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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I feel like a poster child for TMS recovery!

Discussion in 'Success Stories Subforum' started by AuntieBubbles, Feb 9, 2019.

  1. AuntieBubbles

    AuntieBubbles Newcomer

    For a dozen years or more, I've struggled with pain. Pain in my back, pain in my hips from bursitis after many years of working on my feet, but more recently, pain that has disrupted my life to the point of thinking I would not be able to work anymore. I've consulted my physician many times, had multiple tests (X-rays, MRI, sonogram) which revealed nothing other than a small bulge in one disc in my lower spine. I've had many rounds of physical therapy that never helped. I've tried many prescription drugs: baclofen, diclofenac, gabapentin, and even hydromorphone, (which had me tripping balls for 36 hours) but none of it did anything more than affect the rest of my body while still leaving me with pain.

    Sciatic pain was shooting down my legs, often reaching down to my heels; I couldn't sit for long periods, or drive without pain shooting down my legs, or sleep in any other position than on my back, surrounded by pillows to keep me from rolling over to my side. Pain would change locations, sometimes the left side of my lower back, sometimes the right, sometimes shooting up to my ribcage. A very depressing situation for me and my family.

    Without telling me he was doing so, my husband ordered Dr. Sarno's book for me. He'd heard about it listening to Howard Stern and thought it just might help me. I started reading it the day it came to the house.

    Within two chapters, he laid out my problem so clearly that I became 80-90% convinced that my back pain was a mental health problem caused by unaddressed trauma in my life in the past few years. I finished the book that day, and by that evening, the pain had diminished so significantly that I
    literally wept with relief. After a few more days, I was 100% convinced that I had TMS. The fact that I could still do my job, could still bend over and touch my toes, and had no significant injury or illness to point to, was a real help in convincing me that it was safe to continue with this assumption.

    I found a clinic on this wiki, and was connected with a therapist whom I've been seeing by video chat for several months now. It's not covered by my insurance but I'm billed on a sliding scale that works for my finances. She is helping me learn techniques, mostly using guided meditation, for dealing with the situations that have been causing me pain. Just letting go to her, someone who has no interest in my life, about my trauma has been so very helpful. My own techniques prior to this involved lots of unhealthy food choices made under stress and pain, drinking too much, taking too much ibuprofen, and laying around feeling sorry for myself after work every day.

    Since receiving professional mental health care, I have experienced an almost complete elimination of the type of pain that was ruining my life. I have zero sciatic pain, and minimal lower back pain from time to time, which is relieved with rest and yoga poses. I still have bursitis in my hip joints, but that pain is minor, stays where it is, and isn't demoralizing. Every now and then, a stressful situation comes up and I can feel the pain start to creep in; just being able to make that connection helps me to deal with it and move on.

    I've found the courage to enroll in college after 25 years of avoiding higher education due to fear and anxiety and I started classes this week. I'm not afraid to sit for hours at a time, not afraid of not knowing what I'm doing or being the old lady in the class, not afraid, even, of failing at it.

    I no longer live in fear of what pain will do to my day today. I'm most certainly not pain-free, but I'm so so so glad to say that I am no longer a prisoner of pain.

    Thank you thank you thank you Dr. Sarno and J.G., my wonderful therapist!!
  2. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

    Beautiful, @AuntieBubbles. What a gift your husband gave you, and that you gave to yourself. And that you have now given to our community so that others can take hope in their own ability to recover.

    I especially like these reminders that this is a lifelong process - it's not a permanent cure, but the great news is that we have the power to permanently take control over our lives and our well-being:
    And congratulations on your achievements - you go, girl!

    AuntieBubbles likes this.

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