As a child I experienced spontaneous nose bleeds, abdominal pains, cramps, diarrhea, and a swollen face…all with no explanation. After hospital stays and a variety of tests, the only diagnosis I had was that I was not happy and that Mom and Dad should build me a workshop. I guess that was supposed to make me happy.
Not surprisingly, my health did not improve and I began to believe that this was my normal. To this day I wonder how well I would have done in sports if I had been in good health. It was a good thing that I found school easy because I felt awful most days. My social life in high school was guarded; I did not tell anyone about my health issues.
In my early twenties, I hit rock bottom. I had no direction in my life. I was depressed and had a gut that didn’t like anything I ate. The one bright spot was that I got a job at a battery factory. It paid decent for the area where I grew up and they treated the workers well. During this time, since my health continued to be an issue, I went to see a lady who did food allergy testing. The idea was to eliminate the foods that my gut didn’t like, which would correct the inflammation in my bowel. While this theory may have seemed logical, the results were quite the opposite. Instead of improving my health my body just rejected more foods.
The allergist found issues with how my body was dealing with sugar, so she recommended that I see my family doctor for tests. My doctor scheduled a five-hour glucose tolerance test at the hospital lab. After fasting for 12 hours, I was given a very sugary drink each hour for a total of five hours. During this time, samples of my urine and blood were collected. A follow-up visit with my doctor revealed that I was hypoglycemic. This meant my body panicked when I ate or drank anything with sugar. The pancreas released an excessive amount of insulin into the bloodstream, which caused a below-normal blood-sugar level. This could cause headaches, shakiness, fatigue, foggy head, nausea and, at the worst, a coma. The doctor’s only advice was to eat small meals more often throughout the day to prevent sugar crashes.
This created a dilemma. I was supposed to eat more often through the day and my body rejected food. At this point, I had lost 30 pounds in six months and was literally crawling through my days at work. The allergist had given up on me and had given me the name of a Naturopathic Doctor and his phone number. I had no idea what a Naturopath Doctor was or what they did. Since I was desperate, I called and booked an appointment. My first appointment involved completing a questionnaire about my health, which asked me things that I didn’t know people talked about openly. Do my bowel movements smell and how often do they happen? Does your urine have a colour and does it burn when you go? What had I gotten myself into?
After having numerous tests that I’d never seen or heard of before, the Naturopath scoped my bowel and took X-rays. He didn’t give me any immediate answers, but he sent me home with gas buildup and a follow-up appointment for a week later. My brother drove me to the appointment, which was a two-hour drive. When the doctor came into the room he asked, “Is it possible that you have AIDS?” I’m sure my jaw dropped and hit the table. I stumbled with my reply. I said, “I don’t think I’ve done any of the things that you can get AIDS from.” He replied that he didn’t mean HIV AIDS, but that my immune system was shot and it had to be rebuilt before I could improve. The x-rays also showed that I had a prolapsed bowel. This was all foreign to me. I did not know a bowel could prolapse.
For the next year, I had 35 colonics, which meant a plastic tube was inserted into my rectum and a tube was connected to a water tank. The water was warmed and different solutions were put into it, including coffee. It was pumped into my bowel and then released back out of the tube. This was to detoxify the bowel and cause the liver to dump its poisons. I was also given supplements to help my liver get rid of the toxins in my body. The toxins caused me to have an (overactive? or underactive?) immune system. Getting rid of them would enable my body to return my immune system to normal.
During this time, I received regular chiropractic adjustments, did recommended exercises at home, and read books about how the human body can heal itself, a sort of Health 101. Looking back, this was a huge learning curve for me. I realized that I needed a total personality and lifestyle change. I had to learn that the day-to-day decisions I made had an impact on my overall health. For example, I decided how or what I ate, my level of physical activity, and the thoughts that I carried in my head. With this discovery, I found direction in my life complete with goals and dreams. After a year of commitment to this program, I saw improvements. I was going on blind faith during that year, possibly because I had no other options.
During this time, I lost my job at the battery plant because of company downsizing. One of my main directions in life was now gone. Little did I know that I would find direction again when my father had a stroke.
My father, at the age of 55, had a massive stroke that left him paralyzed down his entire left side. My new job was to be a caregiver during his recovery.
Before my dad had his stroke, we encouraged our father to be assessed by the Naturopathic Doctor. Unfortunately, he gave a typical male response and said that he was fine. Needless to say, after his stroke, he realized that he was not in good shape. Now, like me, he had to go to the Naturopath to survive.
A treatment that I received at the Naturopath’s office was called Bio Energetic Testing. It was strange and intriguing to me from the moment I saw it. It was based on the theory that every living thing, including the human body, has a unique frequency/vibration. Every cell, tissue, and organ has a specific frequency when it is healthy and functioning properly. When the frequency is abnormal, the tissue/cell is not well.
Seeing my interest, and possibly some ability, the lady that was doing the testing suggested that I learn how to perform the testing and treatment methods so I could help my father. It amazes me how being given one name and number had set me on a whole new adventure.
The class was basically handouts, lectures, and hands-on learning. I loved the hands-on learning because, as far as taking notes, I never really learned much that way. This course was just my speed; I completed the entire class with five pages of notes. I learned from listening, questioning, and analyzing answers. Upon completion of the program, an informal apprenticeship started through the Naturopath’s office. The lady performing the BioEnergetic testing, would do the difficult treatments on my father and give me homework that was less difficult, but still important. As my confidence increased, I took over full responsibility for treating my father and he made dramatic improvements. After a year of being off work, he was able to return to work full-time and drive his car once again. He retired at 65 and in 2020 passed away at the age of 85.
From working with my father, I progressed to starting my own Bio Energetic practice. For over 26 years, I have had a practice in two small towns, starting in Hanover and currently in Walkerton.
I have been married for over 25 years to my wife Lucy. She is a master’s prepared registered nurse who joined the office in January 2022. We have three children: Anna, Tony, and Jeremy, who are all intelligent. Anna is now studying to be a nurse practitioner at Western University in London; Tony is the Social Media and Wagering Manager at the Woodbine Mohawk Racetrack; and Jeremy is attending York University.
My mom, Ann, lives in Walkerton. I have a sister, Debbie, and two brothers, Steve and Kevin. Both my brothers live in the Walkerton area and my sister lives in Guelph.