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I want to get the life I dreamed I could one day have

Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by Will_Make_It, May 12, 2022.

  1. Will_Make_It

    Will_Make_It New Member

    Hey guys, I'm a 26 year old male living in the U.S. Ever since I graduated college, I've suddenly had all these quasi-orthopedic issues. When I was 22, was convinced I had ulnar nerve issues as my fingers would go numb for a while but that resolved on its own. I also at that point accidentally "cracked" my back while reaching down to grab something. As soon as I heard that noise, I felt like something was wrong and that was the genesis of my back pain. Also earlier after graduating college after weightlifting, I felt a sharp pain as I was bench pressing which was supposedly an impingement. After many months of physical therapy did nothing, in July 2019 I had shoulder surgery for it. It felt like it helped but I still had twinges of pain every once in a while. Interestingly this never coincided with the times I had back pain (more on that later). So here I was at 23 with a bum shoulder and back pain, so much to looking forward to post-college life.

    Fast forward to Dec 2020, I was passed up for promotion while one of my colleagues who started with me was promoted. I didn't realize the significance of this but literally the week later my hands started to kill me (thought it was RSI). When I tried to do pullups a little while earlier, it also hurt my elbow (golfer's elbow). And somehow all the typing caused tennis elbow. So now here i was at the ripe age of 24 with a bum shoulder, back pain, tennis elbow, golfers elbow and RSI. Add to that someone getting pains in both sides of my wrist (some doctor said it was tendonitis) and one hand having 'mild carpel tunnel'.

    This continued for a month while I frantically searched for information as to why this was happening. I was lucky to stumble upon a blog by some guy who said his RSI disappeared after reading a book. What book? The Mindbody Prescription. It was almost too good to be true. But what did I have to lose? I bought and read the book cover to cover several times. I read the success stories. I fit the Sarno type perfectly, overachiever all the way (graduated top of my class in HS and then went to a top 25 college etc) and felt I had to be perfect.

    Over the course of several months, various pains started ebbing and flowing. I remembered conversations with doctors in the past who said "hey the MRI shows you have a bulging disc but that might not be the cause of your pain" - what? If that's not the cause of my pain, then why do I have pain? I remember my dentist saying stress was causing my tooth to ache. Why would my mental state cause that? My new MRIs for the elbows and hands showed 0 abnormalities! How could I have pain? These things + reading the Success Stories + re-reading the book amazingly cured me! God helped me find a way out by directing me to Sarno, I will ever be grateful to him for what's he's done for all of us. Literally all of my pains went away, from both sides of my wrists to both sides of my elbows to my hands (pain and carpel tunnel) as did my back pain and everything else. It was incredible!

    Sadly story doesn't end there. I decided to begin weightlifting again now that I knew I could but after a few weeks I woke up at 6am on Saturday with this intense pain in my stomach. What? If it was weightlifting, why didn't it hurt my when I did the exercise? After weeks of taking it easy, a doctor said it was chostochondritis and that he himself had it for a while back in college and his HS daughter had it recently as well but that it goes away. It reminded me heavily of what Sarno discussed in the book of fibromyalgia -- it was some kind of inflammation but science couldn't point to a cause. Once I knew this and became suspicious of the pain, this went away as well.

    Now I am again trying to lift and I feel I have injured my shoulder / elbows. Easy to say TMS but here's the quandary. When my elbows hurt, I was doing triceps pushdowns and they ache. Yet oddly while they ache I can't even identify the medical form of tendonitis. It's not tennis elbow or golfer's elbow as that would hurt at two specific points on my arm (which are both fine), it's just a general ache. My shoulder also aches a bit after doing certain excercises (the one I had surgery on). What I'm puzzled about is whether this is TMS or if my form is crappy and it's actually an injury.

    I'm not worried about living with this pain forever. I know that if it lasts more than a month it is TMS and it'll go away. Here's what I worried about. I'm on the border of overweight and I've never had great self esteem. I feel weightlfiting is my only way out to get a body to be proud of & find a girlfriend. I am 26 and I feel I'm getting older every year and losing the chance to have relationships and have a family (which I'd like to do by my early 30s). I've always been fairly shy. It is causing an enormous amount of subsconcious stress and some conscious. I'm afraid of dying alone. While my parents and friends love me, I worry I won't find romantic love. I worry that I'm overwieght and not attractive. I worry that everyone else is moving on with their lives but I am stuck. I see wieghtlifting as the ticket out of this, if I get a body I'm proud of (both for my self confidence and for dating) I know I can take these next steps. But I'm sick and tired of all of these injuries holding me back over and over. I have the resolve, but it feels my body isn't letting me.

    All of these reasons could cause TMS but I'm also not sure if I'm messing up my form weightlifting. Please tell me if anyone has similar experiences and thank you all so much in advance
    Square Pemulis likes this.
  2. hecate105

    hecate105 Beloved Grand Eagle

    Ever thought of loving yourself as you are?!
    If a partner is worth having they will love you as you are - not just a gym bunny .....
    Value yourself and also value others....
    Value the internal beauty, the honesty, sense of humour and kindness of others.... Aim to develop these yourself - this will lead you to the right people... One day you meet your lobster...!
    Balsa11 likes this.
  3. Andy Bayliss

    Andy Bayliss TMS Coach & Beloved Grand Eagle


    Welcome. I agree with hecate105 that part of this would be addressed if you had more love for your precious self, just the way you are.

    It also seems that your mind=body has put you in a bind, which feels TMSy to me. "I need this, but I can't get it because..." TMS tends to go where we put pressure or to symptoms which get us deeply. Like the musician who can't play the guitar, etc. So that is evidence for TMS in my opinion. But it never hurts to simply treat as something physical and let it heal, and as you said, you'll know it is TMS if it becomes chronic by your past experiences.

    Just not pressuring yourself to achieve or to become xy or z might really be nice. If you don't act out the pressures with the weight lifting routines, then you have to deal with the fears and thoughts which hit you, which you describe. Self compassion might go a long way here. Empathy for your thoughts and fears, and seeing the pressure you put on yourself... Really feeling the fears of how your life might work out, journaling about this too, might help you have more kindness to yourself.

    Good luck in this work and keep posting and checking in.

  4. Barb1k

    Barb1k New Member

    I know many examples of people who have an average body or are overweight, but who are successful in relationships because they love themselves, they feel pleasure and they are confident
  5. Cece

    Cece Newcomer

    I have a similar experience with being a bit more curvy. My TMS manifested in my legs.

    It's awesome how much success you have had already and I agree with the comments above that there is so much to be gained by finding more acceptance for your body. It sucks to hear that though.

    It would be interesting to examine where you learned that you need to look a certain way especially for romantic partners. Do you feel like you have nothing to offer but your body, do you want to be show cased? And if something would ever happen and you wouldn't have weightlifting anymore, and your romantic partner would leave you for that, would you really want to be with that person? Do you feel attracted to more fit persons and think they won't accept you the way you are?

    And last but not least people have different preferences. Some prefer chubby, I can tell you that for sure.

    Self-compassion and kindness are a turn-on.
  6. Will_Make_It

    Will_Make_It New Member

    Hey guys -- thank you all for the wonderfiul advice and support. Turns out that this 'injury' healed, it was almost certainly TMS. The thing is if I don't lift, then I am pretty much TMS free all the time. Lifting though for whatever reason -- I guess because of the real injuries I've had from it -- seems to trigger TMS for whatever reason

    I'm glad I can live a happy, pain free life without TMS by just not lifting, but I really do want to lift. Something I'll have to figure out

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