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Fighting doubts and slow recovery

Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by rcal43, Oct 18, 2013.

  1. rcal43

    rcal43 New Member

    Hi All,

    I am relatively new to the form (2 weeks), but I have been at the Sarno approach for a little over a month.

    I am a 24 year old guy and have DDD in my L5-S1. I also have a few moderately herniated discs in my thoracic. I have LBP, sciatic pain and a sharp pain in my thoracic that can travel into my arms with any upper body physical activity. My pain pales in comparison to may in this form and in the TMS books, but it has still dominated my life. I have given up the physical activities I love and now only swim to stay in shape. It is difficult for me to work because of the pain while sitting, but the pain is constant regardless of position.

    I have read Sarno's books and I am currently finishing up Steve Ozanich's The Great Pain Deception. Additionally, I am in week 2 of the structured recovery program on the Wiki. I have unfortunately seen little improvement and have become discouraged. I am continuing full steam with the program, but I wish I could fortify my confidence and start to gain some traction to help reinforce the diagnosis.

    I am reluctant to stop using my pillows and bolsters on my work and car seat and to begin exercising more vigorously. Do you guys suggest throwing caution to the wind and enduring the immediate pain without these aids, or would you suggest that I wait until I'm further in the program?

    I want to thank Forest and all the contributors to this form. It has greatly helped me to know that others have found such great success!

    Thanks for your support,

    Ryan
     
  2. Mtngal

    Mtngal Peer Supporter

    Hi rcal43. First know you are not alone in this struggle with doubt - for me and a lot of others, it is the main hurdle in overcoming your pain. To completely repudiate the structural diagnoses (DDD - which by the way, Dr. David Hanscomb, a spinal surgeon himself, says should NOT be called a disease - it is a normal abnormality to quote Dr. Sarno) is very hard when you are in a lot of pain. I too am a fitness "nut" and was running lots etc. and find it very hard to give up on these things. For what it's worth, I had the exact same question you did about throwing caution to the wind and "Just Do It" like Steve O. did. While it may have worked for him, I think we all have to find our own approach. Even Dr. Sarno discourages patients from starting too intensely and too soon with vigorous exercise before the pain has been significantly reduced or gone. He explains that this is not because you will damage your back, but rather if it makes the pain worse, it might be too discouraging. On the other hand, if you do that and the pain get worse for awhile and then subsides, it's a way to reprogram your brain. It thinks, "oh, I just ran X number of miles, hmm, maybe my back isn't all that vulnerable, in spite of maybe increased pain.. so I don't know, it's kindof a judgement call. I have done both through the years. I think if it were not for work, I probably would go ahead and run all out, but still have that fear of the pain being worse and not being able to perform my job. And as Sarno points out, the FEAR of exercise is as potent a distraction as the pain itself.

    Just recently I tried just thinking very consciously about any stresses and thoughts that were making me anxious. I just put them "out there" and faced them.. and the day after that I had pretty much a pain-free day at work. I also write down on an "evidence sheet" the activities I did w/out pain that forces me to see that I actually did those things and didn't hurt. Even if it's a seemingly insignificant or small thing, you have to take those little victories and cement them in your mind. Healing happens fast for some but for others it occurs in micro steps. In the meantime, swimming is an excellent cardio exercise and I know a lot of people who swim only because they hate to run anyway :)

    Good luck, hang in there.
     
    Eric "Herbie" Watson likes this.
  3. Eric "Herbie" Watson

    Eric "Herbie" Watson Beloved Grand Eagle

    rcal43)- I am relatively new to the form (2 weeks), but I have been at the Sarno approach for a little over a month.

    Eric)- nice to see you here rcal43, although a month is a good start - it is relatively short for the reconditioning process so take heart that your hangin in there and going in the right direction. You are keeping up with the time and that isn't a good thing to do with this knowledge therapy ok, you cant fall bac into the tms trap so one of the pitfalls is time watch, this causes anxious thoughts and that only equal pain so don't keep up with the timeline ok. you can, just don't have a limit on what it takes to get the job done. You stay course and let time heal, not hinder. Thanks

    rcal43)- I am a 24 year old guy and have DDD in my L5-S1. I also have a few moderately herniated discs in my thoracic. I have LBP, sciatic pain and a sharp pain in my thoracic that can travel into my arms with any upper body physical activity. My pain pales in comparison to may in this form and in the TMS books, but it has still dominated my life. I have given up the physical activities I love and now only swim to stay in shape. It is difficult for me to work because of the pain while sitting, but the pain is constant regardless of position.

    Eric)- ok , I understand pain- believe me after 25 years of it you get pretty good at knowing when folks are in it, so I know you hurt but that's the reason for the season your in now, the healing season- see you have some sensitization to recondition and some repressions to uncover. You have lost a balance you have with life and you want to get back out there and start living right now. You can , its just now when you try you hurt so keep doing the work at the SEP and do all the journaling work and activities. You should be seeing results soon now that you know not to think about the time ok, and have you looked at Alan Gordon's Program. It'll really help when you have conflicts due to almost anything.- its called the TRP, http://www.tmswiki.org/ppd/TMS_Recovery_Program
    rcal43)- I have read Sarno's books and I am currently finishing up Steve Ozanich's The Great Pain Deception. Additionally, I am in week 2 of the structured recovery program on the Wiki. I have unfortunately seen little improvement and have become discouraged. I am continuing full steam with the program, but I wish I could fortify my confidence and start to gain some traction to help reinforce the diagnosis.

    Eric)- The more you hope and wish , the more your trying to pull time to you so again this is your sticking point, be patient and give up on watching the time ok its slowing your progress. And you said you read sarnos book right , now go back and read it again then read it again till you can start to quote what p.82 says without looking. ITs not about quantity as much as quality, so get that book down like second nature, this truly is knowledge therapy and its the knowledge that you retain that will heal you ok. Steves book too should be read like 3 or 4 pages a day so it will really sink in ok.

    rcal43)-I am reluctant to stop using my pillows and bolsters on my work and car seat and to begin exercising more vigorously. Do you guys suggest throwing caution to the wind and enduring the immediate pain without these aids, or would you suggest that I wait until I'm further in the program?

    Eric)- This shows fear and focus and you already know these twin instigators will always keep you in pain. I wouldn't suggest that you go hurt yourself at all. Get to the repressions and let the knowledge sink in , soon you should be able to loose the pillows and such which are conditioned responses caused by fear that you might hurt. So start to think like I did. when I lay without that pillow- I wont hurt. And the focus is as bad as the fear so learn to think psychological even more, if you have a pain think what is it that could be bothering me emotionally. This should help you on your journey.

    And we want to thank you rcal43, thank you for taking the step to recovery, thank you for being on top of things.
    Bless you

    PS- Those were very good questions rcal43, Always ask when your not sure ok and have a great weekend
     
  4. Lori

    Lori Well known member

    I thought using a pillow in my car was helpful but realized it wasn't really helping me. I remember Dr. Sarno saying "it's not your bed, your chair, or the seat in your car". I also remember thinking that sleeping with the pillow between my knees helped me have less pain. Kind of funny now in retrospect.

    healing takes as long as it takes. I think people forget it takes time for this new information to sink into our brains. Which is why Dr. Sarno's prescription to me was to read "the program" (in the Divided Mind book) EVERY DAY for 30 days. It was 3 or 4 pages. I made myself do it.

    Don't give up. Many of us are pain-free now. You can be too when you believe you can! :)
     

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