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Day 31 - Need Some Encouragement

Discussion in 'Structured Educational Program' started by TMSMatt, Dec 20, 2016.

  1. TMSMatt

    TMSMatt New Member

    I am on Day 31 of the SEP, and have been doing Dr. Schechter's "Mindbody Workbook". I initially devoured Sarno's HBP as well as Steve O's "The Great Pain Deception". With all of that, you would think I'd be moving along swimmingly on my road to recovery, but not so much. After reading Sarno, I stopped all treatments and accommodations, diving back into my regular workout routine. Initially, I felt like I was progressing well, but lately my symptoms have really reared their ugly heads. Though the most pain-free I am is either sitting (working/driving/otherwise distracted), or working out (Hmm....).

    I started out 5 months ago with low back & mid back pain with some sciatica that was pretty manageable. My chief complaint was that my hip and buttocks pain flared up at night and made it difficult to sleep for more than an hour. Over the years I have been diagnosed with several herniated discs, stenosis, DDD, you name it. I've done it all, meds, ESI, PT, chiros, etc. I believe my pain is TMS after all the knowledge I have gained, but now my pain is worse and now the doubts are creeping in.

    Now, I have hyperacusis in addition to my constant tinnitus. The back pain is more sharp, and at night my sciatic pain jolts me awake when I move, not letting me sleep for more than 30 minutes or so at a time. I noticed last night that for the first time my sciatic pain was throbbing. It would hit me hard for about a minute, then fade away, then a minute later it would come back, and so on. By morning that sensation had passed and I was left with my typical morning stiffness and leg pain. I'm curious if anyone has experience this waxing and waning of sciatic pain. It was intense and freaked me out at first, but the more I think about it, it doesn't make much sense. As Sarno and Steve O have said, "pinched" nerves don't cause pain, rather numbness and/or paralysis. What's more, if a nerve is really pinched like I have been told by doctors, you would think the pain would be nearly constant, not coming and going minute by minute all while lying perfectly still.

    I'm really hoping that all of this is just the "TMS exorcism" that Steve O talks about, you know, the mindbody pulling out all the stops before it finally gives up. I can't give up on my TMS healing because it's my last hope. I can't imagine the future I would have if I took the surgery route, on and on you go, where they stop, no one knows. I suppose I just need some encouragement for being in pain for 5 months now with symptoms getting worse by the day all the while doing the work of TMS healing. Thanks for listening.
  2. Andy Bayliss

    Andy Bayliss TMS Coach & Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi TMSMatt,

    I think your observations about the sciatica pain are right on. Why would it change and pulse? This is typical actually of TMS pain. It will increase when you're noticing it, thinking about it. The list of your symptoms also support TMS diagnosis.

    In some ways, you may be pushing yourself too much, in engaging Dr. Sarno's work, doing the SEP and Dr. Schechters's book at the same time. The best way to do this work is about 1/2 hour a day, and then forget about it. Move your attention to something else. That something else can and should include things which relax and soothe you.

    One thing that may help is to observe your personality patterns as they engage the Sarno work: perfectionism, pushing, feeling behind. This is a refined observation that can be made, and you can add this observation to your evidence of how your personality makes your Inner Child feel. I am mentioning all this not so that you can "do it better." Simply connect how you partake life, with the theory of TMS.

    Try to be gentle, methodical, persistent. Many people take longer than your experience in order to get better. You're not behind or doing it wrong. You're finding your way.

    Another suggestion is to visit a TMS physician. It can well be worth the money and time to travel, in order to get a TMS diagnosis. This can go deeply into the mind...

    I hope something I write reassures you.

    Watch my ski vids! I remember thinking that I would pay someone $500 for me to not walk around the block. I hadn't walked around the block in over 3 years, the pain was so bad. Then I got my life back. You will too!
    http://www.tmswiki.org/forum/threads/skiing-two-years-after.14222/ (Skiing Two Years After)

    Andy B
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2016
  3. TMSMatt

    TMSMatt New Member

    Hi Andy, your entire post was very reassuring to me, especially the ski vids! The perfectionist tendencies are very clear in my over-doing the program. I will certainly take your advice and ramp up the relaxation and quit putting my recovery on a time table. It's funny, even as I was typing "...in pain for 5 months", a little voice in my head said to me, "you shouldn't be tracking this". So the knowledge of what I should do is there, it's just that methodical approach as you described it, is lacking. Unfortunately, I live in a city with no TMS physicians, so I am self-diagnosed. I'm certainly confident that I have it, but I see your point about how a live diagnosis would deeply increase my belief. Thanks again for posting Andy, I really needed this!
  4. nowtimecoach

    nowtimecoach Well known member

    Hello Matt! I'm not going to address you as TMS Matt - because that identity is ON ITS WAY OUT!! Your post reminded me of myself as I diligently did everything and more that was suggested. And you know what - I was impatient - Who wouldn't be when you're in screaming pain?!! But I'm here to tell you - that all this works pays off. Maybe not tomorrow but it will as you find yourself being more and more aware of triggers, of paying more attention to pain instead of those moments when you're out of pain...making choices to be and be different than the patterns described from Andy. I have learned so much on my TMS journey that has nothing to do with back pain, it still amazes me. I'm not on the forum very often because for the most part I'm recovered. I have relapses when the stress is off the charts but I view it as my opportunities to take care of myself before taking care of anyone else. Good job Matt! Its working even if you can't feel it working!
  5. nowtimecoach

    nowtimecoach Well known member

    ps - it took me about 8 months to get solid relief from TMS - Everyone is different and part of the process is start dropping the attachment to the outcome. Again - that is pretty difficult when you're in pain!! But start noticing every moment - even if it is just a moment that you're not in pain. It screws up the pain pattern... Those patterns are saying "Whhhaaat? What do you mean you're not paying attention to me!!" And you the master of the mind - says "Yep! I'm taking the reins now and not paying any more attention to you - no matter how distracting and ouch'y you are!"
  6. TMSMatt

    TMSMatt New Member

    Hi Molly (healed-name!), thanks for the encouragement. Great advice about noticing the pain-free moments even if they are fleeting. I try to tell myself what a great testimony I will have once I'm healed, and I will have that ever-important evidence that TMS healing works. It's hard in the trenches when it doesn't seem to be working. Testimonies of people like yourself and Andy are great reminders to me that "this stuff works"!! Best to you in your sustained healing!
    Saoirse likes this.
  7. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi, TMSMatt. I agree with the others who have replied to you, and have little to add except wondering if you may not yet believe 100 percent in TMS. I had severe back pain and believed about 90 percent that it was from my repressed emotions. It took a few weeks but when I finally believed totally in TMS, the pain went away.

    Wishing you a very happy holiday season.
    Saoirse likes this.
  8. TMSMatt

    TMSMatt New Member

    Hi Walt, I would agree with you that 100% belief has been a struggle for me, especially with the increase in pain and symptoms recently. I understand that 100% belief is necessary for 100% healing, but the doubts do creep in. I know that this is common for us on the "TMS train" for the first time, and the fix is to keep Sarno's daily reminders front and center in my mind. I need to understand that pain is just a message; that something is bothering me emotionally. I'm getting there, I just wish I had some "pain gains" here to embolden my resolve. Thanks for the post, and a Merry Christmas to you and yours as well!
  9. Saoirse

    Saoirse Peer Supporter

    Thanks for that I have been in chronic pain 24/7 for over 20 years and it takes over every aspect of my life, the planning and the not being able to do stuff. I am doing this on and off for a year but not sticking to it because of all the srtories of it working in days . I am now three weeks doing the program properly and giving myself over to the process . Your story of a longer time line has given me a boost tonight and I thank you . I don't know the longest a person has taken to get out of pain but I am ready to stay the course as I am definitely a TMS sufferer .
    nowtimecoach likes this.

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