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On Being a Doctor |

The Birthday Gift

Abigail A.D. Ford, MD
[+] Article, Author, and Disclosure Information

From Columbia University Medical Center, New York, NY 10032.

Requests for Single Reprints: Abigail A.D. Ford, MD, Columbia University Medical Center, PH 16-29, 622 West 168th Street, New York, NY 10032; e-mail, abigailadford@gmail.com.

Ann Intern Med. 2009;150(4):279-280. doi:10.7326/0003-4819-150-4-200902170-00013
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I spent the evening of my 27th birthday working overnight on the labor floor. I had been an intern for just over a month and had begun to feel the slight, constant tug of fatigue and stress on my spirit. I had emerged from medical school with an abundance of excitement and confidence about my career. This attitude was rather easy to maintain in the face of my senior-year schedule, which included more vacation and travel than I had in my life. When 1 July, the fateful day when a new class of interns joins the medical community, arrived, I didn't understand what all the fuss was about. Internship would be great. All the fun of learning about patients and diseases I had enjoyed in medical school, with a little more responsibility. A paycheck. What's not to like?





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