I am not a literary maven, but I have to say that I love Anton Chekhov's short stories. Chekhov was an old-fashioned physician and a brilliant observer of human nature. I discovered him through a radio interview about a book where the author interviewed 125 of the best authors of our time and asked which books and authors spoke most powerfully to them. In this important list, Chekhov came out as the 8th most popular author of all time, and his book of short stories came out as the 9th most beloved book of all time. I love a good short story before bed, so I bought the book and have been amazed at how much insight the man could pack into an incredibly short story. A bio of Chekhov, is provided by the author of the book I described above: Recently, I was reminded of the following story when it was forwarded to me by a TMS therapist. I think that Dr. Chekhov drew on his intuition and experience as a doctor when he wrote it. It shows how incredibly powerful our intuition can be when it comes to recognizing mind-body illness and how much good an old-fashioned doctor with good bedside manner can do when it comes to recognizing PPD/TMS, especially when they don't have spurious MRIs to distract them. This also came up in the recent thread about the cases of mass hysteria in Le Roy NY. I think of TMS has having three tightly interwoven sources: childhood stress/trauma, current stress, and personality traits. What I like about this story is that not only does Chekhov get the mind-body connection, but he also begins to form a portrait of the TMS personality and how that personality can interact with the world to create stress and pain. I mentioned, above, how I see this story as a portrait of at least one type of TMS personality and how that personality can create internal tension. Do you see some of the same personality traits reflected in your own personal tension and pain? Or do you see the clerk's tension as arising more from his situation (current stress) rather than his personality? And, because this forum is about recovery, do you think that the clerk could have done anything to keep everything in perspective? Clearly, by finding a way to relate better to his fears and emotions, he could have saved his life. That's definitely a skill worth learning, for any of us!