Graduations, acceptances, scholarships and new leadership roles…
Yeah! I’m good!
Police brutality, murder, lies and threats, white supremacy…
Yeah … I’m good.
How are you feeling? How can I help? What can I do???
Yeah. I’m. Good.
Thinking about my brother, my friends that have become brothers, my grandfather, uncles, cousins…
Yeah, I’m good.
Hold it in because I have work to do. Suppress it because that’s a mature defense mechanism… Don’t cry because you might not stop.
Yeah. I am good.
Tears in anger. Tears in sadness. Tears in hopelessness…
Frustration at the political correctness. Guilt at being a student when my community needs me. Questioning why I’m even pursuing medicine….
Yeah … I’m. Good.
Venting with my friends. Reassurance from mentors, friends and allies. Soothing from my mommy…
Yeah — I’m Good!
I wrote this piece to sort through the turbulent mixture of feelings that were ominously dominated my life during the week of George Floyd’s murder. I picked a fight with my mom because I was scared for my younger brother but could not express it. I was more tuned in to CNN, Twitter and Facebook than my gastrointestinal system lectures on Zoom. I texted my fellow Black classmates, but I could not text them all day because they had their own things going on. I observed the initial silence and lack of acknowledgment from ALL levels of medicine while Black medical students nationally were rallying with solutions. As a native of the Southside of Chicago, “You good” can mean six different things depending on the tone, context and situation. I wanted to reflect that and shed light on the lurking depth of the easygoing response ofm “Yeah, I’m good.” This spoken word piece is me acknowledging my fears and weaknesses in a deliberate way to foster the perseverance to overcome these events and succeed in my goal of becoming a physician. This piece represents my inner conflicts, sheds light on my insecurities and gives gratitude to my support system.
Image credit: Custom artwork by Geneva for this Mosaic in Medicine piece.