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Becoming my mother…NOT

Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by North Star, Jan 8, 2015.

  1. North Star

    North Star Beloved Grand Eagle

    I am growing so weary of this TMS stuff. It occurred to me that some of my aches and pains were likely conditioned by years of watching my mom struggle with her aches and pains. (Mom was a gold medalist in the TMS Olympics.) Specifically, getting out of a chair (which was usually accompanied by comments about the woes of aging).

    I work out nearly everyday and yet when I rise from sitting, I feel like a hobbled old woman. I see my mom. Hear her voice.

    Anyone overcome this sort of nonsense?
    donavanf likes this.
  2. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    I think if we're around elderly people who verbalize their aches and pains it tends to resonate inside us and we feel we either have or will have the same pain. My parents didn't do that, but others I knew did. I think they want sympathy.

    I will be 85 in June and when I get up from a chair, especially the recliner I sit in while watching TV in the evening, I feel like I need a crane to help lift me out. But I get up and start moving and feel better. I tell myself I'm not old and that any back or other ache is what Dr. Sarno says:
    "Gray hairs of the spine."

    If you're over 12, you have to expect that you are not going to feel as great as you did when you were 11.

    I wish I felt 83 again, but thank God I am still up and around. I drove to three malls this morning and did my grocery shopping.
    It was zero cold and there was ice on the ground. I keep telling myself not to go out if it's icy, I might fall.
    But I was extra cautious and used my cane for safety. I don't consider it a cane but a "walking stick," which makes me feel better about using it.

    It's all in the mind, isn't it? haha

    Have a great new year, North Star. Don't be weary of TMS. I keep thanking the Lord that I got TMS because I've learned so much
    about myself and others.
  3. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    North Star, I do think we can spend too much time thinking about TMS.
    It makes us think about our pain, maybe more than what caused it...
    repressed emotions maybe going back to childhood,
    and/or a perfectionist or "goodist" personality.

    I take lots of distraction breaks to take my mind off of it all.
    donavanf, yb44, Forest and 1 other person like this.
  4. North Star

    North Star Beloved Grand Eagle

    Walt you are the crown jewel of this forum…..muah! Thank you for your sweet encouragement. Overall, I am grateful for what I've learned from TMS…I just tire of feeling like I'm doing all that I can do….and I'm still gimping around. But you're right - excessive thinking about it is NOT helpful.

    I often remember your words to watch funny movies and laugh every day. I know I need to do that more.

    Thank you so much, dear friend…I love you!
    donavanf and Forest like this.
  5. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    North Star, you warm my heart on a cold sub-zero day.

    I know you know what I suggested. I just thought it might also help others.

    It's hard to find funny movies today, so I mainly watch those from 1930s-1950s.
    YouTube has lots of them, and they're free. Look up a favorite star like Carole Lombard
    or Ginger Rogers and it lists what full-length movies they have.

    If you can only watch YouTube on your computer or a handheld device,
    google for Highsense and see the gizmo that lets you watch it on a tv anywhere for about $50.
    I use it to watch YouTube and Netflix Streaming on my living room big screen tv.

    I am a great believer in distractions to take my mind off pain or aging.

    I love you, too. Your replies to posts are wonderful and inspirational.
    donavanf and Anne Walker like this.
  6. Mala

    Mala Well known member

    Hey NS I wouldnt worry too much about a few aches & pain & some stiffness here & there. You mentioned that u have been working out every day. Do u think that may be why you are feeling this way?

    Also maybe some ppl are more prone to body stiffness than others but once they get going, they r fine. My husband who does not have a single TMS bone in his body makes a lot of groaning noises when he gets out of bed in the morning & when he tries to get into my car which is very low but then is completely fine afterwards whereas I have pain in parts of my body nearly all day but no stiffness & can jump out of bed easily.

    Heck the fact that u r working out everyday is wonderful.

    Also have u tried drinking more water? My husband hardly touches the stuff whereas I drink around 2 - 2.5 litres everyday. I really think that helps.

    I think Walts advice on not over thinking it is spot on & I do think u are doing marvellously & are a great source of inspiration for all of us here. :)

    Last edited: Jan 8, 2015
    donavanf, yb44 and North Star like this.
  7. North Star

    North Star Beloved Grand Eagle

    Walt, I did head over to Youtube and WHOA!!! What a bonanza! Old time classics galore. But I had to chuckle over a few things. The first movie I pulled up - a Cary Grant/Irene Dunn comedy, was about a young couple divorcing. The next one I looked at was a Jimmy Stewart and a music store and a feud and….a beautiful girl, Molly.

    One of my current stressors is the fact that my beautiful, darling baby girl…is getting a divorce not even one year after the wedding. Short version - We URGED them to wait because we could see how this was going to play out and indeed, it has. They were both too young and immature. So anyway. I may have to look for another one. ;) And btw - I will look for that highsense device. I can connect my mac to the tv but if this other thing would be easier, I'm all over it.

    Mala, you are such a sweetheart. Yeah, some of the stiffness is from weight lifting, etc. The issue is…it rarely goes away. I have constant stiffness and pain deep in my hips. And I'm a huge water drinker like you. I'm pretty sure it's TMS. And shit, with the on-going drama my kids give me…is it any wonder?

    Anyway, thank you to you both for your encouraging replies. Love to you both!

    PS Walt…it's shirt sleeve weather here in AZ. Come visit me. We can watch old movies together and Daisy and Annie can play. (Cary Grant is one of my favorites.) PS Deanna Durbin is always a delight too…man, could she sing!
  8. Ellen

    Ellen Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi NS,

    I was reading an article on how exercise keeps us young, and I found that there is a common test done to test how fast a person can get up out of a chair, walk a ways, and get back. I thought it was kind of interesting, so thought I'd share it. See below:

    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    The Timed Up and Go test (TUG) is a simple test used to assess a person's mobility and requires both static and dynamic balance.[1]

    It uses the time that a person takes to rise from a chair, walk three metres, turn around, walk back to the chair, and sit down. During the test, the person is expected to wear their regular footwear and use any mobility aids that they would normally require.[2] The TUG is used frequently in the elderly population, as it is easy to administer and can generally be completed by most older adults.[3]

    One source suggests that scores of ten seconds or less indicate normal mobility, 11 – 20 seconds are within normal limits for frail elderly and disabled patients, and greater than 20 seconds means the person needs assistance outside and indicates further examination and intervention. A score of 30 seconds or more suggests that the person may be prone to falls.[4][5] Alternatively, a recommended practical cut-off value for the TUG to indicate normal versus below normal performance is 12 seconds.[6] A study by Bischoff et al. showed the 10th to 90th percentiles for TUG performance were 6.0 to 11.2 seconds for community-dwelling women between 65 and 85 years of age, and determined that this population should be able to perform the TUG in 12 seconds or less.[6] TUG performance has been found to decrease significantly with mobility impairments. Residential status and physical mobility status have been determined to be significant predictors of TUG performance.[6] The TUG was developed from a more comprehensive test, the Get-Up and Go Test.[7]

    Anyway, you are not your mother because you have an important tool that I doubt she has--awareness. But I have the same worries at times when I see myself doing or saying things my parents did.
    North Star and Dahlia like this.
  9. yb44

    yb44 Beloved Grand Eagle

    Not yet but I sure can relate. It wasn't only watching my elders struggling to get out of chairs and cars but hearing them tell me, 'this is what's going to happen to you when you get older because it runs in the family' that left a negative impression. I do note on my virtual evidence sheet though that there are times when I get up from a seated position with no problem at all.

    TMS has decided to land in my knee recently and I'm fine with most activities but stairs are a challenge. I keep thinking that I am holding people up so I let them pass me. I still try and stay lighthearted about it all a la Walt. Here's a clip that reminds me of me and my elders.

    donavanf and Ellen like this.
  10. North Star

    North Star Beloved Grand Eagle

    Ellen, I am happy to note that I could pass the TUG test. LOL And yes…mom did have an understanding of stress on her health but the the full impact, I think not.

    Yb44, OMG, I can so related to Mr. Bean..and the old lady. I've been in both positions. But it reminds me of one of my pet peeves - getting behind slow shoppers in skinny store aisles. One of the lines my mom would often say was, "honey, don't get old." But I think of my dear sister who passed when she was only 26 - she never had a chance to get old.
  11. donavanf

    donavanf Well known member

    North Star, I won't go into great detail here, you can read more about it on my profile page, but I believe my young experiences with my mother (who had Lupus, Arthritis and many other health maladies, before she died of lung cancer from chain smoking) really "anchored" my TMS. From a young age, I saw my mother (the bravest nervous wreck you could ever imagine) struggle with constant pain. She groaned and gritted her teeth constantly and she also had a terrible "exaggerated startle response". If you came up behind her, and scared her (or even entered her room without proper knocking) she would jump out of her skin like she'd been plugged into an electric socket. Despite her having enough neurosis to give Freud apoplexy and a CLEAR cut case of SUPER TMS, I miss my mother terribly, she was a wonderful, kind, tough, generous and sassy old soul who wore her heart on her sleeve, despite her tough exterior. She was DEFINITELY one of a kind, an iconoclast just like my father, but unlike him, quite an introvert. Although, she could certainly hold her own in the work world, she was a quiet and steadfast workaholic to the core, Type-A/Goodist. Before she met my father, she was Frank Sinatra's personal secretary! And later, his executive producer. No doubt, having to be a strong, "good" and stoic woman in the business world of the 1950's created a lot of internal struggles and ego defenses. Who knows, all I know is that I was DEFINITELY conditioned by years of watching my mom struggle with her aches and pains, and put on a brave face. And it got worse as she aged. MUCH worse. But ironically, she hated doctors and almost never complained out loud, instead suffering in silent groans and moans. My sister (a terrible hypochondriac and anxiety sufferer just like me) and I often joke that we have spent much of our lives complaining and going to the doctor because my mother almost never did! And in the end, it killed her. She ignored all the early signs of cancer and refused treatment when it was diagnosed. And decades before that, she almost died of septicemia because she ignored a ruptured appendix thinking it was just a bad case of food poisoning! Not a moment goes by that I am not grateful for my mother teaching me how to love better, live better and be a good person, but I must bear the weight of also having been programmed to not feel safe in the world or in my body, and also find the line between self-obsession and self-care. My advice? Let go and forgive your mother. See that she did her best, or at least tried to. You seem like a terrific person, just from your posts on here, so clearly your mother did something right. All you can do is understand your programming and start UN-programming yourself. Not that I am saying that is easy. It is a DAILY struggle for me as well. As I type this, I am down with a bad cold, and I've spent the day trying to convince myself that it is just a cold, it will pass, I am OK and I don't have pneumonia! Or worse! Paging Dr. Sarno! Paging Dr. Freud! Speaking of docs, have you ever studied the work of Dr. Donald Winnicott? His theories on the "good enough" mother are very interesting.

    Check this out:


    Also see the work of Winnicotts teacher, Melanie Klein:


    Good luck in your journey, North Star. You are NOT alone in this one! I'm sure many people with TMS learned it from having it modeled to them at a very young, impressionable age.
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2015
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  12. Buckeye

    Buckeye Peer Supporter

    North Star... I only shop at 3am and not in a place with narrow isles.... but I am definitely a 'slow shopper' because I'm completely befuddled when out of the house. :)
    North Star likes this.
  13. North Star

    North Star Beloved Grand Eagle

    Wow! Look at these great replies! Thank you Donovan and Buckeye. Buckeye…I too shop in the wee hours - was that you the other night in Krogers? Just kidding! And for the record, I too get befuddled and overwhelmed shopping because of decision overload. (Do we REALLY need 15 varieties of canned tomatoes?)

    Donovan, that looks like some great stuff - thank you for posting. It will be my reading over my bowl of oatmeal. :) As a mom, I know I will find it particularly interesting.

    My mom was a boat load of health issues - all secondary to her morbid obesity. In her last decade, she shed all the extra weight but by then, the ravages of diabetes had done their damage. It has been gratifying to look back with my TMS knowledge and have compassion and understanding. Sure, some of that has come just with being a parent myself. But the TMS understanding is teaching me to not only have compassion on myself…but others as well.

    I bet your mom could tell stories - Frank Sinatra's secretary! And I know what you mean about missing her. My mom's been gone for 21 years and there isn't a day I don't think about her and miss her.
    donavanf and Ellen like this.
  14. Buckeye

    Buckeye Peer Supporter

    North Star - hehehe.... it's the cereal isle that gets me. The grocery store has at least 40' of cereal types! But, not Krogers... so, we're not at risk of a cosmic clash :)

    Reading about your mom made me think about my own. I've always lived away from my home town, but when I called my mom, I could put the phone down for nearly the first 30 min because it was like listening to a tape (and it would be funny to learn all these years later that she'd actually slipped on a cassette tape because she wasn't into talking that much!)... but, despite my attempts to not become my mom, I too see my mom in my own actions in some ways that disturb me. Today, I'm looking at mindful meditation a bit closer... but hopefully that will help me look at myself and not use the filters that I originally developed to make others tolerable :)
    North Star likes this.

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