So there I was— hiking to the grocery for alkaline water and pure maple syrup (Day 5 Master Cleanse) with a hail storm brewing overhead. I pulled over underneath an overhang to seek safe shelter, and took advantage of the time to show some love to thee homies of this place with style and grace.
And if you don’t know; now ya know, nigga.
In all seriousness, in short summation:
Upon an honorable discharge from the United States Air Force, I went from one laborious service industry to the next, in joining hospitality. The hustle and bustle life was serving me nicely because I was getting discounts on my whiskey and chicken wings whenever I wanted to go out for quirks. At one point, from age 27 until I hung up the apron at 30, I was tending bar at 2 different hotel restaurants, running food at a giant upscale restaurant, and holding a part-time job as a furniture hauler for a moving company. One obnoxious night, while a patron at the restaurant I ran food at, I was drinking whiskey with one of the company owners I worked for who I’d whimsically met thanks to the bar staff– the next morning, I was late to work. It wasn’t long after that when I did even more damage to my already damaged spine. I’d tried going through the VA for help in my healing journey, but they weren’t really giving me the warm fuzzy one might hope for when they’re looking to heal. Yay, ‘free’ healthcare!
Eventually, I gave up on their help. Different Rx cocktails and surgery were their recommendations. But I wasn’t satisfied with that. I’d seen the episode of Shark Tank where an Army paratrooper named Arthur was reduced down to life in a wheelchair, and he now walks among us after Diamond Dallas Page’s yoga therapy.
I searched for a doctor at 5 different VA locations in 3 different states: Florida, New York, Pennsylvania and back to Florida– the VA in NY was in my hometown. I was seeking someone, anyone, who could treat my injuries and dis-ease without a scalpel or some sort Rx cocktail based with ibuprofen 800s. Slowly I was coming to fruition. It was evident to me, from my experiences, that being a member in the VA system is as good as being a lab rat.
Amidst all of that, through thick and thin, I had come to a ground-breaking point point in self-research where I learned about the atlas bone and that I should have mine looked at. I was in my hometown at the time, but due to unfortunate circumstances, I put the search for the right chiropractor on hold as I needed to move again back to Florida.
Some time passes, I forget about the atlas research I had done– and one day, while seeking care for severe neck pain– my prayers were answered. By way of good, old-fashioned word of mouth from a complete stranger, I was informed about a team of chiropractors nearby who specialized in upper-cervical spinal care. On my thirty-third birthday, I went in to meet with them.
Finally— after nearly two handfuls of years of uncertainty, being passed from one doctor to the next and turning down suggestions of neck-fusion surgery after suggestions of neck-fusion surgery after suggestions of neck-fusion surgery– it only took about an hour and a half of my time before I finally knew what was causing all of my problems. My atlas wasn’t just off– it was WAY off. I knew this because it was shown to me on an x-ray image (they shot the images that same visit). And I was on my way to where we are today– right here; together.
The best part was knowing. Knowledge is power. Once the cause of a problem is known, there becomes this will to see it through to solution. In the USAF, we learned of this in Six Sigma problem-solving, but I don’t want to bore you with the details. It has been on my heart to drop this knowledge for any one out there who might be suffering from a serious illness and you have some MD bullshitting you straight to your face.
Don’t let it happen to your self. It ain’t worth it.
Love your self.