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Letter to My TMS

Discussion in 'Structured Educational Program' started by Ellen, Sep 6, 2013.

  1. Ellen

    Ellen Beloved Grand Eagle

    A week or so ago, Forest posted a video of his interview with Andrew Miller, MFTI, in which he discussed giving his clients the assignment of writing a letter to their TMS. It sounded interesting to me so I thought I'd give it a try.

    Dear TMS,

    I know we’ve been together a very long time. We’ve met a lot of people (doctors, alternative healers, therapists); tried a lot of gadgets, potions, and pills; and blown through a whole lot of money along the way. But mostly we’ve spent a great deal of time alone together—home sick from work; sometimes shut in on beautiful days; and all those sleepless nights just lying awake in bed. I know, I know, there have been some good times, too, however short-lived—those times we thought we’d found “the cure” and those brief, heady, hopeful days when it really did seem to help. Oh, and those first few weeks after being prescribed pain medication—quite nice, actually—like living on a cloud. And that time I was able to use you as an excuse to not attend my family reunion—well, I will always be thankful to you for that.

    But, my dear TMS, I feel it’s time for us to go our separate ways and move on with our lives. It’s not you—it’s me. I know you have tried really hard to be a great defense mechanism and distract me from all those painful repressed emotions and childhood traumas. I know you have always been there for me and have only been doing it to protect me from myself (or selves). And you have done a wonderful job, dear. You’ve been so great at coming up with new and novel methods to distract me when the old ones seemed to be losing their impact. I am in awe of your creativity, tenacity, and genius. Like that time we spent a week in Paris, but never made it out at night to see the City of Lights due to pain and fatigue—impressive, really. Who else could pull that off but you?

    But, the problem is, my dear, I’m on to you. I have seen behind the curtain and am no longer dazzled by your wizardry. Your tricks and sleight of hand—how you can move symptoms around and even completely change diagnoses and disease classifications in a few days—well, it just doesn’t do anything for me anymore.

    Yes, I’m the one who has changed. I know you think it’s because of all those new books I’ve been reading and those new friends I’ve been hanging out with on the TMS Forum. And I know you blame them and that new therapist I’ve been seeing for tearing us apart. But no, TMS, you mustn’t blame them. I take full responsibility for this decision to break up with you. It’s because I’ve grown in a new direction and I’m ready for a change. I truly think I can live my life without you now. And, really, it will be best for both of us—you’ll see. Just give it time.

    Now I know we’ll likely run into each other from time to time. Old habits are hard to break and we both hang out in the same places. But please understand if I don’t stick around and talk when I see you. It’s not that I’m angry or resentful. I appreciate everything you have taught me—really I do. But I need to move on now. There is an entire unchartered, wild and wonderful world out there, and I’m intent on exploring it.

    Au revoir,
    Forest, Lavender, angelic333 and 6 others like this.
  2. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    Ellen, this is pure genius.

    As I read, I felt a presence at my shoulder. Of course my own little djinn of pain pricked up it's tiny ears as my inner voice gave sound to your words, and now it is all big eyes and astonishment.

    'Can this be true?' its gaze says.

    "Well I'm sorry poppet, but it is. You've relished the limelight for too long. Oh dear tms, you suddenly look rather fragile and old..."

    Honestly Ellen, your wonderfully inspirational writing just made my day.
    angelic333 and Rinkey like this.
  3. Ellen

    Ellen Beloved Grand Eagle

    And you just made mine, dear Plum.

    Thanks for your kind words.
    angelic333 and Rinkey like this.
  4. PeoplePleaser1

    PeoplePleaser1 New Member

    Awesome letter, Ellen! I have been struggling with the power to "break up" with my TMS bc it has fueled my work/life for so long! It's like a drug that I don't how to live without...I've gotten quite used to it. But your letter really helped. Some great thoughts and good writing. :)
    Rinkey and Ellen like this.
  5. Anne Walker

    Anne Walker Beloved Grand Eagle

    Ellen, this letter was great!! Even in the most dysfunctional relationship there is something soothing in the familiarity. I know what life with TMS looks like, but I have a hard time picturing what it will look like after the break up. I remember so many times feeling envious of people who wake up and happily go about their day without navigating the obstacle course of pain, discomfort, fear and anxiety. Oh, I managed to get a whole lot done but not without a lot of internal drama and struggle.
    NolaGal, Rinkey and Ellen like this.
  6. Rinkey

    Rinkey Peer Supporter

    Fantastic letter!!!
    Ellen likes this.
  7. NolaGal

    NolaGal Peer Supporter

    I love this SO much!!
    Ellen likes this.
  8. mousemom

    mousemom Peer Supporter

    Love it! I read aloud to myself because it fits everything that I would want to say to my TMS. I just might have to bookmark this one. Thanks!
    Ellen likes this.
  9. Colly

    Colly Beloved Grand Eagle

    Think I'll print this off and stick it on my wall! Ellen you are a gem:)
    Ellen likes this.
  10. winterhaven123

    winterhaven123 Peer Supporter

    Ellen The best I have heard. & am still working on the downloads you have sent Me. I know as myself you have been struggling for a long time. I wish I was as clever as you I really admire your strength & your positive self. thanks for allowing Me to being able to read that. Beautifully said. Judy
    Forest and Ellen like this.

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