Gift of Life

Recently our M1 class held a Gift of Life Ceremony to honor the people who donated their bodies to our school in order for us to learn the intricacies of human anatomy. Many of my classmates spent time organizing the beautiful ceremony along with our professor Dr. Shana Williams, and we were all able to reflect on our experiences in the anatomy lab. I wrote this poem for our donor ceremony to express my debt of gratitude to my own donor. (Featured Image by M1 Raychel Simpson)

Dear Donor B,

I’m a medical student and I’m here to get to know you.

In this unfairly one-sided introduction,
I’m very honored to have your un-acquaintance.

Very honored to meet the parts of you
Never known to you, or anyone else:

The ropes that close the curtains in the opera house.
The wheels that whir inside the music box.

It’s so strange to know you so well and not at all.

You taught my fellow students and I about your legs,
but I don’t know if you ever liked to dance.

You introduced us to your hands,
But I don’t know the lives you’ve touched.

You showed us your heart,
But I don’t know who it loved.

I’m so grateful you gifted your goodbye
So that we could all say hello.

And because of all that you taught us
You will live on in all our other hellos
Every time we knock on a door, enter, smile and say

I’m your doctor, and I’m here to get to know you.



Carrie Bailes

I’m a lifelong South Carolina resident originally from Clover, SC.  In my undergraduate years I spent my days going to the beach and frequently tripping over cobblestones while attending the College of Charleston. I graduated in 2015 with a degree in Biology and Neurosciences and spent a year playing with rats in a neuroscience addiction lab at MUSC before continuing my education. I’m thrilled to continue my tour of the state in Greenville and am enjoying all the great spots to read outside here. I believe USCSOMG has an untouchable sense of community and dedication to patient care, and I’m so grateful and excited to be a part of the class of 2020!