Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by Alan Gordon LCSW, Jul 28, 2017.
Great post joe! Just the reminders I need as I continue, determined to win out over TMS! As you say, BELIEVE! Much thanks and blessings.
I looooved the exercise. I downloaded it and use it at least twice a day. I need to learn to focus on 1 thing at a time. Pain/anxiety etc vs neutral feelings. Great practice!!! Thank you
Thanks, jdb49. These are not just empty words. It's easy to say "believe" and try to force yourself. You can't do that (at least, I can't). If it wasn't for the absolute desperation I felt after umpteen doctors, tests, exercises, etc, all to no avail, I probably would not have been so predisposed to believing wholeheartedly in the diagnosis. And sometimes I can't help but wondering - are these people reading the same book I just read? Again, not to belittle anyone's agony. Do not forget - I am agonizing too!
Why do I believe so strongly? Because 1st of all the good doctor absolutely NAILED what no other doctor could nail: a real, believable diagnosis. And if you question that diagnosis because you're still in pain, then you haven't believed in it yet, or the pain wouldn't intimidate you any more. Of course it will torture you! Of course it will agonize you! That's why it's called pain! But scare you or make you despair? HELL NO. NOT ANY MORE.
No more envying others that lead their normal lives (been there done that!). No more waiting for the pain to just magically go away (been there done that too). Know what you're brain is up to (step 1), get busy (step 2), divert your attention to your biggest fears and angers (this for me is the hardest, most counterintuitive and difficult part, especially when it causes anxiety, which in turn ramps up the pain... for now), and (step 3) have faith that the symptoms will melt away by themselves in time.
If you're envious, anxious, despairing, and think it's just not working because you're still in pain, to quote the funny old lady in the commercial about "unfriending" the other old lady: "That's now how it works. That's not how any of this works." ;-)
I have also had TMS for years. Most of the time I have been able to work my way out of it. These symptoms have been with me for 6 months and while my back and neck are much better, my neuropathy keeps hanging on. The biggest problem is that I am rarely pain free with my feet. I manage to deal with it - today I walked 3 miles, worked in the yard for 45 minutes and fixed my gas grill - another 45 minutes. I had pain throughout but I tried to just observe it. It is not easy but I have no choice. My biggest concern is that the rest of the world is barreling ahead - my wife wants to go on vacation, my kids want to get together, I want to be with my granddaughter, and other "fun" things - but the pain is always a constant companion which gets tiring. I was able to "get rid of" the neuropathy twice before in the last 15 years, without using TMS tools; but this time it seems tougher. Nevertheless, I am hopeful "That this too shall pass!"
Wow lunarlass66! It is amazing how this all works. I feel like if I had known how decades of my emotions and personality traits would somehow lead to being in chronic pain, I would have been much more conscious of this growing up.
Yes, despairing reactions and frustration and irritation are actually subtle forms of fear.
Let me be a little more specific. Fear is the emotion that comes up when our brains interpret something as dangerous. Fear makes us want to get away from something. Feelings of frustration, irritation, and despair, drive us to want to escape from our current situation.
Although, it may not give you that feeling of panic, any form of resistance or desire to escape from your current situation is form of fear, subtle as it may be.
This is why outcome independence is so helpful - it's really just the ultimate form of non-resistance, accepting what is, and determining your own mood independent of your pain. Outcome independence can free us from fear in both its obvious and subtle forms.
I have a hard time understanding this. I do not think that I fear structural damage. I simply fear being in pain. I don't think the pain can cause me physical harm but it causes me grief and it causes me to suffer because it hurts! So I see the pain as causing harm but not the kind of harm you are referring to
Penny2007... that's exactly my biggest struggle with all of this. I feel the same exact way.
Thanks so much Alan. That makes a lot of sense to me now.
I'm sure I stand with others in expressing my heartfelt thanks and appreciation for what you are freely giving on this forum to so many people. Forever grateful
This is one of the best lessons so far. There is so much great information here that it has put me into a panic that I won't learn it all or I'll miss something. I don't know why I put this pressure on myself which is making me feel overwhelmed. Before this lesson I was feeling quite good and now it is causing me anxiety.
Thanks SO much for your response. DEFINATLY NOT a completely useless answer!!
I know it's tough right? I saw your post earlier on about your 19 year struggle. I truely hope you, and everyone else here can turn their situation around. Pain is an awful thing to live with day in day. And with the modern medical system failing us it is easy to despair. But I hope no more!
Good luck with your journey Joe12- I wish you pain free days!!
I'm trying to take Christie's advice on how to work on myself (see page 3 of the comments) and am feeling calmer. I started today with the mindfulness meditation she posted from Alan. That really helped slow down my thoughts. I've been working on mindfulness in general and it is very helpful. The key for me is noticing my thoughts without trying to change anything. That really takes the pressure off and is calming. Also labeling your thoughts is useful, again, without judgement, just with a sense of curiosity. i.e. "fear thought", "pressure thought" etc.
I have pain in my feet too...just keep moving. Sooner or later it will melt away. Having a relapse twice with pain in the hips, back and feet for some strange reason the feet pain was the last to leave. I think I would rather have the foot pain. Find yourself some shoes that are soft and feel better while out and about.
Have had a number of back pains but never hips thank god. I don't like the foot pain because most things I like require me to be on my feet. So far today was a good day - walked for 40 minutes and then walked again locally - had lunch with my wife and kids at a restaurant - there were significant time with little or no pain. I kept repeating to myself that I am safe and loved. I had an emotional discussion with my wife this morning but I tried to actually get in touch with my emotions - had some flareup in symptoms but felt better as the morning progressed. Keep the faith.
yes, i do see a PT who seems pretty knowledgeable (she believes in TMS too). So far, she hasnt made me much better, however, she's definitly keeping me from getting worse. I find that my pelvic muscles form knots (new ones every week!) and wind tighter and tighter every day until i see her. She releases it all, but it's so temporary and keeps coming back. My IC shifted into my pudendal nerve (it was like my bladder shut off, and the PN turned on) during a medical procedure. My brain couldnt feel/handle both sensations so it only focused on one. THat's what i started to get the hint that maybe this something more than pure physical. Like you, i feel like i'm always in a "kegal". I catch myself doing it constantly and make an effort to relax it. Ten min later, i'm doing it again. It's like the tight guarding has become my "default" over so many years. I do have issue with my obturator though, and apparently that's a muscle you cant voluntarily control.
Hi NicoleB34- Yes that is exactly what I have as well is are very tight obturator muscles and nerves. It is horrible- so Im so sorry, but Im glad you have a PT. I too experience good things while there and then when leave everything tightens up again. Well Im glad we both found this website and I hope we can get relief!!
I wish my iPhone would actually let me download and save this audio vs needing to return to this page each time. It's really great and worth repeating!
I was able to download the audio on my laptop. I'm not an iPhone user, but I'm able to then transfer audio file to my Android.
That's about the extent of my IT knowledge Someone more knowledgeable may be able to tell you how to do it for iPhone.
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