#WhatsYourWhy: Day 1 of 7

Delivery man

Me: "You being safe out there?"
Him: "You already know what it is. Got the hand sanitizer, back up masks, all that!"


Me: "Dang, you even wearing gloves."
Him: "Got a whole box in the truck. I ain't playin'!"

Me: "That's what's up."
Him: *turns to walk off*
Me: "Hey. . . .you planning to get the #COVIDVaccine when you can get it?"

He stopped in the middle of the lawn. Then he pulled his head back and then cocked it to one side.

Him: "Am I gon' what?"

Rut roh.
Me: *talking from doorway* "Get the vaccine to prevent #COVID19."
Him: *squinting eyes and (probably) smirking under mask* "Are you crazy?"


Him: "Heeeeeeellllll yeah I'm getting that shot! Shoot, you got one in your house?"

Me: "Good stuff."
Him: "Yeah. I ain't fully sure about it all but you know what I am sure about? Not wanting to die or end up with a stroke."

Hmm. A stroke.

Him: "This dude I know I had a stroke from #COVID. A young dude, too. With kids."
Me: "Damn."

I didn't ask more.
Me: "Alright then, fam. I didn't need to sign?"
Him: "Nah, you good."
Me: "Be careful out there."
Him: *getting in truck waving* "You already know what it is."

Not wanting to die or become disabled from #COVID19. That was his why.



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More from @gradydoctor

14 Jan
She's a Delta.🔺

Grady wards, 2016

On my rounds one day, I was with a med student talking to these two women about their seriously ill father. They were worried, tired, and understandably nervous. They asked a lot of questions.

A whole lot.

Damn, they were scared. Image
Then, in the middle of an explanation, I was making hand gestures and one sister interrupted me suddenly.

Her: "Wait. Can I see your hand?"

She slowly turned over my right hand, gasped and then looked over at her sister.

Her: *whispering to sister* "You see that?"
The other sister closed her eyes. Then she smiled and then nodded slowly.

Sister: "You're our soror."

She shook her head and released a big relieved sigh.

Then we embraced in a tight three-way Delta hug as tears rolled down their cheeks.

Damn, it was beautiful.
Read 16 tweets
13 Jan
#WhatsYourWhy: Day 2 of 7


Them: *ringing up items* “You find everything okay?”
Me: “Yup.”
Them: “I like your hair.”
Me: “Hey—thanks.”
Them: *nods while continuing to swipe items*


Them: “Is that highlights? Or . . . .“
Me: “Grey?”

*laughter* Image
Me: “Yup. I’m openly grey.”


Them: “Well, it’s working for you.”
Me: “’Preciate that.”


Me: “Can I ask you a question since you got all up in my grey-hair business?”


Me: “You getting the #COVIDVaccine when it’s offered to you?”
Them: *raises eyebrows*
Me: “Ha ha ha that’s not a answer.”


Them: “Wait--you a doctor or something?”
Me: *patting my head* “One with grey hair, yes.”
Them: *laughing* “You funny. But nah, doc. I’m cool on that vaccine.”

“Cool on” the vaccine. Hmmm.
Read 13 tweets
30 Dec 20
This car pulled up to a 4 way stop just after me the other morning. On my left. As I pulled out, they did, too.

We nearly collided.

After a brief pause, I continued. Moments later, the driver swooped alongside me, extended an arm over the passenger seat, & flipped me off.
Then, they sped off. But got stuck at the red light just ahead.

2 lanes. An empty street. On an early morning.

And this person in a car now beside me who, after not having the right of way, decided to greet me with a middle finger.

Mmm hmmm.
Did I mention that this was on December 26? And that I'd worked not only on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day--but 12 consecutive days before?

And where I come from? Flipping folks off is not compatible with life.

Or at least compatible with not having it threatened.
Read 21 tweets
18 Dec 20
You: “They crazy as hell if they think I’m doing that shit.”

We stared at the wall-mounted TV showing the news. Health care workers gleefully rolled up sleeves and smiled for cameras as they received the first batches of the #COVIDVaccine.

You shook your head hard.
I’d swung by to check on you after missing you on rounds earlier that morning. Even though the television was muted, what was happening was clear.

Me: “What makes you say that?”

You cocked your head and raised your eyebrows at me.

Then threw back your head and laughed.
Me: “I’m serious!”
You: “Shiiit, I am, too!”


Me: “But real talk, though. What makes you say that?”
You: “Say what? Say I ain’t taking that half-cooked shot they peddling?”

Your reply was telling.

I sat on the bedside chair and waited to see what you’d say next.
Read 18 tweets
15 Dec 20

Me: “Sis! I got your text. Damn.”
Her: *coughs* “Yeah. I feel like I got run over by a truck.”
Me: “How's your breathing?”
Her: “Bad cough. But OK, I guess.”

*coughing paroxysm*

Me: “Do you feel short-winded?”
Her: “No. Just worn down.”
Me: "Okay."

Her: “Dang. I would be the one to test positive for #COVID on the same damn day they start giving the vaccine.” *chuckles then coughs*

I wasn’t sure what to say to that. So, I let out a weak laugh, too.

Her: "Damn. This is kinda scary."
Me: *thinking* "Yeah."

It is.
Her: “What should I do?”
Me: “Well, you’re already isolated. So that’s good.”

After that, I told her about supportive care, red flags and reasons to go to the hospital. As I was talking, she started coughing again. Super hard.

Me: “You okay, sis?”
Her: *coughing* “Yeah.”
Read 12 tweets
11 Dec 20
PM rounds at Grady

Him: "You alright, doc?"
Me: "Me?"
Him: "Yeah you. You seem outta sorts."


Me: *smiles* "I'm in sorts I promise. Now tell me--you alright?"
Him: "Me? Feeling a little better."
Me: "How's your wind?"
Him: "Waaay better."
Me: "Yay."
I sit him up and carefully untie the back of his gown. On cue, he takes breaths in and out as I listen intently.

Me: "Lungs sound good." *moves around to front of chest* "I'm listening to your heart now. You can just breathe regular now."
Him: "Okay."
After pressing my palm to his chest to feel his heart, I search his chest with stethoscope. Although it's not normal, it hasn't changed. Still he keeps making big gasps, forcing breaths in and out the whole time exaggeratedly.

Me: "Just breath regular, okay?"
Read 9 tweets

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