I *blinked*... and then it was gone. I couldn't even begin to
tell you what's happened over the last week. I took a comprehensive
final over a year and half's material, volunteered at an event, did
a bunch more master's work, and I don't even remember what
Work in the clinic was a little slow last week due to SPC
students being on spring break. We squeezed in a few patient
visits, though, and I had some interesting cases. There was one in
particular, a woman with a pretty complex history of stroke among
other things. I love the variety. You absolutely never know what
you're going to see each day.
We had a pretty good-sized crew to go down to Sarasota last
Saturday. We worked alongside Dr. Arick at the Sarasota-Bradenton
ITU Triathlon. We had several hundred 16- to 19-year-old
triathletes participating in swim-bike-run at Nathan Benderson
Joe Hicks, Julia Harter, Leslie Jacobi, Dave Aiello, and I did a
ton of soft tissue work on several injured, non-rehabbed athletes.
There were several that had continued training through some pretty
tough injuries. It seems like many of these teenagers have coaches
that push them really hard, but don't attend to their injuries once
Julia Harter participated in the Seminole City Fire Truck pull
for the Kiwanas. They raise money for vocational school
scholarships for kids. Dr. Jaya Prakash heads up a lot of events
with them. Dr. Carlo Gaudagno was also at event. Our team won first
place for "mixed adults" and garnered a trophy!
(L-R) Julia Harter, Alex Gubco, Brandon Alexander, Fan Yang,
and Dr. Guadagno
That's about it from me. I finish the master's program this
week. Everything should be done on Friday. I honestly can't quite
grasp it. Here's hoping that this week goes by quickly - but not
Have a great week, everybody!!!!
Boy did last week fly by! I finished up my time at the VA,
participated in the Loop the Lake Doggie Bones 5k, and wrote 3
papers (among other things). Actually, this whole trimester has
flown by. I can't believe I'll only be writing with you all for a
few more weeks.
The last month at the VA has been CRAZY! Our volume of patients
was pretty high. In my last week, we saw 11 patients in just a few
hours. I'm grateful for the experience there. I was definitely
exposed to things that I likely would have never seen. I had the
chance to use a multi-disciplinary EMR system that absolutely blew
my mind. Imagine putting 20+ specialties into one system, having
access to ALL films, bloodwork, lab reports, physician notes, and
pharmaceuticals in one record. It was awesome! It allowed me to go
through more records in a few minutes, than I could have in hours
I had the chance to work with some pretty complex problems. Some
of the patients had severe systemic metabolic problems. It was
interesting (and sad) to see the "end result" of what happens when
health isn't maintained. There were some good reminders for me
there -- and definitely opportunities. Chiropractic and Functional
Medicine are most definitely needed within that system. There's so
much good we can do!
On Saturday, I joined Dr. Fava and Dr. Gambina at the Loop the
Lake Doggie Bones 5k -- which was actually a cycling and running
event, a walk, and a dog walk all in one day. We must have had 500
athletes there in one capacity or another (and it seemed like even
more dogs). Seeing all the super high tech bikes made me want to
ride again -- although I can't tell you when was the last time I
rode. Dr. Fava and Dr. Gambina are extremely talented sports
chiropractors, and I was able to observe some intense Graston work,
as well as see some different stretching techniques. It was a good
event. There weren't any crashes or major injuries, but we did have
a few cramps and pulled muscles.
There's a triathlon this weekend that I'm hoping to attend at
the same location. Several of the interns are going. We should be
seeing quite a few patients. I can't wait! I'm finishing up the
master's program at UWS. I have only 9 days left until the last of
the final exams are finished. I honestly can't believe it's over.
It's really gone so unbelievably fast. Last week I wrote 2 position
papers and a research paper on Vitamin D and Metabolic Syndrome. I
must have read 25 articles, and found teasers for at least a dozen
more on peripheral topics like vitamin D's influence on autoimmune
disorders (which will definitely be a topic of mine for the
future). All of the papers were well received - as far as I know. I
don't think that I have any more to write -- which also makes me a
little sad. It looks like I'll have to publish in the future, just
to get my writing "fix."
We have less than 6 weeks left in the trimester. It'll go by
even faster. Everyone is making plans for graduation -- to travel
to Lombard and walk the stage. It all seems so surreal, but it's
really, finally happening.
See you all next week!!!!
It's hard to describe that feeling of waiting for board scores.
If you are lucky, the days and weeks following a board exam are
busy enough to distract from what feels like impending doom. The
day gets put on the calendar and slowly approaches. The night
before, there's this nagging feeling like something big is
happening tomorrow. And then there's the sinking feeling, when I
realize what it is. The nausea sets in, and maybe a headache. Time
ticks so extremely slowly. It's like Christmas Eve, and you're 6
years old, but waiting for the zombie apocalypse. Morning comes. 8
am rolls around. Scores are in. Sitting in clinic seeing patients,
I try not to think about what's waiting for me. Others have already
checked. They passed! Congrats to them. I want to throw up.
I'm sure that they're smarter than I am. They must be; they
passed. I don't know what my scores are. I'm too chicken to check.
Patients roll through the clinic and I am trying not to think about
it. Good thing I have complicated patients. "Thanks for the
challenges and the distractions," I keep thinking to myself. Oh no.
I remember what I have to do when I get home. The day is over. And
even though I've stayed late to try to distract myself and get all
of my paperwork done, I don't want to go home. I don't want to see
my scores. It's the end of the world.
I make the drive, get home, and Grey meets me at the door. "I
have to do something," I say. He's telling me about his day. I sit
down and open my computer: NBCE in the Google window. And then I
wait. All that stress to a final moment I click on the link:
September 2014 scores. Click. One eye open, the other looking
through fingers, squinting, scared -- Grey is still talking to me,
trying to distract me. I can't look. I open my eyes. No stars. NO
STARS!!!! There are NO STARS!!!! I passed. (Stars mean that a score
isn't passing. If there's a star there, then the score is too low.)
All of that stress for absolutely nothing. The scores are fine. OK,
now I can go on with my life. Done. *Whew*
Now that all of that's done...
Last week, I had the great pleasure of participating in "All
College Day" for SPC. At All College Day, all of the SPC campuses
and staff come together for workshops and seminars. It also gives
all of the University Partnership Program participants and
affiliates a chance to come out, remind people that we're still
here, do some demonstrations, and hopefully bring some new patients
to the clinic. There were two sessions, a morning and afternoon.
Julia, Daniele, Brian, and Manuel held down the fort in the
morning, and Theresa, Antoinette, and I kept things under control
in the afternoon. Of course, Dr. Harrison accompanied us throughout
the day. It was a great day!
Many of the staff weren't aware that the clinic was available
for them. I've said this before, but I always love the response I
get from people when they hear "free healthcare." We were using the
G4 Massager and giving free massages, and also performing postural
screening and giving evaluations. It was a TON of fun. It's nice to
get out of the office every once in a while and do some outreach.
But also amazing to reach some new people, and see them come into
the clinic shortly thereafter. It's also great to see some of our
patients out running around in their natural environments.
Lots of incredible things coming up in the next few weeks; I'm
on to the next great adventure. Part IV Boards.
Have a Great One, Everybody!!!!!
In case you're not familiar with the NUHS Florida site, we share
space with St. Petersburg College as part of the University
Partnership Program. This means that NUHS, along with Barry
University, FSU, USF, Case -- Bolton School of Nursing, Cleveland
State University, and a whole bunch of other schools share some
space with us. We don't often use the same classrooms, but we do
have shared hallways and things like that. As part of the
University Partnership Program, NUHS offers free exams and
chiropractic care to all of the University Partnership participants
(including SPC) and their immediate families. Check out
As part of SPC's health initiative,
they've started adding automated blood pressure cuffs to some of their campuses. There are 10 different
campuses in the area for SPC. In order to help us "get the word
out," SPC has invited us to give information to students at these
campuses, regarding blood pressure and cardiovascular health.
Last week, I had the great pleasure of spending a couple of
hours with Dr. Michelle Jourdan and Intern Roshaun Hardy. We must
have talked to a half dozen faculty members, including the provost
at that campus, and also at least a dozen students -- who didn't
know we were there.
There's something magical about seeing someone's face when you
say the words "free healthcare." Many of these students are local,
without health insurance, and have no idea that such a service
exists. I'm hoping we see more of them in the clinic. I think we'd
all be really happy if we were super busy -- but also that we're
providing such a needed service. It was a great session.
Unfortunately, I didn't take any pictures to share with you
There will be more events to share, and more outreach. In fact,
we're participating in SPC's "All College Day" and their "Career
Day" coming up later this month. Should be great! We may even be
doing some presentations to let people know what we're all about.
Who knows? We may end up with some more students because of it!
Grey and I have been looking at colleges. For those that haven't
been following that story -- Grey graduates right after I do, and
has been looking at colleges. I think he has his list narrowed down
to about 6. We'll be writing applications here pretty soon. Some of
the deadlines are in November for next fall! I can't even wrap my
head around that. His front-runner is still the University of
Washington, but we've found a few others that seem to have good
programs he's interested in. We shall see what all pans out.
I'm reconnecting with people I've lost contact with and getting
anxious to start looking for jobs. Boards are in about a month --
which is also hard for me to believe. We're checking off boxes and
crossing things off the list. This might actually happen.
Have a Great Week, Everybody. Stay warm and dry, wherever you
I'm back from the mountains of North Carolina, where I spent
from last Thursday through Sunday. It was, as it always is, a
life-changing event. I learned so much from everything I
experienced there, and everyone that I met. My life is forever
changed. Coming back from such a life-altering experience is always
really hard. I find myself struggling with motivation, coping with
what we call the "default world," and dealing with daily
obligations. It's funny how being apart from civilization gives a
completely different perspective on what civilization actually
On the way up the mountain
I may have mentioned Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs before. Maslow
postulated that in order for humans to function, they must have
certain needs met. The fields of psychology, sociology and
anthropology have embraced Maslow's theory, on some level, and run
with it--proposing that everything from the basis of emotional
well-being, to the likelihood of success, stems from these needs
Image source: www.21stcentech.com
When out, away from civilization and the comforts of "home,"
people tend to do one of two things: they think about how much they
miss the comforts of home; or they realize how little those
comforts actually comfort them. I tend to be the latter, rather
than the former. Don't get me wrong, I would have loved a warm, dry
place to sleep, but for the most part, I didn't miss the Internet,
television, my cell phone, or even electricity.
Being apart from society and civilization would imply that we're
apart from each other. But that's not the case. I've found that
when I'm out in the woods, with other people, that that is when
society actually begins. We form a tribe, a family. I often wonder
why we don't do that, when we're among each other in the default
As students, we've been through several years of schooling
together. We're nearing the end. Stress is running VERY high among
our group. We're finding ourselves more anxious, more
short-tempered, more ready to judge, bicker, harass, and goad each
other. For those of us that have become close, we're finding it
easier to support, empathize, listen, and care for each other.
Perhaps some of this is because we know we won't be together for
much longer. Perhaps the rest of it is that we're so unsure of what
comes next. Perhaps some of us view each other as the member of the
family that we really don't want to associate with (because we
didn't get to pick this family).
In just under 9 months, we'll all go our separate ways. Some of
us will be friends for the rest of our lives. Some of us will never
hear from or see each other again. Just like my past weekend, some
of us will be friends for the remainder of our lives, and others
I'll never see again.
We have the opportunity every day to contribute to someone's
hierarchy of needs. We can build each other up, nurture each other,
be family (the good kind), and contribute to each other's
well-being, not just our patients.
Last, I want to plug some of the upper trimester classmates
who've been doing some good
community outreach work. My hat's off to you guys. You're
making it happen.
Until next week, my friends, I challenge you to think about how
your needs are being met, what you really need and want in your
lives, and who and how you view "family."
• After the DC Degree
• Botanical Medicine
• 1 Year at National
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• First Week in Student Clinic
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