Thank you OPM!

Hello everyone!

I’ve been a lurker on this site for a very long time and decided it is finally time to come forward to give a heartfelt thank you to all of you who have made this site so special-- so supportive, positive and welcoming. When I made the decision to return to school to take the science pre-requisites at the ripe old age of 44, I was very, very concerned about the age thing and reading your stories helped me understand that becoming a doctor is possible, no matter what your age. What a revelation!

In hopes that I can return the favor and help someone else, I’d like to share my story with you.

Like many of you, I’ve wanted to be a physician for as long as I can remember. But life has some strange twists and turns, and I came to beleive that this was not an option for me. After earning a BA in Psychology, I tried to find another career in which I could serve people and eventually ended up in Human Resources. I have been an HR Manager in the foundry industry for the past 16 years and have enjoyed it immensely.

But the feeling that I wasn’t doing what I was supposed to do-- I wasn’t serving in the way I was intended to serve, kept growing. It came to be overwhelming and I knew I’d have no peace ever, unless I tried it (as totally impossible as it seemed). Terrified, and barely able to even speak about my goal to anyone other than my fantastic husband and daughter, I took an intro Bio class after working hours. Unbelievably, I did well, and not only that, I was really excited about learning this stuff!! Oh my gosh! It was a whole new world! The next semester, I took two more classes. And so on, for the next two and a half years.

It was not possible for me to leave my full time job, so I adapted and became a good time manager. I can honestly say that, even if I don’t reach the ultimate goal, this journey has been totally worthwhile. I’ve been able to learn so much, to get to know some great professors, to appreciate the fine qualities in my young peers. There has been so much support from so many unexpected sources.

It has been a fantastic adventure (albiet very demanding and difficult) and I wouldn’t change it for anything in the world. My advice to anyone who is considering reaching for their dream is “do it”. Life is all in the journey and the end is secondary. The experiences you gain along the way make it all worthwhile.

I was accepted at UAB last week and will be part of the class of 2012, matriculating at the age of 47. That means I’ll be able to join AARP the same year I graduate! So be it!

Congrats !

Congratulations on your acceptance. Keep us posted as your journey through med school begins.

Congratulations and welcome! I wish you the very best as you start medical school.

You are most welcome & a sincere ‘thank you’ for your flattering comments.

You mentioned “giving back” - WARNING: Shameless plug comes next - now that you are in, you become an even more valuable resource foe the members of OPM who seek to walk your path of success. Please consider devoting a small portion of your precious free time to chronicle your experiences & share the pearls of wisdom you acquire as you mature within this arduous, challenging & most rewarding process. This is how you can best contribute back to OPM.

Again, my sincerest congratulations! Please seriously consider my requested favor-in-return.

congrats betterlate! post that you got into UAB in the accepted thread. Its been a while since that thread has been updated.

Congratulations, BetterLate!

Having just read your other post, and noticing I didn’t say it here yet - congrats! It’s great that you took the initiative to pursue your goals, and now you’ve ended up at your first choice. That’s awesome! I hope you’re able to offer some juicy tidbits of perspective and advice to who come after you, as well .

Thank you, everyone! I couldn’t have gotten this far without the support of so many wonderful people. Just gave notice to my employer (leaving my company is going to be very sad–I will miss our team so much) and started wading through the financial aid process, so everything is starting to feel so “real”. And I’m scared to death…!