"How are you feeling?", asks Dr. Mark.
I answer, "I have lots of tingling and numbness in my leg again."
"Great! It's working!", responds Dr. Mark.
This was a typical appointment in the first ten months following my very first Atlas Orthogonal correction and that was the first question asked with each visit. I arrived with my answer carefully planned but the response was almost never what I'd expected. I hadn't been accustomed to understanding healing in this way. Years of pharmaceutical answers to chase away my symptoms had only given me the illusion of healing. The first ten months was a test of patience and faith but it was also a lesson I'll never forget. I'd been diagnosed with an incurable autoimmune disease 18 months earlier, and not willing to accept that sentence, I launched into a complete diet and lifestyle makeover. I made great progress and had reduced the toxic load on my body enough to feel significantly better. The numbness in my feet had subsided and I could feel the floor again. Neuropathic tingling and spasms in my legs were calming, and careful budgeting of energy had reduced the debilitating fatigue. Brain fog and sound sensitivity were improving slowly but I was still experiencing foot drop, temperature sensitivity, and painful, daily migraines. I was also managing bouts of anxiety and depression.
It was a Monday in February 2016, after a particularly difficult weekend, that I found Dr. Mark Freund. My family had visited a museum and I was only able to travel from bench to bench while I watched my family enjoy the exhibits and as I felt the anxiety grow, I was fearful for my future. Perhaps by divine intervention, I ran across video about Atlas Orthogonal and migraine relief on Facebook the next day. I called Dr. Mark's office immediately and went in that day for my first consultation. I was eager to get started, hoping desperately for some relief from the daily migraines.
My first visit was a consultation, a set of x-rays, and my first cranial adjustment. I hadn't even realized that my skull would be considered for adjustment and listened with interest to the doctor's explanation. I asked Dr. Mark about some research about upper cervical adjustments that I'd found online. He graciously took the time to explain and sent me home with another stack of reports to read. I went home that night and while my migraine arrived on schedule, I had hope that my first Atlas Orthogonal correction the next day would provide some relief.
I arrived the next day, eager to begin. After several more questions and Dr. Mark's patient answers, I received my first atlas correction. That was it? All that research and build up for a little thump of a button? I was instructed to lay on the table for a few minutes of recovery. A feeling of warmth traveled down the back of my neck and halfway down my arms. I'd learn later that this was the release of spinal fluid, now able to flow freely throughout my nervous system as designed, courtesy of the atlas correction. I left the office a little bit lighter and laughed as I adjusted my rearview mirror just as Dr. Mark joked that I would. That little tap of the button, I know now, returned my future.
I woke the next day to a new world. I felt as if the bag someone had put over my head several years earlier had suddenly been removed. My brain was awake and breathing again! I felt lighter, my vision seemed clearer, my mood was relaxed and happy. I felt more energetic than I had in years and my right foot wasn't dropping as I walked. I no longer felt as if I were wearing 10 lb ankle weights and my daily migraine failed to arrive. The switch to my nervous system had been flipped back on! On that day, February 17, 2016, I suspected that I had my future back but a little part of me was afraid to hope. After years of losing balance, energy, strength, cognitive ability, bladder function, and even happiness, I needed more time to have faith that this was more than fleeting.
Over the next ten months, the disease I'd been told was irreversible, was indeed reversing. I was fortunate to experience a dramatic turn around and I attribute much of that to my previous change to a plant based diet. I'd relieved a primary source of body burden which allowed my body to heal from a stronger place after atlas correction set the wheels in motion. I experienced some periods of retracing during this period in which a few symptoms went away and then reappeared before finally resolving. It was particularly difficult to be rid of a troublesome symptom for weeks only to have it make a reappearance. Even one step backwards after feeling the power of healing was barely tolerable. Given the huge leap forward I'd experienced and the renewed faith I had in my body's ability to heal, I remained hopeful. At about the ten month mark, 95% of the symptoms I'd once felt daily were gone. The symptoms remaining ended up being unrelated to the original diagnosis.
Atlas Orthogonal correction was different than diet and lifestyle changes. Although diet and lifestyle were powerful agents of healing, I knew that if I faltered I'd be right back at square one. It was Atlas Orthogonal correction which showed me that my body wanted to heal and was capable of doing so simply by being allowed to work as designed. I found that as long as I continued to follow up and maintain the correction, my body continued to heal. As time went on and the muscles around my atlas bone adjusted from their decades long detour, the correction held longer. The return of structural pain or symptom return that had once signaled my need for another correction were fewer and farther between. Eventually, it would be difficult to tell if I required any adjustment at all.
It's now been three years since my diagnosis and 20 months since my first visit to Dr. Mark. My life has been returned. I've since visited the same museum that found me effectively disabled only this time, I walked and experienced it with my family. What's more, we went out to dinner afterward and visited another museum the next day. If you're reading this and connecting to my story, please give your body a chance to show you what it is built to do. We can all heal to the very best of our body's ability and we deserve to give ourselves that chance.