So there have been quite a few threads on regrets. The consensus seems to be about not having done it sooner. I can live with that. I just finished a conversation with a friend and how he’s about to buy his 3rd house and the market and blah blah blah…future so bright and all that.

I’m sitting here not thinking about what will be, which is what I should do but instead what I should’ve done. Grrrrrrr. More like where I would be now “if only”. Not having a pity party just thinking about how much we give up. Not changing my mind about pursuing medicine just about how absurd it all seems at times. I can go and get my MBA and make more than I would as a physician and much sooner. Sheeesh I’m looking at 2 years till I would even start…4-5 years in school…3-4 years until I’m earning a salary 1/3 of what I’m earning now…


It’s not what I want to do. It’s not what I need to do. No one dreams of being a research administrator when they’re young. No one dreams of becoming an expert at filling out forms, submitting grants, babysitting PhD’s, and then there are the all-so-important meetings on how to plan a meeting to meet about meetings.

So in this pseudo-pit party I guess my point is we as non-trads usually sacrifice more than we are given credit for. Nothing against our traditional applicants. It’s just sacrificing a few years so you can begin to have a life at 30-35 is not the same as to live a life, put some of it on hold, press the reset button…so we can begin to have a life at 40, 45, 50…ahhhh to be even younger again.

Ahhh, Crooz, how true your statements seem. All the possibilities of making more money in a shorter time, buying that nicer home, etc.,; BUT, like you said “It’s not what you want to do.”

And no matter how much more difficult and time consuming it may seem right now, if you’re truly working towards something you know you will love, then it really doesn’t matter when you start. All that matters is that you work towards that dream and hold onto the fight and desire to fulfill the goals you hold so precious.

Heck, assuming I pass my boards this next time, I will be over 60 when I finish residency. . . and I could care less. Age isn’t the issue. The issue is that I will be doing what I have wanted to do for a long time now.

Little pity parties are okay now and then; just don’t let them overwhelm you. Keep the faith and keep on putting one foot in front of the other.

And thanks for all the encouraging words and posts I read from you so often. I know you are not only going to be a fine physician, but you will be a caring and compassionate one as well!

Regrets I have many. I want more than anything to go to medical school. It seems nothing else will ever satisfy my soul. But I fear for me it is too late. In May I will be 50. I am a nurse midwife with an Master of Nursing and a Master of Public Health. I am in the disseration phase of earing a PhD in Public Health. I need about a year and a half of chemistry and physics in order to apply to Med School. I would do it if I thought I stood a chance of getting in. In spite of all of my accomplishments I literally ached to be a physician.


It’s only too late when you decide it is.

  • Wanda Said:
Regrets I have many. I want more than anything to go to medical school. It seems nothing else will ever satisfy my soul. But I fear for me it is too late. ....I would do it if I thought I stood a chance of getting in. In spite of all of my accomplishments I literally ached to be a physician.


As just a few years shy of 50, I have found I have had nothing but regrets in my life in virtually all areas of my life. But I will refuse give up without at least trying, knowing my chances are nearly zero. However, the chances are actually zero if I never even apply. If you want to win the lottery, you gotta at least buy a ticket. And for a woman who is a nurse midwife, two masters, and ABD on a PhD, I think you have a damn good chance of getting in. Hell, a professor I had as an orginal undergrad and who was the medical school admissions committee for 20 years at SUNY Stony Brook recently told me of the 57 year-old female NYC cop who applied, got in, and then turned them down to go to a better school!

You can decide that it is too much work, too much money, or too late, that's fine. We all make comprises in this thing called life. But not trying because you think you don't have a shot. Now that is giving up. I think you may regret that more. Frankly I have found that living in regret is the ultimate form of selling your soul. They can have my soul when they pry it from my cold, lifeless body and not a moment before that.

later sister

Wanda, I was 52 when I was accepted. I will now be 58 when I finish, due to health problems and board issues. But I don’t regret it and I will still be the doctor I wanted to be.

Don’t let your age stop you!! You have a wonderful background and there will be schools who are more than willing to open their doors to you so long as you do will on your prereqs and MCAT.

Best of luck and keep us all posted!

And, if you can make it to the conference in Chicago this year, you will have a great opportunity to talk to some of the schools who will have booths, as well as to myself and others who are older and making it!

My point was in how absurd all this is. All the hoop jumping we subject ourselves to and my only regret is “I should’ve done it sooner”. I see those words to someone older than I seem even more absurd and perhaps even downright unsympathetic.

I’m at the age where the average person has started to earn a decent living. I’m earning a decent living and have a lot of plans on hold until I finish medical school.

“Why? Why do it?” For me I can’t see myself doing anything else. Medicine has meant so many things to me for so long. Everytime I get away it pulls me back in. (Godfather 3 reference) While I’ve accomplished great things none of them have been my lifelong dream. Actually it’s funny to see those words at 34 vs 18.

I ran into a lady who knew me 17 years ago and she asked me “So what are your future plans?” Same question she asks her kids and loved ones. I told her that I was taking my prereqs and applying to med school next year. She applauded me for my tenacity and resolve. I wasn’t sure what she meant. She took me to her office where she had a paper she had me write my future goals down. Right there…#3 was to become a doctor!

I don’t even remember that. She was telling me how I didn’t know how I’d do but that I’d be a doctor one day and now 18 years later I begin to apply…so 19 years later I’ll begin to fulfill what I wrote so very long ago.

My point is NOT to live with regrets. My point is to count the cost and keep moving. When I posted the initial post I had just gotten off the phone with a friend and was just thinking how crazy it all seems at times. However going after your dream will always seem crazy. Hate to sound like Don King but only in America could a kid who graduated high school with a “D” average even think about one day becoming a doctor.

So my final point is to get off the regret pity party and just move. You live this life stumbling forward but learn by looking back. So learn what you need to learn from your past and move on. The only guarantee is that you will not get accepted to medical school if you never apply.

I think I will just go for it. I will be 52 when I apply, need to get those sciences in. But you are all right, I want never know until I try, so I will try.


You are all inspiring me so much to go after my dream. I know it will be hard. I know people will question me leaving my previous “calling.” I know the time spent away from my wife will be missed.

I also know I love the thought of being a doctor. I love helping people. I want to learn, and do all it takes to accomplish this.

You go girl!