Looking back on it, my career performing cardiac anesthesiology was one of a chance occurrence. As with many physicians my age, the road to my ultimate profession started early in my life. It’s likely that the astute reader may recognize some of this story, but it bears repeating for those who are still young and may not have their entire future mapped out. Beyond being a physician, my ultimate profession was certainly not charted.

In fact, when starting medical school, my plans were to be anything other than an anesthesiologist. My father, A.H. “Buddy” Giesecke, Jr., M.D., was a relatively well-known academic anes- thesiologist. My initial thoughts were, “How could I find a home in a profession where everyone might measure me against the yardstick my father created for himself?” Like many baby boomer children of successful parents, I...

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