Surgery is a solo act. We step up to the table with a scalpel in our hand and we go it alone. The isolation can start to define you, because even though you're surrounded by a team, what it really comes down to is your training. Your choices. Your wits. Your hands. Your stitch. It comes down to just you. Surgeons are trained to go it alone, to be solo artists. To be mavericks both in and out the OR. But the truth is we are never alone. We stand on the shoulders of those who came before us. We stand side by side with the colleagues who have supported us. Prepared us. For the moment that every surgeon lives for. When it all comes down to your training. Your choices. Your wits. Your hands. Your stitch. When it all comes down to you.

Go It Alone is the 20th episode of the tenth season and the 216th overall episode of Grey's Anatomy.

Short SummaryEdit

Cristina enlists Meredith to help her prepare an acceptance speech for her possible Harper Avery win and while Owen offers to attend the ceremony with her, she insists on going alone. Meanwhile, Derek feels overwhelmed between his responsibilities at home and at the hospital. April and Jackson come to a disagreement on children and religion, and Callie and Arizona try to reconnect in their marriage.

Full SummaryEdit

Cristina is packing for her trip to Boston. Owen offers his help, but Cristina refuses. He asks her if she has written her speech. She says that she and Meredith are going to write it. He says he's going to come. She asks if he means out for drinks, because he's working. He says he means to Boston. She thinks he's too busy, but he'll work it out so she doesn't have to go alone. She says she's only going to be gone for a day. She asks him he if he got a haircut to change the subject.

Jo and Alex discuss how he's doing nights at the hospital so that he can work at Oliver's practice during the day. He still hasn't told Arizona. Jo says he's a double agent. They see Callie and Arizona at the desk and say hi. Callie tells him to back off because Arizona is off duty. He says he was just going to say Arizona looks nice. Arizona thanks him and tells him it's date night. They've been on opposite shifts for weeks and they need to sit down together and share a meal so they can remember why they chose to get married so they don't kill each other. Alex assures them that he has it under control and tells them to have a good night. Arizona tells him he's amazing as she and Callie leave. Alex comments that she has no idea how amazing he really is.

Jackson comes up to attend to Jill Kasliner who was bit by her dog. Jill is in the ER with her parents Nicole and Kyle. Both Jill and Nicole are deaf. Jackson examines the wound and determines that he can repair it with just stitches. Kyle and Nicole fight over whether or not to get rid of the dog, who bit her because she was pulling on his tail after previously growling to warn her that he didn't like it, though she was unable to hear that. Jackson asks them if they've considered a cochlear implant for Jill. Kyle says they're not interested. Jackson continues that Jill is a perfect candidate, but Nicole starts to yell that her daughter is not diseased. He apologizes and goes to clean Jill's wound.

Richard and Meredith are explaining to Adam Keller that he experienced a common post-op complication after gastric bypass surgery, but they are confident that they were able to fix his problem. Meredith asks if he has someone there with him. He says his wife just dropped him off. She'd stayed with him the first time and he figured he could spend a few days in the hospital by himself. Richard assures him that he won't be alone, that there will be someone there to monitor him all night.

Out in the hall, Richard pressures Meredith to offer to stay overnight with Adam as he is at risk for post-op complications. Meredith says she has plans, but he says all-nighters are the best experiences for doctors. She says she just did one last Monday. He says then she's well-rested and tells her goodnight before leaving. Meredith sees Nurse Kathleen at the desk and asks her to ask Derek to pick the kids up at day care.

Derek is listening to a Russian man speak while a translator translates. Owen comes in. The translation doesn't make much sense, so Derek mutes it and tells Owen that even when he understands, he doesn't understand. Owen tells him that he pushed Nova Jenkins' hippocampectomy again. He says he's also referred to cases to the Cleveland Clinic. It's not okay. Derek has also cancelled lectures for the residents. Owen knows something has to give, but it can't be surgery and it also can't be teaching. Derek says that the lectures will happen and to schedule Nova's surgery for tonight and he'll handle it. Kathleen comes in and gives him Meredith's message and he says he'll handle that, too.

Bailey is talking to Braden's parents. The bone marrow extraction went well and now she has to prepare the virus to be transfused back into Braden's body. They ask her to explain the use of HIV to them again. She's using deactivated HIV to transfuse a virus carrying the enzyme Braden needs. They trust her to do what Braden needs. Bailey tells them that Braden will probably sleep for the rest of the night and they say sweet dreams. Bailey tells him to dream of replicating genes, but his mom says to dream about bunnies.

Cristina find Meredith still in scrubs and asks why she's not dressed. Meredith confesses that she has to stay to monitor her patient. She tells Cristina to be thankful and be funny. Cristina sees Alex and asks him to go get drinks, but he can't because he's working. Then she sees April and starts to ask, but thinks better of it.

Cristina walks in to the McNeils' room and checks in. All three kids are on tablets while Sabine folds laundry. Cristina tells them she'll be gone for 24 hours and says to call Owen if they need anything. Jon and Sabine get in a fight and Cristina breaks it up, telling Jon to go somewhere else for a while. The kids are all worked up from witnessing the fight.

Stephanie says the other residents can't go out together because karaoke is her thing. Ben will also be missing out as he's coming off a 32-hour shift. The others make fun of him, calling him "Gramps." Derek comes in and tells them to put their scrubs back on so he can teach them.

Bailey takes a tray full of vials and puts it into a deep freeze to incubate overnight. Ben comes in to tell her he can't go home. She wants to stay all night to watch the virus, but he tells her to go home and sleep because he can't.

Cristina is practicing her speech as she plays Jenga with Link and Frankie while Ivy rests. They say her speech is braggy. Owen comes in. Cristina tells him about the fight the McNeils had. She asks him to help her write her speech. Braden's RC car comes in and he asks Frankie to play Hide and Seek. Frankie asks Cristina if she can and Cristina allows her 15 minutes. Owen leaves, refusing to listen to Cristina practice.

Derek takes the residents into Nova's hospital room, where her best friend, Chelsea Ansell is waiting to yell at Derek for rescheduling her surgery so many times. He apologizes and says they'll be operating tonight, though as it'll be 1:30 AM, it'll actually be morning. Chelsea is glad to hear that.

Derek gets a page from the ER and tells the residents to come along.

Meredith goes into Adam's room and sees that he has a GI bleed. She asks for a second-year resident to scrub in on the surgery, but Nurse Ruth informs her that they're all with Derek. She's surprised to hear that he's still in the hospital and wonders where their kids are.

Jackson wonders how the Kasliners could choose not to have a cochlear implant put into Jill. He says if she were their kid, she'd have had it years ago. April asks what if she feels differently. When he shrugs it off, she tells him not to dismiss her feelings. She would want to immerse their kid in the deaf culture, where they consider deafness to be a blessing.

Sabine comes back with her coffee, shocked to see Ivy unstable. Frankie asks if everything's okay and then asks if she can keep playing. Sabine tells her to stay close. Cristina tells Sabine to get Jon back to the hospital because she suspects that Ivy is rejecting her donor heart.

Meredith is operating on Adam as the scrub nurse continuously calls the house and Derek's cell phone, trying to locate their kids.

Derek is in the ER, having the residents practice on a recently deceased patient because it gives them the chance to work on an actual brain. Nurse Howard comes in and tells Derek that Meredith needs to speak to him. Derek asks where he left his phone and lab coat.

Ben attempts to close his eyes for 30 seconds to rest.

Baby Bailey spits up on Arizona's date night dress. Callie comes in and says she cancelled their reservation and says Derek owes them. Arizona said he offered to take Sofia for a weekend so they could have a getaway, which she is holding him to. She hands Bailey off to Callie so she can clean up her dress. Callie forgot what it was like to have a baby that small. She wonders how they got through it. Arizona reminds her that they had Mark. They miss Mark. Callie says three's a lot, which makes her think they should stop after she has the next one. Arizona questions her use of "I," but Callie says theirs, but she said "I" because she'll be the one having it. Arizona didn't think they'd decided that, but Callie didn't think there was anything to decide.

The residents, minus Ben, are staring in wonder at Mr. Quaid's scans, which show a pair of shears lodged in his forehead. Stephanie says it's disgusting. Derek calls her out on it. She apologizes to him, but he says she needs t apologize to Mr. Quaid. She turns to where he's lying on a hospital bed only a few feet away and apologizes to him. He says it's fine because he thinks it's disgusting, too. He asks how they'll get the shears out. Derek says it'll be a very careful, very precise yank. Jo immediately offers to be the one to do it.

Cristina is doing a biopsy on Ivy's heart. She asks if she has to acknowledge the losers when she wins because she only has five minutes and she doesn't want to waste it on people she doesn't know. Owen says it's a courtesy and notes that she's nervous. He again offers to go with her so she won't be alone. She says she wants to go alone. He asks if she thinks she'll lose and she asks him to let her go alone.

Leah is attempting to pull the shears out. Derek says the risk of further damage is minimal, so pull it out. She isn't getting anywhere, so Jo steps in to pull them out. She does so quickly. Leah thinks there will be a massive bleed, but there isn't. Derek sends them to eat and refresh themselves before meeting them in the OR for Nova's surgery after he finishes up with Mr. Quaid. Meredith comes in and asks Derek where the kids are.

April scolds Jackson for walking away while she's talking. He just wants to go to bed. He says it's irrelevant since the odds of their child being born deaf are slim. She says that's not the point. She says he thinks they're stupid and bad parents because they're making a different choice than he would. She says it means he thinks she's ridiculous, too. She asks him to replace cochlear with christening or Bible studies or prayer and then tell them it has nothing to do with them

Sabine is calling Jon, leaving messages about what's happening with Ivy and saying she can't find Frankie. Alex comes by and asks her about that. She asks if he knows where Frankie is. He goes to Braden, who directs his RC car to where Frankie normally hides. They find her slumped against the wall, passed out.

Owen and Alex search for Frankie. They find her with a faint pulse.

Owen comes in while Cristina's scrubbing out. He tells her that Frankie's in heart failure. She needs an LVAD.

Meredith talks to Derek about not knowing where the kids were. He says Richard and Owen accused him of dropping the ball. Meredith says he dropped the kid ball because he has to tell her where the kids are and he didn't. The kids are fine. He just forgot to make a phone call.

Arizona is in bed, on the phone with Meredith, telling her that the kids are fine and they're asleep now. She hangs up and cuddles in to sleep. Callie turns the bedside lamp on and says she wouldn't just assume that Arizona didn't want to carry their baby. She took Arizona saying she couldn't take another loss as her not wanting to try to carry again. She was worried her asking again would make Arizona too sad. Arizona says that was a year ago. There was a lot going on and maybe she's changed her mind. Callie asks if she has. She says that if it'll make Arizona happy, it'll make her happy. Arizona asks if Callie thinks she should.

Derek is talking to the residents about what he's doing. He asks if they have questions. They all try to ask at once. He says they'll take turns stepping up to the microscope and asking one question each. Jo asks where Ben is, but Leah says it means more time for them, so who cares.

Ben is sleeping, leaning up against a wall.

Jackson and April continue to fight. April says her religion defines her. It's who she is. Jackson says he loves her anyway. She is upset because he likes her despite her beliefs. She says he doesn't accept her. He tolerates her. She says he doesn't have faith. He says he has faith in medicine and helping people, but she says that's not faith. He wants her to admit that he thinks she ridiculous to believe. He says she is ridiculous. Her god is no more real than their imaginary child who is deaf. He apologizes and says it doesn't mean he doesn't respect her. She pities him because he can't have faith in things he can't see. April suggests that they just go to bed.

Frankie's LVAD surgery is going well. Meredith comes in, surprised to see Alex. She asks Cristina if she finished her speech. Cristina has decided to wing it. Alex says he figured he'd read about Cristina winning a Harper Avery, not operate with her the night before she won it. Meredith asks when they last pulled an all-nighter together and suggests it was third year. Cristina says now Meredith has two kids, Meredith says Cristina's about to win a Harper Avery, and Alex ... Alex says he has the private practice. They're surprised. He asks them not to tell Arizona about it. He says it's a lot of money. He's not from a rich family and he's not going to win any Harper Averys.

Callie questions if it's silly. Arizona says flipping a coin to decide feels right. Heads for Callie, tails for Arizona. Whatever it says, that's what they do. Callie flips the coin. While it's in the air, Arizona panics and tells Callie to do it. She apologizes and tells Callie she doesn't want to do it. She says when Callie did it last time, it was so beautiful. She wants Callie to do it and asks if she wants to. Callie would love to. They kiss. Bailey cries over the baby monitor and Callie offers to flip her for who has to go get him.

Owen and Cristina break the news to Sabine: all three kids are on the transplant list. They're freaking Ivy with anti-rejection meds and the LVAD is working well for Frankie for now. Owen offers to call Jon, but Sabine says he hasn't picked up all day and his voicemail box is full. She says it breaks couples apart to have sick kids. They didn't think it would happen to them, but they also didn't think they'd be facing three dying kids. She asks if this is what it looks like, him being gone?

Derek is talking the residents about Nova's surgery. He asks a question, which Jo answers though Stephanie is at the microscope. He has Stephanie step back and Jo step up. He asks her two questions which she easily answers. He sends her back again, because no one likes a know it all. Leah steps up and instinctively reaches for the wrong tool, possibly damaging Nova's brain permanently. He has her step back and asks them all to be quiet.

Owen, Cristina, and Meredith wait for Cristina's cab. Meredith gets paged away. Owen is concerned about the cab being late, but Cristina says she has time. Owen gets paged. He says he can stay, but she says he doesn't want to ignore that page. He wants to see her off. She says she's only going to be gone for one day. She can send herself off. She sends him to go answer his page and waits alone until her cab pulls up.

Richard walks into the hospital to see Ben sleeping. He wakes Ben and says they have on-call rooms for that. He asks Ben about his all-night surgery with Derek. Ben runs off, panicked.

Derek is trying to wake Nova, who isn't responding. Chelsea is also worried about it. Eventually, Nova responds weakly. Leah looks relieved. Derek says Leah will monitor Nova, but she should rest now.

In the hallway, Derek tells Leah that they don't cry in hallways. They have stairwells for that. Leah is relieved. Derek says she got lucky. Nothing bad happened, but it could have. If it had, it would have been on her. He says to remember the feeling, the what if, not the relief, so she won't make that mistake again. Ben comes up and asks what he missed, but Leah just walks away.

Owen brings Jon into the kids' hospital room. Jon apologizes. He fell asleep. He went to sit in the car to calm down, but he fell asleep and his phone died. He says he never should have left. He should have been there with her so she wouldn't be alone. He tells her he loves her and they hug.

Jo is tying Alex's tie, asking him how he does it. She says she feels tingly and hollow after just one all-nighter and asks him if he ever gets that feeling. He doesn't answer because he's asleep. She wakes him with a kiss on the cheek.

Derek is on the phone. He hangs up when Meredith comes in. He apologize again for dropping the ball. She says that the kid ball can't be dropped. He says nothing catastrophic has happened yet, but it could, so something needs to change. They're juggling too much. He's not saying it has to be her, but something has to go. She says she knows, but doesn't know what to do. She asks him to take the kids for the day. He says yes and he'll update her on their position hourly.

Arizona answers the door, with Bailey on her hip and Callie right behind her. It's April, asking if she can stay with them for a while. They invite her in.

Bailey tells Ben about her wonderful night of sleep and wonderful breakfast. She had time to read the paper, too. She's off to check on her virus and says now it's his turn to get sleep. She left his favorite tea on the counter. He tells her he managed to squeeze in a power nap and he's about to scrub in with Callie. She calls him a super man.

In Boston, Cristina mingles with people in the lobby. She meets two excited doctors, who ask her about her work. Cristina is overwhelmed until a chiming notifies them that it's time for the ceremony. As they file in, she pulls out her phone to call Meredith. She says she made a mistake and Meredith should be there and they should be drunk. And Owen should be there, to hold her purse and remind her to wear deodorant because she forgot and now she stinks. Meredith asks where she is. Cristina says never mind and goes in. She looks for her table and sees Meredith and Owen waving her over. She is happy to see them. Cristina has a speech that she wrote on the plane in six hours with a tiny bottle of tequila.

Catherine Avery comes out to present the award. She gives a speech about the Harper Avery Award and then presents the award to Dr. Ronald Myers from Johns Hopkins Hospital. Cristina is shocked, but starts to clap after a long pause.


  • Meredith Grey
  • Cristina Yang
  • Alex Karev
  • Miranda Bailey
  • Richard Webber
  • Callie Torres
  • Owen Hunt
  • Arizona Robbins
  • April Kepner
  • Jackson Avery
  • Jo Wilson
  • Shane Ross
  • Stephanie Edwards
  • Leah Murphy
  • Derek Shepherd
  • Catherine Avery
  • Ben Warren
  • David and Teresa Morris
  • Sabine McNeil
  • Jon McNeil
  • Nicole Kasliner
  • Kyle Kasliner
  • Nova Jenkins
  • Chelsea Ansell
  • Mr. Quaid
  • Adam Keller
  • Nurse Ruth
  • Nurse Kathleen
  • ER Nurse Howard
  • Excited Doctor Robert Bonocore
  • Excited Doctor #2
  • Francesca McNeil
  • Ivy McNeil
  • Link McNeil
  • Braden Morris

Main CastEdit

Guest StarsEdit


Medical NotesEdit

Jill KaslinerEdit

  • Diagnosis:
    • Facial Laceration
  • Treatment:
    • Stitches

Jill Kasliner came into the ER with a facial laceration from a dog bite. It was able to be repaired with stitches.

Adam KellerEdit

  • Diagnosis:
    • GI Bleed
    • VFIB
  • Treatment:
    • Massive transfusion
    • Gastrotomy

Adam Keller had had gastric bypass surgery. However, his stomach and intestines had stretched out, a common complication. Meredith Grey and Richard Webber had to take him into surgery to repair the damage. Then he had to stay in the hospital overnight to be monitored. Overnight, he developed a GI bleed, so he was taken to the OR for a massive blood transfusion. Meredith was later sent a page that he was in VFIB, but the outcome of that is unknown.

Nova JenkinsEdit

  • Diagnosis:
    • Epilepsy
  • Treatment:
    • Hippocampectomy

Nova Jenkins was in the hospital for a hippocampectomy to treat her epilepsy, which was causing multiple seizures every day. In surgery, Leah Murphy made a mistake that could have left Nova permanently brain damaged, but fortunately, Nova woke up after surgery and everything was fine.

Braden MorrisEdit

  • Diagnosis:
    • Severe Combined Immunodeficiency
  • Treatment:
    • Gene therapy

Miranda Bailey had the idea to treat Braden's SCID using deactivated HIV to spread the ADA enzyme throughout his body.

Ivy McNeilEdit

  • Diagnosis:
    • Headache
    • Donor Heart Rejection
  • Treatment:
    • Anti-rejection meds
    • Being put back on the transplant list

Ivy had a headache after watching her parents fight. She later spiked a fever and Cristina took a biopsy which confirmed that Ivy was rejecting her donor heart. She had to be put back on the donor list.

Francesca McNeilEdit

  • Diagnosis:
    • Heart failure
  • Treatment:
    • LVAD

Frankie collapsed while playing hide and seek with Braden Morris. She was in heart failure. Cristina and Alex operated to insert an LVAD.

Lincoln McNeilEdit

  • Diagnosis:
    • End-stage heart failure
  • Treatment:

Link continued to wait for a donor heart to become available.

Mr. QuaidEdit

  • Diagnosis:
    • Sharp force trauma to the forehead
  • Treatment:
    • Controlled extraction

Mr. Quaid came into the ER with a pair of scissors stuck in his forehead. He was taken to the OR for a controlled extraction, which was successful.

ER PatientEdit

  • Diagnosis:
  • Treatment:

In the ER, Derek used a recently deceased patient to teach the residents.

Callie's PatientEdit

  • Diagnosis:
  • Treatment:
    • Shoulder replacement

Ben mentioned scrubbing in on a shoulder replacement with Callie.


Song Performer Scene

Capital Cities

(originally by Madonna)

  • Owen tells Cristina he wants to come to Boston with her.
  • Jo asks Alex when he's going to tell Arizona about his new job at the private practice.
"Every Little Thing She Does is Magic" 

Sleeping at Last

(originally by The Police)

  • Ben takes a nap during Derek's surgery.
  • April accuses Jackson of thinking her faith in religion is ridiculous.
"Something About You"

Cary Brothers (feat. Laura Jansen)

(originally by Level 42)

  • Derek advises Leah.
  • Jon apologizes to Sabine. 
  • Alex falls asleep as Jo knots his tie.
  • Meredith and Derek realize they need to change something as they're juggling too much.
  • Meredith asks Derek to take the kids today.
  • April asks if she can stay with Arizona and Callie for a while.
  • Bailey rejoices Ben.
"Everybody Wants to Rule the World"

Aron Wright

(originally by Tears for Fears)

  • Owen and Meredith surprise Cristina the award dinner.
  • Catherine announces the winner of the award.

Notes and TriviaEdit

Grey's Anatomy 10x20 Promo "Go It Alone" (HD)

Grey's Anatomy 10x20 Promo "Go It Alone" (HD)

  • This episode's title originated from the song Go It Alone, originally sung by Beck Hansen.
  • This episode scored 8.45 million viewers.
  • The table read for this episode took place on February 25, 2014.
  • Filming for this episode was scheduled from February 27 to March 12, 2014.


Episode StillsEdit


Meredith: Cristina?
Cristina: Mer? I made a mistake. I don't wanna be here alone. You should be here. We should be drunk. Why aren't we drunk? And I want Owen here. He could, like, you know, hold my purse, and tell me things and oh my God... Tell me to wear deodorant. I forgot deodorant and now I stink and...
Meredith: Where are you? Are you at the table?
Cristina: You know what? Forget it. I'm fine.

Catherine: The Harper Avery Award celebrates those who have destroyed the obstacles, altered the direction, and invented the future of how we are to live and heal and thrive. The surgeons in this room are redefining medicine for generations to come. And so I am very pleased to announce this year's winner. The Harper Avery Award goes to doctor Ronald Myers, Johns Hopkins!

Alex: Hey Robbins!
Callie: Back away, Karev, she's off duty.
Alex: I was gonna say you look nice, but whatever.

Callie: I never would have just assumed you didn't want to carry our child.
Arizona: Hmm hmm.
Callie: You said: "I can't take another loss. It's too hard." I took that as a no. And I was afraid that if I asked you again it would make you too sad.
Arizona: That was a year ago and there was a lot going on, I mean, maybe I changed my mind.
Callie: Have you?
Arizona: I don't know. Maybe.
Callie: Arizona, if it would make you, it would make me happy.
Arizona: Yeah but.. Do you think I should?

Meredith: Alex, you're still here?
Alex: Night shift. You're still here?
Cristina: Yes, we're all still here obviously.
Meredith: Did you finish your speech?
Cristina: Nah. I'm just gonna wing it.
Meredith: It's weird. They've made their decision. Your name is typed on a piece of paper in an envelope.
Alex: I know. I always figured I'd read about you winning a Harper Avery. I didn't think I'd be operating with you the night before you won it.
Meredith: When is the last time we all pulled an all-nighter together? Third year?
Cristina: Oh God, look at us now. You got two kids.
Meredith: I mean, you're about to win a Harper Avery! And Alex...
Cristina: Oh, sad.

Derek: Murphy, doctors don't cry in hallways. We have stairwells for that.
Leah: I'm sorry, I'm just so relieved.
Derek: Yeah, you got lucky today. Nothing bad happened, but it could have. And if it had, it would have been on you. So remember that feeling, that what if, not the relief. It'll keep you from making that mistake again.

Cristina: Why aren't you dressed?
Meredith: Wow, I can't, I can't go. I have to babysit my bypass patient.
Cristina: Oh come on! Tomorrow everything changes! I won't have time to talk to you. I'll be busy being better than you.
Meredith: Good thing it's not gonna go to your head. Oh, the speech. Thank people, and be funny, because people love funny.
Cristina: There's nothing funny about babies with HLHS! You're not help to me! (notices Alex) Alex! Tonight is your lucky night because I will go drinking with you.
Alex: Can't. Working.
Cristina: Kepner!
April: Yeah?
Cristina: Never mind.

See AlsoEdit

A complete overview of this episode's crew can be found here.

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