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We're on Each Others' Team

Sarah, who lives in Manhattan, N.Y., went into labor in the late afternoon on a recent Monday. Her husband, Joel, was at work, so he called his brother, Michael, a fourth-year medical student, to accompany Sarah during the cab ride to the hospital. Sarah’s labor was progressing at light speed, while the rush-hour traffic on Madison Avenue slowed to a crawl. Sarah tried to be stoic, but the pain was becoming unbearable.
They were on 55th Street and Mount Sinai was still a long way off at 100th Street, so Michael instructed the cabdriver, Osama Hassan, to pull over to the side of the road. Michael opened the car door, and turned the back seat into a makeshift delivery room, while Osama diverted traffic and chased off gawkers.
With just one push from Sarah, baby William arrived amidst the honking chaos around him on the streets of New York City. “He’s perfect!” Sarah told the reporter from the New York Daily News. “I can’t believe that I get in a cab and 20 minutes later I’m delivering a baby. I’m not feeling nervous. I’m not feeling modest. I’m not feeling confused. My body is just in the mode,” she said.
Michael grew up in Kansas City and is a lifelong friend and classmate of our son Jimmy. Baby William’s grandfather, Dr. David Steinhaus, served as president of Saint Luke’s Cardiovascular Consultants for 10 years before taking a job with Medtronic, where he now serves as medical director and vice president.
The surreal story of William’s birth highlights some of America’s greatest strengths - our sense of national unity despite our remarkable diversity, and our willingness to come together to help others in need.
Face it - you’re a pack animal. Whether or not you realize it, you need your clan and your band of friends around you in order to really thrive. We humans are hard-wired to be highly social beings. Especially your heart and brain need the emotional and physical support of an inner circle - for receiving affection, kindness and compassion, and for giving your love and support to others. The American icon of the lone wolf, the Marlboro man out there conquering the world on his own is a dangerous myth. For virtually all members of the species homo sapiens, a solitary existence is fraught with misery and danger.
In Good Health,
James O'Keefe, MD
Picture Credit:  Creative Commons Pixabay