Good afternoon Good Life Family!
I hope this note finds you safe, rested, and healthy. The last two weeks have been a whirlwind for me and my family that made me see firsthand just how valuable our health is. Wednesday morning, 8/26, started out like any other Wednesday. I had been working late the night before and had to get up early to help get the kids ready for school and get to the office on time to help prep for morning shift. It continued through shift like that, taking care of several of you with your adjustments, re-exams, covering x-rays and sEMG findings, making recommendations, answering questions, and ... then I received a phone call that would change my life forever.
For those of you who have not called the office much because of our app or texting service, you may not realize thatI do not answer the phone often. But I happened to drift to the front for a few moments while Kristina handled something else, to help make sure that our patients were being taken care of well. As I settled down, I saw that my wife was calling. I picked up.
She said that our baby, Ezekiel, had stopped breathing at day care and she was on her way over.
That stopped me cold. Zeke has been our healthiest baby: zero health issues since the day of his birth. I had been content to check him about once per week since the week after his birth. He was bigger, stronger, and hitting his milestones faster than Dietrich and Annika, who were both also healthy and ahead of their milestones, by all measurable definitions. For this to happen to Zeke caught me completely by surprise. You never expect it to be you, and I never expected it to be Ezekiel.
I rushed to him as fast as I could, and when I arrived in the emergency room I learned what had happened. He had gone down for a nap, flipped himself from his back to his stomach, and when he did so, he let out a yelp and became non-responsive. His caregiver had gone through two rounds of CPR before he became responsive again, but he began having a seizure on the way to the hospital. That was what I noticed first: he was still gasping for breath, crying when he could, but shaking uncontrollably. I took him in my arms to comfort and pray for him, and as I did so, my hands instinctively went to his spine.
Under his skull, I found a horrific subluxation; atlas had been massively misaligned. So, as I prayed for him and rocked him, I began to adjust him - a gentle massage-like adjustment that immediately calmed him. He slowly came out of the seizure, his breathing normalized and the shaking stopped. He asked for "Mmmm" and began to nurse, falling into a peaceful sleep a few moments later. Then the tests began. The agonizing, expensive, soul-crushing tests.
I later found out that Wednesday morning, while my wife was getting the kids ready, Zeke had rolled off the bed and she had caught him by the head, and almost immediately, his 2 1/2 year old sister kicked (accidentally) him hard in the head. He took it like a champ, but I should have known there that trauma was the cause of this whole episode. However, being caught up in the stress and fear of the moment, we opted to do all the tests. Tens of thousands of dollars worth: he had a CT scan, chest xrays, blood work, EEG, MRI, spinal tap, cultures on everything, and 72 hours later, it all came back negative. I thank God for all of the kind and caring medical professionals and their work, but ultimately none of them were able to find the cause, ultimately ignoring Kjersten and I when we described what happened that morning.
We thank God for everyone who prayed for us during this time. It was completely an overwhelmingly emotional, draining, and traumatic weekend for the entire family. We felt each of your prayers. But it also served as confirmation for me that this is my life's calling. God called me out of ministry to do this and teach this. God ultimately had a chiropractor intervene when I was a baby to save my life, leading to my choice to become a DC (Doctor of Cause, Chiropractic). That led to the training I received allowing me to enter this moment fully prepared to save my son's life and ultimately raise awareness that you and your child's first chiropractic exam and subsequent adjustment is the most important, necessary, and helpful visit they or you will ever have to a doctor of any kind.
We have had two follow up visits since we left Children's in Omaha: 1) to another chiropractor for a second opinion, and 2) to our pediatrician. The chiropractor confirmed my findings, cementing the narrative in my mind. The pediatrician had great empathy for us, but ultimately told us the same story we got from the MDs and specialists at Children's: that they had no idea why this happened or why Zeke is so healthy.
I pray that through our suffering, you and your family can further realize the truth about health, the importance of the role chiropractic plays in that, and ultimately choose for yourself, as is your right, how to invest in your health. Either way your choice comes down to investing in your health now, or paying for your sickness later. I pray God gives each of us wisdom to continue to make the right choices.
Dr Jake and family, and the GLFC team
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