I would venture to say that there are very few children out there who dream of becoming a chiropractor someday, and the ones who do are most likely children or grandchildren of chiropractors. I’ll be the first one to admit I didn’t even know what a chiropractor was until long after I realized my dream of becoming a pro baseball player was just a dream. If you talk to any number of chiropractors you’ll soon realize that most have their own chiropractic story – a turning point where their life was so profoundly affected by chiropractic care that they decided that’s what they wanted to be. So, without further ado, here is my chiropractic story. Please feel free to share yours as well.
Once I gave up on the pro baseball dream (I went as far as playing on the JV squad in high school), if you asked me what I wanted to do with my life I probably would give you a blank stare. It wasn’t until I was 3/4 of the way to a Bachelor’s degree in Neuroscience that I decided on a career. I spent four and half years in undergrad with future medical doctors, dentists, and neuroscientists. For three of those years all I knew about my future career was that it wasn’t going to be one of those. I was not interested in practicing medicine or working on lab rats for the rest of my life. All I knew was that I wanted to make people feel better.
One day I was eating lunch in the quad and perusing the school newspaper. There was an ad for a student discount at the local chiropractic office. Throughout my adolescence and into college, I suffered from frequent tension headaches and occasional bouts of sciatic pain after sitting too long in class or on a car ride. These were both conditions that the chiropractor in the ad said he could treat, so I thought I would give it a shot. I went into my first treatment somewhat skeptical, but also hoping something amazing would happen. I went through an exam that involved him checking my range of motion, poking and prodding in certain parts of my neck and back, and taking some x-rays of my neck. He mentioned that my neck was not aligned particularly well and I likely had been in an auto accident previously (4 to be exact). I then lay down on the treatment table and he went to work.
Starting with my low back, he used a combination of quick thrusts with his hands and some moving parts of his table to make the adjustments he needed. Then he turned me onto my back and with one flick of the wrist, he delivered a neck adjustment that rocked my world. I was speechless. All I could do was smile. I had no idea that so many joints could pop all at the same time. I left the clinic, still smiling, almost in shock because I had never felt anything like that before. For the next day, to be honest, I felt sore. I questioned whether or not the adjustments had worked because they just seemed to amplify the pain I had gone in with. At the doctor’s advice, I stuck with it through the prescribed treatment plan, which was something like once or twice a week for a month or two. I never got the miracle cure adjustment I had hoped for, but after about a month into the process, I started to realize it had been a while since my last headache. The sciatic pain I occasionally felt after long hours of studying in the library had also not bothered me recently. It was working! It was not a one hit wonder as I had hoped, but a process in which small, incremental changes over time helped my joints and muscles to function more optimally. As a result I felt better, and subsequently decided I wanted to be a chiropractor so that I could make others feel better.
Now, several years into this profession that I now love and am passionate about, I continue to receive regular adjustments to keep my headaches and sciatic pain at bay, and get to see this same process repeat itself in my clients. Nagging problems like neck pain, back pain, and headaches that have persisted for years slowly fade away as we apply the catalyst of chiropractic adjustments and specific corrective exercises to set the body back on the right path. It’s a beautiful thing.
Now let’s hear your story!