1. Our TMS drop-in chat is today (Saturday) from 3:00 PM - 4:00 PM Eastern U.S.(New York) Daylight Time. It's a great way to get quick and interactive peer support. Celayne is today's host. Click here for more info or just look for the red flag on the menu bar at 3pm Eastern (now US Daylight Time).
    Dismiss Notice
  2. Alan has completed the new Pain Recovery Program. To read or share it, use this updated link: https://www.tmswiki.org/forum/painrecovery/
    Dismiss Notice

Day 1 Living with it

Discussion in 'Structured Educational Program' started by Cara, Jul 18, 2016.

  1. Cara

    Cara Peer Supporter

    I'm probably about 95% accepting of the diagnosis. I think all of the repetition in Healing Back Pain, although it was panned on Amazon and Goodreads a couple of times, is very helpful. So many other people have stories like mine and GOT BETTER. Plus, as the doctor on the John Stossel clip mentioned, I don't have anything to lose. I've been to a chiropractor, a PT, and a neurosurgeon. None of them have better ideas. I wouldn't be neglecting a recommended course of treatment. I've tried them. They didn't get rid of the pain. I'm tired of thinking about my back all of the time. Whatever it is my brain is repressing cannot be worse. Besides, I want to LIVE my life. I don't want to not feel my emotions!! And I want to be able to play and exercise and put away dishes.... My only thoughts about suicide (never that I should do it, just that it exists) have been when my back is making me feel like my life is worthless. It's not living in the way I want to live.

    I recently made an appointment with a pain doctor. The appointment is in August. Hopefully I can cancel it. I was ready to accept that having a deteriorated disc bewteen L5 and S1 meant I was going to have to find a way to live with physical pain. According to Sarno, such a medical condition is a "normal abnormality." Most people have it! No one else I know is in this much pain, or pain this often. I know dozen of people my age or older who run multiple marathons a year. They may have the same condition. I do know people who have back pain every so often. Then they move on and go back to life. I think I've trained myself to be afraid of the pain because of my history with it.

    In my vision of my new world, if this is all TMS, I start to feel better before school starts. I get there by reading constantly to remind myself of what TMS is and how to handle it. In September, I sign up for a Fundamentals of Yoga class and do that, even though my chronic pain started the day I took a power yoga class. Sarno says to fully beat TMS you have to do whatever physical exercise you've been avoiding. Then I'm going to try some half-hour runs. I imagine that some pain will come back because I've spent so long thinking that was what made me hurt. I will acknowledge, again, that my mind is a powerful and sometimes misguided thing, fix the pain that way, and try again. Every so often, the pain will recur, and I will go back and redo some TMS exercises.

    My understanding of my own case of TMS is that it probably isn't because of some traumatic childhood experience as much as it is because of my personality. I have impossibly high expectations of myself. I like to be perfect. I like to be admired. I don't want to make others angry or hurt. I can believe, then, that all of that perfectionism is a problem. When I took cognitive therapy (which I had to quit because I couldn't sit for an hour because of back pain), I learned that that was the case. I can try to learn meditation. I probably won't be a new person though. Hence, I am going to be a TMS patient "in remission" even when I feel better. (See how positive my talk is there? I said "when" and not "if"!) I can live with that knowledge. I mean really live.
  2. Gigi

    Gigi Well known member

    Hi Cara, and welcome to the forum! I too had an L5-S1 diagnosis. It had been called Degenerative Disk Disease, as well as other things. I recovered from the TMS pain about 20 years ago, and flare ups of my former back pain are very rare. I've had many other types of TMS pain over the years, but the process for dealing with it all is basically the same.
    You seem to have grasped the concepts pretty readily. I'd encourage you to work your way through the SEP. Read the success stories, journal, try all sorts of things to see what works for you. You can DO this!!
    Cara likes this.
  3. Cara

    Cara Peer Supporter

    Thank you!! Hearing that you had the same diagnosis and took care of it gives me great hope and courage.

Share This Page