Lucy’s Journey team
I’m often asked by patients how I got into chiropractic and most commonly, I brush it off – I had a bad back, without any further detail. Not sure why this is, but mostly, I think it’s because I don’t want to talk about myself during an appointment for you.
The truth is, I had a tumour in my spinal cord, a schwannoma to be exact, and in a location as rare as ‘only a handful in the world’.
The pain in my back began when I was in year 11, 2001. At the time, I was representing Victoria in hockey, rowing for Ballarat Hight School and loving life. It was only mild initially, but over a few years, it progressed to the point that I was sleeping in a chair, couldn’t laugh without pain, couldn’t eat without pain and couldn’t breathe without pain. I knew every pothole or bumpy road in Ballarat, I would rarely go out and if I did, I’d have to take cushions with me. I missed most 18th’s and 21st’s, I was working the bare minimum and life was fairly challenging to say the least.
During this time, I regularly visited health professionals looking for answers as to what was causing the pain in my back. I started with physiotherapy, then massage, myotherapy and acupuncture. My GP referred me to Melbourne, to pain clinics and for numerous CT scans, MRI’s, bone scans and x-rays. At one point, I was traveling to Adelaide to visit a practitioner who was highly recommended over there. I also saw a chiropractor during this time, who provided me with some relief and most importantly, some hope. I think this saved me because without this care and compassion I’m not sure how I would have coped, if at all. I had doctors tell me that it was never going to get better, that it was in my head and that I had to learn to live with it. However, chiropractic care provided short term relief from the unrelenting pain and the chiropractors who cared for me, provided hope.
It was in 2006, when I was visiting a Rheumatologist in Melbourne who referred me for yet another MRI, that the 4X6 cm tumour was discovered in my spinal cord. I was referred to a neurosurgeon the following day, admitted to hospital the next day and had surgery the day after that. The surgery was long and risky, but a complete success and I have never experienced the pain in my back again.
Although I wouldn’t wish this on anyone, as cliche as it sounds, I’m grateful for the experience. I’m also thankful that I had Nath with me, every step of the way through this journey. This has shaped us as individuals and certainly as practitioners. It’s shaped how we care for our patients at One Life Health Group and it influences who we have join our team. We are passionate, compassionate, and understanding. We care not only for the immediate complaint, but we also care for the person wholeheartedly, for their families and for their future. We aim to provide relief, answers, hope, guidance and improve people’s quality of life.
And at the very least, we listen and we care.