~Life goes on. And we as well.
Exactly how we do it is no mystery.
One by one we fill the days.
We find a thousand different ways. ~
So check out the opening lines of Empty Nest, a sitcom that appeared in the 1980s. It featured Dr. Harry Weston, a pediatrician with whom his adult daughters lived with him. I focused on the pediatrician part. I remember imagining what it would be like to have my own pediatric clinic (as I thought Dr. Weston did). I imagined it would give my heart the warmest, fullest and most contented feeling to see young children in my own adorable children’s clinic.
I have always had a special love for children – they are my favorite kind of people, and they are always our hope for the future. I love the thought of having the opportunity to bring positivity into their lives, help them put their best foot forward and boost their self-esteem. So it was either being a teacher or a pediatrician. I wasn’t dosed with an abundance of patience, so being a teacher fell away from the top spot.
When I was in seventh grade and assigned to research my future career, I dove headfirst into all things pediatrician. I was well on my way, graduating as a valedictorian from Smithville High School, graduating with honors from Millsaps College, and then being admitted to the University of MS School of Medicine. However, my general pediatrician path took a turn after I was introduced to pediatric gastroenterology. This rotation included some of the common pediatric issues (ie reflux, constipation) as well as the more GI specific diagnoses (ie Crohn’s disease, eosinophilic esophagitis). Throw in the opportunity to use procedures (nice job) to diagnose and I fell in love with it. After medical training and a pediatric residency at UMMC, I attended Cleveland Clinic in Ohio for my pediatric gastroenterology fellowship. It was a fantastic time, I learned a lot and met some great and wonderful people. But three years of that snow was enough for me.
When I returned to Mississippi, I was all about group practice when I first finished fellowship. It seemed smart and safe. And it was. But there is a season for everything. I realized I wanted to spread my wings and do things my way. I wanted to create an environment where I could present my best self to my patients so they could get the best GI care I could provide. Cue Happy Tummies Pediatric GI Clinic.
I started working on this clinic in January 2021, moving into a former GP practice and making it my own space. And I quickly learned that there is much, much more to the practice of medicine than just seeing patients. The learning curve has been steep. But I am sure that I am walking my goal by building this clinic and following my dream. I’ve said several times throughout this process that it may not always be easy to keep in line with God’s will, but it always feels right. And this clinic, my newest baby, felt all right.
We started seeing patients on June 29th. Any new patient aged 0-18 is welcome to make an appointment to have their GI issues resolved. We see everything from reflux in babies to constipation in toddlers to vomiting in teens and every pediatric GI problem in between. I am not disappointed that I will have the perfect answer for everyone; but if I can’t help you, I’ll do my best to point you in the direction of someone who can.
When you call for an appointment, you speak directly to someone… or get an answering machine. A bit old-fashioned perhaps, but your call will be handled quickly. You walk through the front doors and you are in the clinic – with its calming shades of purple, blue and green, a few colorful chairs for my smaller clients, lots of books to read and the sweetest staff on hand to assist your visit. child as smooth and stress-free as possible.
Sometimes my own babies visit me and make themselves comfortable in my office while they read, color or otherwise amuse themselves with games. This pleases my heart – I want them to know what their mother is doing. I want them to know that they too have the option to build something themselves if they want to. I want them to see that hard work pays off, in more ways than one. Hard work will help you make that difficult diagnosis and lighten the heart of a concerned parent.
By working hard, you can be proud of what you do and go to sleep at night with no regrets. And in my case, hard work has also given my heart “the warmest, fullest, most satisfied feeling when I see young children (and older ones) in my own adorable pediatric GI clinic.”
Come visit us on Old Fannin Road, just off Lakeland Drive. You can call for an appointment, 601-398-1949, or visit us at our website www.4HappyTummies.com. We are also on Facebook and Instagram. At Happy Tummies, helping tummies is what we do.