Congratulations are in order for a Loyola University graduate who took part of her bar exam while in labor, paused to give birth and then finished her test.
"I PASSED," Brianna Hill wrote on Facebook, adding later in the post, "I am SO happy I get to be a lawyer officially and am so thankful that I got here. Now, I am going to go celebrate with my cute little family."
Hill knew she'd be pregnant while taking her final test toward becoming a lawyer, but when the coronavirus pandemic changed the timing from July to October, she suddenly realized just how pregnant she would be.
Hill took the test remotely in her home, with technology in place used to watch test takers and keep them from cheating.
Minutes into her test, she went into labor. "I didn't think about it because I was in the test," she said.
During a break, Hill made a few important calls and then went back to finish the rest of her exam.
"I cleaned myself up, called my husband and the test kept going," she said.
Hill completed the first portion of her exam and, several hours later, gave birth to a healthy son, Cassius Phillip, at West Suburban Hospital in Oak Park.
But there was still another day of test-taking to go. Determined to finish what she started, Hill, still in the hospital, spent the following day taking the final leg of the exam.
"I took part of the exam sitting on towels because my water had broken and the other part sitting on an ice pack because I had given birth the night before," Hill wrote on Facebook on Tuesday.
"I hemorrhaged after birth and took the second day of the test while anemic," she wrote. "I only slept for 1.5 hours before the second day of the test because my sweet baby was SO grunty. I breastfed my baby in between sessions. I did all of this because I did not see any other option to accomplish both my goals- become a lawyer and a mom."
Hill said she experienced pre-term labor while studying for her test, which helped prepare her for what she would ultimately go through.
She credits "the best freaking support system ever" in her family, friends doula and hospital nursing staff for their help.
Through it all, Hill wrote that she recognizes "I am not the only one who went through difficult circumstances to complete this stupid test and I strongly feel it is not an accurate reflection of competence, mostly privilege."