Blogger Q&A: Gratitude

28 Nov 2013

Happy Thanksgiving! Today’s post is all about gratitude. Every once in a while, we find it important to pause and reflect about the people and things we hold most dear. Keep reading to find out our responses to the following question:

What are you most thankful for?

Minerva Romero Arenas, MD, MPH:

I am thankful for my family and friends, my health, and my mentors.

Brittany Bankhead-Kendall, MD, MSc:

  • The many career and volunteer and family opportunities that come with a career in medicine
  • A two-year-old who is healthy, smart, and loves me even when I can’t be there for him as much as I want
  • The military and their families for keeping our freedom and nation alive
  • A job I love
  • A husband who is supportive of a surgeon for a wife

Mary Brandt, MD:

I will be thinking of the physicians, in practice and in training, who will sacrifice time with their families this year to take care of others.  To the physicians, nurses, hospital staff, police officers, fire fighters, soldiers, clerks and anyone else who spend this holiday helping others – thank you.  We are grateful.

(cross posted from

Amalia Cochran, MD, MA:

  • My family of rescue animals. They keep me sane and remind me that I am always, always loved.
  • The opportunities that I get to teach and mentor. Having found this niche provides me as much or more than those I’m teaching and mentoring.
  • My friends, who tolerate my crazy schedule and intermittent unreliability (not my fault- it’s patient care!) and love me in spite of those things

Marie Crandall, MD, MPH:

  • My health
  • My freedom
Celeste Hollands, MD

The privilege of providing surgical care to children and being a part of the lives of those children and their families, the opportunity to teach future surgeons about why my career is awesome, and the love and health of my family: both two- and four-legged members!

Bharti Jasra, MD:

My family and mentors

Sophia Kim McKinley:

Most years, I spent Thanksgiving with my mother and brother in Boston. But this year, thanks to residency interviews, I get to spend Thanksgiving in California not just with my mother and brother but with my aunts, uncles, and grandmother as well! So I am thankful for the chance to spend my favorite holiday with more of my family, and for the privilege of pursuing the career that I love.

Lauren Nosanov:

In the midst of this interview season, I have been very struck by all the pieces that have had to fall into place to enable me to be pursuing a career as a surgeon. I am thankful that I am fortunate enough to live at a time in a place where such opportunities are available to women, standing on the shoulders of those who have come before me. I am thankful that my family placed a great emphasis on education, and constantly reminded me that I could do whatever I wanted in life if I worked hard enough. I am thankful for my husband, who has been a constant source of strength through this entire process – I am certain I would not be here at this juncture without his support. Lastly I am thankful for my son for always being a source of inspiration and drive to be my best every single day. Being here, now, is the most wonderful gift.

Mona Singh:

I’m thankful for the love and support of my family and friends-like-family, all the opportunities to learn and grow, and for this and every moment in life.  
Callie Thompson, MD:

My family and friends and the love and respect we share. My co-residents whom I commiserate and laugh with, whichever is most appropriate at the time. My patients who give me the daily gift of being allowed to care for them.

Danielle Walsh, MD:

I am thankful for three very special men in my life —

  • my father, who motivated me to reach higher, work harder, and be more than I ever thought possible
  • my husband, who grounds me, picks me up when I fall, and loves me unconditionally
  • my son, who reminds me that reading books together is for bonding, wooden swords and shields can bring victory in every battle, and night time “snuggelies” are the best time of the day
  • the privilege of being able to spend my adult life living out my childhood dream
  • mentors who see my potential and are tough on me for my own good 
  • sponsors who see me as a promising investment and enthusiastically open doors for me
  • family and friends who have never wavered in their love and support of me
  • the kindness of strangers, hearty conversation, and bellyache-inducing laughs

What are YOU most thankful for? Answer in the comments below. To read our Blogger Q&A on advice passed down from our mentors, click here.

2 Replies to “Blogger Q&A: Gratitude”

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