• Tracy Rodriguez

The Injury Came Back

If you know me, then you probably know my story. In 2014, while driving across state, I was hit by a semi-truck. When I’m telling a condensed version of my story, I usually tell people next that the injury from the accident disabled me. What people don’t know is that it took a year and a half to do it.

I try to remember how I got to my friend’s house in Colorado from the accident site. I cannot. Was it a tow truck? Was it the police? I’ve blocked it out. But I do remember arriving at her door trembling. I then proceeded to drink entirely too much wine and try to cope with what has just happened.

The injury didn’t onset for a few days, as can happen after a big accident. I went to chiropractic. I received massage. I strength trained. And I healed. It had seemed like a small blip in my bright future. I moved onward and forward.

Shortly after this, I met the most amazing man I had ever known. We fell in love and got engaged. We found a gorgeous apartment that overlooked the Columbia River and started moving my stuff into the apartment.

It was two weeks before our wedding. I was lifting one end of a very light keyboard when the injury relapse happened. Not a very exciting way to go down. I was out of commission for a few days and then carried on with my life with some nagging pain.

But then the injury relapsed again when I was lifting a dish. And then again as I sat down wrong. Each time it relapsed it was more severe. Until finally, it completely disabled me.

I was to the point where my husband had to pour water into my mouth because I couldn’t shift or move without excruciating pain and spasms. I needed help to get to the bathroom because I couldn’t walk on my own.

I was disabled for about a year total. I would start to slightly see improvements and then the injury would relapse again. Because that’s what injuries do. They relapse. I would start to finally be able to walk around and then would be back in bed. Because that’s what injuries do. They relapse.

I tried chiropractic and couldn’t move my neck for a week. I tried physical therapy and it didn’t help at all. Nobody had told me that I also have hypermobility, which makes healing much harder for the body unless done in a very specific way.

I tell people all the time that I trained myself through my recovery and it’s true. I started correcting all of the muscular imbalances pulling my vertebrae and joints out of stability. And like magic, I needed my brace less and less every day. One day, I didn’t need it at all.

It took me about 6 months to fully heal, but I still keep up the work to a certain extent. Because even though my body has found new neuromuscular patterns that don’t cause me pain, it remembers the old patterns too. And I still get a flare up every one to two years that reminds me of that. The body has an extraordinary ability to heal, but it is still vital to listen to it and treat it well.

If you’re reading this today and saying, “I’ve had several relapses, but I’m still going.” I don’t mean to frighten you, but this is the time to solve the issue before it comes back with a vengeance.

If you’re reading this and can relate to trying everything and nothing has worked to help your pain, you are my people. And this is my jam. Reach out to me and I would love to help you heal. You don’t have to live with pain forever. I’m living proof.

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