My mommy is a doctor : A children’s book (and love story)

Moises Gallegos illustration
Moises Gallegos’ book is designed to illustrate his wife’s life as a doctor for their son, Noah.

MOISES GALLEGOS, an emergency medicine physician, has written a children’s book called My mommy is a doctor superhero.

Gallegos wrote the 13-page book in one sitting after he and his then 1-month-old son watched FLORA NUÑEZ GALLEGOS, now a pediatric cardiology fellow at Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford, drive away on her first day back to work.

With his son on one knee and an iPad on the other, Gallegos began drawing. In the book, his infant son is seen exploring his mother’s world. Noah peers over a table edge to see a stethoscope, reflex hammer and other clinical equipment and comments, “I’ve seen all the gadgets and tools she has … like a superhero toolbelt.” In another drawing, Noah tugs on the bottom of a physician’s white coat while trailing his stuffed rabbit and says, “She even has a superhero cape.”

Gallegos took his first drawing class his junior year of high school to meet creative arts requirements for college. But drawing quickly became an important tool for both learning and courtship, especially after Moises and Flora met at Stanford School of Medicine.

Moises finagled to sit at the same worktable with her, and they became study partners, then friends, connecting over similar backgrounds as first-generation Americans. When they studied, Moises often illustrated concepts and processes by drawing sketches that linked terms to images to cement the ideas in his memory. After he and Flora began dating, he would leave her notes with drawings when their schedules didn’t align.

Moises, who is never without his iPad and his drawing kit, continues to illustrate lessons for residents and sometimes patients. And he plans to draw more stories for his son as he grows up and begins to ask difficult questions about the world around him.

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