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Gayle's Story -> My Story

There are No Accidents - By Dr. Gayle A. Whittaker

I'm often asked how I got into Network Spinal Analysis. I was in private chiropractic practice in Staten Island for many years and was living in Forest Hills 45 minutes away. A good friend, Dr. Lisa Kirsch was practicing in Forest Hills and living in Manhattan. As early as 1990, when Lisa's partner in practice left, she and I started to discuss our options. I was pregnant at the time and decided the cost and stress of starting over were too much. However, over the next few years, I became increasingly overwhelmed with commuting and unhappy not being there for my family. Lisa's own family had grown to three children including a set of twins.

In 1995, Lisa was doing a technique called "Network Chiropractic" and she suggested I go to an upcoming seminar in Connecticut. Since she and I had similar chiropractic philosophies and had done similar techniques over the past 10 years, I figured the seminar would better position me to take over her practice in the future. I took that seminar by "accident", but it changed my life…

Dr.Donald Epstein, the developer of Network Spinal Analysis, began the seminar Friday evening insightfully integrating anatomy, science and his healing philosophy. He explained chiropractic with the magical power that had attracted me to the profession to begin with. One of the perks of attending his seminar was that I would be adjusted by him or one of his staff. The 250 seminar attendees were divided into four groups to be adjusted. Although my adjustment time was the following morning, that night I was curious so I decided to stay to watch the evening's group.

As I walked into the large room I was shocked to see about 30 people all getting adjusted at the same time. I felt awkward, embarrassed, and in awe - all at the same time. People on the tables were moving strangely, crying, moaning, and even screaming. I still remember one woman rhythmically going through dolphin-like motions. She was lying face up and bodily waves gracefully propelled her torso slowly forward at the waist as her hands inched closely to her toes. This woman then flipped effortlessly onto her back with her legs and feet gliding backward over her head. I wanted my body to move like that! I watched in amazement as if I was connected to them all and then "clunk" my low back went into spasm. I knew I was experiencing a very profound turning point in my life.

Unfortunately, the bad upper respiratory infection that I had been nursing for a month, had kept me from sleeping well for several nights. That entire Friday night, I was forced to sit up in bed because of my constant cough. Never a morning person, on no sleep, I anxiously rose up early Saturday morning for my own 7:00 AM adjustment session. I got on an open table with Dr Jeff an easygoing practitioner with a ponytail and warm smile. When I was finished, I felt a bit dazed as I got off the table- well euphoric actually. As I stood on the side lines I realized it was the closest to enlightenment I had experienced since EST, a transformational seminar I had taken years before. I had studied over 30 different chiropractic techniques and couldn't believe I could have this kind of awesome experience from an adjustment.

That night I slept for the first time in days and the next morning got up early again to watch the group-room in action. I was drawn to it like a magnet. A baby of the staff was crying while both parents were trying to adjust, I offered and held these strangers' baby. I noticed another staff member had not eaten and I got him a bagel and coffee; small courtesies, but definitely out of character for me in unfamiliar surroundings. I felt more present, more participatory, more in community.

The rest of the program was equally illuminating and intense. As I drove home that Sunday evening from Connecticut exhausted but exhilarated, my senses were heightened. Even the music on the radio sounded wonderful. It had been too long since I had listened to anything but 1010 news. I thought, I planned, and I sang…. The whole time though, I was getting a very bad pain in my left chest. The pain became excruciating and yet I was still in ecstasy.

When I arrived home that night, Devorah, one of my closest friends form chiropractic school, was on the phone. It had been 5 years since we had spoken. She was living in Boston had also been doing Network Chiropractic for several years! I was shocked by this coincidence. I welcomed this trusted friend's validation of the work, which made my experience even more gratifying. Later that night, even though my chest was still severely jabbing, my husband and I had the best sex we had in 7 years. That was the icing on the cake.

The next morning I announced to my patients in Staten Island, "We are going to do something different today," and I began to do Network myself. That next evening, still with that persistent chest pain, I decided to go to my own MD. Thankfully, tests revealed no heart attack just a chest cold. However, looking back I know that my heart opened up that weekend, and muscles in my chest were rapidly being put back to use.

Fortunately, such a painful introduction to Network care is avoided now that the work progresses an individual gradually through Levels of Care. These enable our body's hardware to gently upgrade to handle increasing amounts of life's informational software. Although much of the drama is tempered too, I've learned true healing is not just about the rush but more about depth and connection. The lasting sweetness of wellbeing can only happen when we feel safe in our own body.

In 1999, four years and 13 Network seminars later, I left Staten Island and took over the Forest Hills practice. As the work and I have evolved, it's been an amazing journey of continuing professional mastery and self-healing.


© 2004-2007 Dr. Gayle A. Whittaker Holistic Oasis :: (718) 544-8282