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Lessons From Claire Weekes

Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by Eric "Herbie" Watson, Feb 22, 2014.

  1. tgirl

    tgirl Well known member

    The lessons from Claire Weekes make sense to me, but there is one statement that doesn't fit with my situation. She says not to worry because the symptoms are just temporary. The prickly sensations I experience aren't temporary. I don't really experience them when lying in bed at night, but i feel them almost constantly (to varying degrees) the remainder of the time.. Can anyone comment on this? So disheartening!! Also, I have been tested extensively and nothing can be found...
  2. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    Claire Weekes was specifically speaking about anxiety and panic where the horrible symptoms are temporary and intense but do pass. Pain and it's various manifestations such as prickles don't necessarily fit the same pattern as anxiety but the underlying mechanisms are the same so for the most part the advice Weekes gives, extrapolates well.

    TMS is a very individual thing so it is best to get good at tailoring generic advice to suit you and your situation. For me, the pain was a constant bleating, burning, unrelenting hurt that rolled on day and night so I empathise with what you say. I'd suggest focusing less on the details and more on her general thoughts which are excellent.

    If nothing can found, there is nothing to worry about.

    Plum x
    mike2014 likes this.
  3. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    What a lovely post. I really enjoy hearing about what works for people. It reminds me of how essential it is that we make healing our own.

    I especially appreciate your words on acceptance. This has been a big thing for me too, but more with a leaning towards accepting my situation rather than the pain. This said though, I did have a brief and awful run of fierce anxiety early last year with a flash or two recently, and I was able to abort it entirely by accepting the sensations and saying to myself this is just my nervous system...it will pass...and it did completely.

    Acceptance is more challenging when it comes to pain where I find I need to reach deeper into surrender. This helps me connect at a more soulful level to what is going on and what lies beneath it all. I agree that self compassion is of prime importance.

    Sometimes it only makes sense with hindsight but isn't much of life like that.

    Plum x
    mike2014 and AC45 like this.
  4. tgirl

    tgirl Well known member

    Thanks plum. Did your symptoms go away?
  5. Ferndale37

    Ferndale37 Peer Supporter

    Hi all, just listening to Claire weekes audios. im in an anxious situation regarding a relationship I'm in that I'm really not sure about. after listening to the audio my understanding is that this prolonged period of anxiety/uncertainty has caused me to have sensitised nerves, but as long as I'm no longer fearful of the feelings of sensitisation, im no longer suffering from nervous illness as I was when I was worrying about worrying. my anxiety is now situational. does that sound like iv understood it right?
  6. AC45

    AC45 Well known member

    You are correct about the sensitized nerves. She does believe that you can recover. It does take time though. Her big thing is acceptance. She wants you to stop what she calls the "second fear". This means that she does not want you be afraid of your anxiety. When you stop the fear, you weaken the anxiety cycle and eventually stop it all together. I found it really helpful to read the book as she provides a lot of examples.
  7. Ferndale37

    Ferndale37 Peer Supporter

    Thanks for the reply. since iv been writing some of my thoughts down, Iv noticed that they aren't all "what if" thoughts. a lot of them are self criticism and depressive thoughts all very negative, and quite entrenched. im certainly not severely depressed as im up and about, at work, at the gym, being a dad etc. but I just feel a bit flat and down with it all. can I treat the depressive thoughts the same as my anxiety thoughts? accept, float, let time pass etc
  8. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    I'm on the home run. My pain levels are down by 80-85% and I've enjoyed some virtually pain-free days lately (thank you god, thank you god, thank you god...).

    I've gone from brutal, relentless, mind-loosening neuralgia to being really ok. I'm not out of the woods yet but I'm ambling along the healing path and know for sure I'm going to make it. You will too sweetheart.

    mike2014 likes this.
  9. tgirl

    tgirl Well known member

    Plum, you give me hope, you really do. I didn't know you had suffered from nerve pain. Sorry to keep going back to your situation but did it start at a time of stress? I imagine you were seen by doctors as well?

    Is your incredible improvement due to an attitude change, a new belief...?

    I have to say mine went away twice in the past for very long periods of time, but this time it is stuck, so to speak.

    Thank you plum.
    plum likes this.
  10. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    Angel, I'm about to go swimming so shall reply to your post later, but yes there is much hope and better still, healing. xxx
  11. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    I've suffered with atypical trigeminal neuralgia for around 13 years. The first bout was attributed to tooth-grinding and I did the whole mouth guard thing. My life was super stressful at the time but rather than deal with the stress I sought out cures. As my life calmed down, so did my pain but I believed this was due to taking manuka honey. Honestly, I thought it had resolved an underlying infection or something. Ah well, we live and learn.

    I was totally pain free for a couple of years after this and then BAM, following a long and weird period of being really and desperately unwell, my hubby was diagnosed with Parkinson's. My pain came back with vengeance. Same old dental route prevailed for about five years, but at the latter end of this I discovered Sarno. This forum didn't exist so I relied on the books and the tmshelp forum, which although excellent in its own way really didn't help because the focus was on pure Sarno, i.e. Journaling and therapy and suchlike.

    Nothing was helping. I was getting worse and worse. This forum was created but sadly I was at the end of my rope and I decided I'd had it with the whole TMS business. I thought it bullshit and I took my leave. In hindsight this was the very best thing I could have done because I was tying myself up in knots of desperation. Now you have to appreciate that all this time I was not taking painkillers. I was balling it out. Back then the whole 'stop taking meds' aspect of Sarno was pretty strong. Screw this. I went back to the doctor and got both the diagnosis and the relief my tortured body was screaming for. I started on a very low dose of amiltryptaline which mainly served to help me sleep like a baby. And sleep it appeared, calmed my nerve.

    A little while after this, my hubby and I went to the coast to celebrate our anniversary. He was sleeping and the hotel room was too dark to read a book, so I opened my iPod and found a PDF of the first draft of David Hanscom's book. I flicked through and was astonished and delighted to read that one of the first things he did with his pain patients, was to get them sleeping properly. This was fully corroborated by my own experience. I read about his thoughts on how the nervous system became over-sensitised and a light bulb turned on in my brain.

    For a long time I focused only on sleeping. No more overwhelming myself with information or god help me, trying to heal. I realised how insanely I had been pushing and pushing for a cure. I had generated HUGE amounts of tension and stress in doing so. Then I turned my attention to replenishing my poor body which had been battered by all the stress. I started to follow the Weston Price dietary protocol because I was scared that my teeth would be adversely affected. At this point eating, drinking, brushing my teeth, wearing make-up...all were seriously compromised because they took my pain from 10/10 to off the scale. The thought of interdental cleaning induced a paroxysm of terror. I was probably completely insane at this point.

    So sleeping helped a lot. I did begin to feel better. My pain levels dropped from off the ceiling, at least in the mornings. Come early evening they were veering into awful again, and by nightfall I was once again demented. But we have to live.

    My overall health was improving. The deeply nutritious diet affected a dramatic change on how I felt and looked, and I was sleeping very well. Then one day my boy and I decided to start swimming thinking that water therapy would be great for his Parkinson's racked body. This is where my healing galvanised. Turns out that my body and mind just adore the water. I used to swim as a kid and had forgotten how much I loved it. I also loved the jacuzzi and hot tub. As the weeks passed by, my body began to uncoil. It realeased tons of tension. My pain started to go away.

    All was good for a while. And then I was sexually assaulted at the baths and the actual experience, combined with the legal process (I prosecuted the bastard), caused the perfect TMS storm. There were long periods when I couldn't swim or if I did, the gossip about the incident left me feeling pretty disturbed (no one knew it was me so they had free-reign). Putting this dreadful experience aside, I was able to see quite clearly how TMS operated in my life. I came back to the forum, and thank the gods, a sea-change had prevailed and a more wide-ranging healing philosophy was held. Through helping others, I helped myself.

    All is water under the bridge now. I am swimming regularly (and safely. He was found guilty and amongst other things, I have an indefinate restraining order against him). The whole ugly episode meant I did a lot of inner work. Interestingly, I have found that releasing all the tension from my body enabled me to return to more emotional and psychological based healing with greater results and insights. This ties in well with David Hanscom's protocol in terms of soothing the nervous system before you do anything else. I am also incredibly aware of how emotions feel in my body. I am alive to the physiology of emotion and allow myself to feel it. I no longer cringe from it, or try to push it down, or over-intellectualise it. I let it be what it is. I suppose this is why my lengthy response is germane on a post about Claire Weekes. Healing is not about accepting your pain but rather about accepting how your emotions feel as physiological concomitants to thoughts and cognitions. I believe the repression occurs at the point at which we deny how our body feels. We don't like how anxiety feels so we run from it. We don't like how anger feels so we fight it. And some of us don't like how pleasure feels (Guilt? Shame?) so we stuff it down. And on and on.

    The biggest error we all make in our healing is to over-analyse our emotions rather than simply feel them. The reams of journaling, the endless chronicles of pain displayed in endless posts, the dissection of our personality, the blaming and scapegoating...all are second darts. All are intellectualisations. Make no mistake, they are fine ways of building pathways back to wholeness and healing but they are not the root.

    The root is to be able to feel how you feel, to surf the waves of emotion without judgement, to feel ALL emotions and not privilege one over another. You don't need to seek them out. They come unbidden. You simply need to feel them in the moment they live and surge through your body. The more you do this, the keener your ability to differentiate between emotions gets and the better able you become at integrating all emotions into the full repertoire of what it means to be human.

    Wow. That was a freakin' long response. I didn't expect that, but it was a stream-of-consciousness that I was helpless to stop. I hope it helps you and others glean some insights into your way back to yourself and to a life without pain.

    With blessings and love,

    Plum x
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2016
  12. tgirl

    tgirl Well known member

    Plum, thank you so much for your response. I think I will reread this one several times.

    I am happy to hear you are significantly better.

    Here's to our good health, both body and mind!
    plum likes this.
  13. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    You are more than welcome. I've learned a tremendous amount from reading other people's experiences of both struggling and healing, and if my words can help even one person find their way out of darkness then I am content. Mostly though, tms wisdom seems osmotic, so the reading of success stories pays huge dividends in the end.

    I pray you find the peace and relief you seek, and beyond that I wish you much health and happiness.

    Plum x
    tgirl likes this.
  14. Ellen

    Ellen Beloved Grand Eagle

    Thanks so much, Plum, for sharing your story with us. May I suggest that you post it on your profile so that all Forum members can read it when they are interested in knowing your own experience with TMS.

    You have been through a great deal, and your courage and persistence in your recovery journey are inspirational to us all. I'm so glad to hear of your success in healing.
    plum likes this.
  15. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    Ellen, thank you so much my dear. Your ongoing support has been invaluable. I love your suggestion regarding 'my story'. I may make a couple of amendments first and then do just that.

    Bless you xx
  16. mike2014

    mike2014 Beloved Grand Eagle

    Another wonderful jewel of wisdom, Plum. Thank you so much for sharing your story. It will definitely be one of my go to post when I need clarity and inspiration.

    We are all very lucky to have you on board, not only are you a mind body almanac of information :), but a wonderful person with it. Thank you dearly for being such caring friend.
    Eric "Herbie" Watson and plum like this.
  17. Avy

    Avy New Member

    I just made a quick glance on this topic because I'm waiting for my Claire Weekes book to arrive for helping me deal with the anxiety. Plum your story is so inspiring and I will never forget your comforting response to my thread when I was feeling really sick and lost. I'm so happy to hear that you are doing much better. You give me so much hope that no matter how many ups and downs we can have, with patience and persistence we can get to the light at the end of the tunnel.
  18. MWsunin12

    MWsunin12 Beloved Grand Eagle

    Plum, This is SO significant. I hope everyone on this forum reads this one.
  19. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    We helped each other Avy. I hope you're doing well and I send you much love. xx
    Eric "Herbie" Watson likes this.
  20. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    I truly believe this is the wild beating heart of healing and wholeness. Not perfection but authenticity.

    God Bless You. x
    Eric "Herbie" Watson, Abbo and Ellen like this.

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