So I was in my car, driving from a gig to my house, listening to NPR the other day. I was only a minute or two away from home when a local news segment came on. The feature: decision day for medical school students. This was the day when they all learned at what hospital they’d be working.
One of the students featured was a woman who had changed careers mid-life. At the age of thirty-five, she transitioned from a career in theatre to attempting a career in medicine. In the years since she started medical school, she’d gotten married and had children; she had an entirely new life.
As I listened to this small news story on my way home from the job I am trying to transition out of, I started crying. Right there, in my car, over a small news story, tears trickled down my face. I was grateful I was most of the way home. I pulled into my driveway and pulled myself back together.
There it was. There I was. There was where I could be. A person with a similar background as me had already done what I am just starting, the long road to a career in medicine.
I’ve been pretty up front with how scary and nervous making this whole process is for me. There are a number of hurdles I need to jump through before I can even apply for medical school. At least two years of community college. Studying for and taking the MCATs. Figuring out how I’m going to pay for all the learning I will need. All the while I know I will have to stay in my job, make sacrifices with my time, with my friends, with my family, and, sadly, with the many kinky adventures you read about here.
But this one little news story of how someone else, someone I don’t know yet who is somewhat similar to me, that one news story is what I needed to hear.
I’m sure, in the years to come, during the struggle, during the not-so-fun times, I will remember those five minutes on my radio. I will remember that someone like me, someone who didn’t come to medicine early, made it there anyway.
Sometimes you just need a little motivation, a little reminder, a glimmer of hope along the way.
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