31 Days of Women: Suzie Brown

Credit: Alex Berger

Editor’s Note: In celebration of Women’s History Month, You Sing I Write is highlighting female country artists and songwriters throughout March.

Suzie Brown has been on the front lines of the coronavirus pandemic for a year as a cardiologist at Nashville’s Vanderbilt University Medical Center. Brown specializes in advanced heart failure and heart transplantation. The work entails confronting mortality on a daily basis with her patients and with Covid-19, that risk has heightened.

“It’s been tough for everyone, but Covid has made my job a lot more stressful, both because of my worrying about my personal safety and the safety of my family,” she tells me. “Then also seeing terrible things happening to our patients. Heartbreaking, horrible stories that I wouldn’t even want to tell you. It’s added a whole other layer of anxiety and sadness to an already really difficult year.”

Brown works at the hospital part-time and when she’s not at Vanderbilt, the mother of two is also a singer-songwriter. While she usually turns to songwriting as an escape, Brown admits that it took her a while after lockdown to be creative.

One of her early songs during the pandemic was “Another New Normal,” which Brown released this month. She says she’s not a religious person but found herself praying on her long walks. Some of her prayers included surviving the pandemic and not exposing her family.

“As I reflected I realized this is a big, seismic shift in the world. People were throwing around that phrase, new normal. Then I was thinking, ‘I’ve had so many new normals in my life,’” she says. “I was reflecting that life is full of new normals and that we’re always adjusting. I’ve had that feeling so many times like, ‘Wow, I was just starting to feel like I’m in a groove and now I have to make this huge change.’ I think to be successful in life, you have to be willing and able to adjust to all these new normals.”

For more of my interview with Suzie Brown, visit Forbes.