sunday review

3 Mar

Today was a fantastically exciting day.  Today my essay was published in the New York Times!  Not to sound trite, but it’s kind of a dream come true for me.

nytimes 1 nytimes 2

Family, friends, colleagues, mentors, and readers I haven’t had the privilege to meet have left some kind, encouraging words.  Thank you–they mean so much to me.

It’s strange to see my words in print (and online) in the New York Times–it’s almost like they were written by someone else who has a remarkably similar voice to mine, if that makes any sense.  What’s also bizarre is the mini-bio alongside the article that states: “A student at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania and author of the blog Anna in Med School.”  Author of the blog?  I feel like a kid who’s been working lovingly on his experiments in the basement of his parents’ house and then one day is recognized as a scientist or something.

I caught a few shots of Ari looking almost as elated as I feel.  She seems to have discovered her tongue–doesn’t get much better than that!

nytimes 3 nytimes 4 nytimes 5


57 Responses to “sunday review”

  1. Ryan March 3, 2013 at 7:46 pm #

    Amazing! Congratulations on a great article, and what an adorable kid! Those photos are terrific.

  2. Kristen March 3, 2013 at 7:49 pm #

    Oh my, that face!!! You know I’m beaming with pride and happiness for you today. xo

  3. Shannon March 3, 2013 at 7:51 pm #

    Oh! Congratulations! How exciting! And, yes, that baby is just the cutest.

    • annaojesus March 3, 2013 at 7:51 pm #

      Shannon, thank you! And, coming from the mama of three beautiful children, that’s so kind of you!

  4. John Jesus March 3, 2013 at 8:01 pm #

    I’m very proud of you! With all my love and affection!

    • annaojesus March 3, 2013 at 8:07 pm #

      Now that really means the world to me!

  5. Brian O'Keeffe March 3, 2013 at 8:17 pm #

    Anna, what a lovely baby! Love her. Congratulations on the article. Brian

    • annaojesus March 3, 2013 at 8:21 pm #

      Hi Brian! Thank you so much–we’re in love with her also. I hope you’re well!

  6. Eric Rosoff March 3, 2013 at 9:00 pm #

    mazal tov! I’m so proud of you, and clearly, so is your family.

    • annaojesus March 3, 2013 at 9:04 pm #

      Thank you!!! It makes me so happy that you’re proud 🙂

  7. phantomdiver March 3, 2013 at 9:14 pm #

    Love the faces! And gratz on the editorial!

  8. eklinman March 3, 2013 at 9:15 pm #

    that first photo of ari is amazing. “she seems to have discovered her tongue”

    also, CONGRATS

    • annaojesus March 3, 2013 at 9:45 pm #

      haha…thanks–i love that eyes-nearly-pop-out-of-head look she gets when she’s really excited 🙂

  9. Sharon March 3, 2013 at 9:53 pm #

    Loved your article Anna; especially the comment about a combination of wanting to bash your head against the wall and tha joy of seeing your baby experience the wind. A perfect description of having a child.

    • annaojesus March 3, 2013 at 10:05 pm #

      Thank you so much, and I’m glad you liked that description…it was the only one that seemed to fit my experience 🙂 Thank you again!

  10. jalcyn March 3, 2013 at 11:35 pm #

    I found your blog from the NY Times, and wanted to wish you all the best of luck on your path through med school and parenthood. Oh, and your daughter is adorable!

    • annaojesus March 6, 2013 at 2:46 pm #

      Thank you so much; I really appreciate the well wishes! And Ari is flattered!

  11. LB March 3, 2013 at 11:36 pm #

    Your NYT essay brought me here to your blog, and I wanted to thank you for sharing your perspective. I’m a married phd candidate and we’ve recently received some similar infertility news (of the “act now or forever hold your peace” type). It’s so nice to see that your family is happy, further down in a similar road!

    • annaojesus March 6, 2013 at 2:50 pm #

      Thank you so much for your comment! I’m sorry to hear about the news; if you’re hope is to have kids, I wish you the best of luck! It was a tough road, initially. But I received help from physicians I admire deeply. If you ever want to chat privately, please let me know. Thank you again!

  12. Catherine March 4, 2013 at 5:59 am #

    Oh my gosh! Congratulations, Anna! That’s huge, and I’m thrilled for you!

    • annaojesus March 6, 2013 at 7:02 pm #

      Thank you so much, Catherine! Wonderful to hear from you, as always.

  13. Ashley Wilson March 4, 2013 at 9:13 am #

    Ari, you’re famous! 🙂

  14. Tina S. March 4, 2013 at 10:21 am #

    Anna, your article is really great writing. You did a beautiful job making something full of medical jargon into something easily digestible by us common folk. I guess you’re now a published author like your famous hubby, eh? 🙂

    Seriously, baby’s first 6 months are amazing. Each little discovery is so exciting to them! After finding her tongue, blowing raspberries isn’t too far off so get excited. It’s hard to be upset about all the drool when they are having some much fun making it!

    • annaojesus March 6, 2013 at 7:05 pm #

      Oh, the raspberries! She’s learned how to do this tongue-lip smacky thingy that I think is absolutely adorable. Thanks so much for letting me know what’s in store!

      And thank you for your kind compliment! I have to admit, though, the editors helped a lot strike the right balance of medical jargon.

  15. Eric Rosoff March 4, 2013 at 12:43 pm #

    Hey, what’s the story behind the artwork on your piece? Did you choose it?

    • annaojesus March 6, 2013 at 7:05 pm #

      I did not, but I think it’s hilarious. I didn’t see it until it was published!

  16. Liza Thompson March 4, 2013 at 6:02 pm #

    Anna–Wow! I saw your article in the Times and thought to myself, “Is that the Anna I used to know?” Lo and behold it is! What a fantastic article and what an absolutely adorable daughter you have. Congratulations on both. Life for you sounds busy but wonderful. You are a fantastic writer; keep the opinion pieces coming. Savor every moment with your daughter. Congrats again…Liza

    • annaojesus March 6, 2013 at 7:11 pm #

      Hi Liza! So good to hear from you, and thank you so much for your congratulations! I’m so flattered that you think I’m a good writer–it means a lot to me. And I’m touched that, after advising so many students, you still remember me.

      A little off topic, but one of your former TAs at Hopkins (Jon M) is one of my closest friends here.

      I hope you and your family are well! Thank you again for the kind comment!

  17. MTMTMD March 4, 2013 at 8:10 pm #

    Anna – I so related to your article in the NYT. I was a 30 year-old Jr in Med School (took the “scenic route” – was a nurse first) and my husband was finishing his residency when we realized that there would never be an easy time to start a family. Thankfully I had no difficulty conceiving either of my sons, now 27 and 21.
    Clerkships were grueling during my first trimester but I finished all but the 12wks of surgery before delivering. The Dean (Northwestern) was a prince of a man who allowed me to take a full year off after my son was born. My husband, by then a “junior” attending was able to support us and a live-in nanny making my transition back to school surprisingly seamless.
    The process was not as smooth the second time. Anesthesiology residency in 1991 preceded the work hour regulations that residents have now. Long days and frequent on-calls at a Level I trauma center were the norm. After a 6 week maternity leave it was back to the routine. During my daily 20 min lunch break I tried (mostly unsuccessfully) to eat lunch, call home to check on the kids, and pump!
    I feel fortunate to have had two healthy, beautiful, full-term babies and a lot of help.
    Congratulations on your career as a wife, mother, and doctor!
    Best of luck to you.

    • annaojesus March 6, 2013 at 7:20 pm #

      Hello! Wow–you are a rockstar! Having a baby during residency (in addition to another child at home) sounds incredibly grueling. I can’t wrap my mind around how much you were able to get done in a 20-minute lunch break–it takes me nearly 20 minutes just to pump when I’m at home. I’m so glad both your sons were healthy then and I’m sure doing well now.

      It seems like our experiences were similar. Clerkships during my first trimester were the worst! But my medical school has been fantastic and, after I came out about the pregnancy, the registrar actually managed to swap the order of my clerkships so I could finish the most demanding ones prior to my daughter’s birth. I am technically taking a year out, but it’s broken up a bit–I’m returning to finish the clerkships I missed and a few side projects, and I’ll be taking the boards.

      Thank you so much for your encouragement, your congratulations, and for sharing with me a little bit of your own experiences! It’s always great to hear other people who have done it. I wish you and your family the best! Take care!

  18. tojarrett March 4, 2013 at 9:19 pm #

    You are a badass. But then we knew that.

    • annaojesus March 6, 2013 at 7:21 pm #

      As are you, my friend! You know, I try to take your advice…to try to write a little something everyday. You taught that that is important.

  19. Trudy-Elsie March 4, 2013 at 10:23 pm #

    Yep, and that’s how I found out about your blog Anna, through the NY Times. Bravo! I love your blog!

    • annaojesus March 6, 2013 at 7:21 pm #

      Thank you–I’m very flattered! I hope you’re well!

  20. L March 5, 2013 at 10:26 am #

    Anna, thank you so much for your article in the Times. I’m actually a grad student at the same medical school and reading your story helped me realize consciously what I already sort of knew intuitively: it doesn’t get any easier. I used your article as well as the Motherlode blog analysis of it to start a conversation with my husband, and it jump started a pretty big decision…

    • annaojesus March 6, 2013 at 7:24 pm #

      Hi L! Thank you so much for your encouraging comment. I hope it was a good/productive/helpful(?) conversation (it seems that way). (“Pretty big decision”…sounds interesting 🙂 ) Exciting that you’re in the neighborhood. If you’d like to continue a conversation privately, please let me know! I wish you the absolute best!

  21. Amy Silberschmidt March 5, 2013 at 2:29 pm #

    Congrats on your article! Fun read. This may be a weird question, but I think I may have met you at medical school interviews at Tufts. Did you interview there in fall of 2009? In any event, I am also a med student and a mama. Good luck to you and yours.

    • annaojesus March 6, 2013 at 7:25 pm #

      Hello! I’m so glad you liked the article–thanks so much for commenting. Very possible, I did interview at Tufts in October 2009. Where are you now, Amy? Best of luck to you and your family!

      • Amy January 7, 2017 at 5:37 pm #

        Somehow, this just came to my attention. I’m a second year resident in psychiatry in PIttsburgh.

  22. Claire March 5, 2013 at 4:43 pm #

    Hi Anna,

    I loved your NY Times piece. I produce a radio program in British Columbia and we would love to have you join us on the show to discuss this issue. My host has a very similar story and thinks a tons of our listeners can relate to your choice.

    If you are interested, please email

    Thank you

  23. BC March 5, 2013 at 4:46 pm #

    Thank you for your article! I’m 30 and am planning a nontraditional road to med school. Many doctors I’ve spoken to immediately bring up children as a reason not to go (though I’m not even sure I want them). It’s nice to hear firsthand that med school doesn’t preclude one from keeping their options open. You med school moms are an inspiration.

    • annaojesus March 6, 2013 at 7:37 pm #

      Thank you for your kind words! At the end of the day, I’m not sure I know anyone who is passionate about his/her career and thinks he/she gets enough time at home. It’s just tough. But if you want to do medicine, you absolutely should! And if you want a family, I think med school is a good time to do it–but, of course, I’m biased 🙂

  24. Jessica March 5, 2013 at 8:26 pm #

    I’m in school right now for my pre-med and since I took my time deciding what I wanted to do I’ll be 31 by the time I finish it. Which is why I decided to have my son the spring before I transferred to my new school from community college. He’s 9 months old now and even though it can be a struggle to figure out how to make everything work it’s worth it. Your NYT piece really reinforced my decision, which I needed since a lot of people in my life don’t really believe in me or take it seriously that I’m going to stay in school and not drop out to be a stay at home mom, so thank you.

    • annaojesus March 6, 2013 at 7:50 pm #

      Congratulations on the birth of your son! There is often one or two moms at the start of med school–I think it’s awesome! And I’m really happy that my piece helped reinforce your decision. I wish you the best of luck in the application process. I promise, med school is much more fun than premed!

  25. Holly March 5, 2013 at 8:36 pm #

    Found you through NYtimes. I had my first 3rd year and my 2nd 2nd year of my peds residency (both planned). Most of my attendings think i’m crazy as do my co-residents, but there’s never a good time and with enough support it’s totally do-able. My husband stays at home, which makes child-care especially when I’m on call much better. Yes, it does make residency harder when you would rather be at home with your baby than with some entilted jerk in the ED, but overall I wouldn’t change anything. We’re even planning a 3rd when I’m in fellowship 🙂

    • annaojesus March 6, 2013 at 7:53 pm #

      Hi Holly! I’m so happy for you and your family–it seems tough but that you’re making things work. I would love to be a pediatrician one day and, although having a kid in residency sounds particularly challenging, I’m so encouraged that you’re doing it. I wish you the best of luck in your career and in your efforts for a third during fellowship! Thanks so much for the comment!

  26. Michelle Cove March 6, 2013 at 10:26 am #

    Hi Anna, I found your NYT opinion essay fascinating. I’m a journalist and doc filmmaker, who made a documentary called Seeking Happily Ever After, about how women are redefining happily ever after – and this issue of “should I wait?” came up all the time among single 30-somethings. In fact, your brave letter inspired me to write a blog post about my own thoughts on the topic: Thank you having the guts to tell your story and get women thinking about this!

    • annaojesus March 6, 2013 at 8:01 pm #

      Hi Michelle, thank you so much for the comment! I would really like see Seeking Happily Ever After, and I’m looking forward to the release of One and Only. I’m flattered to have been included in your recent discussion, and I certainly agree with the conclusion. (On a side note, I particularly loved when you mentioned that parenting is hard enough when you really want to do it…and I’ve only just begun, so what do I know? :)) Thank you again!

  27. Shari Danielson March 6, 2013 at 10:49 am #

    My story is different — I didn’t go to medical school, and I was 41 when I got pregnant with my twin daughters — but the topic of waiting, or not, to have children is one that I just wrote about, too. Read Old Mom/Young Kids, which was published this week on I love being a part of the motherhood tribe that explores issues like this with courage and intelligence. Best of luck to you, Anna.

    • annaojesus March 6, 2013 at 8:09 pm #

      Thank you so much for sharing your story–I enjoyed reading your post! My mother was 24 when she had my eldest brother, and she was 40 when she had me. I had a very close relationship with her; I think we all felt like we were very close to her, she was a great mom. I liked how you articulately delineated some of the benefits and challenges of having kids in your early 40s. I’m glad you have such positive relationships with your daughters, and I wish you the best of luck as well!

  28. lamentingthelentil March 7, 2013 at 9:52 am #

    Anna, I want to thank you for bravely writing your story!. I write about my infertility (and its effects on my life and career, etc), too, but I do it with (half-hearted) anonymity. I can very much relate to your experiences. Initially, knowledge of a family history of the BRCA1 genetic mutation primed me for trying for a child earlier rather than later. I’m now in my late 20s and in graduate school. And our attempts at baby-making have led to the discovery that we fall within that “unexplained” category. On the career horizon are predoctoral internships and postdoctoral fellowships that we will likely have to move around the country to accommodate. If we are lucky enough to end up pregnant tomorrow, the timing would (by anyone’s book) be terrible. But, after much worried thought, we’ve come to the decision that we don’t have the luxury of waiting for the right time. If we want to try to become parents in this way, we need to try it now. These things aren’t often talked about in public. But they are difficult issues. And they are common. And so I commend you for putting these struggles on paper!

    • annaojesus March 7, 2013 at 3:59 pm #

      Dear Lentil,

      Thank you so much for your kind comment. I’m so sorry that you’re having to deal with unexplained infertility in addition to a recent miscarriage (information I saw on your blog). It seems like you and your husband have a lot on your plate. I wish you the absolute best of luck in both your personal and professional pursuits.

      It’s sad that infertility is something we are so guarded about publicly. I can’t speak for you (or anyone else, of course), but I felt a little ashamed…almost like I was a disappointment as a woman…which is clearly ludicrous. I hope that you feel none of those things.

      Again, I wish you the very best of luck! Thank you for your encouragement!


  1. where we are now | anna in med school - May 6, 2014

    […] would certainly love to be pregnant again, we know there are no guarantees, especially considering my challenges with infertility.  And, given the time and energy demands of residency, I think it would be best for our family if […]

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