Dr. Rimka’s Personal Journey
Over my 24 years in the health field, my clients have given me feedback on what they tell other people I do. They have called me: personal trainer, chiropractic psychologist, neurofeedback therapist, chiropractor, energy worker, pranic healer, functional medicine doctor, kinesiologist, spiritual advisor, brain trainer, and life coach.
Almost like my unique and diverse ethnic background which confuses people and makes me very hard to place into one box, I tend to be perceived by people as to whatever they need me to be in that moment for them. I’m good with that. I didn’t feel like the confusion was a problem.
…I tend to be perceived by people as to whatever they need me to be in that moment for them.
I’m fortunate to collaborate with a lot of therapists and psychologists who refer to me. They noticed my unique blend of therapeutic approaches I take in working with my clients before I did. Once, one asked me who in my family struggled with certain issues because this therapist stated, “You must have grown up with it to be able to do what you do so well.”
This therapist was referring to the acceptance, patience, and commitment seen in caring for others in my practice. Reflecting upon this question created insight into how my early development created my current clinical style which blends these seemingly unrelated concepts together.
I grew up in Detroit as the youngest of four kids being raised by a single mom. We didn’t have any child support, and we didn’t have a long list of relatives to help us out. My mom is an only child who lost her father as a teenager.
Her own mother, my grandmother, had her own long life of confusion and trauma, and she did the best she could. My mother didn’t have her to rely upon for any help. So my mother did it all.
You learn a lot about grit, determination, self-reliance, teamwork, hard work, being tough, and even fighting when you come from the midwest, Detroit in particular. Being the youngest and smallest with a single mom without a lot of money to survive despite often working 2-3 jobs, you learn those lessons quickly.
And, I am grateful for it. I decided early that I wanted “to be a doctor when I grow up” and gave that answer to any adult who asked. (Well, right after they explained that I could never be a jockey because I was already taller at age 7 than most adult male jockeys. That was devastating, but that’s another story.)
We were not some holistic, granola, natural, hippie family. My mom raised us on basic principles of the “4 Food Groups,” didn’t overload us with sugar, always cooked a hot breakfast, and lined us up for cod liver oil in the morning, but we ate regular food and Flintstone vitamins like everyone else. In fact, I actually ate the worst and had the poorest health of us all growing up. I was the youngest, so most rules didn’t apply to me!
You learn a lot about grit, determination, self-reliance, teamwork, hard work, being tough, and even fighting when you come from the midwest, Detroit in particular.
Trauma is the Silver Lining
Despite the incredible results, I was a pretty crappy patient. I didn’t comply very well, I would come and go depending upon my pain, I didn’t always do my rehab exercises, I used him as a band aid to patch me up after injury. Typical patient and typical teenager. He just kept serving and educating. No judging, only loving. Then, in a college soccer game, I ended up in the ER with a concussion. I don’t remember all the details. But we discovered later that I actually also broke two ribs and my L5 vertebrae while herniating the L5/S1 disc. I spent an entire summer on my back, getting adjusted, doing traction, trying to gain back the feeling in my entire leg, and crying in desperate fear as I often lost all motor control in my leg as well. It was a frightening time to be told I would never play sports again, and if I wasn’t careful during this time, could risk never walking again. And running was done.
Therefore, undergraduate college wasn’t the most fun time in my life. I listened to my doctors and decided team sports was too risky for my ultimate plans in life. I did rehab enough to play co-ed recreational league sports. But, this was still a great loss of joy for me. Add to it, I was plagued with a lot of mysterious illness after that injury. Significant amounts of chronic pain, fatigue, weight gain, depression, and foggy brain. This began a personal journey into figuring out how to heal myself since no one had an answer at the student health clinic. I dove into studying diets, supplements, weight training, and became a personal trainer for dozens of women on campus. It was a time of deep self reflection about my purpose and my true mission. I was deciding if I genuinely wanted to commit to medical school and took a year off to breathe after graduation.
An Aha Moment
Yes, I said attack. Because I’m from Detroit, and that’s just what we do. Focused, almost obsessively, studying and training to grasp the complexities of physiology, detoxification, neurotransmitters, how to alter brain chemistry via adjustments, diet, supplementation, lab testing, functional medicine, orthomolecular psychiatry. I never wanted to not know how to help anyone ever again. I was driven, and it was personal. Truth is, too many members of my family are or have been in prison. Many struggle with alcoholism and drug addiction. Mental illness and personality disorders litter my lineage. And I have experienced first hand what this can do to a family. I know how destructive dyslexia can be to a child’s self esteem and ability to succeed in life. I see what biochemical imbalances can do to ravage someone with so much depression they feel unable to do anything but hurt themselves or someone else. And I wanted to learn to stop that suffering somehow.
I wanted to save lives with a drug-free approach. Six months later, I moved to Atlanta and started chiropractic college. Curing back pain or headaches was the furthest thing on my mind. I cared about how the nervous system controlled mental illness, and that was how I attacked my education.
While I was earning my doctorate at Life University, my sister’s son was displaying increasing signs of developmental delays. Her trust in me to help figure out what was going on and to help my nephew Kyle started me on another journey diving deeper into understanding functional medicine related to detoxification, brain injury, and genetics.
My nephew is autistic. His many functional medicine physicians and therapists were not only open to my involvement, but many of them specifically helped coach, guide, and train me to understand what they were doing and why. In addition, they wanted him adjusted and to hear my input into diet and supplementation.
Because of the profound effect neurofeedback had on my nephew, I decided to learn that as well. It’s a longer story, but that’s ultimately why I ended up as a Board Certified Neurofeedback therapist.
Providence Moves Too
I actively sought out mentors to teach me to listen to Spirit. To connect myself deeper to the divine source of all knowing…
That’s why I ended up studying psychology, functional medicine, neurofeedback, energy medicine, ancient spiritual healing practices, meditation, parenting, and diet/nutrition so much before, during, and after earning my doctorate. And this is why some of my clients say things about me like, “I’m not sure what is exactly working, but she should have been a therapist. I mean, she is really good at that part.” Some of them come in and say, “I don’t want the typical adjustment, I want you to do that thing you do with all the energy, emotional, and chakra stuff. You should do more of that.” Or my favorite, “Are you a psychic?” Um, no. I’m not. Make no mistake, I am a chiropractor. I just love the psyche. My vitalistic mission and my desire to serve have just forced me to keep adding whatever I can find to help.
Your body tells me everything it wants me to know. I care enough to know how to listen.
“I feel great today! In fact, I’ve never felt better. I don’t know what you did, but you did wonders. Thank you!”
“Emotionally things feel different since our work together. I feel a certain calmness around decisions, and that’s nice! Spiritually I notice my thoughts changing to more positive, inspired ones without even consciously trying. Thank you so much for helping me find myself again.”
“It is very difficult to put into words exactly how instrumental Dr. Rimka has been in helping my son work through his challenges…Despite being very intelligent, he was so anxious that panic attacks were very common to the point he couldn’t even speak…The gratitude and love that we have for them can never be expressed. I will be bringing my entire family to Dr. Rimka, and I highly recommend her to my clients, friends, and family.”
“I have referred several of my clients to Dr. Rimka for neurofeedback. In conjunction with my therapy, the clients who have completed neurofeedback, have, in my opinion, experienced increased insight and happiness. They have also experienced a decrease in depression, anxiety, dissociation, negative thoughts, and insomnia.
I wish all my clients were willing to incorporate neurofeedback into their treatment.”