I can’t afford this. I can’t afford this. I can’t afford this.
This was the constant stream of thought running through my brain last Wednesday afternoon as I found myself standing in a chiropractor’s office for the first time in my life. At the time, I didn’t really know much about what they did in there (I do now...boy do I know now) but I’d heard whispers that they might be able to make me feel like less of a geriatric, so I figured I’d give it a shot.
I walked in and then immediately turned to walk back out, but Sarah was blocking my path to the exit.
E: We’ve gotta get out of here.
E: I can’t afford this.
S: Our insurance covers it, it’s fine.
E: There’s stone tile everywhere, the entire back wall is a waterfall, and I’m pretty sure I just saw a glass-fronted mini fridge full of refreshing beverages.
S: Did you see any tranquilizers?
E: What??? Why would they have tranquilizers???
S: Because if you don’t calm down, you’re going to have an aneurysm.
Our conversation came to an abrupt halt when a waifish supermodel approached us to ask how she could help us. I just stood there staring at her for a second as all my worst fears seemed to materialize in front of me.
They are totally going to make me go on a diet.
I’d had some suspicions along these lines while I was filling out the paperwork they’d given me, because they kept using phrases like “optimal wellness” and “total body health”. Let’s get one thing straight here: I know I could stand to lose a few pounds, and I really do have plans to do so, but I’m pretty sure if someone told me that to my face I might have a mental breakdown – especially if that someone looked like Gisele, but with a better nose.
I resigned myself to my fate and followed her into the exam room.
So she’ll tell me I’m fat and I’ll cry in front of a beautiful stranger, big deal. I’m sure worse things will happen to me in my lifetime.
She spent about thirty minutes explaining what subluxation is, then told us she was going to take a series of $79 x-rays.
Seventy nine dollars?!?!? I KNEW I shouldn’t have accepted that juice box in the lobby! And now I’m stuck in this little room with no hope of escaping. I wonder if I could take this chick in a fight...doubtful, since I’ve never been in a fight in my life, plus she looks like she works out. A lot. Wait a second, what did she just say? Our insurance covers x-rays too? So it’s only gonna cost me $7.50? Well this is embarrassing...I wish I wasn’t holding my keys in such a threatening manner....maybe I would benefit from a sedative.
Once I stopped mentally hyperventilating, I was able to make it through the x-ray process with a reasonable amount of dignity. The chiropractor came in after a while and told me I carry fifteen more pounds on my right side than my left, and that my ears, shoulders and hips were all slightly higher on the left side (that second part really isn’t much of a surprise if you’re familiar with the concept of gravity.) I stood there and waited for him to deliver the death blow and tell me all my problems stem from the fact that I have the body composition of a walrus, but he never did. In fact, neither of them ever mentioned my weight at all. Sure, they clued me in on the fact that I’m a big ol’ lopsided awkmonster, but a fatty? No sir.
This morning I went back for my first adjustment, and things went a lot more smoothly for me this time around. Gisele told me I looked cute, I didn’t worry about money because I know we have at least $7.50 in our account, and the adjustment was not the painfest I had anticipated; in fact, you could almost say it was enjoyable. I walked out of that office a little taller, a little prouder, and just a little less disfigured.