passion. But in any case, family first, don't stress yourself out with applications during a time where your family needs you and (just as importantly) you need to recover, you're obviously going through hell right now.

    Secondly. This is a bit more pragmatic in its approach, but you really shouldn't apply with a 158 nor should you rush your LSAT or legal career. Just as with family, your future should be given 100% of your effort. Don't half-ass your family life nor your future goals. Likewise, even if you go to a top 100 Lawschool, your LSAT allows you the possiblity of a debt-free education which you actually cannot put a price on since your options (financially) increase tremendously over your lifetime. So giving "due diligence" to the LSAT is a tremendously good choice. Passing a year and applying early next year after getting a much higher score will be a boon to not only you, but your parents will at least not have to worry as much. Plus you get to spend time with your family so that's always a positive.

    Thirdly. If you decide to go ahead and take LSAT anyways in october, I may warn you from my own personal experience that taking even a PT during stressful times gets me a lower score than my average or even my worst ones. So keep that in mind that you're wasting a take during a stressful time.

    Final words/tldr: I'd suggest just trying to fix one problem/issue at a time. I can't imagine what you're going through, so make it easier on yourself and don't add on every possible burden or future problem on your shoulders. You obviously are a good child to your parents, make sure you don't kill yourself doing so because your parents wouldn't want that on their conscience. Would you want someone to jeopardize their future (from your LSAT or potentially bad law school apps) on your behalf? That would cause your parents guilt I'd think and that would go back to you. Unless you're magical and you can somehow handle that. In which case, do you.
    All in all, I do wish you and your family the best and that the tumor ends up being a nonissue for your family in the future and you weather it. In life, make decisions that the future you will be thankful for. Don't half ass your family nor your future.


  • taschasptaschasp Alum Member Sage
    796 karma

    I'm so sorry to hear about your mother. That is really tough.

    Can you postpone taking the LSAT until at least November or December, but still apply this cycle? Why are the only options to delay a whole year, or take it in October?

  • lsatplaylistlsatplaylist Alum Member
    5244 karma

    Thinking of you. Some schools have later deadlines and there's more test dates this time around.

  • a. valdeza. valdez Alum Member
    112 karma

    Hey, first of all, I'm so sorry. Cancer is the fucking worst. My sister was in a similar situation a couple years ago. Our mom was diagnosed with cancer right before she was about to head off for undergrad. She ultimately decided to attend a backup school in our hometown instead of the higher ranked school that she had been admitted to out of town, but she did it so she could be closer to home to be around for her treatments. I think it would have been really hard for her to be away during that time. Our parents are Spanish speakers and were undocumented at the time, so she especially didn't want to leave her alone to navigate all the healthcare stuff by herself. My mom is thankfully still with us, and my sister ended up graduating and is now at USC for grad school.

    I think you'll want to take into consideration if you want/can be around your family during this time. Law school will always be an option, and you can always explain in your addendums why you decided to delay or take time off. I would say that if there is a law school in your city that you're confident you can attend, that could be an option! Applying to law schools also means considering how far away you are willing to be from your mom/family during this time, the treatments, etc. Definitely weigh in how much you can emotionally and physically handle because law school will already be very stressful.

    Take care of you and your family first. I think there is this immense pressure of rushing towards your next professional step, but remember that a ton of people take time off before applying to schools! I'm 24 and still studying for the LSAT lol. Happy to talk more privately if you need any other advice/would like to vent. <3

  • Regis_Phalange63Regis_Phalange63 Alum Member
    1058 karma

    Echoing what everyone else's been saying above, I say FUCK THE LSAT for the time being. Your family and YOU are the most important in life. The LSAT/law school comes AFTER all this. I wouldn't be able to study at all as well. Drop the LSAT. Take good care of your mother. Bounce back once she's adequately taken care of. Law schools don't go anywhere. YOU GOT THIS! <3

  • AstralCzarinaAstralCzarina Alum Member
    38 karma

    @Regis_Phalange63 said:
    Echoing what everyone else's been saying above, I say FUCK THE LSAT for the time being. Your family and YOU are the most important in life. The LSAT/law school comes AFTER all this. I wouldn't be able to study at all as well. Drop the LSAT. Take good care of your mother. Bounce back once she's adequately taken care of. Law schools don't go anywhere. YOU GOT THIS! <3

    I completely agree with this point of view. Law school is always going to be there, and i can tell that you're passionate enough to not fall behind if you wait one more application cycle. Obviously I don't know your family situation, but my advice is to be there for your family, they're the only ones you've got.

  • z.shilaz.shila Alum Member
    111 karma

    Thank you all for your comments and advice. The other factor I did not mention is that I am a first-generation college graduate and my education has always been very Important for my mom. She has stage 4 cancer so just looking at the statistics makes me want to rush to finish so I she gets to see me become a lawyer before (god forbid) something happens to her...
    As all of you mentioned, I need to prioritize my family and I will. But it’s so difficult to know what the right thing for me to do is. If I need to end up choosing a local school, then delaying another year will not really change much.

Sign In or Register to comment.