spinal column

Maintaining balance between study, work and family

Katie Pohlman, D.C., Davenport ’06, and Randy Pohlman
Katie Pohlman, D.C., hands off son, Jacob, to husband Randy, then a student, during another hectic day.
Randy Pohlman watches son, Jacob, kiss Dr. Katie Pohlman

When asked how I decided to become a chiropractor, all I can remember is that in the 8th grade, I wrote an essay on what I wanted to be when I grew up and I knew I wanted to be a chiropractor.

After my husband, Randy, and I were married in the summer of 2002, we moved from Maria Stein, Ohio, to Davenport to start what we thought was going to be a three-year journey to finish my plan of becoming a chiropractor. But in 2004, we realized we were going to be here a bit longer than three years.

As I entered my sixth trimester in the chiropractic curriculum, I was also entering into my third trimester of pregnancy with our first child. It was at that point that I realized I wanted to take some time off to be with him.

That same year, Randy, who was a computer numerical control programmer by trade, began to see more potential within himself in the chiropractic field. Initially he considered becoming a chiropractic technologist so that we could work together.

But as he attended orientation for the C.T. program and heard about all that chiropractors do, I could tell that he was drawn to the career of a chiropractor. So he stayed in the C.T. program long enough to fulfill his undergraduate requirements before entering Palmer’s D.C. program. Now our three-year journey was about to have an extension.

By June of 2006, I had graduated and opened a small private practice within a business in Bettendorf, Iowa. I was also in the middle of obtaining my Diplomate in Chiropractic Pediatrics. However, I soon became disappointed in the quantity and quality of research in chiropractic that dealt with pediatrics, so I enrolled in Palmer’s Master of Clinical Research program.

After four months in this program, I also realized that I did not have enough time to be a full-time mom, full-time student and a practicing chiropractor. Since I knew there was a need for quality pediatric research for the chiropractic profession, I sold my small business so I could dedicate more time to my master’s degree.

In the winter of 2007, I was offered a full-time position in the Research Department as a clinical project manager. And in June, after Randy receives his D.C. degree, we will be welcoming our second child to the family.

The most challenging aspect of our journey has been maintaining a balance between personal, family and professional time. We strongly believe that nobody can raise a child better then one’s parents, so we have been committed to spending as much time as possible with our son.

To be able to keep this balance and spend time with our son, we have also had to have very open lines of communication with each other. For example, by completing the D.C. program myself, I’ve understood the expectations that have been required of my husband. And in the same way, Randy has been able to support me through my jobs and the pursuit of my Diplomate and master’s degree. Together we have been able to keep each other balanced and still enjoy life.

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