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“Threw my back out, really scared”

Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by NYCfamilyguy, May 18, 2019.

  1. NYCfamilyguy

    NYCfamilyguy New Member

    hello all,
    I am 43 and have episodes of throwing my back out for years. I read sarno’s books and went for about 2 years without throwing my back out. I have also been doing heavy weight
    lifting with no problem. About 1 week ago, my back started getting tight. I would push through it with some exercises and it never got really bad-just stiff. So today my wife is having a bunch of people over and even with a stiff back (si joint/lumbar area) I decided to do some weeding. I pulled a bit crooked and felt a little “tweak” by my si joint/spine. I stood up expecting pain, walked about 20 feet and started to panic. I felt the muscles spasming. I went inside and then I couldn’t stand. I lied down-no pain lying. I continued to catastrophize and get upset. I have been lying down being panicky and anxious for 4 hours now wondering how badly I hurt myself and how bad it is going to get. I really can’t even stand up anymore. I know that the catastrophizing and anxiety is making it worse but I am having trouble stopping. I hope this is TMS and an overreaction but doubt abounds. Any reassurances would be a great help. Thank you.
     
    Last edited: May 18, 2019
  2. Anne Walker

    Anne Walker Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi. Sounds like you have good awareness of what you are doing to yourself. This may be a really good time to take a step back, reassure yourself, and just rest. You do not have to fix this today. Managing your TMS is not always about pushing through. Weeding can be a strenuous activity if you don’t do it on a regular basis. You may have overdone it a bit and your TMS tendencies are escalating things. You are going to be fine. And then when you are feeling a little better, take some time for journaling and reflection. What sort of pressures and expectations have you been putting on yourself recently? What else is going on?
     
  3. NYCfamilyguy

    NYCfamilyguy New Member

    Thank you so much. I wish just knowing would make it magically go away. I’ve said “Sarno” so many times over the past week but I didn’t do anything for myself emotionally. I guess this morning, my back found it’s way to really get my attention. I’m still a bit upset, but your reassurance helps a lot.
     
  4. healingfromchronicpain

    healingfromchronicpain Well known member

    A few weeks ago my back went out for the first time in about 4 years. My “usual” pain is lingering but manageable neck pain that I haven’t been able to fully get rid of over the last 14 years. But a couple times my back has randomly gone out. This time when it happened I literally just stood up from the bed after I was resting my neck. I didn’t even twist or anything. But I had been lying down slightly cockeyed.

    I was in really bad pain all day. Could hardly breath because of the pain. Every breath in was terrible. It was intense pain no matter what I did, sit, lie, stand. But somehow I just didn’t panic or overreact. I just lay down pretty much all day. I didn’t sleep well because the pain was so bad. But I never felt like it was anything permanent or something that wouldn’t eventually go away. I didn’t actively try to think about anything to try to make it go away or analyze anything. I just rested and waited, without any idea of how long it would take (I’m on disability because of my neck, so I guess I know I can always rest as long as necessary). So I guess I wasn’t stressed out about having to get better immediately.

    Then the next day I was 95% better. By that night I was pretty much back to my normal (moderate neck pain), but that acute spike in back pain was gone.

    It’s amazing to me that it was so bad and the knot in such complete spasm and then was gone a day later!

    So all I can suggest is know that you’ll be fine. Nothing is broken. It will subside.

    Best of luck!!
     
  5. Anne Walker

    Anne Walker Beloved Grand Eagle

    Great news!! Glad you are feeling better. We can spend a lot of time thinking “what If this is something bad and doesn’t go away or gets worse.” It’s just fear talking and does not help anything.
     
  6. NYCfamilyguy

    NYCfamilyguy New Member

    Thank you both for your replies. I still have some pain but went from stuck in bed, panicking on the first day to becoming more mobile each day and have been walking around the house the past two days without any assistance (no cane, etc). I really let my stress levels get out of hand before this ( to the point that I was envious of people who have a psychologist to speak with regularly). It’s crazy how TMS works. I regularly deadlift 275 lbs while lifting weights, but when my brain was in a bad place, I “threw it out” pulling a weed slightly twisted. Now that I know it’s TMS, I still have some pain because I catch myself being afraid of it sometimes and of course my subconscious still has some learning to do. It’s great to have this forum as a resource. Thanks again.

    I just wanted to edit this reply to show how crazy TMS is and how it feels so real but is caused by the mind. Going on a vacation with my family is a somewhat stressful event as I have mild agoraphobia and two small kids who can make them less than relaxing. Also, my wife and I were having a bunch of people over for a BBQ and there was a lot of prep involved, plus mild social anxiety. As Anne suggested, I have been reflecting on what’s been going on lately. Here is the timeline.
    No significant back issues for 2 years
    5/9/19- put down deposit on a vacation for early June
    5/10/19- my back got mysteriously stiff and cramped while exercising (not bad)
    5/11-5/17- stiffness in low back and slight pain on right lumbar just wouldn’t go away
    5/17 evening- back got even tighter
    5/18 morning(day of bbq)- “threw out my back pulling a weed”

    I just wish my subconscious saw it that clearly
     
    Last edited: May 21, 2019
  7. healingfromchronicpain

    healingfromchronicpain Well known member

    “I just wish my subconscious saw it that clearly“

    I hear ya!!!
    These crazy minds of ours!! :)
    Glad you’re feeling better.
     

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