Tuesday, April 3, 2012

My last day

You all know that I've had big changes happening lately.  One of the biggest is that I left practice in Pana.  It was a little sooner than I'd have liked, but it seems that time moves faster everyday.  From the beginning of the year to the end of my contract happened in the blink of an eye.  I was unprepared.  I've been at the office for nearly 3 years.  You would think in that time I'd have recorded testimonials and gotten pictures and that sort of thing, but no.  I waited until the last 3 days.  Here are just a few of my darling patients.  

This is Ross.  I try to tell myself not to get too attached to patients.  But that's just not in my nature.  Instead, I get really attached.  I love them.  And I love Ross.  Can't help it, and you couldn't either, trust me.  I know Ross, really know him.  I can tell you about his life and he could tell you about mine.  That's the relationships I have with my patients.  I don't walk out of the room unsure of their names. I walk out knowing their kids' names and where they live and what they do.  I know their hobbies and how their families annoy them.  

Ross told me about his shop and his wife and about church.  He and I talked about being landlords and our mutual love of junk.  He was a weekly patient and on days he really hurt, he let me button the cuffs on his shirt for him.  That's why I love Ross.  

This is Linda.  She is a doll.  She wrote this testimonial for me...

I met Dr. Ballard the early part of 2010 when she spoke at a cancer support group meeting.  After listening to her I came to believe that she could help me take control of health issues.  She was able to make suggestions regarding prescription drugs that could be reduced and encouraged me to take supplements that would eventually help cut back on even more prescription drugs.  My medical doctor was willing to accept her suggestions and work with us.  There has been much success in following her advice.  My health has improved greatly.
In February 2012 I started chiropractic treatment with Dr. Ballard for Restless Leg Syndrome.  My symptoms had worsened to the extent that my feet jerked when I tried to sleep.  There was also tingling and numbness in my feet and a sensation that something was stuck on the bottom of my feet.  After starting chiropractic treatment the symptoms gradually diminished and by the 7th treatment I was experiencing no symptoms. 
I found Dr. Ballard to be very knowledgeable about the human body and how it works and able to communicate in a way that I could understand.  My experience with Dr. Ballard has been life changing.

How could I not feel lucky to have an opportunity to help her?  

This is Dora.  She is the grandma of Gina, the massage therapist that rented space in the office.  She is just the sweetest thing going.  She bought me a hallmark flower that blooms when you push a button.  She dropped it off and had to leave because she couldn't compose herself.  I was glad she left, or I'd have been in the same boat too and I still had hours left in the day.  Crying my friends, is a slippery slope. 

This is Shannon.  Years ago he dated my cousin.  For the last few, I got to whip him into shape every so often.  I was thrilled to get to take a picture with someone that was bigger than me.  He got a kick out of me saying so.

These are Gina's girls.  Emily, Elly, Claire, and Kaylee.  They are all fantastic and beautiful.  Kids are my favorite to work on.  They respond to care quickly.  Plus, it is adorable and makes ya feel good when a mom brings in a little one that's been asking for you because they know they you can help them feel better.  Kaylee (the littlelest) was especially good about demanding to see "Docta Bowowd" when her ears hurt or she had a headache.  I will take those demands any day of the week.   

This is Geri.  She is just a wonderful person.  She was always so positive and caring.  She is one of the patients who's names you hope to see on the book because she brightens the day.  She gives off good energy and she really understood what we had to offer.  She appreciated me and I sure appreciated her.  

This is Don.  I only got to treat him for about a week before I left.  Apparently I made quite the impression because I got a hug and a kiss when I left.  He is so good natured you can't help but be happy around him. 

This is Sharon.  She made me cry.  Her video says it all.  

This is Doug.  Another of my big guys.  He works a tough job now and is out of town a lot but the office was one of his first stops.  We tried our best to keep him healthy.  He is a happy guy and I'll miss him.  I was a big fan of his deep voice and his love of motorcycles...and that he's the first person to make me look remotely small in these pictures :)

 This is Angie.  she's gonna write a testimonial for me too.  I'll post it up for ya sometime.

 This is Barb.  I just love her.  In fact, I just love her, her husband, her son-in-law, and her daughter.  They are all wonderful, but Barb takes the cake.  She is sassy and funny and I was always glad to see her.  There was more than one occassion when she was glad to see me.  She saw Dr. Beyers for a bit, but said it was awkward since he is on the school board and she teaches.  She said it was like having your boss work on you.  I told her "who do you think works on me Barb?"  She was not convinced.  I will miss her sense of humor and occassional cuss word that she always semi-whispered.  You're a peach Barb.

This is Rodney.  Just look at the grin and tell me you don't like him.  You do.  I do.  He cracked me up and I hope I'll get to work on him in the future.  If not, I'll appreciate that smile and his super freckled face in pictures. 

This is Donna.  She's Geri's mom.  She is soft spoken and, if Dora's not the sweetest thing goin, Donna is.  Even if I wasn't treating her, she'd stop and ask how I was.  She'd ask about Ollie.  Donna is just the epitome of nice.    

This is Rhonda.  Excuse her red eyes, she cried.  She was out the door before I got to the point where  I couldn't handle myself, but it took a lot to keep it together.  Rhonda is just a dear woman.  She genuinely liked me and I'll never forget the look she gave me when I told her I was having a baby.  She was pumped.  Rhonda is one of my cheerleaders.  She was happy to listen if I was having a rough time with something.  She was enthusiastic for all of my triumphs.  Rhonda you dear lady...I will miss you. 

This is Missy.  Missy works for the hospital.  I will always appreciate the support and opportunities she gave me.  She helped me get set up to give public talks at our local hospital  It afforded me what I like to call mad street cred.  People I may not have ever reached where there and saw me speak about all of the things I know well.  I think Missy came to every one of them.  

This is Mary.  Her eyes are closed and she said she wasn't dressed well, so she would hide behind me.  Mary is a riot.  Frequently she'd get laughing so hard I'd have to wait for her to compose herself before we could move on with the adjustment.  She was a patient I was happy to sit in the room and chitchat with while she was on therapy.  Mary also has a family member with Down Syndrome and she was a source of comfort for me when I really didn't know what to expect.  For that, I will always be grateful.  The imperfection of this picture makes me so happy.  Thanks Mary for being my patient, and for the hugs, and for the cards.  Next time I see you, you'll be getting a big squeeze from me.  

This is Bill.  He's the boss.  I am sure inquiring minds want to know just who this mystery man is that I've been working for and with the last (almost) 3 years.  This is "Doc."  Doc is not a man of many words and the words he says are always thought through.  In the 3 years I worked there, I never heard him talk bad about another person or raise his voice.  Not once.  Even when I knew someone was driving him crazy or I'd really pissed him off.  He is as even-keeled as a person can get.  Bill is a family man and a champion for the local community.  I understand Bill, I am much like him.  Between the two of us, their are a whole lotta irons in the fire.  When I started with Bill, I planned to buy his practice. I really did.  If Bill were older/closer to retirement, this would have been much more realistic for the both of us.  Darn him and his youthful vitality!  With any luck, I'll take all that I learned in my years working for Doc and I'll hit the ground running this fall.  The experience I gained in Pana has really been priceless.

Now where to start with these ladies....from the left are Patsy, Gina, and Connie.

Patsy is the newest to the team.  She started almost a year ago.  I picked her, then birddogged Doc until he decided to hire her.  I knew she'd be great and she is.  Patsy is one of the hardest working people I've ever met.  And if you've met my family, that's saying a lot.  Patsy is very handy.  She can cook, she can clean, she can take care of animals and she does it well.  I frequently would have to tell her to take a break.  And for a girl that is 100 miles an hour with her hair on fire most days, I found Patsy to be a kindred spirit.  Plus, how do you not love a lady that comes in on her day off because she made too many homemade cinnamon rolls.  You'd be crazy not to!

Gina is the massage therapist who's beautiful little girls were posted earlier.  You can see where they get their looks right!?  Gina is a woman with a lot on her plate.  Four little girls can wear a person out, but Gina always seems to keep up.  She is a great mom and is a leader for her church youth group.  Gina is one of the people I really loved because she always made sure to let me know that she also appreciated me.  When someone takes the time to say thank you, I don't let it go unnoticed.  Plus, Gina and I had a sweet deal.  I'd adjust her and the girlies, she'd massage me.  I will miss Gina and her huggable babies.  I will also miss her quirkiness and her quickness to laugh.  Luckily, massages never go out of style and I'll see her sooner than later.    

And now for Connie.  The piece de resistance (make sure you read that with a frenchy accent) of our office.  I am not sure where to start really.  Connie and I click.  I love her dearly!  I remember she told me that someone had asked her how she would feel about taking orders from someone younger than her.  She told me "you don't seem younger than me."  I know exactly what she means.  I think we balance each other out....we are both mid-thirties in personality.  My patients confirm it....I am an old soul, I like to take this as "slightly older".  But Connie is my friend and companion.  We chitchat and gossip and cackle at each other.  She was always appropriately shocked or outraged or thrilled with the things going on in my life and the reverse is true.  The difference really...Connie is older and does have a 19 year old daughter.  Luckily this works in her favor as I am a whiz with FAFSA and college financial aid paperwork.  And it works in mine as she gave me advice like "never let your kid eat at their kid-sized table while simultaneously playing because they will take forever to eat and be easily distracted from food the rest of their lives."  

Connie also believes in the importance of family and is as dedicated to her nephews as she is her own daughter.  This I appreciate deeply and hope rubs off on me more.  My sisters' kids are amazing.  I see them all the time.  I am more lax about my sisters-in-law's kids which I hope to remedy.   

The end of the day Friday Gina gave me a going away massage and helped me carry all my stuff out to my car.  I told her it was a fast 3 years, then I had a mini break down and had to drive away quickly.

This was my last day.  A day of highs and lows, but all-in-all a good day.  How could it not be with so many people coming to wish me well and so many hugs.  I will miss my job and look forward to starting my own clinic.  I can only hope it is as successful and the people are a fraction as wonderful.

P.S.  I told my patient's I was gonna use their pictures at my next office and online.  They are cool with it. 


  1. Dern it I bawled all the way through this You make me proud.

  2. Wow! All I can say is you are such a blessing. It must be an amazing feeling to know you make a difference, that you have touched these people's lives and brought them comfort and relief from pain. I wish you were my chiropractor! :-)You are going to be so successful in your practice and your patients are incredibly to be lucky to have you. And you look wonderful! :-)

  3. You are such a good doctor and friend! I am proud that you are my friend and my doc! I will give a testimonial for you ANY day!

  4. Wow! What a blessing you are to so many!

  5. John forgot to bring the boys by on that day. Maybe we could get together for lunch this summer when they are out of school.


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