Happy to Announce…

A little over a week ago, I wanted to give yall an update that I have just been granted my full license to practice medicine in Georgia by the Georgia Composite Medical Board. I was going to talk about how licensure was a lengthy process that requires successful completion of all three United States Medical Licensing Exams (USMLE), as well as completion of intern year of residency, and how before full licensure, residents had to work under a temporary license. However, I did not get to write that post because that very next day, I encountered an even bigger news to share. I am happy to announce that Irene and I are now parents again, to our new daughter, Aria Serafina Ho, born September 2, 2016 in Macon, Georgia, in the same hospital and same city as her daddy.

Our first photo together as a family of four
Our first photo together as a family of four

It has been quite a week, with our 5-year wedding anniversary on August 31, Irene’s birthday on September 1 (and the news of my licensure), and now Aria’s birth on September 2. I took a week off work to take it all in. Now is the time that Irene and Lyra needs me the most, as Irene recovers from her repeat C-section and as our first daughter Lyra is figuring out what is going on, like why mommy now has a big boo-boo on her belly and who this new baby is. While Irene focuses her attention on nursing Aria, I put more attention to making sure Lyra understands that she is loved. Being two years old, Lyra has not yet fully understood that Aria is here to stay, and has been slow at warming up to her.  There are times where she struggles to hold onto that attention, showing us her boo-boos and wanting kisses to make her boo-boos feel better, and even regressing, such as wanting to go back into the crib to sleep, even though we have long transitioned her to a bed. However, we do our best to empower Lyra to be the big sister that she is now responsible to be, encouraging her to behave well and be a role model for her little sister.

When choosing a name, we wanted a name that would complement Lyra’s name. First, let me give you a little bit of background on Lyra’s name. Lyra is Greek for “lyre” or “harp,” and it is also a constellation. In the northern hemisphere where we live, the Lyra constellation appears in the sky starting in April, which is when our first daughter Lyra was born. So on Lyra’s birthday, you can look up at the sky and see a pattern of stars shaped like a harp, the Lyra constellation. For our new daughter, we also wanted a similarly musical or astronomical name. We also wanted a name that was short and simple to say. Aria sounded like a good fit. Aria, which is Italian for “air,” is a solo song in an opera, probably named for the airy and celestial way it was originally intended to be sung. It is our hope that our daughters will grow up to be musical (or at least expressive in some way), and have a love for science, like their parents.

We are grateful to have so many family and friends visit us this week, offering their help and support, and feeding us. My parents took care of Lyra while Irene and I were in the hospital. Irene’s mother and father came up from Valdosta to help as well, bringing with them lots of good invigorating soups for Irene to drink while she recovers. My younger brother came down from San Francisco and my older brother came up from Florida with his family to visit. Irene’s sister came down from Atlanta, and her uncle and aunt came over from Hong Kong. A lot of our coworkers and friends came to visit us in the hospital, including the family medicine team. It has truly been an awesome week.



family medicine team with Aria.
Family medicine team with Aria.
My parents with their new granddaughter.
My parents with their new granddaughter.
Irene's parents meet their new granddaughter
Irene’s parents meet their new granddaughter
Aria meeting her cousin James
Bringing Aria to her home for the first time. Pictured are my parents, younger brother, my older brother, sister-in-law, niece, and nephew.