Some people go to a massage therapist for to relax. I go so that I can walk. About ten years ago, I experienced the first flare up of an injury. After sitting crossed legged on the floor, I tried to stand up – but couldn’t. The pain was excruciating. I felt like my hip was trying to pop out of the socket. After a few minutes, the pain subsided and by morning I was fine. Only I wasn’t. I didn’t realize I had started down a path that would change my life. The frequency of these episodes increased. My husband would literally have to pick me up and carry me to the bathroom because I couldn’t walk due to the pain. I sought medical help. Tests confirmed this wasn’t an auto-immune condition like lupus or rheumatoid arthritis. I turned to sports medicine – which meant X-Rays MRI’s, cortisone shots and physical therapy. I developed bursitis in both hips as well as a noticeable limp. And still, the episodes continued. Living with a condition that causes debilitating pain is depressing – especially when medical professionals couldn’t determine the cause.
And this is where my story changed. I was driving down the road and literally heard a voice in my head say call Cindy Johnson. I’ve known Cindy for years – knew she was a massage therapist but never gave it much thought, until that moment anyway. I listened and made the call. Cindy, whose massage therapy schooling took one year, figured out what medical doctors had missed. (She would later tell me that she didn’t know how I had walked into her office that day.) My pelvis had rocked back and twisted. Ligaments that should have been short were long. Those that were supposed to be long were short. And all those times I thought my hip was going to pop out of socket – that was when the iliopsoas knotted up. She worked on my body, massaging knots from my legs, hip and lower back. After that first session, she sent me to a chiropractor – said she’d done what she could but I needed more help than she was trained to give. The two of them worked together – helping me repair and restore my body. It’s taken years – but I’m better. I still visit both, finding the benefits too great to forgo.
I share this because I’ve learned the value of looking for alternative treatments. Cortisone shots and painkillers only masked the problem. It is because of the massage therapist & chiropractor that I am able to walk. No, I don’t wear high heels anymore but that’s a small price to pay. (And I’m always grateful for that little voice whispering in my head.)
Obviously, I’m not a medical professional and I realize that there are many competent doctors practicing medicine. But sometimes, they miss things and we shouldn’t be afraid to take control of our health.
And now – my next goal – to find a doctor of Chinese medicine practicing in Eastern North Carolina. (If you know of one, please share his/her name in the comments below.)