So I realised that in part 1 of my “Adventure Race Report To Hell & Back,” I missed one massive piece of the puzzle. I was able to return to work on Monday which was only a week after the accident. Just in doing that, I felt so much more human as I got to do what I do: to help people each day and to interact & be part of my community. However, you guys are quite amazing. Regardless of the pain and discomfort that you were in, you all asked about me and wanted to make sure that my family and I were all doing well. The special thing to me though was that with no prompting, even on that first day back in the office, I was asked how was I doing- in my headspace- at least 5 times.
This alluded to me that, yeah sure physical scars and injuries matter, but what matters even more is one’s mental sanity. In speaking to my laser therapist on Tuesday (who also happens to be an acupuncturist and has done a PhD in spinal cord injuries and pain management), she said that in studies looking at over 200 people in various types of pain and discomfort the only absolute correlation was that pain equals depression. That by itself is a huge thing for me both personally and professionally.
Last week was the most depressed week of my career as a Chiropractor. Yes I was absolutely in pain however, I was also very limited in doing what I love to do. For three days, every time Cain looked at me he cried. I was pretty useless at home and I certainly was not capable of going into the office and ideally helping people feel better there. Emotionally I was drained, as I realised how much strain I had put on Merissa and the kids. To watch both my parents be completely shaken back to when I was 16 and was in a huge car accident was also heart wrenching. I felt like a burden, a drain and I felt just damn stupid for putting them through all of this. Emotions are damn strong and it does not matter at all if someone else says you shouldn’t feel that way– if you perceive the world to be a pretty dark and horrible place, then that is absolutely how it feels to you.
Luckily enough for me after a few days of living in hell, things started to turn around. It wouldn’t surprise me at all if this happened around the same time that my healing really kicked off. As the pain dropped, maybe the mental anxiety and depression started to lift. I began to notice other things like physical changes in scarring, energy returning and I think three big things-
- Cain stopped crying everytime he saw me
- I was able to get back into the office
- I started training again (just not on the MTB…..)
So many times we talk about the spokes in the wheel of health being: a clear brain body connection, great fuel, adequate rest, movement and positive thoughts. Post injury for me I am having to put regular deposits back into each part of the wheel. My adjustments are closer together, I need more fuel and I definitely need more sleep. However, the concept of positive thoughts has taken a new shift for me. As a Chiropractor, I am now appreciating just how much being in pain can trigger negative emotions and if we can help decrease that pain, help you return to doing what you love, then we know you will absolutely be feeling better (inside & out).
Thank you for being there for me over my journey, I only hope that I too can be there to help you when you need to move better, but most importantly to FEEL BETTER from the inside out…..