I do not doubt that by having my own patient experience now, I will be better able to empathize with my future patients, having gone through some similar issues myself. I have received such validation and reassurance throughout my pelvic health journey, and I want to be able to provide that same level of care for my future patients.
From the time I first discovered physical therapy back in high school, I was convinced that I wanted to work with athletes and specialize in sports. I had a background in training full-time at a tennis academy in Florida, which ultimately led to my curiosity and passion for learning more about the human body and how physical therapy plays a role in helping people. Near the end of my undergraduate education at Arizona State University, I had the opportunity to complete an internship at a sports clinic working as a physical therapy technician, and to my surprise, I did not enjoy it.
Coming into PT school last July as a first-year student at A.T. Still University I felt a bit lost, not sure of what setting I could picture myself in. Thankfully, I discovered pelvic health physical therapy early on in my fall semester and have not looked back since. I was lucky enough to have a professor who is also a pelvic floor PT, who helped introduce me to the specialty and truly sparked my interest in the field.
Through learning more about pelvic PT, I became a patient myself, and have since been on a journey of finding answers to my health questions that I have waited years for, which is quite liberating. Additionally, through completing my own research, I have realized just how prevalent, yet undiscussed many of the common women’s health issues are in our society. These include, but are not limited to urinary incontinence, postpartum recovery, bowel function, and especially chronic pelvic pain. I do not doubt that by having my own patient experience now, I will be better able to empathize with my future patients, having gone through some similar issues myself. I have received such validation and reassurance throughout my pelvic health journey, and I want to be able to provide that same level of care for my future patients.
In November, I became a member of the Academy of Pelvic Health Physical Therapy. Since then, I have found great joy in getting involved with many of their opportunities including their free webinars, the access to articles in the Journal of Women’s Health Physical Therapy, and even the SSIG Zoom coffee chats! I have met some wonderful people from around the country through getting involved who have all given me words of encouragement throughout my journey of starting PT school during a pandemic. I am beyond grateful that I have found such a loving community of like-minded individuals, and have had the experiences that I did, as I can say with certainty that pelvic health physical therapy is where I want to be.