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Hello people who are or becoming pain free!

Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by giantsfan, Jan 17, 2016.

  1. giantsfan

    giantsfan Well known member

    I'll try to make it quick (first post)... My name is Daniel. I started having joint issues in knees, hips, shoulders, elbows and ankles about 8 years ago (21 y/o). Eventually developed back and sacrum pain which then turned into burning stinging pain down legs and in sacrum. Developed an eating disorder in the midst (orthorexia-obsessive healthy eating). I lost a bit of weight down to 150 pounds (6'4"). I lost my job, sold my house and moved back in with parents. I also developed chronic insomnia and depression (suicidal thoughts). Pain developed all over body and imbalance/burning-numbness got worse, ended up bed ridden, using wheel chairs and walkers to get around house and clinic (27 years old at the time). I eventually put on weight by force feeding because I ended up having all kinds of gastro issues through anxiety etc. My body got a bit better from weight gain (220 lbs now) but still had to use cane to get around and can't really stand, sit or walk for very long. By the way, throughout all this time I had gotten so many tests and exams by doctors and specialists that I can't even begin to count (I had good insurance at the time). Everything was negative... Emg (nerve tests) tests shows a little delay, but I'm sure that's only because of TMS. It is.

    I'm 29 now and heard of the wonderful Dr. Sarno about a week ago. Immediately before even reading the book I had a huge reduction in many symptoms. I was so excited that my insomnia got even worse (maybe a diversion). I went for a jog the other day for the first time in more than 5 years! For whatever reason though I still seem to struggle with many things like sitting and standing (lots of burning pain, numbness and feeling of imbalance). I feel like I'm a bit worse now than I was 5 or 6 days ago compared to when I just heard about Dr. Sarno. I've almost finished his book now, I've watched his dvd and I've watched success stories on YouTube. I know I need to stop worrying about not getting better or that I may be one of those 5% ers that need a lot of therapy to get better. I do worry about my future a bit still too. My personality matches almost identical with what I read "TMS'ers" have. One of the main things I worry about too is that I won't figure out all the repressed emotions of my past and that I won't write them all down (perfectionism). I want to make sure I'm not missing anything so I can finally get rid of this pain (I'm sure I'm going about that wrong).

    Anybody have any advice about the sitting or standing? I'm also worried about the fact that people will think I'm nuts if they start seeing me running and walking around without a cane just because I read a book. Thanks for reading this if you got this far! Hope the best for all of you!! :)
    billiewells and IrishSceptic like this.
  2. Anne Walker

    Anne Walker Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi Daniel. Welcome to this forum. You have been through a lot for such a young man! And yes, you are very young, with a rich, full life ahead. I can imagine you are very excited to be getting your life back. And you should be! I sense a lot of enthusiasm and energy in your post and I would like you to take a deep breathe and get a little more grounded. Its not all or nothing and it is okay if it takes a little time, the important thing is you are on your way. I am not sensing a lot of doubt in your TMS diagnosis which is one of the biggest hurdles many of us face. I do see a lot of worry and fear though. But try not to worry about worrying! How about you start with one of the programs on this site, SEP or Alan Gordon's. Take some time to journal, reflect on your life outside of the pain, and explore. It is impossible to figure out all your repressed emotions and write everything down. You will find many of the people who have recovered from TMS and are pain free on this site, including doctors and therapists who have TMS, continue to journal and continue to apply all the techniques they have learned to recover from TMS to begin with. So it is a process, a journey, and even if you decide to work with a therapist to get a little support along the way, that is okay too. You are doing great! Many of us work at this for months before we truly experience any pain relief so the fact that you are a little worse with physical pain at the moment compared to 5 or 6 days ago doesn't matter a bit. The important thing right now is to think psychologically, become aware of when you are worried and anxious and work on strategies to diffuse that, and to enjoy your life. Don't think too much about the sitting and standing. That means you are monitoring your pain and progress. That will only set you back.
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2016
    giantsfan likes this.
  3. IrishSceptic

    IrishSceptic Podcast Visionary

    I've been through something similar but not as severe, Anne that is great advice and something older counsel told me again and again. In spite of getting good education I felt as if I had failed totally, I had never really failed in life. Experience is the great teacher
  4. giantsfan

    giantsfan Well known member

    Wow, thank you both for your kind words and advice! Anne, I'll definitely start the structured educational program right away, actually, I take that back, soon... I don't need to rush right away ;). I'll have to learn to not become discouraged if I'm not progressing as I think I should. Gotta just leave the fear and focus on life outside of pain as you said. Thanks again to both of you!
    Anne Walker likes this.
  5. Gigi

    Gigi Well known member

    My first encounter with Sarno's book was in the '90s, when I had such severe back pain that I stood up most of the time. I was ASTOUNDED at the results I achieved! You're definitely on the right track, Daniel! It's usually not a linear journey; many of us have a cyclic type of recovery, even after accepting the diagnosis of TMS or MBS.
    I agree with Anne that the SEP is a great place to start. Be gentle with yourself, especially during self-discovery. Blessings on your journey.
    billiewells and giantsfan like this.
  6. Orion2012

    Orion2012 Well known member

    You have found a great resource here. Yes, don't rush, go slow.
    Why assume you need psychotherapy? While therapy can offer insight and be a wonderful vehicle for growth and change, you are the only person who can heal your TMS. A therapist can become another external focus; TMS healing come from within.
    Everyone's journey is different. The SEP has helped many. I had great results with Dr. Scubiner's "Unlearn Your Pain," which also involves a lot of guided journaling.
    You got this. Belief + patience = results!
    giantsfan likes this.
  7. giantsfan

    giantsfan Well known member

    Gigi, I'm so glad to hear that you're doing so much better! I have started the SEP and look forward to the progress, although my symptom reduction and return to physical function will possibly be cyclical as you said. Orion, thank you as well for the support, I really needed it today. I suppose you are right, I shouldn't jump to the conclusion that I need to see a therapist right away (not implying that it's bad). I've been thinking about purchasing another book, I'm going back and forth between Dr. Schubiner's and Dr. Brady's. As for your equation: I have the belief part about 75% down so far, the patience however....well that's a whole other thing I need to work on. Although I'm sure everyone here can attest to the fact that you don't want to have patience, you want to get out of pain A.S.A.P. Thank you both again!
  8. COgirl05

    COgirl05 Peer Supporter

    Hi Giantsfan! Welcome to the forum. It is the best resource and everyone on here is so supportive and helpful! I've been at this for about 2 years now and I've been 100% pain-free and then I've had pain come back and jump around to varying degrees depending on where I'm at in life. I'm still working at eliminating the anxiety and fear around the symptoms, but I've come a long way. I have a few bookmarks that I always read over and over when I'm feeling overwhelmed or flared-up. Here they are: http://www.tmswiki.org/forum/threads/going-through-hell.5640/ and http://www.tmswiki.org/forum/threads/how-do-i-overcome-the-desire-to-get-rid-of-my-pain.8603/. A lot of other people like to read the 12 Daily Reminders. Good luck and you CAN DO IT!
    giantsfan likes this.
  9. Tennis Tom

    Tennis Tom Beloved Grand Eagle

    WOW! You said it before I could what a TMS story! I've been through a lot of what you had but fortunately knew of TMS when I was dx'ed with clinical depression--an affective TMS emotional equivalent. RUN, RUN, RUN! And get a camera crew to follow you, that would be one of the best testimonials to the miracle of TMS healing. DON'T WORRY ABOUT WHAT PEOPLE THINK!-- That's the problem with TMS'ers they have an unrealisitic view that people really give a hoot that much about what people are thinking. If you're going from a cane to running they are thinking THAT'S A MIRACLE! Whats wrong with that? "Those who care don't matter and those who mater don't care."

    Stop the psycho-archeological excavation for the repressed emotions. It's my opinion it's not good for your recovery and makes things worse ruminating on the past. Dr. Sarno says y0u don't have to do that. You only have to accept the TMS theory that the mind is causing the symptoms and that they are benign and move forward with your life to positive distractions. What he says is, when you feel the pain, think psychological, that's not the same as sitting in lotus, ruminating and psychobabbling. Keep running, I might give it a try myself.
    billiewells and giantsfan like this.
  10. giantsfan

    giantsfan Well known member

    Wow! Thanks COgirl05, those were some fantastic links that included very well written and east to understand analogies. It definitely calmed me down and helped me to re-arrange how I think about TMS (or lack of thinking). It's so good to hear that you're free of pain, hearing that gave me a breath of fresh air. I appreciate the extra support. ;)

    Hi Tennis Tom, I love that quote you posted, it's always been one of my favorites (I think it's a Dr. Seuss quote, haha). You're right though, I need to put that quote to good use instead of just thinking about it. The jog I had was incredible (I was bawling while doing so), although it was only a few minutes it gave me the inspiration to believe that if I could do that, I could get through all of this. I did have somewhat of an increase in pain over the past week or so, but I didn't have any while jogging, meaning that it's purely my fear increasing (psychophysiological). I agree about the negativity impact dwelling of thoughts can have, although I seem to keep getting mixed answers as to the best solution to erasing TMS. Either way, any kind of worrying (psycho-archaeological excavation) will be detrimental to my body and mind. Thanks for the support as well!

    P.S. Nice profile pic, it's my favorite car!
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2016
  11. Tennis Tom

    Tennis Tom Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi GiantsFan, you're in SF, I grew up and work there but now live in Mill Valley. The pic of the Dodge was from a track day up at Thunderhill Raceway. If you'd like to we can get together for some lunch and TMS talk next month, I've met up with a few TMS'ers from around the world when they were visiting Bagdad by the Bay. I'm down in the desert for January trying to find a dry place in kali to play tennis. I'll take you for spin when the roads get a bit dryer in the Viper--hopefully not a spin-out, it can be a killer, half of them crash, but I'm no Paul Walker.
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2016
    KatieDid123 and giantsfan like this.
  12. KatieDid123

    KatieDid123 Peer Supporter

    Wow, I can relate to so much of your story Daniel. I'm 27 now and have experienced quite a few things that you mentioned...quit my good job, got rid of my awesome apartment, moved back in with parents. I too have a lot of burning, numbness, nerve-like pain, and have developed an obsessive healthy eating disorder. The mental struggle too. This is a hard age to be going through stuff like this. Still working through it all. However, I'm a completely different person than when I started this healing journey. I've rid of many toxic habits, people, and thoughts. I appreciate everything so much more. I can't believe the stuff I used to complain about. I'm discovering the magnificent power that lies within each of us. We were put on this earth to experience joy, love, and happiness. Through finding our happiness, we heal. It's amazing how we transform through this journey.

    And I'm a huge Giants fan too! Really looking forward to the upcoming season. The apartment that I got rid of was in San Francisco, and I'm now living in Mill Valley with my parents. I see you're here too Tennis Tom! Good to know there are others around here.

    Wishing you the best :)
  13. giantsfan

    giantsfan Well known member

    Wow, yeah that is quite similar. Definitely confusing and frustrating to go through all that during a persons 20's, but I'm glad to hear you're doing better!

    Journey is the right word, I think a lot of us here get worried when we don't recover over night or month (which is a completely normal thing to feel at first), but realistically it seems to be a process of getting to know ourselves better, and that can take time. As long as we're heading in the right direction though!

    Oh boy, yes, another Giants fan!!! Still hard to believe how good the franchise has become over the recent years. I'm going to some games this year and I can't wait! I haven't been able to in years, but I'm going to face the fear of my symptoms head on and go. C'mon ring number 9!

    Wishing you the best as well, Kate :D
  14. KatieDid123

    KatieDid123 Peer Supporter

    Totally a journey. I'm definitely not one of the "book cure" people. I'm putting in some good, hard work to get to where I want to be, but I've come to appreciate the extent that I'm changing and getting to know myself. Sounds like you are too.

    I'm so determined to get to some Giants games this year! Just the thought of being in the ballpark is so exciting :joyful: I too have reframed for years, but I think a big part of healing is to enjoy your life. I don't know if you've read Steve Ozanich's book The Great Pain Deception, but if you haven't, it's a must read! Steve once said something to me that really resonated: "Stop trying to heal and fix your life." Being the perfectionists we are, many of us tend to attack TMS with the same intensity as all the other things in our lives. We feel we have to do it perfectly, read this many pages per day, think the perfect thoughts...etc. Many also tend to TMS about TMS, aka start obsessing about TMS. When Steve said "fix your life", he did not mean remove all the stress, as that's impossible, but rather to fill your life with as much excitement and joy as possible...to let yourself be happy and start enjoying life again. Giants games def fit the bill for getting some excitement in your life!

    If you ever want someone to talk to or grab lunch with, feel free to reach out to me since we live so close. I find it's sometimes hard to relate to others that haven't experienced something like this, so it could be nice to have someone to share stories with :)
    mike2014, giantsfan and silentflutes like this.
  15. silentflutes

    silentflutes Peer Supporter

    thank you. you kept my realization beautifully in words.

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