If you’ve been at Got Your Back (GYB) on a Friday, you’ve likely seen this mother: she is fit, has long stunning hair and often has one, two, or maybe all five of her beautiful kids with her. Friday’s, for the GYB team, is one of our favorite days because of the kids who join us on the mat. Heather Morrison has been coming in EVERY week since September of 2017. Yes, you read that correctly: EVERY week since 2017 for a total of 117 visits. She is our super Chiro patient. We thought it was about time that we shared her story with you, our GYB family. Enjoy!
(Dr. Darrien) Hi Heather, thank you for being willing to share your story.
Out of curiosity, what led you to Got Your Back Total Health?
(Heather) I came in because of shoulder pain that I had after going on a quick cruise to the Bahamas with my husband. It was a work trip in September of 2017. This was after spending the majority of the summer in the ICU at Georgetown hospital with my youngest child, Will. At that time, the stress was so high I could hardly breathe. A free work trip sounded like a good idea. It was hard to leave Will but I knew I needed to relax and get my mind off of the “what if’s” or worst-case scenario.
I was thinking I could get rid of a summer of stress and worry in an unfamiliar, hospitable environment. But by the end of my Bahamas trip, I was in unbearable pain. I could barely move my shoulder, so when I returned, I did a google search. GYB was the closest place to my house and after looking at some of the pictures on the web, I felt that it looked like the right place for me. I did not even think about bringing Will, at first.
(Dr. Darrien) As you speak, I can sense the weight of what you were carrying back then as your 11-month-old baby lay in the ICU.
What have you learned about the impact of stress since then?
When I was younger, I had no idea what stress really meant. I didn’t realize the damage it could do to your body. I still don’t completely know but I feel I’m always learning more about it. I would say the magnitude of stress really hit my life about two years after my first daughter was born. I was blessed to have a beautiful baby girl at 24. I had waited for that moment my entire life. When she was two and a half, I took her to a Doctor because she wasn’t meeting her milestones. It was at that time I heard the words no mother wants to hear: your daughter has autism. That’s when I began to feel stress.
I went on a journey proving everyone wrong that she was not autistic, that she just has a severe learning disability. Through that journey I think I moved my family five times and spent every penny trying to give her the best education so she would become a successful adult.
(Dr. Darrien) What I see is a mother who refused to let her daughter be defined by a label. I also sense that you’ve sacrificed a lot.
As a mother of 5, what words of wisdom would you offer other mothers?
(Heather) Through each childbirth, I realized even more the preciousness of life. Each pregnancy was just a little harder than the last. It wasn’t until my 4th baby, Emily, that I truly embraced the bond between mother and child. I had been through some tough years struggling to get Hailey (my first born) all the help she needed. Once Emily was born, something was different. I felt an instant bond. Of course, I did with the first three but now I understood that bond. I felt more confident in my own skin. I felt such confidence taking care of her. She naturally breast fed the moment she was born. We were both very in tune with each other and knew each other’s cues. She never cried at night; she just slept on my chest and we created a strong bond that still holds true today.
Before Emily was born, I tried to do what you were “supposed to do” but then I realized it’s more than that: it’s about getting back to the basics. That’s why I relate to what you all do at GYB. I constantly think: what did people do hundreds of years ago? They just did what felt natural. That’s the advice I would give to other mothers: get back to the basics.
(Dr. Darrien) I love your emphasis on the “basics.” That’s something we work hard to emphasize here at GYB.
Before we end, I want to hear more about your Friday routine. I think you and your family have played a big part in our “family Friday” theme.
I loved the fact that Dr. Klein said I could bring the kids. I joked at first and said I would stick to no more than two kids at a time. So, each time you all slowly got to meet different kids. I also love the fact it is a big open gym where my kids can giggle, act silly and crawl around. I have done other gyms in the past, but with Wills condition, I don’t want to expose him to too much until we get his health under control.
But it really just became my Friday thing with Will. After the stress of the week and multiple Dr. visits for him, we look forward to going to the Chiropractor. We always know there will be smiling supportive people when we arrive. It helped me get through both mentally and physically some tough times. I have kept it a routine and something to look forward to. Honestly, it’s kind of a little treat for us on Fridays.
Dr. Darrien Jamar