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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  1. Onto a new day !

    Woke up this morning with a little stiffness in my back. My back has actually started "cracking" in this past few weeks, especially when getting up from sitting or lying down. It doesn't cause any pain, but produces an odd sensation.

    I felt a couple twinges this morning but decided to go running anyway. I felt some real stiffness and resistance when I was pulling the laces to tighten up my shoes. Felt a great deal of pressure on my lower back but fought through it and went on my run. I had to keep reminding myself that any little twinges were just psychological/emotional. I felt a little bit of weakness about 10 minutes in, but kept it at bay with thinking.

    The stiffness came back after the run, feeling a little bit fragile in the lower back. That sent me back to my MRI report where I started to notice all the little details. It seems like my unconscious is hijacking my conscious brain and searching for a physical reason for the symptoms. If the conscious mind can accept a physical explanation, then the unconscious gets to have a field day with the pain. It's worrysome, even though my MRI report is pretty benign and even the orth. surgeon didn't see any cause for alarm. But stuff like "small annular tear" and "mild bilateral neural foraminal narrowing" make me start to worry: maybe the TMS diagnosis is wrong, maybe there are structural problems that are only going to get worse, maybe I should lay off the activity and just be careful. But then I think to myself that there's just NO way that these little so-called "abnormalities" (NORMAL wear and tear, should just call them "normalities"), there's NO way these "normalities" could be causing pain in my knees, aches in my thighs, twinges in the middle of my back, dizziness, etc. It just can't add up. And yet my unconscious mind is trying to play doctor and find some wild explanation for how the gel is leaking and touching on all sorts of nerves that cause pain pain pain.

    I am in the process of setting up an appointment with one of the doctors recommended by Dr. Sarno in the NYC area, because I recognize that I don't think I'm ready to go through this all alone. I have always been the personality-type to try to do EVERYTHING by myself, believing that asking for help was a sign of unforgivable weakness. But I need to accept that being human means being weak sometimes, and I can't be afraid to ask for help. I am hoping that the doctor will be able to get me in soon and give me some confirmation and advice around the TMS diagnosis. I continue to read Sarno's work and go through the daily reminders.

    Thanks to everyone for taking the time to read. Things ARE getting BETTER, but it's still a struggle. The worry is strong within me. I hope everyone has a great day !
  2. georgethee

    georgethee Peer Supporter

    Several doctors told you that your MRI report looks pretty normal. They told you there is no reason to worry. I read you story and it sounds similar to mine. I also wanted to get another doctor involved because I thought all these pains and aches must come from something other then TMS. I made the appointment and continue with my workout. The pain didn't get worse and I actually started feeling slightly better. I started thinking why am I second guessing two doctors. I got angry at myself for being weak and have TMS playing mind tricks. I cancelled my appointment continue on with the SEP program and within a few days I felt much better. Personally I would suggest to work on yourself a little longer and go through the SEP program. Find yourself some videos and maybe success stories that connect with you.

    This guy gave a good explaination about pain that connected with me and helped me alot.

    TEDxAdelaide - Lorimer Moseley - Why Things Hurt
    nick likes this.
  3. spunky

    spunky Peer Supporter

    I can completely relate to your story and how you are feeling. I started out feeling really great about my ability to succeed with the program, knowing that my foot and hand pain was my unconscious mind's way of making me ignore stressors in my life. After all, my foot pain was almost cured when I was on vacation for 3 weeks (unconsciously ignoring it) and numerous tests results show no issues at all with my hands despite the pain. I was determined to do this on my own because I just didn't want anymore doctors telling me what was or wasn't wrong with me, especially since intellectually I know nothing IS physically wrong with me. I even have the evidence to back it up.

    But as I went through week one of the training, I actually felt my courage to do this on my own and the belief that I could do it alone, dwindle. Not only that, my foot pain and finger pain seemed to get worse. The more I tried to ignore it, the more I seemed to think about it even though I know I am not supposed to. I am NOT someone to ask for help, but I, too, am beginning to think that I can't do this without a TMS doctor. I don't think there is anything wrong with your seeking out a TMS doctor if you feel like that support will help you get over whatever hump you are trying to get over. I am in the same boat. I actually took a couple of days off from the program to give myself a break. (Day 7 came at just the right time!).

    I don't have any words of wisdom because I am certainly struggling. But I do fully support your seeking the help of a TMS trained professional. You need to listen to your own voice. If that voice is telling you that you would like someone to join your on your TMS journey, by all means, call up a TMS doctor and get that support. It may just do the trick for you. And then let me know how it goes and I may just look one up in San Francisco. :)
  4. Thanks for the responses, guys. I got an appointment with the TMS doctor, but it's not until the end of August. Seems like Drs appointments are so hard to come by these days ! Everyone is booked up until the end of summer. I'm not too worried about it; I'm confident I have the wherewithal to continue to work on my own. There's enough reading and writing to fill the void, and I'll be on vacation for two weeks anyway (and my boss will be on vacation for 4 other weeks, that will be a relief), so I'll get there.

    I'm starting to recognize that it's at my office that my TMS symptoms seem to flare up the most. I was having a pretty okay day leading up to this -- ran for 25 minutes this morning, went to Staples, Best Buy, and IKEA with my wife and picked up a bunch of stuff; moved some boxes into our new apartment, etc. Not too much pain. But I get to the office and sitting down becomes pretty darn uncomfortable. I've been able to stave off any serious pain through the 12 daily reminders, but I'm pretty stiff and tense. I bent down to sniff some herbs on the porch and got a very humbling pinch in the back. Bending is definitely one of my top demons to overcome. I don't think it's the worst thing in the world to bend my knees to pick stuff up, but I'd like to be able to bend down to do some gardening sometime in the future. I feel like I've been missing out for too long ! Any who, the pain has held off for the better part of the afternoon. I am REFUSING to do my normal thing which is take my laptop onto the ground and lie on the floor to do my work. I thought about doing it earlier and was ready to set up my little mat when I decided that I need to condition myself to avoid these little babying techniques. Rest is for people who are truly injured; my pain is emotionally-induced; I am NOT injured. I have discomfort owing to repressed emotions. It always passes.

    I am inspired by all of the success stories on here and I am confident in my progress so far. For the first time since my accident, I was able to actually be intimate with my wife without any issues whatsoever. That was a real milestone for me, certainly something that had been stressing me out for a while. I have been able to run and walk almost 10 miles a day for the past few days. I am getting stronger ! But I still need to acclimate myself to lifting and to bending. That will take some time, I think. But however long it takes I'm going to continue powering forward. No small setback is worth a so-far great recovery.

    Thanks to everyone for reading; apologies if I am a bit effusive in working through my program, but I feel as though putting it out for the public eye is a good way for me to get things off my chest. Sometimes, journaling can be a little too private for me and I get the impression that, although I'm putting stuff on a page, it stays inside of me. When I can tell some things to other people, then it feels as though I've really let it out and liberated myself from it. So I appreciate everyone who takes the time to go through this. It means a lot to me.

    Wishing everyone a great evening and an awesome night of rest !
  5. And georgethee : thank you SO much for sharing that video of Lorimer Moseley (great name, by the way). What an amazing TedTalk. I have continued to research his research, and it's very interesting and reassuring. I mean, to see a scientist finally with some answers to questions surrounding chronic pain is a great relief, since it seems like modern medicine just throws up its hands and writes prescriptions. But don't opiate-based prescriptions act primarily on brain chemistry? That is, I was under the impression that a lot of the problematic pain medications (not inherently problematic, but with the 'opioid epidemic' in the USA, I mean) essentially block pain "receptors" in the brain, so that the brain actually can't send the pain signal. Maybe I'm mistaken, but if that's the case that makes Moseley's argument all the more compelling.

    I encourage everyone to take a look at Moseley's work; he's a really interesting guy with an amazing sense of humor actually. I would watch this guy talk just to listen to him tell stories, to be honest ! Here's some more : http://www.bodyinmind.org/outreach/ (Outreach and media activities of BodyInMind)

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