Archive for tag: salvation army clinic

Double Time

The next three weeks are going to seem like the longest three weeks of my life. In addition to the long days I spend in clinic in Lombard, I will also be going to the Salvation Army clinic in the city from 7:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. After treating patients under Dr. Charles Kuehner at that clinic, I will head directly back into the suburbs to treat my patients there until 7:00 p.m. This makes for super long days including all the traffic and traveling. Please keep me in your thoughts as I try to get through the long days and short sleep schedules while trying to maintain my sanity!

The population that gets treated at Salvation Army is an amazing group of individuals. They are all either suffering from drug abuse, alcohol abuse or both, with a variety of lifestyle factors that have led to chronic and severe diseases. Yet they have taken it upon themselves to go for change, even after everything they have been through in their lives. Salvation Army is like a refuge for them to get back on their feet. They get jobs to help out the community (ex., working the warehouse of the Salvation Army thrift stores), they get rehab programs, complimentary alternative medical care (from us!), along with room and board for a period of time to help them through rehab.

I went through a two-week rotation already as a chiropractic intern, however, it is a completely different experience as a naturopathic intern. We help support the chiropractic treatment plans along with addressing nutritional goals and nutrient depletions, and we help encourage the patient to maintain an alcohol and drug free lifestyle. I've only been there one day so far, and I absolutely love it. It calls for early mornings with tons of traffic for me, however, it is a great experience for the patient and for me. It will be a long three weeks, but I know in the end, I will be more grateful for the experience.

This weekend, I got the chance to meet up for coffee with Chet, a college friend who was in town. It was awesome to catch up since we haven't seen each other since my wedding, which was 2-1/2 years ago!

My friend Chet and I

I also had the privilege to share in the celebration of two of my colleagues as they celebrated opening their brand new chiropractic clinics! In the picture below are Ryan and I with David Kim, whom I graduated with, and Lesley Wong, who I worked with heavily in SACA.

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David Kim, Ryan, Lesley Wong, and myself

You might recognize the next picture, too! It's a past fellow blogger, John Cress, who has just recently opened up his new clinic in Arlington Heights!

John Cress and myself 

It was such a joy to see all the success around me and made me even more excited when Ryan and I got to bask in all that! :) 

Have a good week everyone!

Babies, Brothers, and Birthdays

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The BEST Birthday Gift!

Meet my nephew Alex(Xander) Sacdyphoud!! He was born June 24th at 11:49pm - just a day and 11 minutes before MY birthday! I have to say…he is the best birthday present ever! He is so adorable and looks just like a doll!! I already love him so much and Ryan is super excited to be an uncle! His full name is Alexander but we're going to call him Xander.  

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Bothersome Week

Despite having a rough patch last week, this week was easier to endure. Looking forward to my birthday weekend really helped me get through what felt like a long week. Dr. Solecki took all of the interns on his shift to work out at X-Sport together and it felt amazing to work out all the frustrations I had from the previous week. I love being apart of his shift. I've been able to be extremely challenged but also have built great relationships with my fellow colleagues. (The photo below shows Dr. Solecki conducting an in-service with all the interns about different soft tissue techniques.)  

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Bidding Bye to Rotation

My last week at Salvation Army was especially difficult due to the crazy amount of traffic that I had to deal with, but having the experience has really taught me on many different levels how to have compassion for others. It seems straightforward that we are in the medical field so we should have compassion right? Well, it will surprise you how easy or difficult it can be to treat the extremes of patient personalities, backgrounds and situations. I feel very blessed to be able to experience all I did at Salvation Army and I know that through that rotation, I can truly be more sympathetic, patient and most importantly, grateful.  

Birthday Surprises

My birthday weekend was amazing! Friday, Ryan and I went to visit my baby nephew. Saturday, my amazing husband had a whole day full of surprises for me. First, the day started off at Brookfield Zoo! He surprised me with a brand new SLR Canon Rebel T1i camera!!!! It is definitely an upgrade from my little digital camera. (I just need to figure out how to use it!) Here is a picture from my new camera.

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After the zoo and tons of picture taking, we headed to see "Little Shop of Horrors," the musical in downtown Chicago. I was apart of the musical in high school so it was so much fun!! I loved it! I recommend going to small theaters. It was such an intimate setting and they were so talented. We went to a Moroccan restaurant for dinner and headed home. It was an amazing day.

The next day, my best friends planned a beach day for me! The weather got sunny just in time and we were able to relax and soak up the sun! I couldn't have asked for a better birthday.  I'm just excited to get back to Rockford for the 4th of July weekend to see my nephew!! 

Overall, Clinic Tip of The Week: Find support in fellow colleagues! I had a very tough week last week, and I leaned on people in my shift to help me move around patients, etc. You need it! The program is impossible to get through alone.


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This week started off bright and early at 5:30am through long stop-and-go traffic with hard-to-find parking to finally end up in the bustling city of Chicago! That explains the start of my Salvation Army rotation. Three other interns and I are participating in our two-week Salvation Rotation from 7am to 11am, Monday through Friday. 

We were all very nervous because we did not know what to expect. Walking into the facility, we were introduced to a very different world than our usual shift at the Lombard clinic. The patients were all participants of either a drug or alcohol rehabilitation program, so the focus was more towards addressing ailments due to the cumulative effects of their lifestyles. Although musculoskeletal problems were part of their complaints, it was the least of their concerns. 

Overall, it was a very interesting experience and I have one more week to go. All the care at the facility is free of charge so the patients are continuously in and out as an obligation of their program.

Salvation Army is an option for main clinic for 9th and 10th trimesters, but the amount of people accepted there is small. Another option is the Caruth Health Center at the St. Petersburg campus in Florida, which also accepts a small number of people. Both options are available so stay open-minded about what rotation you want! There are VA hospitals in Illinois and Maryland (to my knowledge) that usually accept only one person per trimester, but it is worth the try! 


This week was one of the hardest weeks I've had to endure so far. Personal reasons made it excruciatingly difficult, however Ryan and I planned an impromptu trip to Michigan to get away from everything! It was a well-needed weekend get-away. We had the chance to relax by the river, walk around downtown East Grand Rapids during their art festival, and enjoy 80º weather! No rain for once! 

Miraovne -Ryan -Oliver  Miravone -Power -wash

The sunlight, family and nature were definitely what I needed to partially rejuvenate from my rough week. Being back home now and knowing that I have to return to reality makes me wish I could repeat the weekend over and over again, but the show must go on!

My Clinic Tip: When tragedies hit, find a sanctuary. No matter what is happening in clinic, you have to take care of YOU.

Love Is in the Air

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On Saturday, Ryan and I had the honor of attending the wedding of Yesenia, the assistant registrar here at NUHS. We became close to her when I got a job in the Registrar's office when I first started the program. They have all been so supportive of me in the program with words of advice, encouragement and love. It is an awesome feeling to have built those relationships at school. Yesenia, Keith, the Registrar, and Erika, the academic records specialist in the Registrar's office also came to our wedding last year.

Challenging Clinic Week

Clinic this week was very challenging for different reasons. I started the week feeling motivated but started to feel very exhausted towards the end. There wasn't really anything that was different to trigger my exhaustion, but boy was I ready for the weekend to start! 

I learned patience this week interacting with fellow interns, patients, clinicians, and people in general! I think there were certain events that triggered me to tap into my small supply of patience.  I learned A LOT, though. This is how the REAL world will be. I got a small glimpse into how to discharge a patient, take over a patient from an unsatisfied experience with a previous intern, work with different opinions and thoughts, refer a patient to their primary care physician to rule out multiple myeloma, and then come home to my husband after a long day of all of the above. 

In school, we are presented with hypothetical situation after hypothetical situation and until you actually face the "real" thing, it's hard to predict how to handle it. Well, this week, I got a little bit of everything. And after all that, I am very grateful (and tired). The highlights of my week were also the lowlights but coming home to my very supportive and loving (and VERY patient) husband was all I needed to reboot to get ready for the next day.

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Clinic Tip

My clinic tip of the week is quite simple: BREATHE. So far, I have had weeks with no patients to a day packed with patients. It has varied and my patience has been tested. Every time I felt like I needed a break, I took one. Walking outside to breathe and reflect for a couple minutes saved my sanity, so do not be afraid to do it.  

This week, I get the chance to do a two-week morning rotation at one of the Salvation Army clinics. The clinic is set up to provide free care for people who are trying to get their life back on track after a life of drugs, alcohol, and bad life decisions. We give the required physical exams they need in order to keep the jobs that are trying to keep them off of the streets. We also give them treatment and try to positively affect their lives as much as possible. 

I am looking forward to being pushed and tested now in a very different way. Everyone tells you Tri 9 through 10 is when you can take a break, but not for me. This is a learning experience and I'm soaking it all up while I can! 

Have a great week everyone!!