So I have made it through a week on the program. I'm not one to post about things, but my activity says to post so here I am. Do I feel that I am improving? I'm not sure...too soon to really say. But, I am talking to myself (or perhaps my pain) more than I have before. I tell myself the pain is just a sensation and it can't hurt me, I tell myself it is just my neural pathways stuck in a conditioned response, and I try to ignore the pain and not be intimidated by it. But this is hard. Sometimes the pain is very intense, especially if I have been doing errands or after a walk. The sciatica pain is more at the top back of my left thigh/lower buttock area. And I find I am unconsciously tensing it, maybe conditioned this part of my body over the year in order to protect it since the initial issue was low back pain. Anyway, because the pain is overwhelming sometimes, I lay down and do some stretches to relieve it. I know Sarno writes about ignoring pain and not stretching, icing, etc. but I can't give that up quite yet. I also have seen a PT since my microdiscectomy surgery, but not getting any relief I skipped a month, they called, went in again, she used her elbow for deep tissue massage in my gluteus, and it hurt like crazy the next 4 days or so...like I was kicked by a mule...no wonder I limp! I don't feel I need to go and think it is interfering with my TMS progress, as it implies that my pain is physical so I know this is wrong. I don't think I will go back. I am still juggling in my mind between physical and psychological, since my doctor was so adamant about the herniated disc, but I seriously believe now that he was wrong since my pain is back. And I read Egoscue's book Pain Free and he talks about our body being out of whack which leads to almost all our issues physically and has proven patients have resolved their pain completely by doing the exercises he suggests in the book. So how do you know if he's right or Dr. Sarno is right? Can you tell I'm still hesitant about TMS? It's as if I want to get better so fast that I want to try a little of everything. But, the TMS program is the way I am leaning and my journaling has been helpful as my body is able to let go of emotions I've held in, especially when I addressed the loss of my brother last year to suicide. I keep telling myself this pain is temporary, it can't be structural as it totally disappears at times, and I just need to let go of the fear of it everyday. I go on walks every morning no matter if I am hurting a lot or not, I jumped on my bike for a few minutes to show myself I can sit on the seat and be fine, and I began swimming laps again after a couple years. I know my body doesn't move like it has before my back/sciatica problem as I have been so afraid of injuring it more that I have babied it, so now I am telling myself that is nonsense. I just wish I felt stronger and the pain would go away for even one day. After all, my mantra is "Getting better every day!" I sometimes feel my mind wasn't on my pain as much before I started the program, but perhaps I am concentrating on my thoughts and self-talk so much from the exercise activities that it just feels like it. Thank you to all those who have given me support and advice. I know this is a process and I am learning a lot about how powerful our minds are. Just wish I could experience the "Aha" of the pain resolution...if I experienced one day where the pain was almost nonexistent, it would boost my faith by bounds!!