Ever since I moved from “herniated disc – easy to fix” to “WHAT THE HELL?!” in early 2009 I’ve tried to keep an open mind about doctors, treatments, and therapies. I’d been a cardiology nurse for twenty years, so considering anything outside the clear-cut medical world I practiced in made me very nervous very quickly. But being in constant pain that sometimes had me praying for the strength to stay upright and not crying or throwing up for just the next ten minutes changed my view a bit.
If I had a nickel for every time I rolled my eyes when a patient mentioned their chiropractor, acupuncturist, pain management doctor, chronic back pain, resistance to all but the strongest pain meds, or, God forbid, disability for back pain I’d have . . . well, enough to pay for my chiropractor and not worry so much about appealing my disability denial. But God has a sense of humor and karma is a bitch.
So I’ve let doctors who flat-out told me they thought the pain was all in my head stick needles in my epidural space, I’ve sat through office visits where the nurse practitioner spent more time asking for job referrals than actually discussing my case, been under the care for many months of a man I have still never met, had acupuncture on Mickey Mouse sheets, and listened while a physical therapist wondered aloud how to give me aqua therapy without drowning me.
For a very long time, I’ve said I’d happily see a witch doctor – face paint, beads, bloody chickens and all – if it would help my pain a bit. I long ago gave up on “pain relief”. I’d just like to get it down to a level where I’m a little more functional.
So then my husband added a stop to his courier route. A chiropractor who was in a hard neck brace after breaking his back in several places racing his dirt bike. And they got to chatting.
And the next thing you know there I am, most recent MRI and extensive medical history in hand, seeing a chiropractor. After all, my neurosurgeon isn’t even returning my calls anymore, so what have I got to lose, right? I did tell Michael I was drawing the line at handling snakes. I don’t care what grandiose promises anyone makes about decreasing my pain I will not handle live snakes. We all have our limits.
So I’ve had two sessions with this guy, with Michael present both times. Having only one functioning car means he’ll be going with me every time. I go to the doctor alone by preference, so having Michael and the doctor chatting away during my treatments just makes them even more surreal. But I have felt a difference, I saw no snakes, and so with Michael’s encouragement I’ve signed away everything in our bank account for a twenty-visit treatment plan that should take about six weeks to complete. I’ll keep you posted. I just realized I probably should have asked for a “no snakes” clause in the contract. Hmmm.
For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!