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Almost 8 years and finally an answer

Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by andie989, Jan 19, 2015.

  1. andie989

    andie989 New Member


    My name's Andie, I'm 23, I'm a fifth (and final) year college student and part time reporter. I've dealt with pain since about age 16. December is when I learned it is TMS, and I cried and cried as I learned that I am not crazy and it is not in my head. My appointment with Dr. Howard Schubiner (Unlearn Your Pain author -- I'm from Michigan) was eye-opening and I broke down a few times throughout the 2.5 hours with him just because everything he said made perfect sense. I could finally stop searching after years and years of medications, pain injections, physical therapy and surgery, all of which brought on anxiety and depression that I am still fighting. He put all the pieces of the puzzle together for me.

    TMS for me started with headaches and migraines. Then soon after I developed severe pelvic pain (and broke my right pubic ramus because of it). Then started the pain injections, bone scans, meds etc. etc... I carried a donut cushion around my senior year of high school and was excused to stand up and walk around whenever I wanted or lay with a heating pad in a special room because sitting was so excruciating. I went to physical therapy and had internal therapy to loosen the muscles, which helped but wasn't a cure. Somewhere in there I also developed chronic constipation and motion sickness. Pain was manageable after PT. The pain came back full force my junior year of college and I actually took the semester off and sunk into a deep depression. I had a laparoscopy surgery that fall and nothing was found. I had MRIs, took meds, etc. etc. (I'm sure you guys know the drill with all of this). Then anxiety kicked into high gear. One day when my dad was in the hospital I began sobbing because my hands started hurting terribly. I know everyone thought I was crazy but I knew it was real. Pain then spread to my arms and legs and I'm still fighting it.

    The journey is not over, though, now that I know what the cause of all these problems is. That's why I am so so glad to see that there is support out there. I've read tons of success stories in Unlearn Your Pain and read to the part right before Day 1 of 28 starts to reprogram the brain...

    I want to do it so bad but something is scaring me and I'm not sure what. The idea of bringing to the surface all of the life events/personality traits that have caused and continue to cause my pain is so hard for me. Almost 8 years ago my grandfather committed suicide, and that is when my issues started. I know that now because of Dr. Schubiner. That is the main issue, and they branch out from there. He said a lot of it for me is my desire to be perfect, worrying all the time, caring what others think of me, etc., and I know I'm not the only one. I always have pain, it just fluctuates based on life events.

    But I need to go through with this. I WANT to. I just need more courage, I think. Now from family I am dealing with the fact that I have relief "but choose not to go through with it." It's not that I don't want to — I do with my whole heart. But it's so much more complicated than that.

    I'm just wondering if this makes sense to anyone out there and if they could give me advice for going through with the book, which is a lot of journaling and "talking" to people who have caused me these issues. I want to get better. This pain/motion sickness/anxiety has basically robbed me of 8 years of life and I am done with it. I have had suicidal thoughts on a few occasions and am currently battling depression, but I know I am stronger than that. The fact that this forum exists makes me so happy. I have a lot of support in life, but to communicate with people who actually know what I'm going through and/or are going through the same thing will be helpful.
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2015
    Dahlia and Forest like this.
  2. Ryan

    Ryan Well known member


    Welcome aboard the tms wiki, you have come to the right place. Your story is awesome and it's great that you got to see a tms doctor. That will help your confidence in the diagnosis.

    It's seems you are a pretty open person by how real you were with your posts. There is a lot of courage in that posts so don't doubt yourself. Take your time and when your ready to dive in go for it, trust your own instincts.

    Once you know the truth you will be set free. Dont be scared everything will be ok, maybe you should try to find a tms therapists in your area? Wishing you the best of luck, you are in for an amazing ride, enjoy it, you will be forever changed.

  3. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi, Andie. Ryan gives you great advice. You've gone through a lot and have discovered TMS. Don't think you have lost 8 years to pain.
    It took its time but led you to learn about TMS repressed emotions and a perfectionist-"goodist" personality that is causing your pain.
    You also are very fortunate to have had a session with Dr. Schubiner, one of the staunchest healers of TMS.

    You really have come to the right place for help in healing. Keep working on the Structured Educational Program and practice
    deep breathing, living in the present and not the past or future, and do the journaling to discover the emotions that cause your pain.

    You say the pain began after your grandfather committed suicide. Maybe you need to think back on your emotions at that time.
    Our TMS repressed emotions usually go back to our youth.

    You are undertaking a wonderful journey into self-discovery. It will lead you a happier and healthier life than you ever imagined.
  4. Ellen

    Ellen Beloved Grand Eagle


    Welcome to the Forum! We are glad to have you join us.

    Thanks for sharing your story with us. I understand that beginning this healing journey can seem overwhelming. However, the key is to take it just one day at a time. That is the beauty of having a structured program that gives you clear direction on what to do each day. Dr. Schubiner's program is excellent. Just do what each day calls for, for about an hour a day, and do no more. Put it aside when done, and just go out and live your life. Just be very good to yourself as you uncover these emotions. If you feel it is too much, you may benefit from working with a TMS therapist. There is a list of practitioners on this site and many do sessions by Skype.If you get discouraged read a few Success Stories on this site or on Amazon under Dr. Sarno's books.

    Keep us posted on how you're doing. We are here to support you. You are embarking on a wonderful journey that will lead you to a pain free future.
  5. Bill S.

    Bill S. New Member

  6. Bill S.

    Bill S. New Member

    Andie--I learned of TMS two weeks ago and just joined TMSwiki. Just go Dr. Schubiner's book in the mail and barely cracked the cover and watched a couple of his videos. Wish I was in Michigan to meet with him, so you're off to a good start. Courage is the right word, I'm right there with you, 40 years of back pain. Keep the faith!
    andie989 likes this.
  7. Tennis Tom

    Tennis Tom Beloved Grand Eagle

    Depression is an AFFECTIVE (emotional) form of TMS. It serves the same purpose as the myriad of other TMS symptoms, that is distraction from dealing with emotions, a defense mechanism. Once you understand this it makes it easier to accept and deal with.

  8. Andy Bayliss

    Andy Bayliss TMS Coach & Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi andie, and welcome,
    There is such a tenderness and beauty in your post. Others have answered in wonderful ways.

    To me, what you are expressing is a fear and a vulnerability about experiencing ( even more) some very difficult emotions. That really touches my heart, brings me into my own vulnerability, fear, and softness. I want to say it is OK to be hesitant. Treat yourself gently. Investigate your emotions with attunement and compassion at a pace that works for you. This will build something powerful in you: self-compassion. Forget your family in this regard. This is just your inner critic piling on. Move into your TMS work with confidence and gentleness.

    You can apply your awareness of your fear to the TMS cure: You are aware that parts of you are very afraid of experiencing your powerful emotions. So there is pain, as a distraction from these difficult feelings. Period. In my experience, your awareness of this relationship between inner pain and fear, and physical pain--is enough to begin to unravel the symptoms. You're simply building a true picture of the source of your pain. Then it can't continue. Dr. Sarno himself said that you can never really feel the full depth of the emotions that are causing the pain. You just become aware that they are there.

    Bill S. and Ellen like this.
  9. andie989

    andie989 New Member

    You guys are so helpful. Thank you! Hearing all this advice is great, and I'm now even more aware with what's going on with me and what I need to do. I never thought about depression being a form of TMS, but that makes perfect sense. I've learned that being open and honest is the best way to be, so when this bout of depression began I told everyone close to me so they would fill me with love and motivation. It's working and I feel more powerful by the day. These past few days have been eye opening for me. Getting rid of pain is opening a world of doors for me, although I know I have a long way to go. No more sleeping all day, though. I'm gaining interest in new things like I never have before.

    I'm curious about TMS therapists and would like to look into that further. I'm glad Dr. Schubiner was close enough to consult with in person! But I never knew there are people who can help via Skype. I'd love to see Dr. Schubiner one more time, but my doctor refuses to give me another referral (and told me the first one was an accident). It had me down for a while, but I just have to keep reminding myself that I am not alone in this and never will be!

    Looking back on when my grandfather took his own life will be my first step. It's a big step. It still amazes me how Dr. Schubiner pieced together my life and symptoms like he did. I'd read about it in Unlearn Your Pain and thought, "this can't be me ..." but it was. It's so unbelievable to me. And the most frustrating part used to be that I felt alone in my struggles, but now I have all of you and I have resources I never knew about before. The feeling it gives me is indescribable.

    The fact that you use "tenderness," "courage" and "beauty" to describe my story makes me very emotional. If there's anything I've learned on this journey (that has just begun), it is that I can't and won't hide anymore from what I've gone through and how much my life can transform if I allow it through this whole process.

    Thank you from the bottom of my heart. I look forward to getting to know you all and appreciate the guidance.

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