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Day 1 Day 1 and not sure what to think

Discussion in 'Structured Educational Program' started by stephanied, Aug 6, 2014.

  1. stephanied

    stephanied New Member

    Hi all,
    I work in clinical research at a cancer center, so my world revolves around having concrete evidence before being able to say it works. While I think it's very possible that I may have TMS, I feel so conflicted about all I know medically, about alignment and how everything works together and if there's one thing off, you can have pain somewhere else. Having had bad bouts of anxiety, I do also know the power of the mind over the body, but can the power be so much to explain having had to go to physical therapy three times in less than a year for three different "injuries"?

    I'm an otherwise healthy 31 year-old. Why should someone my age randomly have a glute problem/no actual diagnostic name for it, plantar fasciitis, and now tennis elbow that has lasted nearly 18 months despite already trying cortisone injection, occupational therapy, prednisone taper, Graston, Active Release Technique, stretching, icing, heat, rest, no rest, and now physical therapy? It just doesn't make sense. I feel broken, but I know I'm strong underneath.

    A little back story: I had anorexia when I was 12. I was successfully treated and continued to go to therapy through the years (even now), just to keep everything in "check." Over the years, especially since college, I've had random problems come up during stressful times. I had nearly 6 years of bad migraines, varying in intensity, but being so bad at one point that I only made it to work part time most weeks. Once we mutually parted ways, and I started working somewhere I had more passion for, they seemed to go away. I chalked this up to not being in front of the computer as much.
    During this time I also had terrible bloating. Since I adopted a gluten free diet, I haven't had the problem. But now I'm questioning if it's really gluten intolerance or not...
    While simultaneously planning my wedding and having an uncle diagnosed with a terminal illness, I had an awful rash on my forehead and eyelids.
    I used to have awful stomach cramps when I was in third grade because I was so unhappy at my new school.
    And most recently, the glute pain started about a month before my 30th birthday. It seemed to get better until the Boston Marathon Bombings (I live in MA and used to work in Boston), when it took a turn for the worse and that's when I got the tennis elbow (though that was a definite injury--my elbow blew up--and seemed to get better while I was concentrating on my glute injury). Once the glute injury healed, and I was finally back to running, I had a few weeks of bliss before the plantar fasciitis started up. Once that got better months later and I was once again slowly amping up my running while also taking an Anatomy and Physiology class (while working FT) is when the tennis elbow started acting up again. I lived with it being okay for a few months while getting various treatments. Then, recently, during a very stressful time, it suddenly got increasingly painful and I started worrying about it constantly. My glute pain and plantar fasciitis showed back up out of nowhere and I started getting weird pains in my left arm now. This is when I stumbled upong TMS (while researching all of my other options left for treatment).
    So...that's me in a not so quick nutshell. I think it's possible I have TMS, but I know it will require me to get rid of all of my doubts. This will be hard because I am a girl who needs facts! Cold, hard facts. Any other doubters out there who finally were able to convince themselves?
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2014
  2. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi, Doubting Stephanie. It sure sounds like your symptoms are from TMS. Your work with cancer patients can cause you to have emotional stress,
    like one of my nieces who is a counselor for high school students with various emotional problems. They affect her, too. And a real good friend who is
    a psychiatrist got burned out and depressed from helping so many patients. It takes a lot to work with those who are ill. I suggest you congratulate
    yourself for it and follow the relaxation techniques you will find in the forums here. Mainly, breath deeply, meditate, and do the journaling to learn
    what repressed emotions you have. We all have them, even if we think our lives were trouble-free. The harmful emotions such as anger can go back
    to our childhood. Mine did.

    And you had the wedding to plan while the uncle was diagnosed with a terminal illness. That sure adds stress.

    You are obviously (to me) a very caring person, and you internalize a lot. Me, too. That can all trigger repressed emotions from the past,
    especially the first six or seven years which stay with us all our lives.

    If you haven't already, I urge you to read Dr. John Sarno's books, Healing Back Pain, and/ or his Mindbody Prescription, and Steve Ozanich's book, The Great Pain Deception. You say you need proof before you believe anything. They can help give you that proof that most often, pain is from TMS.

    Like the doubting Jesus disciple Thomas, you may just have to believe, in TMS. Unless you believe it, 100 percent, you won't heal from the symptoms.
    Read the success stories to help you believe in TMS. Good luck and write to us about your progress.
  3. stephanied

    stephanied New Member

    Thank you so much for your thoughtful response! The kindness of strangers never ceases to amaze me. You are obviously a very caring person yourself!
    And you provided a very helpful objective view of things--I had never taken into account my current work environment. I do acknowledge that some days or weeks are harder than others (we seem to have a larger than usual amount of our patients going onto hospice/nearing the end this past month, for example), but it's usually just work as usual. Perhaps being amongst so many people with so much fear (who can blame them?) somehow makes me more fearful?

    I have been reading Healing Back Pain and just reserved Mindbody Prescription from my library. I feel I've had more of a response in the past few days from doing the program than I did in reading HBP. Knowledge/awareness of TMS didn't help me so much as putting it into action. I finally got kind of mad with my body yesterday and told it to knock it off--that the new pain in my left arm wasn't anything. I hadn't injured it, so there's no reason it should hurt. Sure, maybe it's a little tense from my anxiety, but that's all it is. It will go away the less tense I become. And it helped!

    You speak of anger, but that's the part I have the hardest time with. I'm not really an angry person. I've tried to dig deep and come up with some things I could be angry about, but the ones I come up with are only minor anger/irritation. I'm kind of mad at my brother for moving so far away and leaving me to be the one to host holidays, represent our generation, etc., but I know he's very happy, so I'm also happy for him. I get mad at myself for certain things, but also realize that everything seeoms to fall into place and some things happen for a reason. So I don't think I have anger so much as many, many fears and anxieties. Have you found this? How were you able to dive deep and find the anger from your childhood?

    Many thanks!
    Eric "Herbie" Watson likes this.
  4. Ryan

    Ryan Well known member


    Walts advice from above is great, I echo a lot of what he said. Faith and perseverance go a long way in this process. Never give up and try to let go of the doubt. What do you have to lose, it will change you for the better.

    I see you struggle a lot with fear. I did to on my journey I suggest you read "hope and help for your nerves." It has
    helped me a lot. Try to live in the present moment, living in the past can cause anger, living in the future causes fear. You have today in front of you live it to the fullest and be grateful for all the blessings you have.

    You have come to the right place, keep doing the SEP and educate yourself. This is a marathon not a sprint so it may take a whole to see results, but do not get discouraged. Your mind is a powerful tool that can overcome many things you never thought you could.

    Wishing you the best of luck. Believe in yourself and know that you will heal. We are what we believe.

  5. stephanied

    stephanied New Member

    I can't believe the amount of care and help I have already experienced from this forum. You are all such wonderful people for reaching out, offering support, and offering suggestions.

    Ryan, I will definitely check out that book! Anxiety has been a big struggle for me, one that I have been able to deal with with medication, but every time I try to come off the medication, no matter how slow the taper and how long it's been out of my system or how good I feel mentally, I end up having an "episode" that wrecks me for at least a month. Then I'm left dealing with the consequences of that episode for a few months after (e.g., trying to put on weight I lost due to lack of appetite, slowly getting back into exercise because I didn't have the strength or energy, stretching out the tense muscles).

    Throughout this most recent episode that led me to discover TMS, I tried what you suggested very much (staying in the moment), but it can be so difficult. I will continue to work hard on that.

    I can be an impatient person, so thank you for reminding me that it will take awhile to see results. After all, I've been like this for some time, so it won't go away all at once. I think as long as I see continued improvement, no matter how slow, that is what keeps me going. I will probably need to realize that there may be setbacks, but that I can still move forward.

    Thank you, again, for your incredibly kind words and wisdom. It means a lot to me that you would reach out to a complete stranger with such genuine concern.
  6. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi, again, Stephanie. Ryan is right, Claire Weeks' book can really help you with reducing anxiety.
    Much better than medication.
    I didn't know about TMS or Weeks two years ago when a drop in income caused me great anxiety.
    I told my doctor and he prescribed a tranquilizer (can't remember which one) and it helped, but only a little.
    I stopped taking it after about a week, doing that cold turkey without telling my doctor and had some withdrawal symptoms.
    They went away and I found hot milk to be better than the pills.

    Then I learned about TMS and have been practicing deep breathing, medication, living in the moment (I'm still trying to do that more,
    but it isn't easy), and not worrying about money or anything else.

    Keep working the SEP program. It's really helpful.

    Bless you.
  7. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

  8. stephanied

    stephanied New Member

    Thank you! :)

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