1. Alan has completed the new Pain Recovery Program. To read or share it, use this updated link: https://www.tmswiki.org/forum/painrecovery/
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Day 1 Been lurking around but finally decided to fully do this

Discussion in 'Structured Educational Program' started by jmccall, Nov 3, 2015.

  1. jmccall

    jmccall Newcomer

    I've been reading posts on this board for about a year and talking with a few people on here but haven't really committed to doing the full program- until now. I just can't ignore the obvious signs anymore, I am SUCH a TMS person. My pains, my personality, my history, all point to me suffering from TMS. It's just hard for me to 100% accept and not look for a structural cause.

    Some brief history for me: My father died when I was 3 and my mother was emotionally abusive/neglectful so I grew up always afraid. I was big into controlling every situation just to create a sense of sanity in my chaotic world (moving 5 times before I was 10, my mother's boyfriends, etc.). As a child I was always nervous, having stomach pains all the time and was afraid to go to school. By the time I was a teenager I was anorexic and practicing self-harm.

    When I was 25 I think the TMS sort of caught up with me and I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia, a dangerous heart arrhythmia (vtach) and a case of plantar fasciitis (horrible foot pain) so bad that the doctors were baffled. I spent the next 5 years and tons of $$ going to doctor after doctor to help my fibro, finally just giving up and deciding to live with it.

    When I was 30 my body sounded yet another TMS alarm that I wasn't able to hear - I started having panic issues, vision problems (blurry, floaters, flashers), and my heart arrhythmia got worse. Now, at 35 as the pains and issues continue to mount, I'm starting to finally see that there is a pattern...this has to be TMS.

    My symptoms right now are centered on two areas: my head/ears and my lower half (funny when you see that diagram of TMS inflammation, it highlights an area at the top near the shoulders and on the bottom near the hips- that's ME!!!) My head issues are : I go through times where I have a horribly tight neck and it reaches all the way up though my head and scalp, it feels like it is squeezing and crushing my head. It also feels like my head is too heavy to hold up! I also have tinnitus (for me it's a high pitched hissing) which I have narrowed down to being from this pinching off of blood from my neck/shoulder area (if I massage the back of my head it goes away for a few seconds). I also have issues with eye strain when I look at the computer, it feels as though my eyes are being pulled into my head.

    My lower half symptoms are that my knees will go through times where they fall back and hyper-extend. It hurts behind the knee and around it. I also get calf cramps and pains all up and down my legs. For this I have narrowed it down to my sciatic nerve being pinched... but I don't have any disc issues that would cause this (I've had MRIs). And some days it randomly goes away. But when it's bad I can't walk and it keeps me in bed.

    These latest issues have been going on for a year now and have kept me from my life and kept me scared (I am a big "I am going to die" hypochondriac type of person). BUT I'm not going to let them do this to me anymore! I'm so happy to start this TMS structured program and to be with all of you! This page is a wonderful resource! Thank you all! Sorry if that was long!
    P.s. I've read "Healing Back Pain" and "The Mindbody Prescription." I've just started " The Divided Mind"
  2. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi, Jennifer. I know where you are coming from. I had a similar boyhood although it was because my parents divorced when I was seven.
    It left me with feelings of insecurity and anger. My subconscious mind turned that into severe pain. The SEP helped me to understand my parents and their divorce better and I forgave them. That healed me.

    You could benefit by putting yourself in your mother's shoes, She was left a widow with a child and may have turned her anger onto you. It means she had TMS herself.

    The fact that your symptoms have lasted so long and moved around are typical examples of TMS. The books you've read and are reading are excellent in understanding the emotional causes of TMS and how to deal with them.

    For now, I suggest doing the SEP every day and do the journaling. That helped me a lot. But don't spend too much time each day on TMS thining, journaling, or realing. That may be overdosing on it. Try to spend as much of the day enjoying things you like to do. Distractions can be very helpful.

    Remember to practice deep breathing and mindful meditation (living in the present moment). There are lots of posts about both, and also Youtube videos.
    I expecially like the Youtube videos on relaxation. One of my favorites is "Guided Meditation in The Seat" (It shows a peaceful scene as if you are watching it from a bench, while deep breathing.

    I too have been a lifelong hypochondriac, worrying the slightest ailment into catastrophy. Realizing this is another form of TMS, I laugh it off now.

    You have become a member of a very caring and helpful community. TMSers welcome hearing from others and sharing ways to heal.
  3. jmccall

    jmccall Newcomer

    Walt - Thank you for such a warm welcome! :) Good to know that people can relate to the childhood thing, it's funny, I grew up with fear being such a normal emotion that I forget that other people DIDN'T have it this way! I mean, I was an 8 year old taking antacids!! That was my normal! I agree with what you said about forgiving my mother. The child in me doesn't EVER want to but I know that that is the root of a lot of this. My mother actually has Narcissistic Personality Disorder, but I know now because of some wonderful books I've read that her mother had it too and gave it to her and it really wasn't her fault. That plus the death of my father did make her act out towards me. I know all of this now but it's just a matter of accepting and forgiving (not something that I've ever been good at).

    Thank you for the advice on a plan of action for this. I'm a big overdosing kind of person.. I get a bit obsessed (perfectionist!) so I will try to limit my time thinking of it.

    Thank you for the recommendation of meditation, I will definitely check that out. I just started doing at least 5 min a day of mindfulness mediation a few weeks ago and I think it is already helping!

    And what you said about being a hypochondriac made me smile because I totally get it. Personally I think I'm like that because of not having a dad around to tell me everything is ok. I guess I need to learn to tell myself that! :)

    Thanks again, so glad to be part of this wonderful group of people!

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