Twenty five years ago I entered a huge lecture hall at the University of Washington School of Medicine. The room was filled with Ivy Leaguers(which I was not) and the instructor of the Anatomy Class was a Hungarian with a strong accent who called on us by name because he had memorized our names and faces from our Med School entrance photos. (Yikes!) This class was followed by the Human Cadaver lab and “living anatomy” where the med students stripped to our skivvies and drew the position of organs on our bodies. 🙂
During my 3rd and 4th year clinical rotations, I rotated through Harborview where the wards were filled with people suffering from a new devastating infection called HIV. During my Pediatrics rotation at Seattle Childrens we were tasked in seeing kids who had suffered the ravages of the E Coli outbreak at Jack in the Box and saw many children admitted with complications of Haemophilus Influenza, Varicella (chickenpox) and Strep Pneumoniae which we rarely see in kids since the introduction of these vaccinations. All the while many of my college friends were starting work at a little company called Microsoft.
On the first day of Medical School I met a bold young fellow medical student, Mary. We were both anxious to prove ourselves and were certain we would cure cancer someday. 🙂 We became instant friends. Three residencies, four children, many moves and several years of practice later between us, we reconnected. How fun it has been to recall our medical school journey. Though we fell far short of curing cancer, it is still mind-blowing to step back and acknowledge the advances in medical treatment since that first day in the lecture hall together.
Needing a distraction from the hexagons I am sewing up, I grabbed one of my last vintage Hmong baby carriers and made her a bag. She had admired one I had made for a fundraiser and as her birthday approaches, I thought I would surprise her with one of her own.
I sure hope she likes it.