Why I got in to integrative medicine

Barbara’s Story

As a young nurse, I began to wonder why patients with similar health history and disease would have very different outcomes. What was the impact when one “had the will to live” or “had no spirit left?”

As I journeyed on in my career as a registered nurse, starting in the emergency department, woman’s health, ambulatory care, and currently employee wellness, I noted Western Medicine is an incomplete model. We operate in the Newtonian thought process of system versus whole body, fixing versus healing.

However, in the 30 years of my nursing career, I have seen a shift. Healthcare providers are understanding that the whole-person concept of care is vital. That mind, body, and spirit are the tapestry of the person, and in order to care you need to view the whole tapestry.

Healing doesn’t always involve curing. I have witnessed patients die peacefully, a peace they did not possess when they first were admitted into the hospital. There is a shift in Western healthcare, a slow shift but there is a shift. Healing is a multidisciplinary it is science, it is nature, it is humanity, it is sacred.

I always wanted to be a nurse and one cannot be a nurse without integrating medicine.

—Barbara, RN, BSN, MA, HNB-BC