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The rhythm of days/weeks and TMS

Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by veronica73, Apr 2, 2012.

  1. veronica73

    veronica73 Well known member

    I've been noticing how my TMS symptoms (these days more anxiety than pain) seem to follow a pretty set pattern each day--I feel more anxious in the morning, settling down a little after lunch, feel pretty good in the evening and then it kind of starts all over the next day.

    I notice something similar with different days in the week--Sunday, some anxiety, Monday AM UG!!, better as the week goes on, really good Thursday and Friday, Saturday can go either way.

    I think this is pretty much tied in with my expectations of what I "have to" get done at various times/days. The up and down is getting kind of tiring though!

    Anyone else experience this? Did you feel like eventually things "evened out" for you?
     
  2. sewmuch

    sewmuch Member

    Everyone has natural rhythms, TMS or not. Times when we are more alert, energetic, introspective, left or right brained. In my case, mornings are usually my lowest in the cycle as I have never been a morning person. I also thought about why and it seemed that morning meant the whole day ahead - which when my "shadow" talks to me means more things to do (or not to do in the times when I do not have client work) and it meant more pain or idleness when I was having pain. However, once I started noticing these patterns and times and the triggers, things levelled out.

    Next I pulled out my trusty notebook with affirmations and did some reading, particularly first thing in the morning to set the tone for the day. I got it out - and often still do - at lunch or at a time when I felt like I needed that redirection and refocus. Amazing what 5 minutes of quiet, breathing, feeling grateful, and release of unproductive thoughts or tension can do.

    I still work at it almost daily - so type A personality - but anything takes practice. The other main thing that has been immensely helpful that I mentioned to Honeybear's post is forgiveness to one's self and taking it easy on oneself. We are all so very hard on ourselves, our expectations, reliving every action, word that we or someone else did not do right out timelines for getting better, and/or worrying about the future (my biggest obstacle) etc etc. Although it sounds oxymoronic, I work at letting things go, letting the natural course unfold in its time, and being present. (Reminder to self today - ha!) The writings of Thich Nhat Hanh have been so wonderful for me and have helped me to be in the moment, appreciate simplicity, and bring joy back to my life.
     
    Beach-Girl likes this.
  3. veronica73

    veronica73 Well known member

    I think that is mostly why morning is tough for me. I had been journaling for a while in the morning and that was good and I think I stopped a few weeks ago with daylight savings time--it was hard to get up with it being that dark. But I like the idea of going back to that.

    I love Thich Nhat Hanh :)
     
  4. sewmuch

    sewmuch Member

    One other thing that helps me. Sounds cliche and simple but doing things for others brings a lot of light to my day. Whether it be opening a door and exchanging pleasantries and a smile or a volunteering project or helping a neighbor carry in packages. It helps me to connect with others and other energy.

    Finally, I also like to have special time just for me. Whether that be some time during the day or week - works great to make a date for yourself - having some time just for me, undistracted, undisturbed to do something (for me it is sewing, painting or walking in my neighborhood by the river), or do nothing at all, is great and recharges my batteries.
     
  5. Forest

    Forest Forum Administrator

    I have always felt that a clear sign of TMS is when symptoms fluctuate. It sounds like with you, the more stress you have going on the more pain you have. Try using your symptoms a signal to examine your emotions. Actually, one of the contributions to the Thank You, Dr. Sarno project actually said that they think of pain as a "canary in a mine shaft" that simply signals them to investigate their emotions. Not only does this help address our symptoms, but it can also help reduce fear of symptoms. If we think of the pain as simply a signal, then we do not need to worry about it. Instead we need to simply ask ourselves, "What am I feeling right now."
     
    veronica73 likes this.
  6. honeybear424

    honeybear424 Well known member

    I am so new to this TMS that I haven't had any "evening out" as of yet. Can't wait to be able to say differently, but I do notice that stress exacerbates my symptoms....and sometimes it isn't until AFTER the stressor is gone (if that makes any sense at all). We were doing some major work on our home recently and I felt fine during that time, but after the fact, started feeling worse. Also, I am thinking that part of why I have been feeling so badly for the past month is because my husband had been working out of town during the week and coming home on weekends (this went on for 5 weeks). I didn't feel bad for the first week, but it's like it caught up with me. Glad that it is over with, but now I am stuck in a bad cycle.

    Does anyone have any good recommendations for books by Thich Nhat Hanh. I am doing an Amazon order for the You Can Heal Your Life movie and want to get free shipping. :)
     
  7. sewmuch

    sewmuch Member

    Check out Amazon - he has written many books so it might be helpful to look at the excerpts and comments to decide which you would like to read. There are also a lot of articles, interviews, quotes etc on the internet.
     
  8. veronica73

    veronica73 Well known member

    Yes, that happens to me too. I think while the actual stressor is going on it's sometimes enough of a distraction from feelings and when the stressor itself goes away, pain becomes the new distraction. I'm not having much pain anymore, it's kind of morphed into anxiety that comes and goes.

    I like "Peace Is Every Step" by Thich Nhat Hahn too. I read it along time ago but a few things from it stayed with me.
     
  9. BruceMC

    BruceMC Beloved Grand Eagle

    My TMS has always followed a daily cycle where when I get up in the morning it's not there and it gradually increases throughout the day until it begins to go down in the evening. When I first get up, my SI is fine. When I start getting dressed I hear a click and that seems to initiate the pain cycle. The less clicking and the more strength I have on the left side in the morning, the less pain throughout the day. And, yes, over the past 3 years I've been getting more and more durable, stronger with less symptoms and pain. I only wish it would speed up! And, yes, the sciatica and lower back pain do travel around like a psychogenic symptom typically does. Lately, though, it's shown up in my quad rather than in the lower lumbar region, which wouldn't make any sense if it was due to my old herniated disk between L3-L4 (if there ever really was one?). I notice too that as the pain level rises throughout the course of the day, my internal dialog and mental gossip go up in parallel, which probably shows how much anxiety is behind the pain syndrome. Odd, that a good stiff road bike ride seems to get rid of it too. After spinning hard all afternoon, there'll be no sciatica or lower lumbar pain and the strength will be back in my left leg when I climb stairs. Maybe the increased circulation eliminates the oxygen debt that Dr. Sarno suspects is the root cause of TMS in the nerves, muscles, and tendons? Or maybe the rigorous activity and paying attention to the road distracts me from the mental process that initiates TMS? Dunno. But, yes, Veronica, my pain patterns like your own follow a typical programmed cycle. Seems as though I need to break that cycle by doing different things at different times instead of falling into a rut that only perpetuates the TMS. Also, noticed a couple of weeks ago that when I had a bad chest cold the TMS symptoms almost disappeared, another sign of the presence of an "Invisible Gorilla" in the room!
     
  10. veronica73

    veronica73 Well known member

    MorComm, something you said reminded me of this: In one of Claire Weekes' talks about anxiety she mentions sometimes making a small change like moving your bed can even help create a shift out of an old pattern.
     
  11. BruceMC

    BruceMC Beloved Grand Eagle

    Very true indeed, Veronica. When I painted my parents' master bedroom in this old house and converted it into my WWII library and armor museum, I noticed with each paint stroke an improvement in my TMS symptoms and strength levels in my left leg. Also, two years ago when I sold my father's old 79 Buick and bought a 2000 BMW Z3 on the Web at a huge savings and moved the little Bimmer into my own slot in the garage, I noticed a slow steady improvement. Conditioning and symbolism, pure and simple. In my mind, my parents were still "here" giving me orders and threatening me until I made some fundamental changes in my symbolic-physical environment; kicked them out of my mind. Just being aware of things like that is an important first step in become pain-free I think. Shake it up & Break those programmed patterns in your body-mind! I'm gonna go take a bike ride right now and assert my independence from the painful past. Initiative is I think the key.
     
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