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- Anthony N. DeMaria, MD, MACC, Editor-in-Chief, Journal of the American College of Cardiology⁎ ()
- ↵⁎Address for correspondence to:
Dr. Anthony N. DeMaria, Editor-in-Chief, Journal of the American College of Cardiology, 3655 Nobel Drive, Suite 630, San Diego, California 92112
Since becoming the Editor-in-Chief of JACC some 10 years ago, I have written over 100 Editor's Pages. Although probably not apparent to readers, each requires and receives significant time and attention, usually with some prior research on the subject under consideration. Oftentimes the most difficult aspect of the work has been coming up with a worthwhile topic, and I continue to despair that the day may yet come when I am out of ideas. In any event, this summer has been extremely hectic, and filled with prolonged visits from grandchildren (and in some cases, their parents). Since I do not get to see my grandchildren very often, much less get to spend time with them, I have willfully devoted all my attention to them and neglected to prepare a proper article. Moreover, I have virtually no regret for doing this. So the only Editor's Page you will get this month is my unapologetic excuse for why I have been derelict in this responsibility.
Previous Editor's Pages have dealt with the demands of being a physician, and the toll it takes on family life. This is, of course, especially true for cardiovascular specialists, since life-threatening acute events are a frequent occurrence in our patients and require immediate attention. So early in our careers it is very easy to form a pattern wherein medicine takes predominance in our daily lives, and our wives and family come second. In my case, and I suspect many others, it is even worse. We enjoy our professional lives so much, and get so engaged in the activities, that we sometimes defer family life even when it is not absolutely necessary. The result is that we miss many events and experiences that are important in the lives of loved ones, and forego memories that we would have cherished for a lifetime.
Having missed many such experiences in the past, I had resolved not to let it happen again. My grandchildren have been growing up quickly, and in the recent past I had only seen them a couple of times each year. Therefore, when circumstances aligned that we could have both sets of children come and stay with us for extended periods of time, my wife and I jumped at the opportunity. And when they were in San Diego, I kept my work to an absolute minimum and even snuck away early on a couple of occasions. We went to the zoo, to Sea World and Legoland amusement parks, and of course, to the beach. My oldest grandson can now beat me in table tennis, and can almost catch bigger waves body surfing. We spent a lot of time talking, and getting to know each other better. I was busy from morning to night, working on everything except preparing an Editor's Page.
And so it is that there is no real Editor's Page this month. I am already a day late as I write this. However, I have had a heck of a summer, and one chock full of memories that I hope my grandchildren will recall as fondly as I will. Although I feel the guilt of not having fully fulfilled my editor's role, this feeling is more than offset by the satisfaction I received by being with my family. Perhaps there is a message in this somewhere after all. I am sure that most physicians, especially cardiologists, work much longer and harder than I do. I sure hope that the price they pay for doing this is not a neglect of their personal lives. As for me, there came a time when I had devoted enough effort to medicine, and needed to seize the opportunity to invest in my family. I had a great time doing it, have no regrets, and received some fantastic dividends. I can heartily recommend such behavior, and urge you all to try it yourselves.
- American College of Cardiology Foundation