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A Physician’s Thanksgiving Gratitude List


I’m thankful for everyone from my awesome medical assistant to the patients who let me deliver their babies. And my EHR.

As we approach Thanksgiving, I find myself trying to focus less on the chaos of the season and more on the many blessings in my life. So, this week, I wanted to share my gratitude for the balance I continually try to achieve at home and at work.

                First, I am thankful for having a robust home and work life to even have to balance.

                I am also thankful for …

1. The people who need me, whether that is to help find a missing shoe, give a hug goodnight, deliver a baby, or manage their diabetes (It’s good to be needed);

2. The people who support me at home and at work so that I can accomplish so many things in a typical day;

3. Friends who challenge me to do less so I can enjoy more;

4. Colleagues who are available to commiserate with, tell me I’m right when that’s what I really need to hear, and tell me I’m wrong in the nicest possible way;

5. My awesome medical assistant who contributes so much to the care I provide my patients;

6. My patient who sent me flowers as a thank-you;

7. The opportunity to see the babies I deliver grow up to take first steps, say first words, and give me a high-five;

8. The patients who let me deliver their babies;

9. The OB colleagues who help me deliver babies that I can’t deliver on my own;

10. The opportunity to be a doctor - still a noble profession, still a great life;

11. The fact that the problems and headaches I manage at work are often inconsequential in the grand scheme of life and that my personal crises are small, relatively speaking;

12. For circumstances that force me to let go of too many commitments;

13. Nursing staff who clean up all the details of our clinic so that I can focus on patient care;

14. Medications like lisinopril and metformin: They are really wonderful and so cheap!

15. Evidence-based medicine, which allows me to have at least a semblance of confidence in what I tell my patients;

16. The fact that medicine is not so cookie-cutter that a robot or trained monkey could do my job

17. Cozi.com, which allows my husband and I to schedule our hectic lives a little bit better;

18. iPhones because, hey, they let me keep track of all my important numbers, check e-mail during boring meetings, and play Plants versus Zombies;

19. Our EHR: While there are drawbacks to the electronic medical record, the availability of information is incredibly beneficial to my patient care and I can catch up on notes in my pajamas; and

20. The chance to write my random thoughts on life down and call it a blog.

And, of course, I am thankful for all those amazingly wonderful things that you don’t appreciate until they’re no longer there - friends and family, health, a warm home, a great living, a free country.

Happy Thanksgiving.

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