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Hi! I’m C.M. Gibson, Naturopathic Doctor.

It’s no secret that when you see a Naturopath, they ask you tons of questions. About the most intimate (and sometimes embarrassing) aspects of your life.

We don’t talk much about ourselves, because we’re there to address your health concerns. You are our focus. And that’s the way it should be.

But some people might be more open to talking about themselves, if they know at least a little bit about the person they’re speaking to. So here it is, the answer to the question: Who is Dr. C.M. Gibson?

And, more importantly: What’s with the initials?

Where does Dr. Gibson Come From?

Having just moved to here from Barrie, Ontario, one of the most common questions I get is: Why here?

I’ve been away a long time, I admit, but I really am a native of northern Ontario. I’ve just moved around a whole lot, since.

  • Born in Nipigon
  • Lived in Red Rock, Thunder Bay, and Kenora
  • Moved to Plum Coulee, Manitoba at age 3
  • Down to central Ontario (Orillia) at age 12
  • University in Hamilton (McMaster)
  • Teachers’ college in Thunder Bay (Lakehead)
  • Taught across the country: northern Alberta, Lac La Croix First Nation (near Fort Frances), and Baffin Island
  • Warmed up by teaching for a year in the Middle East (United Arab Emirates)
  • Back to central Ontario (Barrie, this time) for a couple years
  • 5 years in Toronto at the Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine

Why Northern Ontario?

So why northern Ontario? Well, because I like it.

I like open spaces. I like small towns. I like being able to go out to camp and see the stars at night.

It feels like home. For someone who’s been uprooted multiple times, northern Ontario has been the one constant. My mom’s family is from Nipigon / Red Rock, and the whole clan returns every summer for the Pristanski reunion. Here we are at Lofquist Lake a few years ago.

Not all of the Pristanskis, but a big chunk of them. I’m holding the little white dog.
DBC Staff in front of the dining hall on the old property.

I’m invested in this place. As a teenager, I spent 10 summers working at Dorion Bible Camp. The same place my own mother had been a camper and a volunteer for many years.

When you invest your time and energy into a place, it becomes a part of you. You care about it – its people, its future. And I invested more of myself in the campers at DBC than any classroom of students I ever taught. I taught my students Math and Science – important, but not subjects with eternal consequences. DBC was where I fought for souls.

Why did Dr. Gibson become a Naturopathic Doctor?

While I loved working with kids at camp, I soon found out that teaching them in school – where they don’t want to be – is an entirely different matter. I am not intimidating. I am not authoritative. I am not a good jailer. I loved teaching, but the kids walked right over me.

I didn’t want to be an ok teacher. I wanted to be really good at something. I wanted to help people in a way that I couldn’t, as a teacher. And I wanted to be healthier, myself. I was going through some health challenges, and conventional medicine wasn’t giving me answers. Even though I had a wonderful family doctor, the best he could offer me was a prescription that made my lab values look fine, but didn’t make me feel any better.

I didn’t want to cover up my problem. I wanted to get to the root of it.

And so I came to the Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine.

After 5 more years of education, I began to wonder if I would ever get out of school. But it’s finally over. I completed my internship. I graduated. I wrote, and passed, all those qualification exams. And jumped through every hoop I needed to in order to get registered. I’m here. And I’m ready to work.

I am thrilled to finally be back up north, in Thunder Bay, Nipigon, and all places in between.

Why doesn’t she like her 1st name?

I have no problem with my 1st name. But a few years ago, I noticed a disturbing trend: certain people (whom I still love and adore) began adding a Miss to the front of it. Now, as a teacher, I’d been called Miss Gibson for years. But the sound of Miss (insert 1st name) was just like nails on a chalkboard.

So now, one of my fears is being called Dr. (insert 1st name).

I know lots of people love it. I am not one of those people.

So in print, I am C.M. Gibson. You can call me Dr. Gibson. You can even call me Miss Gibson, if you want.

But you’re not getting my 1st name. At least, not until I am absolutely certain that you will never add a prefix to it. 🙂