Dear Dr. Mary,
At one time in my life, I felt that I had little to look forward to. After having enjoyed a lifetime of good health, I was diagnosed with hypertension, an anxiety disorder, and gastritis. In addition to these problems, I was plagued with insomnia, migraines, and chronic fatigue. Everyday it seemed there was some new little ache or pain, to add to my misery. Colds, flu, and viruses became a common problem for me. Then to my displeasure, my hip began to give me major problems. I had intense pain, burning, and numbness from my hip to my toes. Needless to say, I became very depressed, and fearful.
Over a five-year period, I visited doctor after doctor to discover why I felt so bad. I took a wide variety of medication, and watched my diet. I even practiced deep breathing and relaxation, gave up spicy foods, and spent lots of time in psychotherapy. I constantly guarded my back and hip to keep it from hurting and gave up any physical activity (yes, that too). I researched, experimented, and took advice from everyone. I tried to remain positive and hopeful. As a final result, my blood pressure was higher than ever. I was physically and mentally worse than when I started out. Every night, I would pray that God would send an answer to my health dilemma. I felt like a hypochondriac and my family was sure that I was. Needless to say, I found myself with no one to talk to. The feelings of isolation overcame me and I wondered how a perfectly healthy, active optimist could turn into such a total physical and mental wreck. At this point of my life, all I could do was pray. After a while, I felt that God must not be on my side, either. After all, I wasn’t getting better.
One day my sister-in-law came to visit. She asked me to accompany her to her appointment. She had this mischievous smile on her face and I knew she thought if she could get me to the office I would agree to be seen. Wrong! I had had it with doctors. There was no way that I wanted anyone else prodding or poking at me. Ok, I was wrong. Once I saw how non-invasive the procedure was, I decided to make an appointment. What could I lose? Up to this point, nothing had improved the quality of my life. I was desperate!
On my first visit I was a little nervous. I had recently had a rib dislocated by a chiropractor. He used a method of chiropractic that popped and twisted my body. Remembering my sister-in-law’s alignment, I put fear aside and proceeded to enter the doors of the office. The first thing I saw was the receptionist. She was wearing a big smile. I hadn’t genuinely smiled, or been smiled at in so long. I really wanted to be happy again. She introduced me to the business manager, who was also wearing a big smile. She took me on a tour of the clinic and put my fears to rest by assuring me that I would “feel better soon”. How many times had I heard those words? So often I had been given that same promise, only to be let down. For some reason, this time, the words seemed genuine and I believed what she said.
After the tour, I sat down in the waiting room for a short time. A very pretty, tiny blonde woman emerged from one of the exam rooms. She, too, wore a large smile. What was everyone smiling about? Was this normal? Did they know something I didn’t? How could they all be so happy? This tiny little woman was Dr. Mary Marshall (affectionately known as “Dr. Mary” to her patients) and the answer to all the prayers I thought God had not heard. She led me to an exam room where we talked about my health history. To my surprise, she didn’t think I was a hypochondriac or that my complaints were without a foundation. Instead of brushing aside each complaint of mine, she took the time to show me where the problems had originated and explain how each system of the body is supplied by nerves that originated in the spine. When the nerves are not able to function with the body as intended, the body breaks down. With the proper alignment, the nerves function as intended and healing begins. In only one visit, Dr. Mary told me why each of the problems with my health had occurred. I could hardly believe it. There was hope.
After my talk with Dr. Mary, I had x-rays taken. Dr. Mary interpreted the pictures and showed me why I had felt so bad for so long. I was relieved. There was reason for my pain and suffering. I was not crazy after all! This was great! Or was it? Could these problems be fixed?
The time had come. The procedure was beginning. I was led into an exam room and my spine, hips, and legs were measured. Then I lay down on a table, just inches off the floor. Dr. Mary positioned my head and stood over me. I am not sure what she does during the adjustment, but she pressed gently behind my ear. My first thoughts were odd. I kept feeling like I had made a mistake. I felt nothing. During the procedure there was no popping, no strange sensations, and no pain. Wasn’t pain supposed to be a part of receiving medical treatment? It had always been painful before– someone poking, stretching, or inserting needles. This was strange. How could this heal my body? After the procedure, Dr Mary measured me again and, with a smile, announced that I was in alignment. I wasn’t sure of how I felt, but I was beginning to feel the pain subside a little.
The next step was to go to the recovery room. A delicious treat! I got to lie down in a comfy recliner, in a cool room, with a warm blanket. Soft music played in the background. As I lay there, strange things began to happen to me. I felt some twitching in my thigh and forearms. I was a little fearful at first but remembered what Dr. Mary told me the nerves that had been compressed for a while would start receiving the proper stimulus after treatment. I continued to rest. My pain was already improving.
I had 2 visits that week. On my second visit, something remarkable happened to me. I was resting in the recovery room and my pain just disappeared. Then a wonderful feeling came over me. It was as if the stormy clouds of the past just blew away. I felt relaxed–not the relaxation that comes with being tired, but the kind that comes from having energy and a feeling of well-being. I could breath deeply and the negative, gloomy feelings of the past left me. I still didn’t quite understand the mechanics of what was happening, but I didn’t care. I was feeling normal, even happy, and my pain was going away.
As good as my story sounds, it got even better. My visits to Dr. Mary became fewer but the benefits of her treatment just kept rolling in. Just as Dr. Mary predicted, my body started healing itself. Over time, I stopped taking my hypertensive medication (I didn’t need it anymore). My blood pressure is normal now. My insomnia and depression disappeared. I am able to exercise and do things I haven’t done in years. Best of all, I have no stomach problems, no headaches, no anxiety, and no searing pain in my hip.
For two reasons, I feel that it is important to tell you my story. Just saying thanks to Dr. Mary, Dr. Ray and their staff at Marshall Spinal Care, (and my sister-in-law) doesn’t seem like enough of a reward for giving me my life back. This letter allows me to publicly recognize their talents and compassion. The second reason for writing is that I know that there are other people in this world who feel like they can never improve the quality of their life. Pain, and other health problems, can dim your happiness and lead to depression and withdrawal over time. That does not have to happen. I will always thank God for Dr. Mary and Dr. Ray’s special gifts and the loving staff at Marshall Spinal Care.
Thank you Dr. Mary!