Aug 23, 2016
3
5
Status
Pre-Medical
First post here, though I've been lurking hard for a while.

I am 31 and female. I wanted to be a forensic pathologist since I was thirteen, but was a pretty damaged kid and honestly didn't think I'd survive to see 18 or 21, so I never tried to pursue that goal. I had a very rough life but surprise! Didn't die.

In 2010 I started school to be a histologist. I did well in school, aced my board exam, and I've been working as a histotech in a pathology lab for two years now. I realized over the past year, though, that this is not what I want to do forever - I still want to be a doctor. That never changed, and the events of my life have only intensified that dream. I finally conquered some of my biggest personal hurdles, have become the healthiest and most well-balanced version of me, and feel ready to take on new challenges.

I knew that it would be a major undertaking to go this route, so I thought it through and weighed the options. Decided to go for it. Started back at school this summer. I am taking the classes I need to transfer to university for my bachelor's, then med school is next.

I have no doubt that I am capable of accomplishing this, but it is still scary and often isolating. I am older than most who are at this same stage in the journey, and my past is incredibly unconventional. I look weird. I am weird. At a time when most of my "peers" are working, starting families, or still out partying, I am single-mindedly pursuing a goal that is still over a decade away. I'm happy about it, but I wanted to introduce myself and start building some sort of connection with people who are on a similar path or in similar situations.

I just broke up with my girlfriend and this life goal is a part of that - she has been supportive from the beginning, but she requires more attention and contact than I can give, especially since I will only be taking MORE classes and have MORE studying from here on out. I am already a pretty detached and introverted person, and I simply can't take time or energy away from my goals to devote to a relationship. It's hard not to feel like a cold monster, like I put my priorities ahead of her. But the thing is, I do. And that's my only option. It's too late in life for me to waffle around about what I want, and I refuse to keep someone locked in a relationship where I know I can't be enough for them. I have been warned about how difficult it is to have a relationship while pursuing a future in medicine, so this seems like it is the right decision. Has anyone else faced this? Leaving someone you still love because you don't want to hurt them more in the long term?

Anyway, thank you for reading, and I'll be around. I already am grateful for all of you at SDN and all the insights, anecdotes and humor you have shared :)
 

Goro

7+ Year Member
Jun 10, 2010
53,677
78,997
Somewhere west of St. Louis
Status
Non-Student
Good luck! Just remember that this journey is a marathon, and not a sprint. Look up everything the wise DrMidlife has written in this forum.

And BTW, some of my all time best students have been in their 30s and 40s.
 
OP
T
Aug 23, 2016
3
5
Status
Pre-Medical
Thank you! I am encouraged by your words. Definitely gearing myself up for a long haul.. trying to not just work hard but in a sustainable manner since this will be the next decade or so of my life.

And yes, I've already found some the great doctor's wisdom all over these boards! Yours as well