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Breathing problems/anxiety

Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by Peggy, Jan 6, 2015.

  1. Peggy

    Peggy Well known member

    I have had a relapse lately. The good news is, I have survived to talk about it. Yes, I am quite sure that I think I am going to die a lot of the time. Which is a thing, I don’t usually hear the words, “I thought I was going to die” until after the event, or in my case, panic attack.

    I had been swimming a lot this year until mid-November. I posted that I was swimming and doing well. Thinking back, that just sunk me in. I am aware it doesn’t need to do a person in, but in my case it may have been a contributing factor.

    I haven’t had a cold in 3 ½ years. I am usually proud of my healthy immune system. I had told myself and the universe that I didn’t want a cold while I had a sore back. I couldn’t bear the thought of sneezing and throwing the whole back out . . . more. It was one more thing I couldn’t handle. Gratefully the universe co-operated. (I have to say, that the universe sounds like my other self or sub-conscious mind in this story, which is starting to make me wonder if there is a difference.) This year I found TMS healing in March. I improved so much that as the year went on, say by mid-summer, I had a brief conversation with the universe saying, yes, I can handle getting a cold. It is something I need to deal with and I can handle it now that my back is so much better. I also have the tools to work on some of my breathing issues that surface around colds.

    In November I had a breathing issue at the pool while swimming. I was devastated. I thought I would have to quite swimming. Dealing with a breathing issue in the water, perhaps the deep end is a big deal. The breathing issue sounds like asthma and lasts about a minute. All the life guards came to see if I was okay. I was standing at this time and was safe. The breathing problems often happen when my mouth is dry. I had been swimming this year for 8 months and about 7 of those months I swam above water. When swimming above water my mouth doesn’t get so dry. Anyway, I got over my breathing issue on my own, as usual. I have had them once in a while for years. Coincidentally, the man in the lane next to me was a doctor. He saw all this and in the end said: “you should get a huffer for that”. I did go to the doctor a few days later, tried a huffer didn’t help me at all, it made everything worse for a week or so. I don’t really know how taking one breathe of a huffer can do that, but it did. I would say it triggered all of my anxiety symptoms. Blah! I have had previous tests on my throat, ultrasound, swallows, thyroid. All have come out clear. In Nov. my lungs were tested and were, as the doctor said: pristine. Then I got a cold, right on cue. When I get a cold I have a lot of these breathing problems. (Sorry for indulging in the “me” story so much, but I guess I just need to get it out). Dry mouth and swollen throat. My doctor didn’t really say I had anything and was ok with me dealing with the problems psychologically. I started to see a therapist in December. After many awake nights worrying about something, don’t you ever just wonder what the hell that something is? Finally I googled, “throat spasm” and up it came. All these years of wondering in one video. Laryngospasm, harmless, when you have one breathe through a straw. What, no huffer? Oh, the insanity of it all. Because of my cold I had a spasm shortly thereafter and tried the straw. It really works, now the problem sounds more like hyperventilation, which sounds like a panic attack. Learning to breathe properly through it helps a lot psychologically as well. It is a step to less panic. So I have an appointment with an ear, nose and throat specialist, to see if it is really TMS, by process of elimination. My evidence sheet would say it’s TMS, but we will see.

    I started back to the pool this week. Having been gone for 6 ½ weeks I am really starting over. My issues are surfacing with vengeance. This thing has really had a stranglehold of me for a long time, literally.
    I also started getting what most would call RSI. I was getting a sore wrist starting in summer, I would talk myself through it with TMS talk and could swim with no problems. It totally disappeared while not swimming for 6 weeks, then yesterday, after my first day of swimming, while cooking and squishing a few beans with a fork, I got a sore wrist again. Wasn’t sure if I would go to the pool today, but I went. My anxiety surfaced and the sore wrist disappeared completely while at the pool. The sore wrist disappeared while doing my hair at the pool as well (you know, those small wrist movements can really get you, ha, ha!). Then while driving away the sore wrist came back. There is a lot of kicking and screaming going on it appears.

    So, I am struggling, really struggling with feeling comfortable in my throat area (as it is almost always sore). I guess this is really the first time I have had a cold since I have self-diagnosed myself with TMS. I am really having to talk myself through not getting a panic attack/ breathing problem as well as trying to be functional again, talking myself through living life comfortably and not putting myself through this hell that I have been putting myself through for so long.

    I know, I asked for it because I am strong enough to deal with it now (stoic personality coming out) but it is hard.

    Thanks for listening.
    Sienna and Ellen like this.
  2. Ellen

    Ellen Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi Peggy,

    I'm sorry to hear about your relapse. I also had one recently and know how frustrating it can be. However, with all my TMS symptoms over the decades I've never had the feeling that I was going to die. I can only imagine how traumatic that must be.

    You show a lot of awareness in your post of how your TMS is operating. Still, I understand from my own experience that awareness is only part of the solution in healing for most of us. There is then what you do once you become aware that TMS is operating and what the issues that triggered it may be. I've learned from my recent relapse that it is the preoccupation and self-absorption that keeps the TMS going, and that I need to shift my attention outside myself.

    I have also had the belief that posting about my success can then trigger a relapse. Maybe our unconscious feels it has to challenge the belief of our conscious brain. This also relates to your last statement "I asked for it because I am strong enough to deal with it now". I think that is a way our brains create TMS even when we experience success, which we can change by changing our thinking.

    Your wondering about whether or not "the universe" and your subconscious are the same is interesting. There is all that theory about the Law of Attraction and other ways of formulating this concept. You are the Placebo by Joe Dispenza has some discussion on this topic as well. I think what we believe effects reality, and we can change our beliefs, but it takes time, consistency, and persistence.

    So I have two suggestions: Only think about TMS for less than an hour a day, and then shift your attention outside yourself. And explore any limiting or negative beliefs you have, and try to change your thinking to be more positive and self-affirming--and then see if the universe changes to reflect this shift.

    You've conquered TMS in the past and you can do it again. Keep reminding yourself of this.

    Wishing you the best. Keep us posted on how you are doing.
    Forest, Dahlia, Ryan and 1 other person like this.
  3. Peggy

    Peggy Well known member

    Thanks Ellen for your kind thoughtful response. I find it ironic that when a person is in a relapse they should think about TMS less, up to one hour a day. That is when I am usually more obsessed with it. Oh well, a person just needs to get on with life, relapse or not. Working on being positive to myself about myself can be a challenge, I am so used to my mental chatter that reprogramming it does take a lot of self-awareness, journaling or time meditating. I will keep working on finding the time and space for that, it seems like a gradual process.

    There has been a couple of times this last week or two that I have come to the conclusion it is just about a decision. I need to decide to change my pattern. That's it. Which means letting go of some old patterns. As poopy as things can be at times, progress is being made. Some things are getting through that thick skull of mine (I mean that wonderful structure of bones and awareness above my neck). See, progress is being made as we speak.

    Still wondering about the universe. . . will have to do some more research on that one, may take a lifetime.

    I will keep you posted on my progress.
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2015
    Ellen likes this.
  4. Ellen

    Ellen Beloved Grand Eagle


    Yes, I agree it is about making a decision to change. I've found that the challenge is that it can't just be made once, but must be made every day throughout the day. If I'm on autopilot I easily fall into my old patterns. Hopefully, over time it gets easier and requires less vigilance.
    Dahlia likes this.
  5. Peggy

    Peggy Well known member

    Interesting, I'll keep that in mind.
  6. North Star

    North Star Beloved Grand Eagle

    Peggy…hang in there! Ellen's given you great advice already…I just wanted to throw in my shout of encouragement to you. I'm so glad we can journey together on this road to healing and life more abundant.
    Ellen and Peggy like this.
  7. Marjan1978

    Marjan1978 Newcomer

    Whenever you find yourself in the midst of anxiety and difficulty breathing, practice deep, abdominal breathing. Place one hand on your belly and the other on your chest. Take a deep breath, and keep breathing this way until your lower hand is naturally rising more than your upper hand, indicating that you’re drawing air deeply to the bottoms of your lungs. Keep breathing like this for a few minutes, taking slow, deliberate breaths. Sometimes this is enough to remind you of how to breathe properly so that you can overcome anxiety and difficulty breathing.

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