Art & Poetry in Medicine, Clinical, Featured, Health Policy, Pediatrics
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Well Child Visit

Hello, come in,
and welcome to peds clinic!
My attention is on you
for the next 20 minutes.

How have you been?
What do you eat?
Have you been having
normal poops and pees?

What are your pronouns?
Would you like to explain?
Do you still go by
your original birth name?

Do you exercise daily?
Or play a sport?
I believe all students
should be allowed on the court.

I’ve heard you like books,
what do you read?
Relating to stories
helps form your identity.

Do you feel safe at school?
And safe at home?
I hope you know that this office
is a safe zone.

It’s hard to fit in
when you’re finding yourself.
Do you have coping mechanisms
to support mental health?

Do you get exposure
to people like you?
Do you get perspective
from people different too?

Are there any questions
you have for me?
No topic is off limits
with this doctor, you see.

It seems there are words
you’re hesitant to say.
It’s okay to say queer,
bi, lesbian, trans, or gay.

They are not bad words,
you shouldn’t have to hide.
In this office you’re safe
to say them with pride.

In a healthy world
you’re allowed to say them at school.
It seems we should remind
the lawmakers of that too.

Author’s note: This poem was written in response to the SB49, HB808, and HB574 bills passed in NC on August 16th, 2023.

Image Credit: Petty Officer 1st Class James Stenberg, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Holly Ingram, MD, MPH Holly Ingram, MD, MPH (3 Posts)

Resident Physician Contributing Author

Wake Forest University School of Medicine

Holly Ingram is currently a pediatric resident at Wake Forest SOM in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. In 2016, she graduated with a Bachelor of Science in biology with minors in chemistry and anthropology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She obtained her MPH from East Carolina University, and in 2022 graduated from Brody SOM with her MD. In her free time, Holly enjoys playing soccer, visiting waterfalls, and spending time with her daughter and husband.