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I think I've had a breakthrough.

Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by mrmarker, Aug 2, 2018.

  1. mrmarker

    mrmarker New Member

    At least that's what I'd like to believe. After many months of dealing with the pain, numbness, and fear of peripheral neuropathy symptoms, I am officially free of those demons going on five days now. That's the longest I've been without symptoms since this past December. I can't tell you how much better I feel psychologically, as a result of this. It's amazing that I'm able to actually focus on work now. The time flies by, and it no longer seems like such torture. I feel a lot more productive, and I'm finally beginning to see things in a different light. I wanted to share my story, in case anyone here might be dealing with a similar situation. Plus, it does me good to vocalize it. Or at least type it out, as is the case here.

    Like I mentioned, I have been dealing with symptoms that mimic peripheral neuropathy for the past eight months. This eventually led to a feeling of pudendal neuralgia as well. I was never able to fully grasp just what was going on with me. I had visited my GP, who assured me that everything was normal. And I had felt fine up until December, when these symptoms began to occur. Once I learned of TMS, and began to immerse myself in the material, I instantly accepted that this very well may be the cause of my issues. I'd had a rough go of things over the past couple of years. My best friend since childhood passed away suddenly and unexpectedly, my father passed away unexpectedly, I lost my job, and I had to move and buy a new house. The last three events all happened within a couple of months of each other. Come December, when the symptoms began, I had just closed on the house, and was doing some minor improvements before moving in. After learning of TMS, I was sure that it was this latest string of events that was causing my misery. But now I believe I was wrong.

    I have a female friend that I have known for many years. I actually dated her sister briefly back when I was jst out of high school. This has been over twenty years ago. So we've always known of each other since then. But never really became close friends until maybe five or six years ago. We began emailing each other back and forth quite regularly during that initial period. And we'd talk about all sorts of interesting topics. We are both artistically minded, interested in art and photography, we both see humor in similar things, know some of the same people, and we both deal with anxiety on occasion, so we had a lot of topics that we could discuss. We became very close during this period of emailing regularly. I was just out of a long and rocky relationship, and I'll admit that I started to have feelings for this woman, even though she was, at this point, only a bunch of words on a screen. It wasn't until years later that she would admit to also having feelings for me. But I'll get to that in a bit.

    This particular woman seems to have issues with commitment. Now, I'm not sure if this carries over to having issues with commitment in relationships or not. But the type of commitment I'm referring to involves going trough with plans that are put in place. She'll come up with an idea of something to do together. Then she'll either cancel at the last minute, citing some ailment or stress factor preventing her from being in the mood. Or she'll just fall off the face of the Earth and emerge later as if nothing happened. I had known that she was flaky like this for many years, as I have a couple of friends who had this exact experience with her on numerous occasions. But on the occasions that this would happen, I'd just brush it off since I had no emotional investment in the situation anyway. At the time, I'd just figured that I'd catch back up with her the next time and let bygones be bygones.

    A little over a year ago, after not hearing from her but a couple of times over the past year or so, we began talking again. She revealed to me that she had recently ended a tumultuous relationship, and was finally recovering from everything that went along with that. This was just after my father had died. And I welcomed the shoulder to cry on, so to speak. It was nice having her around to allow me to talk about things and get things off my chest. And even when we were just discussing normal topics, I welcomed the diversion from the cold reality that I'd just been surprised by. The conversation kept my mind occupied. And rather than sitting around wallowing in the emotional turmoil caused by recent events, I was beginning to feel a bit more relaxed and hopeful again. It was good to have a friend. During this time, we began actually spending time together. We would either hang out at her place, or go to a neighborhood bar for a few drinks. The conversation was good. And we would consistently stay up way too late talking, as the conversation never seemed to go stale. We also attended a barbecue hosted by a high school friend of ours, as well as visited an antique mall. But of which were fun outings.

    It was during this time that she admitted to developing feelings for me back when we were emailing each other years prior. She said that she never mentioned it to me because she was almost sure that I didn't feel the same way, and that she was worried that she might be reading too much into things. But she did feel a connection between us, and appreciated it for what it was. She admitted to still having feelings for me, and I was ecstatic to hear such an announcement. I admitted to her that I had also harbored feelings in the past. But I'd kept them under wraps, due to not knowing how she'd respond, and for fear of jeopardizing the friendship we'd forged. I was ecstatic to hear such news. And I told her that if she'd like to give things a go, I'd be more that happy to try things out with her. We both agreed to ease into things, as we had both just gone through some troubling times, and we were both really happy with how things were progressing naturally. We didn't figure there was any need to rush anything, when were were both content with the way things were shaping up as is. When she asked me if she could take me on an official date sometime soon, I happily accepted. Little did I know, that date would never happen.

    Our spending time together regularly lasted through about Thanksgiving. In fact, the Saturday after Thanksgiving was the last time I spent any real time with her for a long while. We had done our usual hang out and talk routine. But this particular night, I was sent on my way a lot earlier than usual. I chalked it up to her being tired, and wanting to rest up for the Thanksgiving dinner that she would be having at her parents' house the following day, as it was the only day the whole family could get together because of work schedules, etc. More weekends came and went without her wanting to get together. In fact, there were times when I wouldn't hear from her for a week or two. Not even a text message. We were well into December at this point. And she was saying that she'd like to come over and help me paint the interior of the house. I told her that she was welcome anytime. But she never took me up on the offer. Always having some sort of stress or odd ailment keeping her indoors for the day. She contacted me around the end of December to see if I'd like to go see a show with her, and I happily accepted the invite. She said this would be that "date" that she'd mentioned. And I was eager to finally feel like things were progressing. I'd been patient up to this point, and really wanted to get things going, as I was really beginning to miss having contact with her. You can imagine my dismay when on the morning of the show, I awoke with what was the beginning of the flu. I felt awful. And promptly texted her to say I couldn't go. Much to my surprise, and relief, she said that she had also come down with some sort of bug, so she was also happy not to have to be the one to rain on the parade.

    During this flu, my peripheral neuropathy symptoms began. And they stayed with me, for the most part, from there on out. Throughout the next several months, I only saw this woman one time. Although we would talk regularly, she had seemed to get herself into some funk. And never really wanted to spend any time together. I was remaining hopeful though, because she would always be sure to let me know that things were still fine, and that she still planned to take me out like she'd mentioned. I began to become annoyed with the constant cancellations and stared feeling like I was being put on the back burner. Sadness and a feeling of loss set in. As well as a hit to my self esteem. Whenever I would loosely mention missing spending time with her, she'd be a little dismissive and nonchalant about it. Giving a quick "I miss seeing you." response, and then moving on to some other subject. She would regularly make plans for us to do something together, only to opt out at the midnight hour, or just gloss it over as if it never happened, once again chalking it up to being stressed out. I had no doubt that she was stressed over something. But it would always be some cryptic, generalized stress that seemed to keep her from going out or having me over. I was beginning to doubt her claims of stress. But kept it under my hat, for fear of upsetting her further and ruining what chance I had at forming an actual relationship with her.

    The readying of the house happened, as did the move-in, with no help at all from her. She was still in the throes of whatever funk she had succumbed to all those months earlier. But still made claims of wanting to spend time together, date, begin a relationship, etc. One day, after not hearing out of her for a few weeks, or hearing very little, she informed me that she'd been invited to a wedding, and wanted to know if I'd go as her plus one. I was immediately thrust right back into my excited state by the promise of getting to spend time with her, and the chance of seeing her all dolled up in wedding attire. Plus, in my mind, the fact that she was inviting me to a wedding would mean that the seeds of romance just might finally be planted. I didn't have a suit any longer. So I went out and bought one, had it tailored and got everything ready just in time to look my best for the occasion. at this point, my neuropathy was really bugging me. And I wasn't feeling my best as a result. But I stayed the course. In my talks with her leading up to the wedding, I was noticing that she was really being indecisive about what to wear and really procrastinating on making any sort of moves to get a dress, shoes, etc. She was saying she was too stressed from work to go out to the dress shop she was planning to visit for a couple of days, and eventually I just told her if she wasn't feeling up to it, we didn't have to go to the wedding. I was trying to be patient and understanding, as I'd done all along. Of course, she took the opportunity to cancel, saying we'd get together soon.

    Over the next couple of months to present, it was more of the same. Claiming that she was coming over after work to see the new place, which never happened. Even though I'd cancel plans and made sure I had the house spic and span for her arrival. Lots of chit chat over text messages. And many future plans of travel, outings, etc. I steadily became more annoyed and saddened by the constant broken promises and plans that never came to fruition. We actually did get together a couple of weeks ago. We went to a local attraction. But due to the nature of the attraction, we didn't really get a chance to catch up. I took her by her place afterward and dropped her off. Assuming she was tired and ready for bed, based on comments shed made on the way home, I parked in the driveway and said my goodbyes, heading home immediately after. A few minutes after arriving home, she sent a text saying that she wanted to invite me up to sit and talk. I explained that I thought she was tired and that I simply wanted her to get some sleep, if that was the case. I apologized for my lack of awareness, and immediately felt like a fool. She said that she thought I wasn't interested in talking because I'd just parked and dropped her off. We both agreed to do a better job of of communicating in the future, and chalked it up to a miscommunication. For the next couple of weeks after this, I noticed that the communication dropped off considerably. What once were long discussions about all sorts of topics, became very short snippets. Last weekend, after she had said we'd get together, and then proceeded to not even send any further messages, I became quite angry with her. I haven't hard anything since. But Saturday into Sunday I was the angriest I'd been in a long time.

    I was seething. And I was finally feeling mad at her for putting me through all this emotional torture over the better part of the last year. I was calling her out for all of her shortcoming s in my mind. I was sure that she'd contact me, I'd tell her all about it. I was having imaginary dialogues with her in my head, bringing up everything she'd dome to upset me. All the times she'd disrespected not only my time, but my emotions. I was sick of myself for putting her on a pedestal for all this time. Sick of myself for ignoring her bad behavior, and thinking that I was somehow the cause of her disappearances. I was furious that I'd let myself be manipulate din such a way. And I was furious with her for treating me, the person that she claimed to want to foster a relationship with, as some disposable plaything, only valuable to her on her terms. As I allowed myself to feel utterly pissed off at her, and ruin my entire day as a result, I noticed that my neuropathy hadn't bothered me at all that day. Up to that point, I'd been too busy fuming to notice. But I kept paying attention to it, and it has barely returned. It's 99% better now that it was just a week ago. I still haven't heard from her. But with the success I'm having, she is the furthest thing from my mind right now. All this time I thought it was the loss of my friend, the loss of my father, the loss of my job, or the stress of moving that may have been the cause of this TMS. But now I realize that it was the experience of being toyed with emotionally that seems to have brought this all on. I'm struggling with the decision now of whether I should express my anger to her directly. I honestly know that a discussion needs to happen regarding her behavior. And I intend to have that discussion. I'm just not sure if I need to express my fury outright, or if expressing it internally is good enough for now. Either way, I think this is a huge step in the right direction. Maybe the next big step should be removing myself from this situation altogether, and stop being a doormat for someone who doesn't take my feelings into consideration.

    I didn't intend for this story to be so long. And I assure you, this is the condensed version, haha. But if this story can help someone else uncover something that they might be dealing with, I think it's worth the read. Thanks for listening. And best wishes to all of you.
  2. healingfromchronicpain

    healingfromchronicpain Well known member

    Thank you for sharing your story. Yes, sometimes the things we think are the causes of our pain may not necessarily be them. I had no idea that I had a repressed memory of a childhood trauma until I got to it through mindbody-based myofascial release bodywork. Once it came to my awareness and I was able to express emotions I’d bottled up for 3 decades, my pain dropped significantly.

    But I continue to have pain (albeit at much lower levels than before). And honestly I have struggled with getting rid of the remaining pain. So I often wonder what’s behind it, and wonder if it is (and assume it probably is) something I’m not aware of or haven’t thought of. I’ve done a lot of soul searching and think I’ve thought of everything, but who knows. And I’ve done extensive body work because I’ve found that it brings up my emotions on a physical level and gets me out of my thinking/analyzing brain, which is essentially a distraction for me. But still no final resolution of my pain.

    I’m so happy for you that you’ve acknowledged and released emotions and tension which have nearly eliminated your symptoms! And as far as whether or not to express your anger to her... I cannot say what would be best for you. Now that you’ve acknowledged it yourself maybe the anger has subsided and you can tell her in a calm way without accusing her or blaming her for anything. Just letting her know how you feel. You never know, she may have discovered why she behaves that way and might be able to explain that to you. Or maybe your telling her might prompt her to look more closely at herself and figure out what is driving her behavior.

    I’ve had a similar conundrum with confronting someone. I finally felt I had to confront him for my own sanity. I struggled though. Being a “goodist” makes it hard, but I had so much anger and many other emotions I needed to express I think. I’m still even struggling with it right now because I’ve written a memoir about my pain journey but still feel afraid and guilty about wanting to publish it, for fear of hurting this person (and and domino effect of others being affected as well). But my gut tells me to share my story, because maybe it can help others... but what about those it might hurt???? Ugh, such a struggle.

    And then I wonder if THIS conundrum is what is keeping my pain alive. Oh, so many questions! :)

    Sorry, I didn’t mean to turn this away from your post. I guess I just want to say thanks for sharing and go with your gut of whether or not to say anything to her. And once you make that decision, let it go and know you made the right decision for yourself. At least that’s what I’m telling myself :)

    Good luck!!
  3. BloodMoon

    BloodMoon Beloved Grand Eagle

    Just a thought, but I was reading (in the book 'John Sarno's Top 10 Healing Discoveries' by Steve Ozanich) that the presence of symptoms can be due to not enough soothers/soothing going on in one's life (to balance out the all the stuff in life that rubs us up the wrong way and makes us angry or whatever). As you've dug deeply and can't find any more things that have happened to you that could be continuing your pain, maybe doing even more self-soothing could help.
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2018
  4. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    I'd say this is a given.
    Unless you want your life to be an endless rehash of this post, TMS and all.
  5. EmQ

    EmQ New Member

    How do you do self-soothing?
  6. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

  7. EmQ

    EmQ New Member

    Thank you for the links for self-soothing.....I will put several of the suggestions into practice. I am struggling with accepting TMS 100 0/0 as my reason for pain, constipation and anxiety....I too have that little nagging voice in my head that says there has to be a physical reason for this....I read continually everything I can....accepting most of it....and believe me I want it to be true....I don't want to go down that rabbit hole of running from doctor to doctor getting a million different opinions......I've done that.....I even treated myself to visiting the only TMS doctor in New Jersey....who actually worked with Dr.Sarno....I'm not sure what it's going to take....
  8. JoeHealingTms

    JoeHealingTms Peer Supporter

    What Plum said. You do not need this kind of emotional rollercoaster. And if you have TMS, this will only be a nightmare. It would be as easy as just being honest with you and herself and telling her that you feel is better to just stay txt friends and nothing more. If this is the preamble, where everything is supposed to be 100% better, do not think for a minute that some magical bug is going to bite her and she is going to become what you want/need. As a man that have been on that situation, just let it go. There is plenty of fish on the sea.
    plum likes this.
  9. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    Don't worry sweetheart, most of us pass through a stage of this in the beginning because we are faced with both a paradigm-shift and a flood of information. Essentially time itself will be your best friend in this regard. It takes time to absorb and really understand TMS and then it takes patience to transform this knowledge into wisdom and healing.

    Be easy on yourself my dear. That is possibly the most important element of all.

    Plum x
  10. EmQ

    EmQ New Member

    I do believe you are right....and I am giving it my best effort! It is scary though to let go of long held beliefs and drift out into unchartered waters.....I have seen a psychologist a few times...not sure this is for me but one thing he did say that resonated was habits are very hard to break ....apparently my way of thinking and dealing with the world is deep seated
  11. Lizzy

    Lizzy Well known member


    You have had quite the adventure with this girl. I used to tell my son, there are damsels in distress and distressed damsels. One can only help a person with a specific problem, no one can fix someone's life.

    Habits are hard to break, but..... Instead of trying to stop old ways forgive yourself and work gently on new ways. It is easier to replace. Print up some of the things you've learned from authors and the people here and read them repeatedly, especially when your mind won't stop talking trash to you. Don't let what the therapist said be a nocebo! Take care.

    Last edited: Aug 9, 2018
    plum and BloodMoon like this.
  12. BloodMoon

    BloodMoon Beloved Grand Eagle

    Wow! Such a better approach/way of looking at the process imo. Thinking of it in this way made me instantly feel much lighter about it all. Thanks for posting this up; I've bookmarked it for myself :).
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2018
    Lizzy likes this.
  13. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    Darling girl, always, always focus on the good and the positive, and by this I mean the things that ring your bell/float your boat/make you feel like starting a revolution from your bed. It's the bad stuff, the negative emotions, the people-pleasing rather than pleasure-seeking that makes us 'ill'. Let yourself out.

    Plum xxx
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  14. BloodMoon

    BloodMoon Beloved Grand Eagle

    Thanks, Plum! - Will do :). It's been difficult to do new things in order to try to find out what 'floats my boat' as I've been pretty much housebound for many years, but following on from the savasana that you suggested, I took it a step further and also did some yoga nidra last night just before bed using the downloadable scripts from this kindle book https://www.amazon.co.uk/Daring-Rest-Reclaim-Power-Meditation/dp/1622039092/ref=pd_ybh_a_55?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1&refRID=51T8BX5TSTTP82037ZC8 ...and I slept like a log afterward. I awoke this morning feeling that I must do something creative...Not sure exactly what as yet, but perhaps during or after my next session it'll come to me. You're so encouraging - thank you :).
    plum likes this.
  15. mrmarker

    mrmarker New Member

    Thanks for all the info everyone. Unfortunately, I've had a bit of a relapse. It began yesterday. And it persists today. Although I've noticed that it comes and goes throughout the day. And it's nowhere near as bad as it's been in the past. Weird stuff. It's disappointing. But I have to try to keep reminding myself that I pretty much beat it for a couple of weeks. I can beat it again. Even if it's just for a couple of days or so at a time, at least it's not permanent. Logically, I can accept that. But it's a real challenge trying to make my brain fully grasp it. I'm back in the phase of monitoring my symptoms now and associating them with certain activities and body positions. Yet only a few days ago, I was barely thinking about any of it. I just want to finally break the cycle. If only a self-induced amnesia was an option. Imagine having no memory of your symptoms. I wonder then if they would still persist. I still think about symptoms I had almost a decade ago. But luckily, none have returned. This leads me to believe that after enough time of a symptom being gone, that we can still remember them and think about them without them manifesting again. The odd thing is, with my past symptoms, I was treated by MDs, physical therapists, chiros, etc. All things that Sarno would attribute to the placebo effect. Yet, eventually, without any knowledge of TMS, all these past symptoms ceased. Granted, they took years to resolve. And none seemed to be cured by any of my treatments. But I do find it interesting. Maybe it was just me finally deciding not to be hindered by them any longer that subconsciously brought the TMS pain and discomfort to a halt, even without knowing about the concept.

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