Why I Became a Doctor of Chiropractic
As an 18 year old, I was involved in football, the band, and many other school activities. I always knew that I wanted to be a doctor as a child growing up. During one football practice, I was hit from behind, and my low back was forced into extension and was twisted when I hit the ground. I immediately felt severe back pain and I had to stop practice early that day. I went to my local medical doctor (he was an osteopath), and he stated that, "I had a sprained my low back". He proceeded to lay me on my side and crudely manipulated my low back....the pain became much worse. He told me to go home and apply ice and take ibuprofen for the pain. I couldn't sleep that night due to the pain. My mother took me to the ER in a nearby city the next morning, and the M.D. barely looked at me and said that it was a sprain, and he gave me a narcotic pain medicine and told me to go home and rest. I took the medicine for a couple days, but I couldn't function when I was on it. We never thought to go to a chiropractor...they were "quacks" after all....what did they know that a "real doctor" didn't? I quit taking the medicine, and I slowly rehabbed myself back to health through weight-training. The pain was better, but not gone. I had mild-moderate chronic pain now.
I graduated, and started college that fall. I enrolled in premedical studies....although I had began to lose confidence in medicine at this point. I realized that many things could be treated naturally. I decided I would be a personal trainer and a physical therapist. Then one day in the college's weight-room, I met a guy named Jake that was in some of the same classes as me. He was going to be a "chiropractor", he told me. I told him that they were all "quacks" and that he was wasting his time. I told him about hurting my back, and that exercise had helped, but the pain was still there. He told me to go to his chiropractor, Dr. Mark, in Moberly, MO. I was skeptical, but I thought I had nothing to lose, so I reluctantly agreed to meet him. That week I met him, and made an appointment at his office. He examined me, X-Rayed me, and scanned my back. He touched the area of my back that was hurting and told me, "This is where you hurt yourself before isn't it?" I was shocked and said, "Yes" it was. He said that he was going to adjust me, and I agreed. He proceeded, and I found that it felt great....I finally felt some relief! He set up a treatment plan with me, and I held to it. Over time, I started feeling better, I was able to lift more weight at the gym, I was virtually pain-free, and I caught less colds and slept better as well! I couldn't believe it.
After transferring to MU, I was all set to enter the PT program and was ready to enroll that next spring. I told Dr. Mark about my decision, and he pulled me aside and told that I should be a Chiropractor....I should go to Palmer...he told me, "It was the best after all." I didn't know. Everything was falling into place to be a physical therapist. He told me that as a Chiropractor, I would be able to diagnose, treat, refer, adjust, and perform most of the same things that a PT would be able to do....and much more. I would be able to make decisions for my patients without an M.D.'s referral as well. He told me that I would be able to provide my patients with real health and keep them well....all without the side-effects. He stated that I would be able to provide wellness care, and not sickness care. I told him I would look into it. I prayed on the matter, and I called Palmer College of Chiropractic in Davenport, IA. I sent my transcripts, and applied. They accepted me, sooner than I figured I could start....I had just the right number of credit hours, and had taken all the right classes to get in. I had two months to get everything in order. I dropped everything, gave my two-weeks notice at Boone Hospital, and at the ARC in Columbia. I dropped my classes for the following term at MU, and moved to Davenport over the 4th of July weekend. It was stressful.
I attended Palmer, and went through the intense curriculum....I never thought it would be this difficult....it was almost as if they was training us to be doctors. That is because they were doing just that! After 4 more years, I graduated, and I was a Doctor of Chiropractic. I had fulfilled my childhood dream of becoming a doctor. Looking back on it all, I know that I couldn't be in as better profession. Everyday I get to do what I enjoy by helping people. It still amazes me how well chiropractic works. I consider it a great privilege to do what I do. I get to experience miracles daily as a Doctor of Chiropractic.