Who am I? Part 2

The origin story. All superhero’s have an origin story, right!

Whilst not all hero’s wear caps (in fact Edna advises against it), I can say with some certainty, I’m no superhero. That said, people do like to know how I got here, and what led me to the work I now do. So here goes.

Many moons ago when I was no older than six or seven, I would be sat on the sofa watching the telly, my dad would come in after a 10 hour day on the tools, plonk down on the floor in front of me, and I would spend my evenings working out the knots in his neck and shoulders. The better the ‘work’ was the longer I got to stay up past my bedtime (and keep watching the telly!).
As I grew, I watched my mum suffering with her neck and lower back. Several bouts of whiplash and the trauma of spinal surgery solidified my interest in the human body, and what I later came to realise was the healing power of touch.
For as long as I could remember I wanted to be a physiotherapist, and I think it was these early exposures which led me down this route.

Jump forward to choosing a university, and I didn’t get the grades needed to be a physiotherapist. A brief foray with chiropractic and a few years later, I settled down into academia on a Biomedical Sciences course. Science had always been (and still is) a passion of mine. I completed my degree and went on to do a Masters. This opened many doors, I got to work with some truly amazing people and be part of some amazing research. I’ll pop some examples of the projects I was involved in at the bottom if you’re interested.
This was the best of both worlds, I gleaned an amazing insight into the workings of the human body, and got to do some really cool science as well. As with most things however, when you’re good at something you get promoted. For me that meant with multiple six figure budgets, managing people and crucially, less and less science. Although it was a great privilege to be in that situation, I became dissatisfied as it took me away from why I had started and although I diversified slightly to work on the environmental management side of things, it still wasn’t right for me so I decided to retrain.

Occupational Health and Safety, my reasoning went, still involved science, and still involved working with people, their movement patterns and ergonomics. So, after completing my post grad – which blended so well with the knowledge gained from my previous degrees, furthering my understanding of the human body, movement and dysfunction – unfortunately I found myself in another role comprised mostly of training and reports.

Thankfully before the boredom kicked in again, a project came up which allowed me to start on my current career, that of a Rehabilitation Practitioner.

Part 1 can be found here: Who am I

Research fun: Supporting Prof. Pilkington with brain cell tracking and visualisation, supporting Prof. Shute with her groups work on asthma, Dr Gibbs with her IL2 research, Dr Donovan with his 11BHSD research, and many more!

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