Change Your Life by Strengthening Your Core

I know you all want to hear about the Corona virus, and that has most definitely been a topic of dinner conversations for the last several weeks. Unfortunately the information is so fluid that much of what DTD says could very well change by the time you read the post. For now, just know that you should stay home and limit contact with others and wash your hands as often as possible.

To take your mind off of this, here’s a story about how some expert guidance and a little effort changed my life.

I told you that DTD has recommended different specialists for me, and although some weren’t a perfect fit, one in particular has been a Godsend. A local physical therapist named Janine Laughlin who owns and operates Healthy Core Wellness & Rehab, Ltd. has helped make my quality of life infinitely better.

I admit freely that I have known Janine for many years. DTD and I are good friends with her and her husband. DTD has also known Janine professionally and has sent many patients her way. They all return to him with glowing reports. (See my post Your Opinion Matters, October 2, 2019) Janine taught me how to strengthen my core, which helped with three major problems I was experiencing:

1. Back pain: Since my first pregnancy over 21 years ago, I have had lower back pain. I just learned to live with it, figuring it was yet another unexpected byproduct of motherhood bliss. Unfortunately, as time went on the problem grew more frequent until one day I actually threw out my back. The pain was excruciating and doubled by the fact that I was humiliated when I told DTD exactly how it happened. I was home, alone, and dancing to MC Hammer’s “You Can’t Touch This.” Allow the visual to sink in and feel free to laugh at me…You’re welcome. After a few days, the pain subsided but the embarrassment still lingers.

I threw my back out a second time when I was picking up a very large bushel of laundry. I was in such severe pain I could not move and had to crawl around for 2 days. I have always known laundry is evil, and now I have definitive proof.

2. Pelvic Pain: I have had years of pelvic pain. It also started when I had children. (I’m seeing a scary pattern about the consequences of childbirth here!) It was always intermittent and I just figured it was something I and most women had to live with. Three c-sections probably messed up my innards beyond repair…go figure.

3. Frequent Urination and Leaking: As a middle-aged woman, again I just figured this is something normal that I would deal with the rest of my life. My family was totally unfazed by my constant search for a decent bathroom. Once on a lovely trip to Boston, they teased that I had examined every available bathroom in the city and should write a review book called “Wicked Pissah!” Such annoying yet witty children!

And God forbid I laughed too hard at a dinner party or sneezed unexpectedly! I laugh often and heartily, AND I have allergies, so I sneeze frequently. Let’s just say I went through a lot of underwear…

After my second back injury, DTD finally convinced me to see Janine. I believe he was afraid I would no longer do his laundry. I saw her four times and she gave me massages targeted to release the pain and pressure I was experiencing plus taught me some simple daily exercises.

She explained that when women give birth their entire pelvic area is traumatized, and then we’re just sent home to take care of the baby and go on with our lives. It’s no surprise that major damage ensues. Scar tissue, muscle weakness, etc. all take a toll on our bodies, and no one tells us to follow up the birth with some physical therapy so we can avoid years of chronic pain. Before you know it, we’re in our 40’s experiencing back issues, painful cramping, peeing every time we sneeze or laugh and thinking that’s just part of aging. Really all we needed to do was some regular manual therapy and certain movements and exercises to make sure our core was strengthened.

All I know is, as a result, I am no longer plagued by any of these issues. Now I can proudly say that I am the last member of my family seeking out a bathroom on vacation. I can lift laundry without pain (unless you count mental anguish) and I can dance to my heart’s content. I can also guffaw during entire dinner parties without fear of wetting myself. Of course I made sure to give feedback about my time with Janine, both to DTD and my regular doctor.

The moral of the story – listen to your doctor, plus don’t assume pain and discomfort are just a result of aging. Oh, and don’t do laundry – but dancing is still OK and should be vigorous and occur often!

If you’d like more information on Janine and her practice, go to:

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s