Why Holding Your Breath is Making You Tense

Breathing – such a simple exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide that involves trachea, lungs, bronchi, bronchioles, diaphragm, intercostal muscles, ribs, sternum, nerves, circulation, and lymph channels – no big deal right??!!

Image credit: Blend Images – JGI/Jamie Grill/Getty Images

One thing I LOVE about the respiratory system is the unique design is voluntary and involuntary. It’s really phenomenal!! You can’t control your heartbeat rate or rhythm and your leg is not carrying you across the street if you don’t send a signal from the brain to do so. Obviously, this system also has sympathetic and parasympathetic control, allowing you to increase or decrease oxygen supply as needed in response to your minute-by-minute demand.

So, why do you hold your breath – well, you are either going under water OR you are bracing for stress. You might be about to lift a heavy box, get punched in the stomach, or dive under water – physical stress. Maybe the love of your life is getting on one knee, or you just learned your mom passed away – emotional stress.

The one stress that you may not be as aware of is chemical. Chemical stress is experienced when pressures or stimulus changes. For example, you are climbing a mountain, running a marathon, or falling asleep. These variable follow 2 rules:

  • Boyle’s Law – the relationship between pressure and volume
  • Autonomic Nervous System – the division of the nervous system that sends signals to respond to stress

I would like to qualify why I think most people hold their breath unconsciously in response to chemical stress. From my perspective – caring for people’s reaction to stress –-> injury, the majority of people do not mindfully connect to where and how their body is processing the level of stress they are exposed to. Are you?!! Do you know when to say no? Do you practice adequate self-care? Do you plan good nutrition? Do you get enough sleep? Do you stop to heal when you have been injured (physically or emotionally)? If you answered no to these – you are part of the majority.

Now the epiphany!!! When you hold your breath, you are actively reducing oxygen distribution to tissues. This creates a hypoxic (and acidic) environment that reduces chemical reactions at all tissues, although for the purpose of inspiring relaxation, I want you to think about the muscles. Decreased chemical reactions –> decreased range of motion and nutrients –> TENSE! Not only is there a chemical consequence for what you feel, but there is also a mechanical consequence that creates limited movement in aiding respiration –> feeds the cycle.

Now that I’ve shared the bad news, the GOOD news is that you are the commander of your voluntary and involuntary respiratory system!!

You can CHANGE your mindfulness, practices, habits, and attentiveness to what YOU need!

STEP 1: Learn how to breathe. Practice different techniques. The one I
personally love the best is doubling my exhale in relation to my inhale. No
matter what technique you use – relax the rest of your body WHILE you are

STEP 2: Prioritize your health. Find routines and disciplines that support your

STEP 3: Identify where stress tends to show up in your body. Find ways to
actively nurture that system. If you have a natural health professional on
your care team, ask them for help.

STEP 4: Check in with your breathing at intervals throughout the day. Set a
timer on your phone or tie a deep breath to something you do regularly
throughout the day.

STEP 5: Exhale on exertion. Coordinate your exhalation with any moving or
lifting that you do repetitiously (even sit to stand) or that aggravates your
body. Practice makes perfect!

STEP 6: Check your posture! When you stand/sit/sleep in an ergonomic
position, it is easier to get maximum respiratory function from your tissues.

Enjoy NOT holding your breath!! I hope you find a trick or two that you can implement easily into your day to help you benefit from maximum oxygen intake and the relaxing affect on your body that exhalation offers!!

In Love and Service, Dr. TSTEP 1: Learn how to breathe. Practice different techniques. The one I
personally love the best is doubling my exhale in relation to my inhale. No
matter what technique you use – relax the rest of your body WHILE you are
STEP 2: Prioritize your health. Find routines and disciplines that support your
STEP 3: Identify where stress tends to show up in your body. Find ways to
actively nurture that system. If you have a natural health professional on
your care team, ask them for help.
STEP 4: Check in with your breathing at intervals throughout the day. Set a
timer on your phone or tie a deep breath to something you do regularly
throughout the day.
STEP 5: Exhale on exertion. Coordinate your exhalation with any moving or
lifting that you do repetitiously (even sit to stand) or that aggravates your
body. Practice makes perfect!
STEP 6: Check your posture! When you stand/sit/sleep in an ergonomic
position, it is easier to get maximum respiratory function from your tissues.
Enjoy NOT holding your breath!! I hope you find a trick or two that you can
implement easily into your day to help you benefit from maximum oxygen intake
and the relaxing affect on your body that exhalation offers!!
In Love and Service,

That Thing that is More Harmful Than Obesity

I was working with a patient that was just released from a 2-week stay in the hospital with Covid pneumonia.  We had the most emotion-filled interaction.  He was so full of gratitude while walking in humility.  He is doing great, by the way 😊  Let’s say his name is Rip (yes, I’m a Yellowstone fan!).  Rip testified that the TURNING POINT in his recovery is when the hospital allowed his wife to visit him.  He was adamant that the destruction of humanity was packaged in isolation.  I’d like to further describe, Rip is a very healthy, Christian, Enneagram 7, 48 yr-old male without any complicating health conditions.  I don’t describe that to contribute to growing statistics of affected populations, but to emphasize that he has a healthy perception of reality and truth. 

When he described the despondency that he experienced in isolation, I instantly thought of multiple people that I know professionally and personally that whether they discussed it or not, I witnessed their health decline in relationship to isolation.  Most experienced exacerbations of their existing conditions in the absence of any germ involvement.  Some experienced Covid and faced fear and anxiety that surfaced buried traumas, complicating their mental health and slowed their healing.  Others have been faced with very difficult decisions surrounding how family members feel about gathering/isolation that have impacted them deeply. People are suffering!

I began to look at the psychology side of isolation.  Can it impact physical and mental health?  I looked at the Bible and the internet – isn’t that what everyone does??  Lol! 

Hebrews 10:24-25

And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.

Ecclesiastes 4:9-12

Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil.  For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow.  But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up.  Again, if two lie together, they keep warm, but how can one keep warm alone?  And though a man might prevail against one who is alone, two will withstand him – a threefold cord is not quickly broken.

1 Corinthians 1:10

I appeal to you, brothers, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be united in the same mind and the same judgment.

Dr. Julianne Holt-Lunstad, a professor of psychology and neuroscience at Brigham Young University, co-authored a meta-analysis that reports lack of social connection heightens health risks as much as smoking 15 cigarettes a day or having alcohol use disorder.  She also found that loneliness and social isolation are twice as harmful to physical and mental health as obesity!

It is without question that our best self is that around others!  I’m often reminded that I live in a bubble where most people are healthy and mindful about their health.  So, I don’t want to speak in generalizations as I think the line between my personal perception and professional opinion is too fuzzy.  But….I will say, please don’t assume AND don’t be compliant against your better judgement.  Speak up for what you personally need – loudly if needed, and be kindly respectful of what your neighbor needs, even if they differ.  I’m NOT saying to be reckless, irresponsible, or obstinate – I think you all know me better than that.  If there’s confusion in what you should say or do, ask someone you love and trust.  These are big decisions that directly impact your health and vitality!

If you need relief from isolation, and it is not in the best interest of your situation to be in contact with people, please consider the following from Rush University with my ideas sprinkled on top:

  • Learn new ways to gather – technology can offer lots of options
  • Find things related to your loved ones that you can celebrate – send a card, gift, photos
  • Get outside – sunshine and nature are alive and are fun to interact with
  • Use mindfulness tools to increase your calm
  • Make your brain work daily – puzzles, sudoku, word finds, math, etc
  • If you don’t already, please consult with a professional

I hope that seeing the direct correlation between isolation and your health can offer you some motivation in pushing away fear (whatever that looks like for you), and taking action to nurture health in your body and mind!!!  You, above everyone else, needs YOUR care!

In Love and Service,


Move to Health

We say “Movement is Life” on a daily basis!!  Movement has a variety of implications – exercise, breathing, range of motion, circulation, speed, spinal, extremities…..the list goes on!  Our #1 goal as chiropractors is to restore movement!  You can understand why, there’s such a high value on the quality of your body’s moves!

Justification and motivation to add chiropractic care and well-balanced exercise to your health regimen:

  • Better BRAIN performance – with movement, your frontal lobe gets excited and helps you have improved memory, decision making, impulse control, and rational thinking (less anxious).
  • Perky POSTURE – as you excite proprioceptors in your joints, you will feed your brain information to help your body have a more erect posture.
  • Reduced HEALING time – as you open and close muscles, you increase the quantity and rate of circulation bringing nutrients to your body, and also improve the flow of the lymphatic system removing waste from the healing reactions.
  • Increased RESILIENCE – if your muscles and joints are consistently working, you will have a higher average performance that results in the reduction of injuries.
  • Awesome SLEEP – with increased oxygenation and decreased tension, your muscles and nervous system can find a state of rest at night that will allow you to sleep well and wake feeling rested.

If you haven’t moved today, start today.  Consistency is the key!  Make a small, attainable goal that you strive for each day.  As you get good at consistency (daily movement), then increase the rate, range, duration, and intensity of your movement.  Measure your movement using a timer, pedometer, smart device, heart rate monitor, or match a set number steps to each of your daily tasks.  You will be in love with the difference you will feel!!

In Love and Service,

Dr. T


I always say I’m going to make a t-shirt that says, “Why did I wait??!!”  This is rhetorical question that I hear often after someone receives their first chiropractic adjustment.  Usually, it is followed with a description of an apprehension that delayed their introduction to chiropractic care.  That apprehension, of course, quickly fades as it is replaced with the euphoria of feelings that flood your body following a chiropractic adjustment. 

I often hear of the limited view of how chiropractic care helps relieve neck and back pain.  If people are open to wholistic care (massage, chiropractic, lymphatic enhancement therapy, cold laser, ionic foot baths, etc), then they essentially wait until the “need” relief to pursue such care.  It is much less common for people to use proactive practices such as drinking adequate water, eating the rainbow, working out, deep breathing, or supplementing various systems in your body.  It is even more uncommon to hear of people seeking proactive treatments, such as adjustments, when they are feeling GOOD. 

I hope that with just a few more words, I can help you perceive the benefits of using wholistic care in general when you feel GOOD to feel your BEST!

Power Poses That Project Happiness And Increase Your Mood
  1. Improved sleep, digestion, respiration, circulation, and mood!  Every system works in harmony to care for the needs that you demand of your body – work, school, recreational, fitness goals, etc.  Wholistic care relieves the “work load” on your body that is required to keep your baseline normal, it leaves more energy for your demands.
  2. When you receive alternative care in a feeling-good state, your care-giver can help relieve deeper, older dysfunction to help you reach new levels of function.
  3. With increased proprioception and processing (refined nerve synapses) you can avoid falls, injuries, and poor performance.  I love thinking about prevention in all ways!!! 
  4. It is statistically proven that keeping your nervous system in fine tune will help you miss less work, recover quicker, and experience fewer complications from illness/injury. 
  5. When you feel good, you feel good!!  It’s hard to argue that how you feel physically affects how you feel emotionally 😉

Whether you are brand new to wholistic practices or you are the wait-til-there-is-a-problem guy, I hope you will not wait.  Experience for yourself how being proactive in your health and healing can help you be more awesome in every way!!

In Love and Service,

Dr. T

What Have You Been Telling Yourself?

Self-talk is a term we are all familiar with.  That little voice in your head that usually stays on spin cycle most of the day, turning the same thoughts over and over – even sometimes while you try to sleep.  What is the common theme of that voice?  Is that voice someone you would like to hang out with?

There’s science and common sense that tells us the input to our brain and body has an affect on our next move.  If you get a compliment from a stranger, you might decide to wear your hair like that again.  If you get punched in the face, you might decide to fake dead – lol!  If you feel safe in a conversation, you might decide to get some feelings off your chest.  There is a lot to be said about the influences around us.  Some say you are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.  Who spends more time with you than that inner voice?

It is common to live on autopilot and let your thoughts carry you away.  A study at Michigan State University suggests a person has 80,000 thoughts a day.  Some sources say that women have more thoughts than men within that average.  MSU, in advocacy for mindfulness, also published that 90% of the 80,000 thoughts (72,000) were a previous thought (remember the spin cycle analogy).  Furthermore, 80% of those thoughts (57,600) were negative.  It’s easy to see how Stinkin’ Thinkin’ can wreck your mood!!  If you get 8 hours of sleep per night, that estimates you have 60 negative thoughts per minute – one EVERY SECOND! 

We’ve discussed in Kids & Stimulus that each input is filtered to determine if you are safe or not.  It gets clearer from this perspective why most adults feel exhausted, frustrated, and even victimized.  Your own thoughts have taken you hostage. 

How does this relate to chiropractic??  It’s everything!  When the sympathetic nervous system is driving and your negative self-talk jumps in the passenger seat your BODY is the hostage!  Tight muscles, back pain, headaches, constipation, sleeplessness, slow recovery, sugar cravings, limited range of motion, poor circulation, frequent illness – these are all ways, among others, that your body pays the consequence of negative self-talk. 

Like all things God created, there is GOOD built into this same system!!!  You can challenge your self-talk and take it from negative to positive!  You can reverse the self-induced stress!  Your body is self-healing and self-regulating.  When you put God in the driver seat and positive self-talk in the passenger seat, you will enjoy the ride of your life 😊

5 Steps to Help You Invite Positive Self-Talk

  1. Affirm yourself: I exhale fear.  I inhale peace.  (insert your own words that YOU need).  You can also search for affirmations that you feel congruent with to share with yourself.
  2. Be a Dream Catcher for negativity: just like dream catchers intercept bad dreams, you can intercept negative self-talk.  Once it is intercepted, redirect your thoughts. It is helpful to redirect them in a positive way. Check out Monique’s work at Rise Regardless.
  3. Thought dump: give those negative thoughts an EXIT – write them in a journal – trash or burn them to help you release your hold on them.
  4. Think of your thoughts like a balance scale.  If you load the negative side (thoughts get away from you) then invest in yourself by loading the positive side. Obviously you want the scale to be loaded in your favor, so don’t hesitate to work when there’s technically “balance.”
  5. Dedicate 10-20 minutes per day in a “word search.”  Think or journal words that you want to invite into your life (think of what you might be deficient in).  This is also a way to have those words in your “easy access” file in your brain so when your thoughts get floaty the positive words can get put it in the playlist more readily than the negative ones.

We are cheering for you as you take on loving you!!!  As simple as these concepts seem, they will change your mind and body!  Add one or two steps to your goals for next month!  It only takes 21 days to make a habit!

In Love and Service,

Taryn Lowery, DC

Kids & Stimulus

I have two little humans that teach me daily!!!  I try my best to learn from them and FOR them!!  My husband and I both take parenting to heart and want to give our kids OUR best.  As I read, listen, inquire, and observe, I find that there is always a new way to look at the same information.  In trying to be the best mom and chiropractor I can be, I have found that stimulus is one thing that I can influence and regulate to help children thrive.   I want to inspire you with what I’ve learned!




  1. a thing or event that evokes a specific functional reaction in an organ or tissue.

“areas of the brain which respond to auditory stimuli”

The nervous system has countless jobs, but one very important job is deciphering stimulus to determine if you are safe or not.  Safety = survival.  It’s not that simple, but it is.  So, as a newborn, your brain starts processing every smell, sound, vibration, touch, taste, and sight to decide which system to activate – sympathetic or parasympathetic.  As you grow and learn, your nervous system uses older information to make quicker, more efficient decisions about stimulus – still deciding if you feel safe or not.  As the nervous system matures, it attaches emotions with stimulus.  This is how you can feel love and security as you smell a honeysuckle that reminds you of your grandma. 

How does this relate to your day-to-day role as a parent, teacher, grandparent or lover of children?  It’s everything!  Since a child spends most of their time with their parent at their home, the smells, sounds, sights, etc of those people and that space are most safe.  As stimulus varies from that “normal” the nervous system must work (expend energy) to decipher the degree of safety.  Unfortunately, the younger they are, the more black and white the conclusion is: mom=safe (parasympathetic) VS neighbor=not safe (sympathetic).  So every time your child goes to a new place, hears a new tone of voice, smells a different odor, eats a new food, sees a face they have not seen often/ever – the amount of WORK that has to be done to maintain homeostasis is dramatically more.  This means they increase the demand for vitamins, minerals, hydration, sleep, comfort, calories, and calm

You can loosely correlate this to the allostatic load that many athletes use to determine how often and how hard they work out.  Most commonly you hear the analogy of a cup.  If the cup is full – you can handle more.  If the cup is low or empty, you need to rest and refuel. 

So, if you want to be supermom and have the best functioning kids on the block – moderate their stimulus!  Make sure your outings and social activities don’t drain their cup AND plan adequate time to rest and refuel.  This might look like:

  • Doing 2 errands per day for 5 days instead of 10 errands in 1 day
  • Mandating rest the day before and after a birthday party or family gathering
  • Planning extra cuddles adjacent to leaving for work and when you return home
  • Limiting the amount of time you spend at a playdate
  • Packing “safe” items that smell, sound, or look like home when your child is away

I hope:

  1. This inspires you!! 
  2. You find that balancing stimulus helps your little human thrive like never before!! 
  3. Your little human gets adjusted; adjustments help the receipt and response to stimulus like nothing else can!!
  4. You feel like you can relate to your child’s behavior in a more compassionate and understanding way!

In Love and Service,

Taryn Lowery, DC

Posturing Yourself for Amazing Sleep

We all do it!  Most of us enjoy it!  Not many of us do it well.  I’m so excited to help you learn how to use your sleep posture to feed your parasympathetic nervous system (needed for quality sleep) and allow you to wake up feeling loose, relaxed, and rested!

#1 Sleep on your back

I hear a lot of reasons why patients can’t sleep on their back…..I can argue why they CAN with a few exceptions.  It is possible, and it is best.  Most people have a hard time sleeping on their back because they can’t get “comfortable.”  I argue that the comfort is not a physical obstacle but an emotional one.  Laying on your back is a very vulnerable position and our unconscious subconscious cues you to move to a safe position (most people choose fetal or stomach).  You can train your brain – just mindfulness, as well as use a weighted blanket, pillows, etc to support your physical body in a way that allows you to find comfort!

#2 Support your spine

We have 5 curves in our spine that need support while you are sleeping.  This is huge, especially if you are getting quality sleep – fully relaxing.  To accomplish this, a pillow under your knees will create a supple low back by relaxing your hips.  Palms face up while keeping a gentle bend in your elbows.  Shoulders have a gentle external rotation – think of tucking your shoulder blades under you.  You can use a pillow under your head but keeping your neck neutral is important.  I talk about the chin a lot!  The position of the chin determines if your spinal fluid is flowing freely, pulled tight, or compressed while you sleep.  Tucking your chin is the worst – side sleepers beware!  Keep your chin neutral as best you can.  My favorite is using a TriCore pillow or several pillows to have support around each cheek to keep your neck neutral while your chin is mid-range of motion.

#3 Thought dumping and more

Prepare your body and mind for sleep.  Allow 30-60 minutes before you want to fall asleep for your body and mind to transition from busy-day mode to heal-and-repair mode.   This is more important than you might think.  If you fall asleep quickly from exhaustion, your quality (and probably quantity) of sleep will be compromised.  This time could include prayer, meditation, deep breaths, journaling away your thoughts (thought dumping), self-massage (only very gentle touch), hot bath, essential oils, gratitude, gargling water, BioMat, and much more.  The concept is to initiate the conversion of function in your body to the resting state.  You could look up ideas online that surround “activate your parasympathetic nervous system.”

I wanted to include reasons why sleeping on your back add to your health, but I’ll save that for another time 😉  Hopefully you can practice the posture, and then find those benefits all on your own!  Until then, I hope your journey in healing and health is fruitful!

In Love and Service,

Taryn Lowery, DC

A Message From Your Cerebellum


Your cerebellum is located at the base of the brain against the occiput.  It is a very important conductor in daily activities that you do mindlessly – picking up your coffee cup, transitioning into your car, shooting a basketball, marching, painting, typing….the list goes on.  Have you ever considered the accuracy that it takes to lift your foot just high enough to clear the curb or maybe thread your shoelace through the eyelet of your shoe?  All these activities are coordinated at the cerebellum.


If you have experienced an episode of vertigo, loss of balance, repeated falls, or you bump into things routinely then you have experienced the effect of your cerebellum having a bad day….or days.  There can be many causes of cerebellum dysfunction – dehydration, subluxation, injury, posture, or one in particular that I would like to discuss today – lack of input!

Your brain was made perfect.  It is really unbelievable to think of the Master’s design from a scientific perspective – the lobes, left vs right hemispheres, neurotransmitters, synapses, hormones, peripheral vs central….it will literally make your brain fire!  With so many factors and functions, it is essential for survival that your brain prioritize functions that you need.  You’ve heard the adage; you don’t use it you lose it?  Well, that applies to your brain as well.  Every movement, thought, calculation, emotion, stimulus, decision (bites of information that you feed your brain) moves you into a more efficient version of you!

Unfortunately, the Master’s design can fail you if you let it.  For every bite that you feed your brain, it is strengthening one path at the detriment of the alternative path.  Sometimes I think of it as a pasture of corn.  If you had 6 friends that lived around the perimeter of your pasture, you would wear 6 paths evenly if you visited them each once a week.  But let’s say that you grew closer to one of those friends and over time, you just walked the path to one house.  The other 5 paths would soon be unrecognizable, grown up and impossible to navigate.  This is what happens to the paths to your cerebellum when you stop moving!

The excellent news is you can start today giving your cerebellum food that helps keep your functions as reliable as GPS!  Just a few things to consider adding into your daily, weekly or monthly routine of activity – maybe a rotation of all things 😊

  • Barrel rolls on the floor
  • Karaoke – calisthenics
  • Step up and down a curb without support if safe
  • Figure 8s with your arms and legs – make sure to do both sides
  • Squat – use the wall or a ball if you are working on building the strength
  • Bicycle your arms and legs on your back
  • Spin in a circle – make sure to go both ways and use support if needed
  • Supermans, Planks, and Bird-Dogs
  • Side crunches – you can crunch just your upper body or lay on the floor and incorporate your leg – again, make sure to do both sides
  • Play catch
  • Take deep breaths in various head positions – preferably while seated or laying down

Looking forward to hearing your stories of improved balance and coordination after giving your cerebellum some FOOD!!!

In Love and Service,

Dr. Taryn

Our Birth Realized – Merik Boone

I’ve always been a tub-soaker; I love the how relaxed your mind feels, how warm water makes every pore supple, and the flicker of candlelight creates an ambiance that can’t be compared.  It also amazes me how the fluidity of water can dance with your movements – effortlessly, romantically…in a flattering glisten.

Back story, I was in one of Jeanne Ohm’s classes and she described how her bedroom was her family’s “safe” place.  She told a few stories of how their bed was a place her children revered as a sanctuary where the biggest storm could be calmed, even as adults.  I remember this magical vision I had (pre-parenthood).  I moved a bajillion times from the time I was 5 years old, so the idea seemed even more as-seen-on-tv.  My grandma, Elizabeth or “Liz,” was my “safe” place.  She only moved as life and age demanded change.  I can still see the map of her home and all the memories we made there.  Even though she wasn’t a place, I thought of how cool it would be to have a tangible piece of safety for our children, hopefully life-long.  The concept of the nest began 🙂

Merik was our second pregnancy, second child, first son, and since this story, has become our youngest/last child.  He was conceived after my husband’s intentional cup of coffee (he read that the pH change makes the boy swimmers more successful – insert his smirk).  I was hoping for a surprise gender, but baby-daddy had to know!!  When we found out it was a boy, we were so thrilled!  Obviously, we would have been thrilled no matter the gender, but somehow our feeling of ~complete was already developing.

We knew that this birth would be something special!  Not only did we project being in our new home in time to have a home birth, but we had wanted to have Mattie at home and the mechanics didn’t allow it.  So, Merik’s birth would be different.  The romantic, intimate, relaxed experience that he deserved, and we desired.

We moved into our forever home on April 11th 2015.  I was 39 weeks and 1 day.  Let’s just say the builder felt daily pressure from us – LOL!!  We had so much support and love….along with an abundance of excitement!  We easily moved everything in one day!  After the big move, I quickly went into full nesting mode, on my NEST!!

So, 6 days after we moved in, Merik was due to arrive!  I, of course, wanted him to be welcomed in comfort and ease.  The nest came together quickly with the help of some loved ones.  The emotion of the space began to take shape.  There was an unspoken joy that was maturing.  The one thing that seemed to take center stage in my vision for his birth was our bathtub.  I began to get excited about meeting our little monkey in the warm, relaxing water.  I felt insatiable; I wanted to give LIFE to this space that would welcome our baby!

At 1:30am on Monday, April 27th 2015, I woke from sleep to go to the bathroom.  It was not common to go #2 at night, but if I’m perfectly honest, this #2 was uncommon.  I took notice and then felt a small contraction.  I went to get some water and within 7 minutes felt another.  I was beginning to think I might be in labor.  I had some doubt because it was unfamiliar.  In Mattie’s labor, the contractions were intense from the onset, but only 15-20 minutes apart.  These were consistent and frequent, but just not intense.  I decided to text our midwife, Terry.

I picked up my phone to find a text message from midnight that announced she was in Whitney, TX.  I decided if she had only been asleep for an hour or two, she might not wake for a text, so I decided to call her.  Thankfully she answered!!  She inquired of my symptoms, and said she would get up, dress, and check the weather (WHAT!?!!).  She said she would let me know when she began to travel north.

I had a small panic set in.  I had mentally planned and prepared for a quick birth.  I had told Terry during prenatal care that my intuition said 17 minutes.  She didn’t like that idea because it didn’t give her time to travel from Cleburne (where she was expected to travel from) to our home.  We jokingly agreed on 1 hour 17 minutes 😉  Knowing Whitney is 90 minutes away, I knew I had to have a talk with Merik!

I had always thought if I delivered unassisted, I would be fine.  I even gave Terry a hard time as I approached 42 weeks that I wouldn’t be showing up for an induction, and that I would send her a picture of Merik when he arrived at home.  She didn’t like that humor neither!

Unexpectedly, I was NOT ok laboring, and especially not delivering unassisted.  I prayed about surrender, God’s divinity, and asked Merik to work together to allow Terry to get to our home before he did ♥

I began calling family and telling those planning to attend, that it was time.  Apparently I was very calm and confused everyone – nobody came!

I got a call from Terry at 3:00am.  She said she was on her way & GPS said it was a 1 1/2 hour trip.  I was interrupted a time or two by a contraction on the call.  I decided to wake Joey up and have him take over organizing and attending calls.

He got up and started the coffee.  I asked him to call my dad and stepmom, and ensure they were on their way in case Mattie woke up they could care for her.  I turned on some relaxation music, and got on the body ball for the upcoming contractions.

An hour passed of quiet.  Mattie was sleeping, Joey was prepping for the midwives, and I was breathing and surging.

Dad and Pam arrived.  Dad checked in on how everything was going, and then sat near me in the living room quietly.  Pam was busy getting the bed prepared with plastic.

At 4:30am Terry and her assistant arrived.  Only moments later the supporting midwife, Judith, joined us.  After a review of symptoms was done, I asked for a position recommendation because I felt like I was crawling up, away from the pressure.  She suggested kneeling in front of the couch.  Joey put some pillows down.  I had one miserable contraction there.

I thought it might be a good time to sit on the potty to make sure I didn’t need to pee.  I thought I might be able to let the tightness go without fear of making a mess.  I had an intense contraction on the potty, and my water exploded.  I felt a huge release and instantly wanted to push!

Terry took one look and suggested we get in the tub.  I had another contraction standing at the side of the tub….wondering if Merik would shoot out on the floor behind me if I bent over at the wrong time!!  I told Joey later, if he could have read my mind, it would have clearly said pick me up and put me in the tub!!!

15095468_10208247933978824_5959590906725606446_nI finally made it into the tub!  With the next contraction we had my son’s head out 🙂  Terry asked me to “just breathe, don’t push.”  I was able to do exactly what she asked.  She freed the cord from around his neck, and then invited me to push at the next contraction.  I again, was able to do as she asked. At 5:08am Joey caught our son as he transitioned into the bath’s water.  Joey savored his touch, and then passed him onto my chest.

He was crying so loudly I could feel my thoughts toggle from, “oh my goodness; here is my son” to “why is he in pain; what do I need to do?”  As my eyes focused on his face, I had an interruption of thought.  “Why does it seem like I’m looking at Mattie?”  They were so identical in appearance to me.  I was in a weird state of confusion….Deja vu!!!  I had invested so much in giving him his own identity and space, I felt like I was robbing him of his moment with mom, because all I could see was Mattie.

I was feeling the concern the midwifery team had for the type of cry he had.  It was distinctly a pain cry in my ears.  I couldn’t help but get swept away from his needs by my own enamor with his being.  I began to feel a love, even newer and more unfamiliar than before.  I knew something was different!  I knew this love had its own frequency.  I expected it to feel like my love for Mattie, but it was new.  Not unequal, just new.

As we moved Merik and I to the bed to deliver the placenta, the crying continued.  I began to hear the crying more in focus.  About that time, Terry said, “why don’t you adjust him?”  I heard her words like a drum – so distinct and familiar.  My chiropractor brain flipped on, and my hands went to work.

I had a moment, one of those times as a professional where it is personal.  It is a moment in time that is surrounded by emotion vs fact.  Perception vs reality – are they the same?  What I perceived was a sudden silence.  I was surprised by the amount of restriction in his atlas.  I had visions in my head that I didn’t have visual reference for.  I saw the cord around Merik’s neck from his vantage point.  I felt the intensity of it tightening with the force of the contraction from mommy.  I felt the fear he must have felt.  I heard the silence again, and realized he was finally calm, latched, nursing, and happy.  I have the pleasure of that moment living in my memories forever.  The impact that moment had undoubtedly changed my life.  I hope it will serve to change others as well.

18486137_10209766244815646_1194172616470812323_nWhile enjoying our sweet baby, we excitedly shared our joy with our oldest sweet baby, Mattie!  She had just woken up.  She came and joined us in bed.  She was so happy to meet her brother, “her baby,” WOW!!!  The amount of love you can feel on one Monday morning is way more than I’ve ever known before!

In the comfort of our home, the midwives made an herbal bath while Grammy prepared breakfast and Joey held Merik.  I was able to soak for a while….in that romantic, serene ambiance!!  My little 8lb 8oz, 21 inch package from heaven joined me, and then our precious Mattie.  The 4 of us sharing our nest!  Mattie was weirded out that the water was brown, so she would only stand in the tub.  Joey beamed proudly!  It was so great to share part of Merik’s arrival with the 2 other people that mean the most.

Mattie in tub

After Merik’s exam of all his perfection, we spent some time finalizing paperwork.  I then find out why Terry had to check the weather – there was a huge tornado, and softball size hail!!!  They drove through the storm damage in the dark to get to us!!  So grateful for God’s grace and provision!!


Once everyone was fed, cleaned, packed – the birth team gathered with the family around Merik and prayed blessings over him!  I felt God’s presence – so warm, so gentle 🙂

To say the least, our birth was A.M.A.Z.I.N.G!  I recognize that we were blessed in so many ways!  Our birth was REALIZED!!  Everything fell into place, and the bliss was abound!!!  I am grateful for those blessings, and pray God continues to grace us with His glory and abundance!

18555975_10209766247615716_7111152102356743251_nIn closing, I would like to be sure to express our gratitude for our birth team, the support of our family and friends, Grammy’s cooking & willingness to help, Papaw’s loving care for Mattie during the recovery, and the welcoming arms of all that visited, prepared meals, and prayed!!!

Merik Boone is about to turn 3!!!!  He is a huge gift to each of us!  I expect his life will exceed our expectations and fulfill God’s plan!  I pray abundance, connection, joy, patience, safety, God’s love & portion over him!


To my favorite little Ee-Ee – Mommy LOVES you!  You are a smile on my face, a light in my heart, and my reason for staying on my toes!  I will always be a piece of you, and you of me! 

Meet Dr. Taryn Lowery

Excited to share my interview with Voyage Dallas Magazine 🙂  It is a philosophically driven team of writers and editors that seek out “The Most Inspiring Stories in Dallas.”

You can check out the full article, but here are a couple of excerpts:

Taryn, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I started my journey in chiropractic as a patient in 2004. I was inspired by the God-given potential for my body to heal, and how different optimal was from normal. In 2007, I started chiropractic college at Parker in Dallas. In the three most intense years of my life I found my purpose in life. I also found my partner in life 🙂

…..So, August 6th 2012, we opened Peace of Life Chiropractic in Midlothian, TX!! We have grown so much in the last five years!! We have gone from one employee to seven. We have gone from 0 patients to over 800. We recently opened an additional 650 sq. ft., adding massage therapy, cold laser, and the coolest part…. Joey and I are working together again!!!

…..Our current vision, and probably our ultimate destination is to relocate in three years to our uniquely designed WHOLISTIC HEALTH CENTER. We aspire to offer a wide variety of professional services such as chiropractic, massage, hydrocolonics, color therapy, infrared light, cold laser, ionic foot baths, counseling, life coaching, nutritional coaching, fertility support, pregnancy care, postpartum services, etc. We will also have accommodations for overnight needs, and hopefully birthing! Our grounds will include a community garden, prayer and meditation center, walking trails, and more. We plan to incorporate holistic care for the whole body and the whole family.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
Not ever! Lol!! Not in a bad way. Just like Henry Kissinger said, “A diamond is a chunk of coal that did well under pressure.” I wouldn’t expect there to never be an obstacle or challenge. They always have a lesson to learn, and make us better at the next challenge. I think the rough road has helped me professionally understand the effects of stress on the body, and made me even more passionate about helping our patients be aware, and then guiding them to resilience!

Peace of Life Chiropractic – what should we know? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
We are set apart from others by our how and why.

Our how is probably our most unique quality. We are the most un-officey office. We have a serene peaceful space that makes our patients feel at home, especially the kids!

We also have an approach to patient care unlike any other chiropractic practice. We offer attentive, focused care for most all health needs – from ADD to hair loss to headaches, we use adjustments and complimentary tools to help patients unleash their inner healer!!

Our why is what we are most proud of. Why we care for patients 6 days a week, come in early and stay late = we love helping people!! Dr. Parker said “Loving service is my first technique.” We practice this daily. This mindful intention is evident in evert treatment, and can almost be palpated!

What is “success” or “successful” for you?
Success to me has two parts. One is internal harmony. The other is the effect my harmony has on others – I strive to always make my heart shine – helping them let theirs shine.

I will treasure this opportunity to share our story!  I hope  it inspires another entrepreneur, healer, dreamer, goal-setter!  I will keep telling our story 🙂  May God continue to be our portion, and provide the grace and provision that allow us to keep serving with love and compassion!

Thank you for being a part of our journey!!!  Your love and support is an asset that we treasure!!

In Love and Service,

Taryn Lowery, DC