Why do I work until 9pm, replying to emails at 11pm, 6am, speaking to a concerned mum about their baby in between patients, or an anxious man with acute low back pain late at night, looking for reassurance? Or fit a runner into a slot that doesn’t actually exist, in the hope that they can compete at the weekend? Or do the books whilst the children sleep, trying to juggle the business with motherhood, school runs and football, gymnastics and swimming, cake making for birthdays or school events? Or be a tag team with my husband, literally passing ships in the night, as I finish on a Friday, he starts, as I work on a Monday for 10 hours, he does the school runs. As we plan ahead for our business, for our house, for our family. Why do I bother?
When I was 16 and thinking about A level choices, I had no idea what I wanted to do. I enjoyed school but thought I wanted to be a vet ( until mum gently told me that this would involve, at some points, putting some animals to sleep – “no it won’t, I said, all my animals will get better” – shortest veterinary career ever). It was my mum that suggested physiotherapy – do be completely honest, I had no idea what a physio was, or did.
I was lucky and did a week of work experience at Hexham General Hospital. From that moment I was hooked. I’d come home and write reems about what I’d seen, who I’d observed, and at that moment realised it was the career for me.
The degree at university was hard but I loved uni life, I devoured lectures and enjoyed exams (I know, weird, but largely thanks to a cunning photographic memory!!). When I qualified, I worked for 5 years in the NHS, gaining valuable experience before working in the private sector for 16 years.
Over 2 years ago I set up Taylored-fit Physio. Why did I bother?
I bothered because I cared. I bothered because I knew I had the skills, knowledge and expertise to help you. I bothered because I knew this would be a better option for me, as a physio, as a mum of 4, and as a wife. I bothered, not because I knew it would work (I hoped it would), but because I knew I’d do an excellent job.
And I bother now, because I love the feeling of helping you, helping you with your physical pains, sometimes emotional pain, often you’re trying to juggle too many things and your body shouts no. Sometimes it’s easier for me to see it than you, sometimes it’s easier for you to listen to me, rather than your body. Usually, often, we get it right. Your symptoms improve, your work life balance is restored, you sleep, you smile, you breathe. Occasionally, rarely, we get it wrong. When that happens, we try something else, or I send you to someone who may help, or we accept that it is a time thing. We are all works in progress.
Running the business is hard, but rewarding. I am a physio, and will always be a clinician, a craniosacral therapist, an acupuncturist. I am marketing, HR and PR manager, social media manager, I am a bookkeeper, an accountant, an administrator, secretary and social media pundit, a photographer, a writer, a website buff. I am all of these things and more, but I thoroughly enjoy everything! ( most of the time!)
I bother because I love my job. My work is rewarding, fulfilling and you, my patients, brighten my day. We share laughs, hugs, sometimes tears and heartache, but you know I am with you. I’ve got your back. I’m bothered about you.
I wish you a peaceful Christmas, a Christmas of joy, and thoughts of those no longer with us.
See you in 2017 if not before, and thank you for being on my journey with me. Thank you for bothering about me, about us!