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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Day 1 Hello there, a decade too late.

Discussion in 'Structured Educational Program' started by MrBadFoot, Jun 20, 2015.

  1. MrBadFoot

    MrBadFoot New Member

    I am on day 1 of the SEP. I am diving in. Thank you for listening. Here is my story.

    About 10 years ago, I started developing terrible pain my pain in my heel. The pain came out of nowhere during a vacation I was taking right before starting a new job. It just showed up one day, invited itself in, and never left. I did not injure my foot doing something specific. I cannot recall a physical event that brought on the pain. I wasn't running, lifting, or twisting anything. I thought that maybe my shoes were worn out, and that maybe, that brought on the pain. My uninvited guest has been living with me for a decade and has never left.

    Over the past 10 years, I have tried all sorts of therapies for my foot including: anti-inflammatory medication, seeing a podiatrist, soft custom orthotics, hard custom orthotics, 2 cortisone shots, physical therapy, shockwave therapy, ultrasound therapy, osteopath, massage, the Strasbourg sock, never walking barefoot. Nothing has worked. Any relief has been temporary. I even got an MRI of my foot and saw an orthopedic doctor. The MRI revealed nothing wrong. The doctor sent me on my way. Ice, rest, etc. Over time, the pain spread to my hips, calf, and lower back. Eventually, I gave up, stopped wearing my orthotics, and started walking barefoot. The pain got less severe. It never went away. I cannot wear dress shoes, or the pain gets too intense. So I wear a suit and Asics to work. It looks ridiculous, but I don't care. I resigned myself to the fact that I would live with chronic pain for the rest of my life.

    I never stopped physical activity, but I never was really active either. Four years ago, my colleague encouraged me to join a gym with him, and since them, I have been going 5 days a week, doing a mix of weight training and cardio. I NEVER ran however, due to my heel pain. I did everything else. My pain was always there, but I learned to live with it.

    A year ago, I started developing pain in my shoulder and trapezius. I thought I injured myself weight training. So I rested a couple of weeks, got a massage, had an osteopath treatment. The pain never went away. So I stopped weights and only did cardio. The pain just got worse and worse. I went for deep tissue massage, osteopath, and physio. I replaced my mattress and pillow. I started sleeping only on my back. Recently, the pain spread to the rest of upper and lower back. It moves around. It always there, and is exhausting.

    A few months ago, an acquaintance saw me clutching my back. He told me that he had had very bad back pain and that he got rid of it after reading this book.. He briefly explained the concept to me, never mentioning the author, or TMS by name. He just told me he had to face his demons, and his rage, and that once he did, he felt better. Although I was not closed to the idea of the mind-body connection, I thought to myself, "I don't have any clear rage issues!" This can't help me. I am pretty in tune with my feelings. I don't have financial problems. I have a successful career. This cannot help me. I dismissed him.

    I just turned 40. I thought to myself, “well this is what getting old is”. Things just hurt. They hurt for no reason. I got scared. If I feel like this when I am 40, what will I feel like when I am 50, 60 or 70. I will surely be bed ridden.

    I was on the internet a week ago and stumbled upon Dr. Sarno and his theories. It led me to the 20/20 piece. Something in my mind clicked. “I wonder if this is the stuff my acquaintance was talking about?” I called him the next day and he said, YES, SARNO. I got the book instantly and devoured it.

    I found myself on almost every page. The areas that hurt, the common diagnosis and treatment, the personality type: Perfectionist. Check. Do-gooder. Check. Achiever. Check... I said to myself, I will give this a shot. I have nothing to lose except the thing only thing worth losing, the pain.

    Do I believe the message? YES! Has it sunk in? NO! I am fearful. Fearful that I will fail at it. Fearful that it won't work for me. Fearful that I will be doomed to a life of pain, because at this point, there is nothing else left to try.

    I found this forum and I am very thankful. I poked around, read a few success stories. Many people are in far worst pain than me. They have suffered more than me. They have had bad things happen to them in their childhood. They have been cured. It gives me hope for the first time in a long time.

    I found the SEP, and I am starting Day 1. I read the first success story. I sobbed as I read it. I don't even know why. It helps to feel that you are not alone.
    Stella likes this.
  2. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    H, MrBadFoot. Welcome to the TMSWiki. You have come to the right place, believe me.
    Your pains are from TMS, either repressed emotions that may go back to childhood
    and/or a perfectionist or goodist personality, wanting to be perfect and wanting everyone to like you.
    We all put those pressures on ourselves. People who don't care about others or care what they think of them
    rarely have TMS. We shouldn't try to change our personality, must maybe modify it a little.
    Expect a little less of ourselves and others.

    I'll be 85 next week. When I turned 40, 50, 60, 70, I felt fine. Then when I turned 80 it suddenly felt like
    I was old. A senior citizen. Me? How could that have happened to a nice guy like me?

    I had severe back pain but it wasn't structural or from aging. It was from repressed emotions going back
    to when I was seven and my parents divorced. I felt abandoned and insecure. The SEP program helped me
    to better understand my parents and that they divorced for financial reasons. I was able to forgive them
    and that stopped my back pain.

    You have started on a very exciting and wonderful journey of self-discovery. It will lead you to a healthier
    and happier life than you ever imagined.

    Two other books that are helpful in TMS healing are Steve Ozanich's The Great Pain Deception and
    my own book, coauthored with another TMSer who healed, Eric Watson, called
    God Does Not Want You to Be in Pain. We offer our healing stories and suggestions for healing techniques.
    We also add the faith element, not saying everyone needs to ask God for His help but it helped us.

    Good luck in the SEP and let us know how it goes for you.
  3. MrBadFoot

    MrBadFoot New Member


    Thank you for reply, encouragement, and for the information that you shared. I suppose what I fear the most is not being able to find the emotions that trigger the TMS. My parents also divorced, so I know that pain. I had other childhood issues, however, I thought I had dealt all of those emotions multiple times. Perhaps I have not fully resolved them, or perhaps it is something else. Until my foot pain started, I had felt physically fine my entire life. I really wonder what triggered the pain to begin with. Was it years of accumulating repressed emotions? If it does have to with my childhood, why did the pain start at that moment, and not before? If not, did something happen to me around the time that pain started, that I failed to see? I suppose none of that really matters as long as I can uncover it, and if successful, can prevent it from happening again.

    Into my 30s, I got married. I finished graduate school as well as very difficult professional certification exams. I had difficulty finding work in my profession where I lived despite having top grades. Six months after graduation, I finally did. Ultimately, I was not appreciated where I was employed, and decided to change jobs. I went to work for an employer that had twice rejected me before. I never gave up, and ultimately made it in. It was before starting this job that the pain started. I subsequently had 2 children. Between work, and raising a young family, the stress is off the charts. I have always managed to cope, or at least, I thought I did. I earn a good living, and though exhausted, I never felt sorry for myself. This is what people do. Others have it much harder than I do. I want to give my kids everything I never had as a child. A happy home, financial stability that enables them have all of the opportunities that I never had. I guess that is the perfectionist in me. Try to do it all, never asking for help. Being the breadwinner, cooking, waking up at night when the kids were newborns, being as involved as I could be in their lives. It is difficult to admit or think that all of these could cause anger and resentment. Isn't that what being a good, responsible parent is about? All over the world people to this. Having a difficult time with it makes me feel like a failure. I feel like I don't have the right to feel this way when so many have larger problems than I do.

    Well, it seems that what started as a thank you for sharing has turned into roadmap for exploration. Releasing these emotions into the world for anyone to see feels liberating.

    Take care.
  4. Camila

    Camila New Member

    Welcome to the TMS club. I'm a newcomer here also, but have spent the last couple of months devouring all the info on this site and reading as much as I can on TMS. Many of the things you said resonated with me. Last year I had a lot of aches and pains, my friends were all suddenly having operations right and left, back surgery, shoulder surgery, knee replacement, hip replacement and these are seemingly fit, healthy folks in their 50's. I am in my mid-fifties and I had a panicky feeling looking into a bleak future filled with pain, my parts wearing out and needing surgery at some point. One thing you will get from becoming educated on TMS is tremendous hope and optimism for your future. I no longer worry about some scary injury or illness being around the corner.
    I also didn't think I had any repressed emotions or that I didn't express my emotions. After you start doing the work, you will be surprised what you learn about yourself and you will start understanding. This website has some amazing resources. I loved listening to all the webinars and also got a lot out of Alan Gordon's tms recovery program. You may want to read through that before proceeding with the SEP. Before you know it, you will start replacing that fear of never getting better with Faith that you will have the same kind of success as all the people who have written their stories in the success forum (read a couple of those every day to keep your spirits up).

    I got a lot our of these two books: Pain Free for Life by Scott Brady and Steve Ozanich's book - the great pain deception. You are so lucky you found out about TMS at age 40. I sure wish I had discovered it many years ago. Best wishes for your recovery.
  5. MrBadFoot

    MrBadFoot New Member

    Hi Camila. Thank you for sharing and for your encouragement. This community seems wonderful with so many willing to share and help. I had a couple of questions about what you recommended.

    Is it recommended to do Alan Gordon's program or the SEP, or can you do both? Is it overkill to do both, or do they complement each other? I watched his video about truly accepting the diagnosis and it helped a lot.

    Thank you for recommending the books as well. I will check those out.

    Best regards.
  6. Camila

    Camila New Member

    I don't think there's a right or wrong answer to your question. Different approaches work for different people. I found it very helpful to do Alan's program before I started the SEP (be sure to listen to the recordings). It helped me get in touch with the emotions underlying my TMS. I had some "aha" moments when everything stated to make more sense. I think the overkill is when you stop leading a normal life and dedicate too much time to TMS stuff. Some people recommend spending no more than one hour/day on your TMS recovery work. I know I spent more time than that at the beginning because I was so excited and fascinated by what I was learning. Certainly, the first step is accepting the diagnosis. For me reading the books and reading through Alan's recovery program really helped me accept that I've got TMS. For some people, that's all they need to get better. I know for me it's going to take a lot longer than that.
    Ellen likes this.

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