Am I mad?

Hello all,
This is my first post to this list. Allow me to introduce myself and then I'll get to the nitty-gritty of my question.
I graduated in '99 with a BA in Japanese and have been living in Japan ever since as a translator/interpreter. Early last year an illness put me in the hospital for two weeks and the experience compelled me to volunteer at a hospital near work - it has been the most rewarding experience of my life. I have recently decided to change hats and return to the US next year to take prereqs and apply to med school once those are out of the way.
Now to my question. I'm planning on moving to California (San Diego) to take the prereqs. Is this an insane idea - that is, establishing residency in CA, which has the most competitive in-state programs to enter? I'm married and have a child on the way (due date is T minus 2 weeks!). Will be working semi-full time as I try and fit classes in. I of course want to maximize my chances of entry somewhere.
I'm sure all of you faced (are facing) some tough hurdles in the road as older premeds, trying to juggle family and work and school and (fill in the blank) ad noseum. What advice do you have for me? A few success stories would be great to hear and inspirational to boot.

RisingSun, welcome!
You’ll find many personal stories here (of struggle, balance, success, stress, and others). OldPreMeds is a great place to look for that… surf around and you’ll probably find some inspiration. (Also, try clicking on “Diaries” on the Home Page…great reads!).
While I think your background is going to make you stick out of the applicant pile regardless of which state you go to and which schools you apply to ( smile.gif ), only you know if you have the motivation to follow through academically and otherwise. If you are determined to learn and do well in the process, you’ll probably succeed in your application to med school and beyond.
And good luck! It’s quite a process, but personally I think/feel it’s worth it.
Ask any questions you want and most of the time you’ll get a response from other members. OPMs is a great place to come to for information, things that inevitably come up while you’re in classes, encouragement, and humor.
…and congratulations on your baby’s upcoming birth! Wonderful!

Welcome to OPM! Wow–fluent in Japanese and lived in Japan, that's pretty cool. I think it won't matter what state you live in as long as you get good grades in your prereqs and do well on your MCAT, etc. But, then again I'm not a Cali resident so I don't know. You can always apply to out of state schools also. From what I've read, Cali residents apply to more schools than most people b/c admission in state is so competitive.
Also, congratulations on your new baby! Do you have a name picked out?

QUOTE (StartingOver @ Jul 17 2003, 02:06 PM)
From what I've read, Cali residents apply to more schools than most people b/c admission in state is so competitive.

biggrin.gif Yep. That's why they call my school "UC-Albany." The student body is almost 40% Californian. And boy did they suffer this winter!
Best of luck with the decision and your growing family.

You’re not mad!
And I don’t think it matters where you live- SOME school SOMEWHERE will want you! smile.gif

Welcome to OPM, RisingSun and I don't think you're mad!
With your experience in Japan as a translator, I think that makes you stand out of the pool of cookie-cutter pre-meds. Remember, med schools want diversity in their student body. Just make sure you do more volunteering or gain more medical experience to prove to the adcoms that medicine is for you. I think that the change you're about to put your family through (moving from Japan to the US to pursue medicine) is enough proof that you are determined.
Anyways, we're all here for you (and for each other) for support and any questions you may have.
Good luck with the new baby and your future career.
~your fellow california resident~

Welcome! Aren't there bunches o' schools in Cali?
Congrats on the baby and your decision!

Thanks everyone for your encouragement! This is a great community to be a part of! It's nice to know that there is a place that I can turn to for advice and a bit of friendly chit-chat.
To StartingOver - we have decided to wait until the birth to find out the baby's sex (somehow I feel learning this through ultrasound is anticlimatic), but we have settled on Luke if a boy, Sakura (cherry blossom in Japanese) if a girl.
I'll post a bunch of smily face emoticons on this board when I find out!

QUOTE (Calvin -- in a box by the river @ Jul 17 2003, 11:38 AM)
Welcome! Aren't there bunches o' schools in Cali?

an' bunches 'o applicants to fill more than all the slots !

True… true…