“Grey’s Anatomy” recap (11.14): We can be heroes

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Alright, GreysGays, this episode is going to be a roller coaster of feels, so let’s get prepared. Stand with your feet shoulder width apart, your hands on your hips, and your head held high. Do you feel it? Do you feel that power and confidence flowing through you? Good, now let’s begin.

We start a little further back than we ended last week, with Amelia looking at Herman’s scans, knowing that the tumor is now entering the optic chiasm. Yet this time, we get to see how Amelia dealt with the news. Amelia’s voiceover tells us that in order to be a successful brain surgeon, you have to be willing to take risks. To try the impossible and be prepared to lose, but never fail. Amelia is fully aware that what she is about to do has a much higher chance of failure, but if she lets herself get mired in those odds, she’ll never be truly great. Owen approaches her to let her know that word of the surgery is out and the gallery will be full. She tells Owen to kindly leave her be so she can prep alone, so peace out, Chief. When he does, she walks into the bathroom, checks all the stalls to make sure she’s alone, and loses her shit for a moment. She stares at herself in the mirror, then gives herself a pep talk. “We are doing this, OK?”

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We watch Amelia in the scrub room as she watches Arizona comfort Herman before surgery. Steph comes in to scrub in and finds Amelia standing with her fists on her hips, staring off into space. When Steph inquires about Amelia’s odd pose, Amelia tells her that she’s being a superhero. There was a study that shows standing like a superhero, can actually make you feel like one. Steph shrugs like, what the hell, and strikes a pose, too. It’s pretty amazing when you think about it. We put our lives in the hands of these human doctors, and pray that they do have at least a little sliver of superhero in them. I’ll take a cocky doc, standing like Wonder Woman, any day.

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Meanwhile, Arizona, as stressed and nervous as she is for Herman, has to operate on Glenda Castillo’s baby. She and Bailey scrub in, all the while, Bailey asks where Herman is. Where Herman is, is on an operating table, in front of dozens of doctors, getting the first cut into her skull. Meredith and Maggie sit next to one another in the gallery, and Maggie tells her sister that she doesn’t get the appeal of watching a surgery. Meredith explains that it’s a real rush. She even brought snacks. Meredith gets really excited when it’s glo-time. Amelia injects a phosphorescent dye into the tumor, that will cause it to glow, and make it easier to see where the tumor ends and healthy tissue begins. It’s kind of like having a rave in your head! We see right away that a large portion of the top of Herman’s brain is glowing. That tumor is indeed massive monster.

In Arizona’s OR, things are not going as smoothly. She’s nervous, and Herman’s voice keeps yelling at her in her mind. Maybe she isn’t cut out for this. Maybe she doesn’t know what she’s doing, and Herman wasted all this time trying to teach her for nothing. When Bailey interrupts Herman’s yelling to yell at Arizona herself, she calls Arizona “half a fetal surgeon.” Somehow, being called out by Bailey, makes her even more resolute. Perhaps Herman has also conditioned her to thrive in the face of doubt.

In the ER, Jo is stuck working the PIT, while everyone gets to watch Amelia’s surgery. Callie confronts Owen about canceling one of her surgeries, but he did it because they needed the OR for Herman. Callie’s face drops, and you know that she’s thinking about Arizona in that moment.

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In Amelia’s OR, she asks Steph who will be subbing in for her during the extremely long surgery. She asks Amelia who her sub is, and when she admits she doesn’t have one, Steph vows to stick it out. too. These two make a great team, and Steph is already learning a lot from her new mentor.

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