Thursday, November 25, 2010

Random Thoughts of Thankfulness.


I like having a day carved out for reflection about what's great about life. Big things, little things, obvious things, not-so-obvious things. . . .isn't it fun to reflect on them? Here are just a few of the ones I thought about today. . .


Thanksgiving 2010, Grady Hospital

My Thanksgiving day started out at Grady Hospital, so I decided that this is where I'd start my (random) list.

Although someone cursed me (all-the-way) out (yes, on Thanksgiving) in a Slavic language and I was asked by someone else to (please) come and look at their bowel movement ("here, in the bedside commode!"). . . . .there were still some good things.

One, I got a consult from and caught up with my favorite surgery resident, Carla H., who I learned is now a chief resident and a newlywed. Yay.

Next, I watched part of that show "The Doctors" with one of my sickest patients, who made me smile when I realized that he was definitely feeling better. He was well enough to ask me if I thought that was "that lady doctor's real hair or a hair-weave?" I said, "I think she just has long hair, sir." To which he retorted, "Naaahh, that ain't her hair, thaas one-a them hair-weaves."

Aaaaah. So thankful for Grady.


This is a picture of Harry skyping with his best friend, Shannon. Shannon is currently away from his family and is serving our country in Afghanistan, yet thanks to technology, got to sit up and shoot the breeze for nearly an hour with his best friend yesterday. Face to face. For free.

Totally thankful for technology.

Disney movies

Our 3D Thanksgiving.
(Yes, I do bring Popcorn cups to split the bag for the kids. And drink cups. Genius, I tell you.)

This is us at the new Disney movie "Tangled" today. Isaiah and I both got a bit choked up off of this one. (Love that Isaiah gets choked up at the right times during movies with me. We were both blubbering messes during Toy Story 3. I decided that this means he is a genius--not just sensitive.)

Zachary watched 75% of the 3D movie without his 3D shades (although has worn them for 75% of the time since we left the theater.) Harry dozed off twice. He would have gotten away with it behind those shades if he hadn't snored. His explanation for this?

"I didn't know this was a musical!"

Hello? Disney?

Family friendly and free Christmas Fun

After the movie -- good, clean (free) fun!

Atlanta has all kinds of fun (and free) holiday things for families to get into. We hung out in Atlantic Station this evening where we enjoyed the lovely Christmas tree (and the pack of screaming kids running laps around it.) The snow-making machine is also a hit. (Especially here in Georgia!)

Dad's and JoLai's health

Dad had a quadruple bypass almost eleven years ago. My sister, JoLai, had an awful battle with ulcerative colitis a few years back which was also managed surgically. The two of them walked 13.1 miles today. Their own half marathon to celebrate life, love, health, and stick-with-it-ness.

Some say 13 is an unlucky number. Today it represented the complete opposite of that.

The Armed Forces and Harry's Army Experience

Harry, the soldier? Two words: Bad. Ass.

Have I ever told you about how when I first met Harry, he told me that he was a Ranger? Ummm, well, did I also tell you about how I thought he meant. . .like. . .a Park Ranger? Well, turns out that what he meant was, like, an Army Ranger. As in jump out of a helicopter and kick somebody's butt Ranger. As in "Black Hawk Down," go after the worst bad guys ever, elite soldier Army Rangers. As in bad ass. As in (nothing against them at all but) not exactly the chase Yogi and Boo Boo, Park kind of Ranger.

Um yeah.

I'm thankful for all of the sacrifices that our service men and women make to protect us. We know first hand what that means. For those who don't, it sometimes means being away from home for over a year. Whether you like it or not. Whether you have kids or not. Or important things to do or not. Harry was in Korea when Shannon, his very best friend in the world, got married. Shannon, who was Harry's best man in our wedding. Shannon, who is Isaiah's godfather. And Shannon, who is a father and a husband and who is currently deployed to the middle east for one year. Now sure. . .missing a wedding is one thing. . .but being gone a full year when you have children? Now that's some sho' nuff sacrifice.(Reminds you to thank a soldier, doesn't it?)

Harry was honorably discharged shortly before we met, but the lessons he learned in the Army and especially in Ranger School will be with him forever. Lucky me--I get to be married to an officer and a gentleman without the fear all that goes with it these days.

Look up "how to be a man" in the dictionary, and you'll see Harry's picture. He's an excellent resource when it comes to leadership, and an awesome role model for sons.

Oh. . .and let me tell you--nobody keeps it realer than Army dudes.

"Sometimes you just have to 'shut your pie-hole' and do what needs to be done."

Words to live by, man.

My Medical Student Advisees

Small Group Alpha, Class of 2011

In 2007, I first met the seven students in my very first small group in the School of Medicine. As a part of the new curriculum unrolled that year, I joined a group of fifteen other faculty members each given the assignment of mentoring a small group of students from their first year to their final year of med school. In 2009, I took on my second small group. I affectionately dubbed them "Small Group Beta."

Small Group Beta, Class of 2013

I have seen these two groups of students twice weekly on average since their very first day of school, and am preparing to see my first group graduate this May. I have come to know each of them so well that they are absolutely like members of my family. How I lucked out and got the two best small groups in each class is beyond me.

I feel personally invested in their futures, and genuinely interested in their well-being. These fifteen human beings have given me a completely new definition of the words "job satisfaction." Hands down, this longitudinal teaching experience is one of the very best things I have ever done in my life-- professionally or personally.

(Almost) The Whole Brood at my house

Case in point. . . Thanksgiving text I received today from one of my advisees:

"Thanks for being you."

Love. Them. Love. This.


Four words: Love. Love. Love. It. The smell of it. The taste of it. It.

My blog

I love writing it. I love reading it. And someone told me that they felt encouraged after reading it sometimes. Wow.

According to my little stats counter, more than three hundred folks stopped by to pay it a visit today. On Thanksgiving day, no less. Talk about something to be thankful for.

Now that encouraged me.

Team Manning and iMovie

I watched this several times today. In fact, I watch it any time that I need to be reminded to make love a verb. I call it my "video quilt." It was made from all the "scraps" of videos that I'd taken over a few years that I couldn't quite figure out how to make meaningful. Thanks to the wonders of Apple computers, it's as simple as iMovie.


So much to be thankful for. Not enough blog (or time) to include it all. I think that's a good problem to have, don't you?

Hope your day was full of peace and reflections, too. And I hope you didn't put too much into or let too much fly out of your "pie-hole." :)


  1. Hi DR. Im in South Africa and here we dont have a designated day in the calender for Giving Thanks.The whole of last week and part of this week I was on training for a new computer system, and the guys that were training us were from America (i think Chicago), they were excited to go home this Wednesday so that they can be with their families on Thanks Giving. At that moment I made a mental note of all the things that I should be greatful for,I couldnt believe how ignorant I was of all the blessings I have received. As from then I make a point of waking up in the morning and write down things that Im thankful for. I thank God for bringing the"american guys" my way

  2. Your sons are as cute as all get-out. :)

  3. Happy Thanksgiving Day!! Thanks for sharing. Davita

  4. This is a beautiful list.
    Happy Holiday.

  5. A beautiful post and one wonderful homemade movie! :)))

  6. Thank you for recognizing the sacrafices that our soldiers make. Over this Thanksgiving weekend I went to Arlington National Cemetary with my son to visit the grave of one of his good friends. In 2006 while they were both deployed in Iraq this friend volunteered to fill in on a mission so my son could see a medic about an injured knee. This friend didn't make it back from the mission. My son still carries a lot of guilt for that. They all sacrafice so much of themselves and most of it we at home never see, never hear about it. It helps when they are openly thanked for their service. So thank you for lifting up men like my son.

  7. Kim,

    I simply love the video, so sweet. Such a touch of MOTHER!

    Love Ya

    Crystal/ Front INC


"Tell me something good. . . tell me that you like it, yeah." ~ Chaka Khan

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