I have used this forum on and off in the past as I have worked on recovering from my hip, sacrum, leg, and back pain but I have never written a success story. The help that Dr. Sarno has given me (and my husband who has cured his upper back pain) has been immeasurable. I was very active as a child and teenager - competing in track and field, swim team, and on my university rowing team. However, I always processed my emotions in a very physical manner - with headaches as a young child and stomach aches from anxiety and then with neck pain as a teen. A series of big changes (positive changes for the most part) in my life led to a great deal of lasting hip, sacrum, leg and back pain. In a 6 month period I moved from Japan back to my home in the US and then immigrated to Canada a country I had never lived in, I got engaged and quickly married, and I was jobless and unsure what the future held. Then followed two years of fighting the pain unsuccessfully - physio, chiropractic three times a week for nearly a year, acupuncture, naturopathic medicine, sports doctors, changing to a paleo diet, and conventional doctors for bone scans and X-rays. Nothing seemed to help and I struggled mightily with my mobility, sleep, and general happiness. Everything seemed to hurt - walking, sleeping, sitting, bending down, even swimming. Eventually I was diagnosed with Ankylosing Spondylitis primarily affecting my SI joint. I started on anti-inflamatories and had about a year of much better health. However, once I become pregnant with my daughter I had to go off of the medication and the pain was back with a vengeance. Giving birth and going back on the medication did not give me the same relief and I again started my search for alternative help. I stumbled on a one-liner on a forum for Ankylosing Spondylitis saying how Dr. Sarno had helped this woman kick her pain. I bought the book and put it aside. However, my husband read it and got immediate help with his nearly 7 years of severe back pain. He insisted I read it too. The book was in-line with my own beliefs and it was easy to see myself on the pages. However, it was a long process for me to kick the pain to any lasting effect. I had been struggling with the pain for seven years by the time I read the book and I have been working through the pain with the TMS process for three years now. The first six months I experienced a huge amount of anxiety and panic attacks as I worked through my emotions. I bought Hope and Help for Your Nerves by Claire Weekes which helped me to overcome these huge anxieties which were unearthed in this process. I had used journalling and meditation since my young childhood so that came naturally to me. I used the Structured Educational Program on the TMS wiki along with a variety of other resources in my process (the Presence Process was a big help as well). Initially I had to focus very hard on reprogramming my mind around the activities that had given me pain for so long - consciously walking and telling myself over and over again "you are okay, you are healthy and whole". It took months of this - when something would cause pain to twinge down my leg I would tell myself that the pain wasn't going to win and I would force myself to do the same action again at varying speeds focussing on my wholeness. I also got rid of my prescription anti-inflamatories within a month of reading the book and have been off them for three years now. I started an exercise program (P90X which I have been doing for about 2.5 years and love) and even when I am having a flair up I try to force myself to even do a bit of yoga....just being very conscious about focussing on any emotions that I am having while working out. Exercising and taking the focus to the emotional letting the pain know that it won't influence my actions or decision often helps to stop my flair ups. I tell myself that the pain will just be there with me for a time but not forever. Weeks of pain free existence stretched into about a month at a time with flair ups brought on by obvious emotional stressors (in-law visits, driving in snow, international moves, oddly enough my period). And finally two years into the recovery process I realized I was going a couple of months at a time without flair ups. It appears to be a life long process for me. But considering that I was told I would never get off medication and would simply need stronger and stronger types of medication I am quite happy with the freedom Sarno has given me. Things that I have found with my struggle to help are that I usually won't get over a flair up without a good cry. I also find that flair ups often last three days for me but if I stick with it and continue to journal, use positive self talk, exercise, and go on with my life they do pass. I also have found that through this process my self talk has become so much more loving. What a blessing that is. I am not happy for the pain but I can see that it is bringing an awareness to my life and my thoughts that I would have otherwise happily avoided. Good luck to any others on the start of their journey. It is hard and for me it has been long but boy has it been worth it. There were many times when I thought I would rather die than have such pain (starting in my mid twenties and I was told lasting until I die) so I truly feel I have been given the gift of a new life worth living.