Friday, August 1, 2014

Good Random Morning.

"When you look good, you feel good. When you feel good, you play good. 
When you play good, they pay good."  

~ Deion Sanders

You know I want to write about our event last night, but my head is still spinning from the excitement. Let me just say instead that it was a smashing success. Each of them, all of it just great. More on that very soon, okay?

My hands and mind need to be on this keyboard writing. About what? No real definite thing. So you all know what that means, right? You guessed it. A post of random stuff on my mind. Usually of first world, non-monumental unimportance.

That's always my disclaimer. Ha.

I'm starting wards today. The service is pretty big to begin with which means there are a lot of patients. We're admitting today, too, which somewhat adds a bit of insult to the injury. That is, if you think of it that way. I remember when I was a resident and my fellow resident and I decided that we'd take a positive view on getting smashed with tons of patients. It was initially this silly joke but eventually it got into our heads and made us less surly and jaded about being busy, sleep-deprived residents.

"How many new friends have you made tonight?" I'd ask with my biggest, fakest grin.

"I've made ten so far!" Maria would reply in an overly giddy way.

"Awesome! I've made only 9 new friends but two of them are the equivalent of four friends. So technically I'm winning since those two are like. . .superfriends."

"Oooohhh! I want to have some super friends, toooooo! But wait. I think I have at least one. One of my friends threw some grits at me today. I'll have to talk to him about the ground rules for our new friendship!"

"Well. At least it wasn't feces."

"Uhhh, yeah. That's such a good point, my dear amigo!"

That's when our pagers would both go off. "TIME TO MAKE MORE FRIENDS! WAHOOOOO!"

Maria started all of this. She'd show up post call to morning report with stickers all over her scrubs and a tepid cup of coffee in a styrofoam cup. If the night was rough, she'd put her right fist in the air and announce, "I WON! I MADE THE MOST FRIENDS OUT OF EVERYONE LAST NIGHT!"

Then she'd go to the podium and present them to our critical bunch of chiefs, attendings and fellow house officers. And that was that.

After a while, both of us DID start seeing new patients and encounters as opportunities. Chances to meet new human beings and to become affected by their stories. A way to learn something or grow, too. Seeing them as "friends" turned us into patient advocates--even more than we expected. What started as a coping mechanism changed us into better doctors.

So my point of that reflection is just that I am about to meet a crap ton of new friends today. And from what I see, some are superfriends.  (I'm still hoping no one throws grits or feces, though.)


What else?

So the student I was coaching for the Medical Student Teaching competition is this wonderful young woman named Kelly A. Our coaching sessions were rigorous and fun and full of whip-cracking excitement. Hands down, that part of the experience was possibly one of the best teaching experiences I've ever had.

Okay, so check it. We discussed everything in preparation for her lecture. Once we got through the logistical stuff like slides and transitions and teaching points, I moved to something that I doubt the other coaches were asking.

"So what are you wearing?" I asked.

"Wearing?" Kelly's eyebrows raised in that "beg pardon" kind of way. But she'd worked with me on wards so knew that she'd probably heard me correctly.

"Yes. Wearing. Whenever I give a big talk, I am very cognizant of what I have on. I wear my power color. Or at least one of my power colors."


"Oh yeah. Red. Red is my go-to power color. Almost always I feel my best in something red. I feel strong and fierce. If not red then definitely some strong pop of color for sure. That--and a good heel. A nice pair of heels makes me feel ready to bring it every time."

"Hmmm. I'll have to think on that. But I will think about it. I will."

Power color ready before a speaking engagement

And she did. We did our dress rehearsal earlier this week and she showed up in her power color--purple. She looked strong and confident and able, too. I could tell. She admitted that she's more of a "flats girl" than a "heels girl" and I said, "You have to do what makes YOU feel best." And she agreed with that.

That dress rehearsal session was great. She gave that talk nearly eight times in a row for me and incorporated all of my tiny criticisms into each version. At the end, we ended up on the power outfit discussion again.

"You look great. And strong!"

"I feel good," she said.

Last night at the event, Kelly made my chest swell so full that I nearly skyrocketed out of that auditorium. She arrived in her power purple and an added surprise--you guessed it--a pair of heels.

"I practiced my talk in them!" she said with a bright smile. "And I felt strong. I can see what you mean so I went with the heel." We both laughed and high-fived. I was in my power red pumps so, as the emcee, was definitely practicing what I preached.

For some reason, that heels thing from Kelly made me happier than it would have made most people. Especially when I saw her get up there and do her thing. She was strong and she was fierce. And sure, it was about far more than the heels. It was just her. She owned her space, man.


I like this quote from the flamboyant former football star Deion Sanders:

"When you look good, you feel good. When you feel good, you play good. When you play good, they pay good." 

Ha. I can't say that my power red pumps or power red dresses are necessarily getting me raises, but I can say the rest of that quote resonates with me.

My hair is the same way, actually. Remember the time I melted down on Harry because I needed to get my hair cut? Yeah. I'm with Deion. Look good, feel good.

Here's something funny:

In my car the other day the kids had this conversation. . .

Isaiah:  "When I grow up, I think I'm going to name my son after me or after dad."

Zachary: "Oh. Well when I grow up, I think I'm going to just name my kids whatever my wife says."

Ha ha ha ha ha. Those kids are hee-larious.


Speaking of superfriends. . . . I have a few real life friends now that were originally virtual ones through my blog. The other day on the way to football practice for Zachary, I had this super rich conversation with Psonya, one of those friends. We talked about important life things, too. And at some point, it dawned on me that this--us being friends--is just another of the many blessings that has come with this blog. It's really kind of amazing.


My friends and superfriends await me on the wards. I hope you all look good, feel good, and play good today. That's my plan.

Welcome to August.

Happy Friday.


  1. How Lucky Kelly A was to have you in her corner! One of my favorite power colors is white. (Maybe I should have been a doctor... I could rock a white coat!) xo

    1. White can totally be a power color. I feel fierce in a good white suit. Yes ma'am!

  2. I love the vigor and joy in this post. How lucky your mentees are to have you!

    1. Much love to you and yours. Please give your husband a big hug, okay?

  3. Dr Manning, how do you feel about the Ebola patient arriving at the hospital? I've been stunned at the lack of compassion I've seen on the news/online, and I trust that Emory has the situation under total control, what do you think?

    1. Olivia, I am not at liberty to make any comments about this on or off line. I didn't want you to feel as if I'd ignored you though. Have a wonderful weekend and thank you for reading.


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

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