Well, I was one of those lucky ones that got relief almost immediately from learning about TMS, and I've been waxing poetic about having been pain free for 2 days. But this morning, I had my first 'relapse' and woke with the old pain back. The good thing now is that I know why. My husband, who is a long-distance cyclist, woke me at 5 AM to say goodbye as he headed out for 4 days on the road on a bicycle. We have predictions of severe weather tomorrow, and that will not stop the ride. I am always anxious when he is out on the road, and when I know he will be riding for 12-14 hours in hazardous conditions, well, it really spikes. And this is hard to admit because I have not told anyone, even my husband, that I get just a bit anxious about being alone. Twice while he has been gone I've had medical issues. I was unable to move from pain once (called my sister on that one), and once woke unable to breathe from a viral infection similar to whooping cough (that one was really scary - I had learned not to panic when I can't get air from years of having asthma, but this was much more acute, and I was ready to call 911 when my air came back). I have always toughed those things out, and I don't want anyone to think my husband is abandoning me (I know he'd stay home in a heartbeat if I ever asked him to). And things could happen to anyone - I don't need a babysitter any more than anyone else. But I have to admit that those occasions do pop up in my mind sometimes when he's gone. I have a reputation for being tough, especially because of the medical issues I've had over the years, but inside I still had a lot of anxiety, both about the medical issues and a fear of someday having to ask others to sacrifice what they enjoy in order to take care of me. I have been reciting my mantra (there is nothing wrong with my back) every night as I fall asleep, but when he wakes me that early to say goodbye, I usually just tumble back into bed and doze back off, and this morning was no exception. And I woke to my old familiar nemesis. But at least I knew why. I sat and admitted that I am worried about him, and I am just a bit anxious about myself as well, and the pain is gone again. And as I'm writing this, I'm thinking it might not hurt to talk to my sister or my best friend about how I do feel anxious when he's gone, instead of presenting the tough face I usually do. When I first read about 'repressed emotions', I wasn't sure that applied to me - I am not shy about letting out anger or expressing sadness. But I just realized that I do hide anxiety from others - from everyone, even my closest confidants. Even when I read over what I just wrote, I realize I was trying to excuse the anxiety. And maybe I need to let that out just a bit and not try so hard to make everyone see me as tough. This has been so helpful. Just writing this has helped me gain some insight. It's good to know there are people who will read this and not see me as a big cry-baby. Not that anyone currently in my life would, either - but people in my past would have big time. Wow - more insight!