1. Alan has completed the new Pain Recovery Program. To read or share it, use this link: http://go.tmswiki.org/newprogram
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Journaling Past Events

Discussion in 'Structured Educational Program' started by nadia, Jun 13, 2012.

  1. nadia

    nadia Peer Supporter

    First I want to thank all you who have commented on my threads. I have never done an online group before, so this is pretty new to me. Not to mention that TMS is a BIG learning curve. I really appreciate the welcome, acceptance and encouragement I've received.

    Yesterday (day 5) in the journaling exercise I chose one event from my past list to free write on for 15 mins. The whole time I was trying to journal about a childhood issue (that I think is pretty major...but also one I've focused on many years ago in 12 step and therapy), I kept feeling negative emotions about my current life: my relationship with my husband, our children, our financial situation, debt, half-renovated house, peri-menopause, aging, and so on. I had to keep pushing these thoughts aside and dragging myself back to my topic which was to focus on 4 year old me! It was strange as I didn't really have any strong feelings about the 'past event' and at the end of the 15 minutes I realized that i was at peace with that event.

    Today, day 6, I read the lesson, watched the clip (which was so great) and came to the journaling exercise, which again focuses on a past event. I reviewed by list of past events and nothing there is triggering emotion for me. I wonder if this is due to my having spent several yeas in 12 steps, group and individual counseling working on these childhood issues? Could it be that it is my present life that is holding me hostage in pain? It's been the past 4-5 years that I've had the SI, joint and digestive issues which correlates with my first-born turning 18 which was incredibly traumatic for me. Since then two more of our children have turned 18, graduated high school and struck out in the world, which has affected me deeply. I have so much guilt about my mothering. I am crying as I type this.... So I think I am onto something here.

    I considered the issues with my children to be present events, but now realize these happened in the past...just not the distant past.

    Also, on the question to ponder for day 5 I couldn't think of any activities that I use to do, or want to do but aren't doing. My favorite things to do are gourmet cooking, reading, taking courses, lunches with friends, traveling and spending time with my husband and our children. And I do these things regularly, well, other than the traveling which we do occasionally if and when finances allow. I use to do a lot of sewing and scrap-booking but have attempted these at various times over the years and no longer enjoy these activities. Maybe I need to think of new activities to tackle?

    Comments welcome...

    ~ N
     
  2. Livvygurl

    Livvygurl Well known member

    Hi Nadia,

    Sounds like you are in touch with your feelings and they seem to be more related to current issues. It is sometimes hard to figure out the exact feeling that is related to the pain, but you are really putting in the effort toward figuring it out. I believe this TMS business takes a lot of work! I just found out about TMS one week ago and have been doing my own research and reading alot about it. I have not ventured into the journaling yet. However, I am continually asking myself what I am feeling (on a deeper level), and have had some connecting moments where the pain becomes like a strange messenger working through the body. Also, I have found that meditation seems to help integrate this whole process rather well. I am inspired by the work you have done!

    Best,

    Livvy~
     
  3. veronica73

    veronica73 Well known member

    Hi Nadia,

    Maybe the particular past event you were writing about is something you've already done a lot of work on? It could be that your current issues are the main trigger right now. Even so, I think patterns from our past influence how we deal with present day events.

    That's great that you're doing so many things you enjoy! Keep it up! I think a lot of us had dropped many activities due to pain so that question in the program helps to think about what might be fun to do again. I was pretty active too despite pain, but some of the "activities" I had cut back on or eliminated were things like using my computer for long periods of time, sitting in certain chairs, etc. Now I'm back to being a world class couch potato ;)

    Thanks for sharing your TMS journey with us.

    :) Veronica
     
  4. Beach-Girl

    Beach-Girl Well known member

    Couch Potato. Right. ( I am going to use a smiley - note I rarely if ever do) ;)

    Nadia: I have the same thing going on. Current issues are so much harder than working on the past. Although I don't think I'm done with my past yet. Odd. But your life sounds like mine (except for kids) and I will write more on this soon.

    Keep up the good work with the program on the wiki. After I finished, I kept coming up with more issues that were traumatic and that I had "swept into a closet" somewhere along the line. Perhaps the 12 step program helped you with that, or you will find that there really are more issues. For instance, why does it make you so sad that your kids are grown? I watch friends go through the same thing, but you seem to be especially hurt by this.

    Is there something in your past that is causing you this sadness?

    BG
     
  5. nadia

    nadia Peer Supporter

    Friends, I had a lengthy response on the go and some how hit a key that took me back a screen and deleted everything! F.R.U.S.T.R.A.T.I.N.G! Lol! It is late and I need to get some sleep. I'll respond again tomorrow.

    Thank you all for you comments and insights.

    N
     
  6. yb44

    yb44 Well known member

    My children are 20 and 25. I can't say that my symptoms started when my elder child turned 18. They were pretty much there from the get go, along with the guilt. I so longed for the day that they would be independent of me because I found myself smothered under the weight of responsibility. That's a tough one for me to admit but there it is.

    Empty nest symdrome is well documented but for each person that experience is unique. I wonder what that 18th birthday meant for you.

    Great idea. I always have and still do enjoy all things sewist. You reminded me of a quote from a book, The World According to Garp. If my memory is correct I believe the author, John Irving, wrote "get obsessed and stay obsessed." He was referring to his character's introduction to wrestling. Substitute the word 'passionate' for 'obsessed' and you'll get the idea. Historically the women in my family have lived very long lives. As I am going to have lots and lots of time on my hands over the next few decades I figure I might as well put my time to good use doing things I enjoy, things that make me really happy. It will also keep pain at bay. I also have a history of osteoarthritis and osteoporosis in my family. One family member once said, "I will have a longer life in which to suffer." Well, I say, "Nix to that!!!!"
     
    Beach-Girl, JanAtheCPA and quasar731 like this.
  7. chumba

    chumba Peer Supporter

    Nadia, I have spent a huge amount of time working on past issues and I'm pretty sure that I'm at peace with them, although reading Anne's recent posts has got me wondering.

    One thing that I have realised from working through Monte Hueftle's master practice is that part of having TMS is that we develop some pretty screwed up thought processes that can lock us into pain. Dealing with our past will not free us if we keep our old thinking. After getting completely through TMS years ago, I'm back worse than ever and I can clearly see that some of my thought processes are a one way street to TMS symptoms
     
    quasar731 likes this.
  8. Beach-Girl

    Beach-Girl Well known member

    Right on Chumba!

    The same thing happened to me. My back went "out" for a year due to a stressful job. I took three weeks off and the pain went away. I started running and felt good. But then it happened again and this time (due to screwed up thinking) it hasn't really left yet. I see some progress, but I need to have the time to work more on this. I really liked Monte by the way - he's so enthusiastic it kind of wears off on you as you read his books.

    This is Nadia's thread, but I couldn't help but comment on Chumba's great observations.

    BG
     
  9. Beach-Girl

    Beach-Girl Well known member

    Right on Chumba!

    The same thing happened to me. My back went "out" for a year due to a stressful job. I took three weeks off and the pain went away. I started running and felt good. But then it happened again and this time (due to screwed up thinking) it hasn't really left yet. I see some progress, but I need to have the time to work more on this. I really liked Monte by the way - he's so enthusiastic it kind of wears off on you as you read his books.

    This is Nadia's thread, but I couldn't help but comment on Chumba's great observations.

    BG
     
  10. Lori

    Lori Well known member

    Hi Nadia. There are those professionals who say that anything (event, thought, etc.) that "disturbs our peace" is part of our curriculum. And that most current triggers are tied to past events that we have not resolved. Sometimes I found as I was writing about a current event, and making sure I was feeling (not just thinking) I was able to relate things to the past. Sometimes a very distant past, sometimes not so long ago.

    If you can relate the pain starting to when a certain event was going on (you mention your son turning 18) that would also be something to consider; the feelings behind the event that may have triggered an issue.

    Or it could indeed be that a certain past event has been resolved if no feelings come up. :)

    This is a process and takes as long as it takes, but it does have wonderful results. :D

    Hugs,

    Lori
     

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