About me – in no particular order.
I am a pediatrician.
It is likely that you have happened upon this blog because of this fact since it is linked with my practice site. I have wanted to be a pediatrician since junior high. I went to Rollins College for undergraduate school, the University of South Florida for medical school, and remained there for my internship and residency. I came to Melbourne in 1989, right after my training. I worked in town through September of 2006 when I had to leave my practice due to illness from Crohn’s disease. This was very difficult for me because I have a real passion for my work, and I cried every day for a year. In 2013 I ran into Dr. StClair in the fish store and he suggested that I come back to work part time and offered to help by setting me up in the office that he had recently opened- Surfside Urgent Care. He knew of a nurse practitioner, Teena Sanders, who was interested in making a change, and together we started Surfside Pediatrics with a lot of help from the staff at Surfside Urgent Care, especially Liz and Noirin. I am so thankful for all of their help in making this practice a reality. Teena and I have very similar practice styles and we meet weekly to discuss patients and new treatments in medicine. It is a great partnership.
I am a wife.
I met my husband, Andy Atkinson, in medical school and we married in our last year of residency. I kept the ‘Feltus’ part of my name so that we wouldn’t both be Dr. Atkinson. He is an internist (adult doctor) at Osler Medical, so between us we see all ages. He is an excellent, caring and smart doctor and supportive husband.
I am a mom.
My daughter, Alyse, was born in June of 1990 after I had been in practice for about a year. Less than 2 years later I had twins, Brian and Michelle. I learned a lot about pediatrics from having kids of my own. I previously had scoffed at parents who told me they were not able to get their child to take bad-tasting medicine or that they didn’t even have time to drink a cup of coffee in the morning. Then I became a mom and my coffee went cold while I was chasing kids down trying to get them to take medicine. It was quite an eye opener.
I am a Christian.
My faith is an integral part of my life, so don’t be surprised if I mention that I have prayed for you or your child. Teena and I have prayed over our practice and continue to pray for guidance in our decisions. I recognize that not everyone is comfortable with this but it is part of who we are.
I am a writer.
During the time that was out sick I wrote a book, Coming on the Clouds (by Carolyn Atkinson), a Christian fiction novel. I enjoy writing and hope that this blog will be a fun way to continue to write.
I have Crohn’s disease.
I try not to focus on this too much but it does affect the way I live my life. I was diagnosed in 1992 and in 2012 I had an emergency proctocolectomy, which is the total removal of the colon. Though it was a step that I hoped I would not have to take, it has allowed me to resume my life for the most part, though I still need to remain part time to minimize the disease flair ups.
I am a gardener.
I enjoy puttering about in my garden and have recently added chickens. I find being out in the garden relaxing and allows me to get gentle exercise. I wish I loved to exercise like the rest of my family does, but I have to force myself to do it.
The purpose of this blog is to share with you some of the knowledge and experience I have gained through my years of study and experience in pediatrics. I hope that you will find it interesting, educational, and occasionally amusing.
Carolyn Feltus-Atkinson MD