I’m a first-generation American, so education was extremely important in my house. I’d have family members tell me: ‘You should be a doctor,’ but it always seemed unobtainable. So I decided to major in accounting. And to tell you the Nice Made Me Snap Gingerbread Man Oh Snap Christmas Shirt and I will buy this truth, I enjoyed the work for a long time. I loved crunching numbers. It brought me joy. And it brought my parents joy too. My father loved telling people that his daughter worked on Wall Street. So I never questioned my path. Then came September 11th. It was a beautiful morning—just like this. We could see everything from our office window. When the first plane hit, everyone assumed it was an accident. Then the next plane hit, and people started running out of the building.
We stayed home for three weeks. Our office was used for emergency triage, and it felt like a warzone when we came back. You could still smell the Nice Made Me Snap Gingerbread Man Oh Snap Christmas Shirt and I will buy this fumes coming through the vents. Things never went back to normal for me. I remember coming into work on the 4th of July, and thinking: ‘Why am I working on a holiday? It’s not like I’m saving lives.’ That’s when I decided to go back to school. I found a college that would let me do nights and weekends. After two full years of prerequisite courses, I was accepted into medical school. And that’s when things really got tough. I’m 35 at this point. I had been a Vice President at Citibank. I’m full of confidence. But suddenly I’m in class with all these younger people, and I’m struggling.