Today was my birthday and I asked for nothing—no cards, no gifts, no special dinners. I just wanted to hear my back crack.
This was how it happened: I recently fell into one of those YouTube rabbit holes, and—I’m kind of embarrassed to admit—I watched a half dozen videos of chiropractors “cracking” backs of their patients. There are a lot of these videos, I don’t know why. But watching these videos were deeply and weirdly satisfying, on the level of popping bubblewrap. This was confirmed by the patients on the video themselves, who would groan in pleasure and remark how it made them feel like a whole new person. (Turns out, backs aren’t actually cracked at all. It’s trapped bubbles between joints that come to the surface and get released, which is what makes that loud cracking noise.)
I don’t really suffer from chronic pain, thank goodness, but chasing my toddler around all day, I do feel tightness in my lower back—a two on a 1-10 pain scale. That plus those videos were all the encouragement I needed—I was going to treat myself to a chiropractic adjustment. Funny enough, there’s a chiropractor the next office over from The Takeout, and for lunch today, I dropped in for an appointment.
Oh boy, was it a mother-loving treat. The chiropractor asked where I felt stiffness (my lower back, the soles of my feet), and he proceeded to twist me like a pretzel. There were at least a half dozen satisfying “cracks”—just like on YouTube!—and I came out of the appointment feeling light on my feet. That’s probably the best way to describe it; my newfound mobility was like I had dropped 20 pounds. Best of all, insurance covered most of it! So that was the birthday gift I gave myself: a voluntary spine readjustment. Golly, do I feel like an old man now.