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ENGAGEMENT PHOTOS

Dr Erica Peabody - Engagement Photos - Chiropractor Fenton MichiganFrom the beginning of our time spent together, the one thing that I told Mike is that I didn’t want normal engagement photos taken.  I didn’t want to take time out of our busy schedule to prepare our wardrobe and have an “engagement photo” session.

Some people have asked “What?  What did you want then?”

Right from the start I had asked Mike to “just be sure there is a photographer standing by close for when the engagement happens and we can have some candid photos taken on the spot.”

Of course for a woman, this makes a lot of sense.  For a man, this can be a difficult situation to maneuver.  Poor Mike got stuck in the middle of it…and though there was a photographer right there for the actual engagement, the photos are not what I was thinking, not because of the photographer though, he was great.  For many other reasons…let me explain.

You see, the proposal was a total surprise.  I did know he was going to ask me to marry him but I didn’t know when or where or how.

I remember along the way we had been talking that he was going to go in and get his haircut just prior to the engagement…but WHAT ABOUT MY HAIR!?!?!?!   My hair appointment was schedule for 4 days after the day he proposed.

I asked him to be sure that when he is going to do it that I at least know enough to wear an outfit that I would want photos taken in.  To make a super long story short, it happened at a western themed winter party.  Not ideal as western wear is not my normal. Dr Erica Peabody - Engagement Photos - Chiropractor Fenton Michigan Now mind you, Mike and I get dressed up every single week and go out on a date night.  We make a deliberate effort to change out of our ordinary work or day clothes and get a little bit fancy and go out for the evening for dinner and dancing. Dr Erica Peabody - Engagement Photos - Chiropractor Fenton Michigan

I don’t know (as I shrug my shoulders) maybe one of those nights would have been a good option???Dr Erica Peabody - Engagement Photos - Chiropractor Fenton Michigan

Our lives are filled with work, personal and family obligations and it isn’t the easiest thing to carve time out for a photo shoot and I was a little bit annoyed that it had to happen this way…that is until I got the pictures back.  Dr Erica Peabody - Engagement Photos - Dr Erica Peabody

The day was fun-filled touring all around Frankenmuth, Michigan, hugging and kissing and getting our pictures taken.  We have a second home right downtown Frankenmuth and we have many sweet little place that we scoped out for great backdrop to our hugs and kisses.

I will be quiet for now and let you scroll through some of the other engagement photos…Dr Erica Peabody - Engagement Photos - Chiropractor Fenton Michigan Dr Erica Peabody - Engagement Photos - Chiropractor Fenton Michigan Dr Erica Peabody - Engagement Photos - Chiropractor Fenton Michigan Dr Erica Peabody - Engagement Photos - Chiropractor Fenton Michigan Dr Erica Peabody - Engagement Photos - Chiropractor Fenton Michigan Dr Erica Peabody - Engagement Photos - Chiropractor Fenton MichiganChiropractor Fenton Michigan - Engagement Photos - Chiropractor Fenton Michigan

 

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NATURE CALLS

Nature calls.

No, really, it truly did call but probably not in the way that you are used to hearing that phrase.Dr Erica Peabody - Nature Calls - Chiropractor Fenton Michigan

Since my climb last year, I have spent almost no time out in the woods.  I had a severe calf/foot injury that locked me into that boot for 6 months.

Of course I have had to keep my body moving and so I found some routines inside the walls of my gym that I could do and still keep my body moving and built a lot of strength at the same time.

I got used to those routines and got comfortable and since the environment was controlled, I stuck with it which really worked out well for me.

What I didn’t realize inside of that time is that I hadn’t been able to get outside and walk, hike, bike or just stroll through the woods…and I also didn’t realize how much I missed it.

Two weekends ago, as I wrote in the previous blog post, I ran a 5K on a trail in the snow.  It was a test for my foot which responded well.  This past weekend I thought I would test it again and I went snowboarding on Saturday.  If you have followed me through the years, snowboarding is one of my greatest joys.  My foot managed snowboarding well too.

Sunday, Mike and I decided to go out snowshoeing along the Arcadia Bluffs overlooking Lake Michigan.  Through these two adventures, snowboarding and snowshoeing, it hit my core that I hadn’t hardly spent any time outside in almost a year.  It also reminded me just how much power and peace I find from being out in nature.  Being in the woods and in fresh air is an absolute MUST for me.Dr Erica Peabody - Nature Calls - Chiropractor Fenton Michigan Tri to Finish

As I am cruising the trails on snowshoes, I am taking in the fresh air, the scenery and the trees around me.  With snow falling and getting stuck in my eyelashes, I feel that peace and I begin to remember just how much that serves my soul.  WOW I have missed that!!!

Fortunately for us, we have had loads of snow back at home and so Monday night I went out after dark and put my snowshoes on again and wandered out around my old stomping grounds by the light of my headlamp.

I am so grateful for the reminder that was offered to me last weekend.  And since I have manage more and more outdoor activities as my foot heals, I am opting to spend less time in the gym and more time in the fresh air.  I am grateful for all the lessons I learned during “boot camp” and I am also really excited to be getting back to my normal life.Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - Nature Calls - Dr Erica Peabody Best Chiropractor

I am a nature girl.  I love the outdoors.  I relax on walks in the woods, mountain biking, snowboarding and hiking.  I need that in my life.  In fact, I think all humans need a regular dose of nature in order to maintain health and peace.

We all have a tendency to stay focused at the task at hand and taking care of the needs of those around us and we unintentionally veer away from grounding and centering forces like getting out and exploring the Earth.

Have you noticed a place in life where you recharge your batteries?  Is there a spot outside that you like to visit?  An outside activity that you enjoy for re-centering life?  Share with me your favorite things when nature calls!!

 

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RUNNING AGAIN

I am beyond excited to be running again!

I completed my first 5K over this past weekend.

5K may not seem like anything to write home about (blog about) however it is a really big deal.

If you have been reading right along with my shares, you know I climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro in March of last year.  It was an incredible experience (CLICK HERE FOR VIDEO LOG OF THE TREK) and landed me shortly thereafter in an immobilization walking boot.  I lived in that boot for 6 months. Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - Running Again - Dr Erica Peabody

I haven’t told you this yet but many many people, after seeing me hobble around in the boot for months, ask me “Well was it worth it?”

HECK TO THE YES IT WAS WORTH IT!!!  There is no question about that.

I learned some incredible lessons while in that boot and the most important has been patience.

I am a chiropractor at Cafe of LIFE Chiropractic in downtown Fenton, Michigan.  Being a chiropractor is one of my most favorite roles in my life and I wouldn’t trade it for anything.  Being an integral part of people’s healthcare team is amazing and fun and rewarding.  I help people that are striving to get back to health, as well as, those that want to be and stay healthy.  Chiropractic care is for just about everyone!

Those that visit me in serious acute pain often have this dreaded feeling of “life is always going to be this hard and painful.”  I don’t know why but humans are hard-wired to think “worst case scenario” and think that whatever is going on will always be going on.  It comes out of fear and frustration and it is warranted AND in a short time are feeling better.

I have a lot of those times of thinking “life will always be this way.”  My thoughts went there as I was approaching 4 and 5 months in that boot.  I finally got to a place where I fully accepted that if I was going to have to wear that boot for the rest of my life, I would be alright with it.  It would shift a lot of my hopes and dreams for what I want to do physically with the remainder of my years but if that was how it was going to be, may as well not fight it.

In my mind I succumbed to the idea of not being able to walk around my neighborhood comfortably again.  Maybe I would never snowboard again.  Maybe I will never run again.Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - Running Again - Dr Erica Peabody

That is sad.  It is still sad looking back on those feeling and just how real and raw they were.  This “boot camp” was not a couple week thing, this went on for MONTHS!!!

For the holidays, I went away to the beach for a week with Mike and great friends.  I decided I would walk the beach barefoot and build some strength and mobility in my foot.  I did that.  It still hurt but I was alright with that.

When the New Year rolled around and I still had the pain, I decided I would stop remaining in limbo and I would get back to my weekly step aerobics class at Genesys Athletic Club and begin to run.  If I jarred the foot enough, it would move past this nagging injury and maybe I would end up in surgery or something, but at least I wouldn’t be in limbo.  I decided I would break it or fix it but I was going to start really using it again.

The first step class was January 2nd.  I was going.  Even if I didn’t use any risers underneath my step, I was going to go, make deliberate movements in class and have some fun again.  WOW!!!  SO MUCH PAIN that afternoon.  Maybe that was not a good idea???

But the next day it was better, I returned to my usual workouts…and the day after that was even better.

My next test…what if I start running on it?  I did 1/4 mile.  That HURT!!!  But it was better the next day.  I did 1/2 mile and that was painful…but it was even better the next day.  On and on with step and running over a few weeks time until I built my distance back up to complete a 5K this past weekend.  Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - Running Again - Dr Erica Peabody

I was nervous to start that race.  I was nervous to even drive up to the venue.  “What if I cannot make the 5K happen?”  “What if I stress it on the snow and ice covered trail and I set myself backwards again?”

Then I remember my plan of pushing it to the point it either breaks or fixes and I settled into the idea.

The drive took almost 2 hours and I had waves of ideas back and forth between this is a great decision and this is a bad decision.  I have a bit of PTSD after being in that much pain for that long.

Then I remember looking back over some of the “boot camp” time and realizing how devastated I was to think I would never run again and here I was going to be able to at least try and I got choked up in tears of gratitude to just be that far started to fall.

Mike was there.  He has a race management company as a side business called TRI To Finish.  Their company was hosting the run and honestly I am always stronger and more confident with that kind of cheering squad!!  

I did it.  I ran the entire 5K on uneven snow/ice covered trail.  I will never be setting records with my paces and I will never ever make it on a podium but I won in my mind.  It wasn’t a battle against my foot, it was more a battle for feeling whole again, feeling capable again.  That medal means more to me than most of my long distance medals I hang in the lobby of my office.

That medal symbolizes healing, patience, support, gratitude and persistence and the fact that I am so happy to be running again.

 

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MY TRIBE

As many of you know, I usually spend the holidays with my tribe.

This tribe consists of long time friends that I met during chiropractic college (and a couple since).  Many of them have traveled most years together, other parts of my tribe were not able to go and a few have yet to join us.  Whoever shows up for the holiday trip is always the perfect blend.Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - My Tribe - Dr Erica Peabody

We always meet somewhere warm and spend a week together.  The week is filled with laughter and silliness and play…but also some serious talks about the past year and projection and goal-setting for the year ahead.

The greatest thing about my tribe is we have known each other for so many years and have been out in the field doing similar work for that long that we see the world through the same lens and they all get me.

Speaking of being out in the field, we have all been so career-focused that there haven’t been any children on this regular holiday tribe trip until this year.

One couple has grown children and they were with us but we also have beautiful 6 month old twins in the tribe now.

Taking twins across the boarder and to the beach is no easy task and prior discussions sounded a little like this “Just get them there and then there will be 11 adults to 2 babies and we will help all week long.”  I am so glad they did.

Much of the tribe lives in close proximity to each other in Denver and get to spend a little more regular time together however being this far away, I don’t get that kind of regular time with any of them.  Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - My Tribe - Dr Erica Peabody

Although the babies added a lot to the dynamics of the group, it was delightful as we all learn to transition into the “with children” phase of our lives.

We shared great conversation over meals, while sitting around the pools and during walks on the beach.  These are the people that light my flame and keep it stoked.  We have a text message thread that goes on and on daily for years however having true face to face time fills my soul.

I do not have a tribe like that in Fenton.  By the end of the week together, I feel so recharged and ready to take on the New Year.  I always head back home rejuvenated but I am also a little sad when I land in Detroit and drive home knowing just how far away they all are.  I miss them terribly and in a small way I dread coming home.  I have a great life here but have always felt a little lonely following a week with my tribe.

This time was a little different.  My boyfriend Mike was able to make it down for the week and of course we traveled home together.  He is my ideal match I feel fortunate that he blends so well into my group of friends.  Our connection fills my life so full on a daily basis and has ever since the day we met 9 months ago.

Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - My Tribe - Dr Erica Peabody

So this time around, instead of having to head home alone and readjust to Fenton and life apart from my tribe, I got to come home with him and together have put some action steps in place towards our goals we set for this year already!!

Although I have lived in pure gratitude for my incredible life for a long time now, I have always said that “Life is sweeter when shared.”  I am finding so much truth to that with a connection like this.

My tribe is part of my lifeline.  Our text message thread has continued on just as silly with bouts of seriousness as before.  I laugh all day long with these people that are thousands of miles away and am grateful for technology helping us easily stay connected.  I love them all so much and miss the babies and am sad I don’t get to watch them grow up in person.

To have this incredible man alongside me as all the days progress wins over all of that.  He is my tribe, but more than that, he is my safe space, my recharging station and my true home.  I tell him daily how grateful I am he is in my life but once more here (because he always reads) Thanks Babe.  🙂

 

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THE SECOND STRAP

He always reaches for the second strap.

It doesn’t matter how many hundreds of times I have put this walking boot on, he reaches for that second strap to help out.

Most of you know I have been in a walking boot since early August.  This has been an overuse injury do to my climb of Mt. Kilimanjaro back in March.  Actually it didn’t happen on the mountain, it was when I got home and never took the proper time to rest that the injury happened.  And beyond that I have been dealing with plantar fasciitis off and on for the past 4 years in my left foot.  It was simply the perfect storm of events.  Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - The Second Strap - Dr Erica Peabody

The trip to Mt. Kilimanjaro was life changing and amazing however since Kilimanjaro it has been the best seven months of my life and all due to meeting one heck of an incredible man.

He has been such a light in my life and I will be sharing our incredible life adventures as we go but I wanted to introduce you all to Mike.

He is the most kind, gentle, generous, hilarious and loving man I have ever been around and I feel lucky to even be able to hang out with someone like him on a regular basis and even luckier to be loved and supported by him.

The other day as I was leaving to head back into work after my lunch, he was there grabbing the boot and helping me.  Of course I am the only one that knows exactly when I am putting it on and taking it off but as soon as I grab and velcro or un-velcro the first strap, he always grabs the second strap.  I got choked up “Even after all this time, how do you just keep doing that and helping me?”

Last week must have marked 500 (not exaggerating) times or so that I have taken this boot off and put it back on.  If he is with me, he jumps up from any place and is instantly up in my business and helping me get this thing back on and he is always fast enough to grab the second strap.  There are 5 total and by the time he has his hands on the second strap he is fixing the rest of them up for me to go out and take on the world.  Every.  Single.  Time.

We have worked and camped and traveled and danced and played since I have had this boot on.  He is always always always making sure it is handled.

There is an air pump on the boot that pumps air around the liner and softens the hard rough corners of the boot.  He knows it takes 8 pumps to pump it up to a comfortable level and that when I stand up it needs 2 more pumps of air for it to be solid.  He counts out loud as he does it.  It comforts me.

I have never ever known a man so willing to help me in my life.  He is there for the fun times but also there, right by my side for the mundane-ness of life…like taking this boot off and putting it back on.  The extent of his help is endless, I am just using this simple task as illustration.  Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - The Second Strap - Dr Erica Peabody

I would be a liar if I said this has all been easy for me but honestly, to accept help in my life isn’t easy to begin with and it has taken this long to really be alright with leaning on him.  His continual willingness to grab that second strap has been eye-opening, as well as mind-boggling.  For the 40 years of my life so far, I have never had so much help, love and support.

Does it sound strange to say that I believe the Universe sent me such a crazy injury that needed so much tending to and sent him at the same time just so I could truly have a shift in my being and allow him to infiltrate my life?  Does it sound crazy that this boot has been like a “boot camp” of sorts to break me down, break all the guards down and teach me to allow someone, him, in?

A friend said to me the other day “I sympathize with your foot thing as I dealt with something similar for 6 months.  It took me getting to a place in my mind that if this is how it was going to be for the rest of my life, if this pain is permanent and I have to deal with this limitation for life, I accept that as my reality…and then I started healing.”

That hit me like a ton of bricks mostly because I have learned to accept it into my life with the condition that it is just for the time being assuming it will heal and feel better.  But taking the idea up a level to the concept that if I have to live in this boot for the rest of my life and be alright with that has really allowed a huge emotional release for me and I can feel the healing happen…on many levels.

…because if I get to have his help with this (which I am finally healing so I will be back to normal in the next few weeks so I won’t need help with it for a lifetime BUT there are ALWAYS other obstacles) life for the rest of my life, I open my arms and heart fully and accept it.

After all of these months and never wavering ever even once, I know he will always be by my side ready to grab that second strap and help me move forward.  I am forever grateful for his love.

 

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FOUNDATION

If you are following me on this journey, you know that I am currently building a house. In fact, this week they are finishing with the foundation.Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - Foundation - Dr Erica Peabody This house project is about 1 year delayed but it is a tricky lot and there has been a lot of time spent on putting in the foundation. The house is set back into a hill and so the foundation has to be done in pieces and locked together.
The house project has been going on for quite a while and the one right next door finished just about a month ago. Of course because that one is ahead of us, it puts a bit of pressure from outsiders that are wondering why they aren’t finished at the same time. What they don’t realize is that the neighbors had their house plans in the works even before I had dreamed of purchasing my lot. Their efforts began much before mine did, but sitting side by side, onlookers forgot about that part.
I am fascinated by demolition as well as construction and I am the homeowner that sits on the sidelines, literally on the sidelines, and watches as much of the process as possible in person. I have a very talented builder working on my house and have been sitting right by his side since the very first line was drawn.
I feel very lucky to be part of the process but also even luckier to be privy to the very beginnings and all pieces along the way.
Currently it is difficult to not spend every extra minute out there watching what they are doing on a day to day basis.Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - Foundation - Dr Erica Peabody It started with excavation and then on to footings. Footings started with just boards for forms and then the cement was poured. At this point it felt like something was actually happening.
The next was forms for the foundation. Watching the crew work so hard and putting together this steel puzzle that would eventually be the foundation of my home, absolutely fascinating. I have an incredible team hired to do the foundation and to watch as they all worked together to make this thing happen was really interesting.
Then the pump truck pulls in and they start filling the forms with cement. I sat there and watched from the neighbor’s stairs as this puzzle soon became my basement.
It has been a beautifully sunshiny fall here in Michigan and that day was no exception. It was in the low 60s and the sun was shining on my face as I sat and watched them do this process.
I have been in awe of this entire building process but to actually watch something like this come together, I called my builder and said “It must be so gratifying to watch lines on paper become something!”
Not everyone will get a chance to put a mark on the Earth.
Not everyone who does get a chance to build will be able to watch the process every step of the way.
In that moment, I realized how strongly I was fighting back tears of

Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - Foundation - Dr Erica Peabody

gratitude. I had to have the events of my life to line up exactly the way they did in order to be able to have this chance. During this long and drawn out process, I had no idea if it was going to actually happen and, truthfully some of the process has been very very difficult and some of it actually quite painful.
The nay-sayers will always be there. The ones that want to give opinions on what to do and how to do it will always be waiting in the wings to chime in. I have heard “Do this.” “Don’t do that.” “Have you considered this?” “If I were you, I wouldn’t do that.”
Yup, you know what? We got this covered. There is a reason, well many many reason, why I am chosen the particular builder I am working with. In the midst of all of this I am confident he has it handled as he has shown me over and over and over.
In a moment, those tears of gratitude busted through the surface and I was balling.
Of course I am sure this looked so bizarre to the crew of guys that a woman would sit on the sidelines and ball her eyes out. It was a combination of tears along with laughter as it must have been a pretty bizarre energy coming through from me (I caught some of this in my instagram story:  follow me @drericapeabody)
So I am in this. I have been in this but I am truly in this in a way that I can feel it from head to toe. I have created this beautiful home in my mind for years now. It is amazing to see the beginnings of its foundation, a foundation that has so much strength it is palpable.
This also rolls over to the fact that I am currently building a strong foundation for my life in other ways. Using the visual of the powerful foundation that is built for my home as a vision for my future, I have confidence it will be able to withstand the many tests that come with time.

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#YOGAEVERYDAMNDAY

As a compliment to my calling as a chiropractor, I am yogi and have been for decades now.  If you are in the yoga community, you know that there are online yoga challenges happening all the time, all over the world.  I finally decided to join one called “#yogaeverydamnday”.Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - #YOGAEVERYDAMNDAY - Dr Erica Peabody

The point of this challenge is have yoga as part of “every damn day” no matter what.  It doesn’t mean to strike a pose and take a picture (although to some people it does).  Yoga is a way to mindfulness…or is it mindfulness is a way to yoga?  To me, they are one and the same.  To me, it also means to move the body in some mindful way to bring our awareness and existence back to the present moment.

Every day I would find a bit of time, some days was a little and some days was a lot, to do some form of yoga and then share a bit about that day.  (It is all on Instagram @drericapeabody)
Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - #YOGAEVERYDAMNDAY - Dr Erica Peabody

I have been a yogi for over 20 years.  In a past life, I taught yoga for years inside of a gym setting (have I told you that in said “past life” I was a group fitness instructor?).  I also took Yoga Teacher Training with Ethos Yoga about 4 years ago.  I didn’t take the teacher training curriculum in order to teach yoga in my current life, it was more about bringing even further awareness into my own personal practice, I don’t have the ability to commit to more in my regular week at the current moment.  Who knows, maybe someday.  Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - #YOGAEVERYDAMNDAY - Dr Erica Peabody

You also probably know about the walking boot I am currently wearing that I discussed in one of the “Sitting on the Sidelines” blog posts.  My physical yoga practice has taken a back seat to my healing and I haven’t been able to attend many classes since June.  Following my summit of Mt. Kilimanjaro in March I was fine while taking a yoga class, but after class my foot would start screaming and I decided was not doing it any favors to continue so I took a break.  Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - #YOGAEVERYDAMNDAY - Dr Erica Peabody

September rolled around and one of the people I follow on Instagram, Rachel Brathen aka “Yoga Girl”, decided to do her “Yoga Every Damn Day” challenge for 30 days.  I needed a little shift for myself and decided I would join.

After decades of yoga, I like to attend very specific hot, intense and sweaty classes with specific instructors.  I am reminded of the irony of having rigid guidelines of classes and instructors as I practice more and more yoga…seems it should be the other way around.  Honestly, if I am going to be in class, I want to spend my time exactly how I want to practice and I have my favorite instructors all over the region, just depends on the day and time for which one I would attend.

Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - #YOGAEVERYDAMNDAY - Dr Erica Peabody

I also love yoga for the community aspect of it.  Doing yoga with other people has a very different feel than practicing solo, or at least in my mind.

I am currently limited in my range of motion as well as the ability to get into different postures.  But inside of the the 30 day challenge framework I just mentioned, I learned so much.Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - #YOGAEVERYDAMNDAY - Dr Erica Peabody

During the month I did make it to a couple classes, having to modify almost every posture…I learned new modifications.

Some days I felt like I am all the way back to square one with my practice, a beautiful reminder of all the progress i have made.

The only way in and out of the postures is through breath and where in my life can I take some deep breathes?

As the 30 days progressed, I relished going back to the basics and cherished the strength I have built in my core.

My movements were slow and very deliberate.  Where else in my life can I be slower and more deliberate?

I had to change many of the transitions in and out of postures.  Are there other paths in my life I can or should alter?Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - #YOGAEVERYDAMNDAY - Dr Erica Peabody

As I look around in life, I see so many ways yoga has opened my eyes and offered me different perspective on life outside of the yoga studio.  That is the whole point of yoga and is one of the most powerful parts of having a regular practice.

Of course there is also the part about being flexible so as life comes at me, I can bend instead of breaking.

Thank you #yogaeverydammnday challenge, i have learned more in the past 30 days about myself and my life and how to alter and modify things and be ok with doing less than I am used to.  In the end, I am so very very grateful that my body even allows me to move around like this at all…and I am (fingers crossed) can announce that I am on my way (although slow) back to a BOOT FREE LIFE!!!!

 

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THE SIDELINES

I am not a sit on the sidelines” kind of gal.

I am in it.  I am in the game.  I am in the adventure.  I am playing full out.  I am making things happen in whatever way I can.

This coming weekend…I will be sitting on the sidelines.

Let me explain…

Wait!  Before I explain, I do not want sympathy but I will take some positive vibes if you have some to spare:)Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - The Sidelines - Dr Erica Peabody

By now, you all know that I climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro back in March of this year.  I had a successful summit, flew home the next day, had one day to rest and then I was back at Cafe of LIFE, my chiropractic practice, being the chiropractor that I always am.

Two weeks later one of my favorite yoga studios, Bent Yoga, started a 6 week yoga challenge.  In those 6 weeks the challenge was to complete 32 yoga classes in 42 days.  “Piece of cake” said my internal voice and I signed right up.

I also workout every single day in some way and I have had a regular step aerobics class that I have attended for years every single week at my favorite gym, Genesys Athletic Club.

I also have done a couple cleanses which included two long walks (8-9 miles) as part of the protocol in the past few months.

Every single one of the activities I feel fine during, but soreness has followed ever since my climb.  Then I would do something again, and I am fine but maybe a little more sore the next time.  …more sore…and more sore…and more sore.

The beginning of June I decided to scale way back on the intensity of all of my workouts and simply just walk and lift weights.  I would feel good for a while and -> so I would want to increase again -> and I would get set back again.

I always heal.  No problem for my body, I always heal.  Until now…

The end of July I got some x-rays taken of my foot and ankle to rule out stress fracture.  Bones are fine.  “It is ligament damage and if you do not rest, you are heading for surgery.”  WHAT?!?!?!  “Oh and here is a boot you will wear for 6 weeks and we will see how you are at the end of those 6 weeks.”

Um…boot?  I cannot adjust and serve my patients IN A BOOT!!!Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - The Sidelines - Dr Erica Peabody

Most of you have no idea any of this is going on.  When you come to my office, the focus is on YOUR HEALING, not mine.  The focus is on YOU, not me.  We are serving YOU and YOUR FAMILIES, not me.  This is our way.  I truly cannot wear my boot to the office.  I tried adjusting one of my chiropractors and I got stuck and had to have him push me back up to my feet.  No bueno, that is not going to work.

So instead I slowly and mindfully walk through the office and take care of patients.  And when I am doing that, I am pain free.  Then after work and whenever I am not there, I am in my boot.

When I really slowed down back in June, I told my man that “if I slow down, maybe I will heal and still be able to run the Crim 10 mile road race.”  

This Crim is this coming weekend.

I will be on the sidelines.

Sometimes I can find the blessing in it all and sometimes I am crushed over not being able to run those 10 miles.

The Crim rolls around every year.  It is one of the greatest days that Flint has all year.  The energy is high, spirits are high, music is blasting through the streets and there are thousands of people accomplishing big goals that day.  It is a FUN day and really fun to be part of it all.

I have ran the Crim for the past 12 years and when the end of August comes, it is just part of what happens and in the back of my mind it is sort of a way that I prove to myself that “I still have it”.  It is a head game for me.  I have been told that some people think that I don’t have any of those “head games” going on for me…but WE ALL DO!!!  Every last one of us is playing a game with those internal voices EVERY SINGLE DAY.

I attended an incredible event this past weekend which brought my awareness to a whole new level surrounding this subject.  For the past two months, I have been in so much pain that even when I simply see a runner, I view it as a horror film in the back of my mind “That would be so painful”.  When I see high heels I also view that with so much distress.  I realize that “if thoughts are things” and they are, that these thoughts have inhibited my healing process as well.  We head in the direction our thoughts go and so I may as well spend my time getting excited for when I can get back to running and wearing heels (not that I wear heels a lot but I do like having options, ya know).

I am sure I will shed some tears from the sidelines this weekend.

I am sure I will laugh and be entertained from the sidelines.Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - The Sidelines - Dr Erica Peabody

I will actually get to see the head of the pack finish the race (let’s be honest, I never see them ever for my entire race at my pace).

I will hang with everyone else’s families and friends as they cheer on their runners from the sidelines.

I will cheer the loudest for my man from the sidelines.

I will cheer all my patients on and yell real loud from the sidelines.

I will stand proudly in my boot, excited for the coming years and returning to running, from the sidelines.

I have already learned so many lessons from the sidelines these past couple months and I will report back to you what that day teaches me from the sidelines.

I will cheer for this life and my incredible body that has chosen a successful summit of Mt. Kilimanjaro instead of finishing the Crim this year.

I will sit in massive gratitude to just BE ALIVE while I sit on the sidelines.

And now that I am finishing up this piece of writing, maybe I will actually enjoy the sidelines.

The best part is, I do not have to sit on the sidelines of the dance floor at the after party, so meet me there for a jig!!!

Best wishes for an incredible 10 miles this coming Saturday and wave to me if you see me on the sidelines!!!

 

 

 

 

 

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THIS IS 40

It is almost 3 months into my 40th year and I find my inner voice saying “this is 40” in the back of my head at least a few times per week lately.

I spent a week in Florida over the 4th of July.  My travel was hooked to a International Chiropractic Pediatric Association seminar the weekend of July 8-9 but I went down to get a change of scenery the Tuesday prior.  I have not mastered the art of “stay-cation” where I just stay home instead of going to work.  I take 2 weeks off per year, Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - This is 40- Dr Erica Peabodyone at the holidays and one at the 4th of July however I have to leave town to not go into work.  It is not possible for me, YET anyway, to just hang out at home and take time off from work.  The guilt rules my days and getting on a plane and being away makes it peaceful for me so I am able to relax and let go of the office for a bit.

My most favorite way to start my days on vacation is to put on a swim suit and a cover-up and walk the beach for 1-2 hours.  It is a peaceful time of day and the walking helps the energy and thoughts surface organically.  In fact, the friends that I often vacation with, began to start asking me what the “song of the day” is because, inevitably, a song would surface in the morning time.  There is always a song in my mind however when it is quiet, it gets really loud.

While in Florida last week, my morning routine changed.  I still walked the beach but I had to have socks and shoes on.  My left foot is still not right from my trek to Mt. Kilimanjaro.  If you saw me in my day to day, I am fine and my foot is fine.  As soon as I start moving forward deliberately walking, it yells at me.  My walk is now a stroll and socks and shoes don’t look cool with bathing suit and swim cover so I wore workout clothes.  Which is fine.  So I am out there the first morning walking, strolling, on the beach for 45 minutes to start my day.  I look down and am in socks and shoes and avoiding the waves as they come to shore, instead of barefoot and walking in the water and my inner voice pipes up “This is 40”.

That bums me out.  I realize I just have to let my body rest and my foot will recover but it has really slowed me down.

In these moments, I know the very best thing to do is to start reviewing my current gratitude list to override that little pesky voice inside of my head.

“I have an incredibly strong and healthy body, stronger and healthier than every before.  This is 40.”Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - This is 40 - Dr Erica Peabody

“I have an amazing chiropractic practice that has been amazing all these 12.5 years it has been open but it is a new level of awesome as I have progressed as a doctor and servant to my community.  This is 40.”

“I have outstanding relationships with my brothers and their families and can bring the wisdom I have gained over the years to help guide the littles in my family and offer unconditional love in their lives.  This is 40.”

“I have learned so many great, hard, wonderful, nasty, eye-opening lessons in life and love.  This is 40.”

“I am grateful to share regular time with my amazing Mom as we have grown to be such allies in life.  This is 40.”

“I have found an incredible supportive loving relationship and I am grateful for all the lessons in love up to this point.  This is 40.”

“I have come to a point in my life that I realize 100% of what I focus on heads my way so I better keep it positive and fruitful.  This is 40.”

“I realize the days, weeks, months and years go by so quickly and have learned to squeeze the juice out of every single day.  This is 40.”

“I am more and more grateful for all the little moments during the days that make my heart warm; from serving my patients, to stopping along my morning stroll to take in the beauty of a neighbor’s yard, to the simple hugs from loved ones, to laying down in my bed earlier at night in order to get proper rest to keep my body strong and healthy. This is 40.”

“It is obvious who ‘real’ friends are, who is in my tribe, and to invest in those relationships.  This is 40.”

“I realize how fast I got to 40 and I will spend the next 40 years trying to slow life down and smile even more.  This is 40”

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Trivial things like having to wear socks and shoes while walking the beach can really take us, well me for sure, out of my game.  I know and trust the tools I have worked to develop in my life that can change that feeling of being bummed and it all begins with GRATITUDE.  This life is not perfect.  These days have their own inherent challenges.  Life lessons come at us in all shapes and sizes.

But be grateful. Search for that silver lining.  For me, even though I had to wear socks and shoes to support my feet while I walked on the beach every morning and every evening, I am grateful I CAN walk and I am grateful to have climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro and realize it is just a reminder of my journey…for now.  This is 40 and I LOVE being 40!!

 

 

 

 

 

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SERVING OTHERS

The concept of “serving others” lives at the core of my being.

I remember 2 years into private practice at Cafe of LIFE Chiropractic I called my mom and said “So I wake up, eat, go to work, come home and eat lunch, go back to work, exercise, home for dinner and then to bed to get up and do it all over again.  Is this all there is?”Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - Serving Others - Dr Erica Peabody

I had jobs along the way however being a chiropractor was my first true career and I opened my own practice right out of school.  I busted my behind (and still do) to get this thing up and running and 2 years into it I made a realization that this is what I would be spending my years doing and it blew my mind to think that was all there is.

When I say that, I am not ignorant to the fact that many are married with children and running families and doing the same thing, however, our lives are truly filled quite full with time spent at work.

My very next thought was…”THANK GOD I am in a profession serving others.”

Service is my highest heart calling and my life has revolved around that for over 12 years in private practice and a few years beyond that during my internship at school.

It was dinnertime our second day on Mt. Kilimanjaro, we sat down and one of the first comments I heard was “Man, I really wish there was a chiropractor here.”

When I am out and about in my personal life, I do not always offer up front that I am a chiropractor and since it hadn’t some up in conversation yet, not many in that particular crowd knew I was.  …well until that very moment anyway.

Day 2 of the trek I still felt yucky, sore, tired and out of it.  That is not a place to “serve others” from since my own tank was on empty but it was now sitting in the back of my mind.

I could probably adjust this entire group.

It would do every single person some good in making the trek a success.

It only takes my hands.

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This thought sat in the back of my mind the following day as we made our way to the next campsite.  As we hiked along that next day, or porters would pass us on the trail.  As they cruised by us, they all carried about 30 pounds of stuff on top of their heads and I know one carried 30 pounds of my own stuff.  This is their job and many had been doing it for years.

From a chiropractor’s eyes, it is so clear to see just how much stress has been placed on their spines and it dawned on me that I should spend any extra energy I have serving them.  The 31 women on this trek live good lives and have access to all the care they need at home.  This is not to discount their need in that moment but many of our team of porters and guides had never heard of chiropractic and had no concept of what a chiropractic adjustment could do…much less how beneficial it would be to their spines, nervous systems, health and well-being and multiply that by the fact they carry so much weight on their heads on a regular basis.Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - Serving Others - Dr Erica Peabody

Our day 3 hike was long and tough.  I stopped part way down the trail and adjusted Kelly (my patient/friend that invited me on this trip in the first place) and that led to a couple staff members lining up to get checked. That led to me offering my services to all staff and  I opened up a make-shift office outside of the dinner tent, which pretty much just consisted of a chair that the staff could sit in so I could check and adjust their spines.

Many stood back and watched, but some jumped right in with full trust.  By serving them, my own energy lifted.  This is a usual thing that happens, even at my office here in town.  By helping others, I am helped.  By helping others to heal, I am healed.  By helping others to increase the energy inside their bodies, my energy increases.  It is the COOLEST thing about this work I do.  Serving others helps me.Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - Serving Others - Dr Erica Peabody

It also fills my heart and nothing is more satisfying than what happened the very next day.  I was stopped and standing on the side of the trail.  One of the guides, that was really reluctant to sit down in my chair the evening before but decided he would in the end, walked up to me and sort of whispered “That ‘thing’ you did to me yesterday, I have been so calm ever since.  Do you think you could do that again before you leave?”

Then the following day he stops me as says “That ‘thing’…do you think you could teach me how to do that so I could help my team?”

“Success means we go to sleep at night knowing that our talents and abilities were used in a way that served others.”  -Marianne Williamson

There is serious power in those adjustments, every chiropractic adjustment is powerful and I often wish you all could feel what I feel in my hands.  Being able to release healing energy inside of the body to allow people to be stronger, healthier and adapt to the internal and external stresses in their lives better, I would argue it is one of the greatest things in life.

Serving others truly is one of the greatest things in life.

I am blessed and lucky to be spending my days waking up, eating, going to work at the Cafe, coming home and eating lunch, going back to work, exercising, then home for dinner and then to bed to get up and do it all over again the next day serving others.

 

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