TIME OUT WITH LOIS: Standing up straight

Do you ever need to fix your head? Not as in a new hair cut or brain scan, but as in an adjustment?

Lois Olmstead

One time my folks took me to a chiropractor to see if he could make me stand up straight. It was in the olden days because I was young. Even his name was old. The Bohleen family called him “Old Doc Taylor.” After they moved to the Shields Valley in 1937, I remember them loading up the car for a trip to Lewistown so whoever needed an adjustment could see Old Doc Taylor (probably rodeos caused the trips).

It must have been traumatic for me because I remember every detail all these years later! He had me stand on a block of wood facing away from him. Then he gripped me under my arms, said “Relax!” and lifted me off the step and dropped me (in my memory). Then he’d do it again and say, “You got to relax!” Then after 20 times (probably really three times) he said to my parents, “I don’t think I can help her. She won’t relax so I can get her spine to adjust.”

Later I remember them taking me to “Old Doc Harris,” and he told my mom to have me stand up very straight, then for her to stretch a piece of white adhesive tape across my shoulders. I think the idea was when I would slump, the tape would pull (ouch) and I would remember to stand up straight. If you see me walking in a hurry today, I may be slumping! Most times I try to remember. After all, I should, after the adjustment, the tape, and my mother and my husband telling me to stand up straight!

After the last few months of so many changes in my life, I began to feel like my head needed an adjustment (did not think to try the tape)! So I said to my mother, “Do you think you would be OK if I left for a couple days?” It had come to me suddenly I just needed to get away to get my head fixed. Speaking trips start again in August.

She looked at me like that was a dumb question, “Of course!” It was not a dumb question. Our hired guy, Kenny, had been here fixing fence. He replaced a gate post. The broken post was in the back of her pickup.

I said, “Like that fence post. Do not unload it. We will get it when I get back. You don’t have to pull dams, irrigate, weed-eat or change any tires. It is too hot. Just clean a closet or sort photos. OK?”

“I will be fine,” she said. “That is the best idea you have had. Go. I will be fine.” (Next week I will tell you how “fine” she was. It was not hazardous; well, yeah, it was but it was not serious; well, yeah, it was that too. I will just say you are going to fall over laughing and she is fine.)

So off I drove with her waving like a kid who just got a day off with the teacher gone. I stayed in Helena after visiting a dear friend on the way. I paid $14 for a senior ticket for the Gates of the Mountains boat ride 7 miles down the Missouri. I had been on the trip once with He-Who and once with my folks but I just let that go and “relaxed.” I took a trolley train tour. I also slept lots. Sunday I visited Canyon Ferry Dam and a neat church.

Now back home after my head adjustment, I sense a new peace. Therefore our Bible verse this week is Isaiah 40:31. It truly fits. I am not slumping either. 


EDITOR’S NOTE: Lois Olmstead is an inspirational speaker and author who lives in the Shields Valley. Email her at loiso@wispwest.net or visit www.timeoutwithlois.com.