Playing Doctor…

A look at my other life…

I don’t talk about my “real job” very much. But I had an interesting and very different week from normal this week. So let me tell you about it.

I am a chiropractor. And while most people think of chiropractors as the doctor you see when you have a sore back or a stiff neck, it’s really way more than that.  Chiropractic is a science, art and philosophy. A philosophy? What does that mean, exactly?

Without going into exhaustive detail, it means that this profession was founded on principles that remain true to this day:

  • The human body has an innate ability to heal itself.
  • It can do so perfectly if there is no interference to those systems that the body utilizes for healing.
  • Interference can manifest itself as a vertebral subluxation – an impingement of the nerves leading from the spinal cord to all the organs and systems of the body.
  • This impingement can occur when the bones of the spine, the vertebra, lose their proper position in relation to their neighbors above and below. Again that is a simplification. The physiological effects are much more complex.  But think about it, your brain and spinal cord, the central nervous system, are the primary communication system by which our beautiful brains tell the rest of the body what to do, how to respond and so forth. How can a body heal itself if it can’t get the message from the brain or to the brain from the periphery?
  • Chiropractors assist in removing this interference when they adjust the spine, restoring the vertebrae to its proper position.

So obviously, I have a love and reverence for my primary profession.  I attended a Continuing Education seminar this week that focused on this “inside-out” principle. I had a wonderful time hanging out with my colleagues, exchanging ideas and sharing stories.

I am rather isolated when it comes to my current practice. It wasn’t always that way, however. After graduation in 1993, I went to work in a busy multi-doctor office and stayed for ten years, until the primary doctor retired. Then I joined another single doctor who wanted to expand his practice and worked there for another ten years. Both of these practices were about an hour away from where I live. The commute started to get old. So at the end of 2013, I walked away. Left the busy office behind and started seeing patients out of my house. The change was a relief. But there were other consequences…

As a solo, small office, taking no insurance, having no staff to supervise…. All good. However, my financial contribution has significantly diminished. Being able to work from home gives you a feeling that you’re not really working at all. It’s weird. And I am not happy with not “pulling my fair share” even though I contribute in other ways. Nevertheless, I have also begun to realize that I am a domestic failure. If I’m home, I take care of the house, right?

Well, truly, there is nothing that makes me more miserable than housework. As a result, the laundry sits in the washing machine until its moldy because I forget I threw a load in. We run out of silverware all the time. The dry cleaning sits in the back of my car because well, that goes right out of my head the minute it hits the trunk.  (And wow, I’m totally getting off topic…) But I should be able to handle this, right? What the hell is wrong with me? Maybe I have vertebral subluxation….. Just about the only thing I take joy in is cooking. The rest of it? Meh.

Ok, back on topic. The other out of the ordinary thing I did this week was return to my old practice an hour away. I covered my former colleague’s vacation this week. It was fun and tiring. When you drive an hour each way, have a ten hour day of patients in between, you come home cross-eyed. Oh and by the way? It’s a very physical job. Those of you who see a chiropractor know what I mean. I’m on my feet all day, moving bodies, sometimes big bodies, around to adjust their spines. It requires a lot of exertion on the part of the doctor. I drove home the other night acutely remembering why I gave it up.

And yet…

Yes, I have more free time. Yes, I get to write and blog and interact with you lovely people throughout the day. And I do see a nice group of patients here at the house. But…

Sometimes I feel like I’m not doing anything well. Personally, domestically, privately, professionally… And then I feel like I’m just playing doctor. I don’t know if you all noticed but I even changed the way my name appears when I comment on your posts. It used to read drmegsorick. Now it reads Meg Sorick. Subtle but telling, no?

 

 

 

 

63 thoughts on “Playing Doctor…

  1. Deep introspection my friend.

    Yes, I noticed the name change. When it occured I thought, she is a doctor, but in her heart she is a writer.
    As for not doing anything well, I disagree. You are a great blogging friend. You post a wide variety of creative posts. Thus, keeping your posts fresh andf interesting. So, in my book, your blog is a raving success.

    But then again, what do I know. I like bananas.

    Have a great weekend and don’t be hard on yourself. xoxo

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I bet the patients you see are very grateful that you are able to help them. When I was pregnant I had an adorable chiropractor. He smelled so good and had to practically lay half his body down on mine to adjust me. It was heaven, lol.
    Hugs, my friend. Housework sucks. There is nothing to say there. It just sucks and I hate it! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I think you’re brave and have followed your path. Not everybody does. Hell, in my line of work, I’ll always work for “the man”. You’re doing your thing! Good for you! As for housework? It blows. That is all. 😃

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Hey, I totally get questioning ones career moves/choice. I have those panic days, those “Why the fuck did I choose this line of work?”, and the “I can’t do this anymore!” Days a few times a year. In the next week I bet you get an affirmation of some sort, that confirms you’re doin’ the right thing. Breathe. 😃

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Don’t even get me started on the laundry I let go bad in the washer. Although, I like to blame it on humidity and not that I hate going down into the centipede lair where my washer and dryer sit.

    You are awesome. And that is all there is to it. I think that any sort of working from home makes you feel that way…I kind of know exactly what you mean.

    Don’t forget about all of the things you do that you didn’t even mention here. Volunteering to help others…even if it means sorting out their cable bill (!) is something that not everyone has the patience to handle!!!

    Plus you churn out words like nobody’s business!!!

    xoxoxo

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You’re the awesome one. I’m a mess. A childless woman who neither works full time nor volunteers full time nor keeps a good house nor keeps her family happy? I’m wired wrong, methinks

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  5. Compulsory retirement caught me on the bounce: employed and wanted on June 30 — a nothing and a nobody on July 1. We rebuild slowly. We readjust (adjustment is good, no?). We learn to create a new world in which we continue to live. We learn new skills and re-develop old ones. Above all, we grow and we (re)find ourselves and our new place(s) in this ever-changing universe. What we should never allow to change is the spirit and the drive that moves us onward and upward … altius, citius, fortius …

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Roger. I am still creating my new world. And I’m not quite comfortable with it yet. As far as the spirit which drives me… It’s been pummeled a little bit, recently. Needs some fortification. I’ll be alright, though. Thank you again, my friend.

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  6. Sounds like a tough week. You could always hire house cleaners, I’m sure. I know very few people who enjoy the everyday mundane tasks. I worked from home for a long time so I know what you mean about separating home and work life. I think you are being a little hard on yourself 🙂 you write more on your blog and your books than many people without jobs…me, for instance. You are a wonderful friend and I have no doubt a wonderful chiropractor xoxo

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Meg, I absolutely understand this. It’s hard to enjoy things that drain your energy and don’t feed your soul in the process. I have to restart the dryer three times to get the wrinkles out because I forget clothes are in it.

    You are following your gift and that’s why a God made HandiMaids 😜

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ugh, laundry. Ah, the trouble is I have is that I have the time just not the inclination. The writing gives me great satisfaction and joy but I haven’t yet come to grips with spending so much time on something that does not pay off financially. I’ll get past it, I’m sure.

      Liked by 2 people

  8. This post was like an ‘Extras’ tab on a DVD.
    Great ‘behind the scenes’ footage and good to know something about this other side of you.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Oh Meg, I understand more than you even know. I’ve been unemployed for (too) many months so my home should be spotless and organized and hell, fucking redecorated! Yet I have not done a damn thing to improve this place. I always cook, do dishes, do laundry, get the kids to pick up their stuff… and that’s it…which to me, feels like the minimum. But I can’t seem to motivate myself to do anything more. I just end up sitting on my lazy ass writing… as though that’s ever going to mean anything to anyone but me.

    I know what you mean about feeling like a failure. I disagree *completely* that you are a failure in any way, though! You have a career… doesn’t matter how much you work or don’t work. You have a home that’s still standing, no matter if the laundry gets done or not. And you’re a talented, wonderful person. I think the stuff you don’t want to do and the things you feel are very normal. But I still get it… I have no job… I feel like a total failure financially — which affects everyone in my family, not just me, which makes it even worse. And not doing anything of value with the time I have had off? Oh… I get you there! Like I said, I do worthless things that might feel important to me but they’re insignificant. And despite having time to do things I enjoy, I’m not happy… in fact, my anxiety and depression are probably worse than they’ve ever been. What is wrong with this picture.

    I totally get it. And I did notice the name change… and I think it’s good to separate the different parts of your life to some extent. And I do see a chiropractor so I understand that, too, and I know I could never do that job! Such a physical job. Plus I hate people and all. LOL.

    (Hope I left you with a laugh… love ya!)

    Liked by 2 people

    1. You’ve hit the nail on the head. I feel lazy and indulgent for leaving a busy practice behind and neither contributing financially (significantly anyway) nor taking care of things around the house. It punches holes in my already tattered armor. But then I tell myself I’m just whining and I should shut up and change those things I’m unhappy with. But that doesn’t work either because I don’t know what to do.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Exactly. That is exactly what happens! I feel like I’m just a whiner… no one wants to hear it (or cares…) and I need to “just fix it” (like people always seem to tell me… like it’s simple and I’m an F-ing idiot for not fixing it already)… but I have no clue what to do. Even if I get a somewhat specific, concrete suggestion, I can’t do it anyway! Oh… I so so so understand!!

        Liked by 1 person

  10. I think chiropractors are God sent. They seem to listen better than other doctors and do their best to make their patients not only feel physically better but educate them to better care for their bodies. I worked for an amazing chiropractor for 8 years and he was one of the best employer I ever had. Patients felt more like family. So I find it is great that you are both an author and a chiropractor.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! I worked for a chiropractor before I became one so I agree with that! Best boss ever! Inspired me to go to school. The rigors of a busy practice can take a toll on you. I’m still figuring out how to manage a professional life with the rest of it. The crisis will pass, I’m sure.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. I know exactly what you mean. I sit at home all day, writing, reading, re-writing, networking, mailing. But hey, I am at home. So make the tea, serve lunch, do the laundry, re-arrange the house. The ‘I’m working’ excuse is met with a roll of the eyes and an exaggerated stare.
    It’s commendable how you are managing things – your practice, your writing, and home too. Please don’t worry if sometimes housework gets ignored sometimes. It happens to all working women – whether office-going or work-from-home.
    You may not be contributing as much as you would like but let that not take away anything from the list of achievements at all. I’m almost 34 and living off my parents currently. I had a wonderful, high-paying job till last year. I chose to walk away from it. I had contributed significantly when I could and that matters to me and my parents. I’ve finally learned to accept that I don’t have an income right now but that doesn’t take away anything from me. I think it’s the same with you. You may be earning less but that’s what you want and what you chose. You have more meaning in your life thn someone else rolling in wads of cash. You make an impact not just as a doctor but also as a writer. Don’t undervalue your worth. BTW, agree with everything Sandra said. I don’t think you’re a failure at all. In fact, if anything you’ve achieved far more than usual.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. For all of the reasons you state I go to an office every day. Plus I know I wouldn’t be as productive as I could be without the deadlines of actually having other people around seeing you work. My commute alone makes me want to move back to Portland every day so I can completely get how mentally and physically taxing that is.

    Know that the people you do help value you tremendously. The readers you make smile and cringe appreciate the flexibility you have with your day job. But life is all about changes and how we roll with them. I think you roll pretty awesome.

    Like

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