Things I Learned Growing Up With a Neurosurgeon Father

(Inspired by @lucy's Stage Manager Dad post)
  1. Motorcycles are the devil.
  2. People always ask doctors for medical advice, even if the ailment has nothing to do with their specialty.
  3. When people ask you for advice, be gracious and as helpful as you can be, even if it's not your specialty. Take the call, answer the email, because why not? Pay it forward when you can.
  4. Horseback riding is dangerous.
  5. If you do not have aneurysm, take two Tylenol and you'll be fine
    No sickness or ailment in our house was ever considered serious because...well...it was never an aneurysm.
  6. Aneurysms are less deadly than you'd think.
    Most of our dinner discussions were spent hearing about his cases. I could identify parts of the brain before I was 8.
  7. Skiing is also very dangerous
    Of course, we still skiied & then I broke my leg at 41. #irony
  8. Compassion makes you not just a better doctor but a better human.
    My dad was a total intimidating hardass with his residents but renowned for his bedside manner and approach with patients. Know when to be tough and when kindness is much more important.
  9. Sometimes, no way around it, life sucks.
  10. Sometimes, though, the tide can turn, and life can surprise you in the most delightful of ways.
  11. When people say, "I mean, it's not brain surgery," you realize they really have no idea.
  12. The ratio of cute neurosurgeons to less cute neurosurgeons is not high.
    Not my dad's generation. Gross. I was around for years of residents.
  13. You get dibs on the coolest show and tell items.
    I brought a real brain into school on no fewer than three occasions.
  14. Choose a steady, loyal partner who is by your side no matter what.
    Being the partner of a surgeon isn't the easiest of tasks. My dad worked endless hours, and sometimes, the work consumed him. He achieved incredible things in his life, and had some low moments too. My mom was there the whole time, raising us, supporting him, and I know that he would give her plenty of credit in his success. Choose well. It makes a difference.
  15. Work hard. Demand excellence from yourself.