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About futurePAstudent10

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  1. I don't have much advice for you as I haven't been through PA school yet, but wanted to let you know that I am in the same boat as you. My kids are slightly older (18months and soon to be 3yo), my husband works full-time as a physician and all of our family lives at least 2hrs away. I've gone back a forth about when to apply and ultimately made the decision to go ahead and apply now. I will explain my thought process below. This is just my opinion and what I think is going to work best for my family. Your situation may lead you to make a different choice. I would encourage you to make a pros/cons list as it really helped me. I think the biggest thing that lead me to this decision is the acknowledgement that PA school will be a family sacrifice. PERIOD. This is not going to change no matter when you chose to go to school. You will feel guilty for missing out on parts of their lives, but it doesn't mean you have to be absent from their lives during that time. Given that I currently work full-time, I am already used to not seeing my kids until the evening, but I do worry about missing out on that quality time in the evening and on weekends. I also worry about putting too much burden on my husband. I've talked to a couple of students/graduates who went through school with young kids and they said it's not easy, but it's doable. The advice I got was that in order to make it through the didactic phase, you have to learn to be okay with passing instead of focusing on being perfect/ getting an "A" on everything. The people I talked to said they got creative in carving out time for studying and family. One student said she would go to campus really early in the morning and stay until 5 or 6 and then spend quality time with family when she got home until kids went to bed and then studied a little more. One person utilized her gym daycare to get some study time in, another person found a 12yo neighbor who would come play with the kids for a little while in the evenings for a cheap price. I've thought about finding a sitter for a few hours on the weekend days to help reduce the burden on my husband (or at least give him a little break). Logistically, I think it's going to be easier to go to school while I have 2 kids who are not involved in a lot of extracurricular activities. Right now, they just go to daycare and one little tumbling class on Saturday mornings. I've been told that kids just get busier and busier the older they get, and I want them to have the opportunity to be involved in as many activities as they would like. If I put off school until they are older, I personally feel like it would be a logistical nightmare to try and coordinate evening/weekend activities. That is an added stress that I personally don't want. It's also nice that both of my kids go to the same daycare right now and that daycare has really nice hours (6am-6pm). If I wait, it again feels like it would be really challenging to coordinate before and after school care for them. Also, I agree with rev ronin that you have to have a solid plan for dealing with the unexpected. Fortunately, my husband's employer provides a free care.com membership which offers "backup care" days. This service helps you find a sitter when you are in a pinch and is available to everyone, but you have to have a care.com membership to utilize the service. This has been a HUGE help for us when the kids are sick and need to stay home from daycare since we don't have family nearby. I've heard good things about the app "nextdoor" as well, which helps you connect with neighbors who might be able to help you out. Someone suggested that my husband and I meet with a financial advisor to budget for these kind of expenses and take out more loans if need be. Also, another big factor for me is that I am in my early 30s and want to have another child. My preference is to go to school before adding a third child to the mix as I think it would only make things more challenging. If I go to school now, I will hopefully be able to have that third child shortly after I graduate from school (assuming I get accepted this year). Again, these are just my thoughts. Hope you find what feels right for you and your family.
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