I was born and raised as an only child in Daytona Beach, Florida. My parents were masterful in their ability to teach the art of dreaming despite the necessity of managing the world’s realities. Naturally introverted and given to daydreams, I embraced the beauty of story and weaved it into my private world of imaginings. When I was about six years old, my parents gifted me the Childcraft Encyclopedia How and Why Library – a set that began with “Poems and Rhymes” and ended with a medical “Guide for Parents”. Early on Saturday mornings, while my parents still slept, I would sit on the floor beside our home’s bookshelf to read the 1980s iteration of this set. It lent me my first peek into literature, and human anatomy and physiology. Maybe it’s no wonder that for as long as I can remember, I have pursued the understanding of human biology and even more so, the understanding of human experience.
There was no hope I could choose between my academic loves. So, while I majored in biology at Spelman College in Atlanta, I also minored in writing. I wrote poetry throughout my training at Miller School of Medicine at the University of Miami. And two years after becoming the Owner and CEO of Hope Grove Psychiatry in 2016, I began a mental health blog – inspired by and written for those generous enough to allow me into their lives as their psychiatrist.
Being a psychiatrist is a curious, powerful, humbling, and ever-evolving practice. Every month, I speak to hundreds of people about stories. Their stories. Often how those stories began is a potent force in our work together. Sometimes, the story beginnings set the very predictable stage for psychological traumas we aim to heal, or moods we try to understand and even out. Sometimes, those beginnings explain the anxieties, fears, and phobias we seek to calm or outsmart. How we perceive our stories determines the distress we feel, or the strength we draw, about them and from them every day. And most times, just about every time, people are trying to make whatever revisions are necessary to bring their particular story to an undoubtedly happy ending. It doesn’t matter if depression, anxiety, perceptual disturbances, traumatic experiences, or brain differences challenge us – we’re all trying to get to the undisputed happy ending.
My debut novel, Family Medicine, is a layered tale at the intersection between story and psychology – and the quest for a story ending that makes sense of, and brings justice to, the injuries of the beginning.
Family Medicine Virtual Book Discussion
Twists. Turns. Mysteries. Themes. Characters.
Let's talk about all the elements that made Family Medicine come to life.
JANUARY 22, 2022 at 12 pm EST