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Making progress several months in

Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by Dee, Nov 9, 2012.

  1. Dee

    Dee New Member

    Hello: I'm new to posting on the forum, but have been reading it for a few weeks now. I have found it incredibly helpful, so thank you to everyone who contributes. I wanted to write because I read Sarno's books back in February. I am 36 years old and have suffered from chronic back pain, shoulder pain and knee pain for about 10 years now, after leading a very active lifestyle. I have had every diagnosis in the book, but they've never found anything on an MRI, etc. I had knee surgery almost two years ago and am now convinced that it was a total waste of time and money. After reading Sarno's books, my back pain has virtually disappeared, and I have become much more active. I have been jogging for the first time in 8 years. I have been doing yoga for the first time in three years. I have been riding my bike pain free. But my shoulder pain has really amped up (original diagnosis 10 years ago was an inflamed bursa), and I've had a hard time fighting it - and I think I've had a hard time convincing myself that it's emotional and not physical for some reason. In the past few weeks, I have vowed to really work on it and get past the conditioning and programming that is causing me pain while I sit at my desk all day at work. This was a big week for me. I rejoined the gym after I dropped my membership nearly a year ago. I had gone to Spin class at this time last year and I left that class in extreme pain. My doctor at the time told me that I have too small of a frame to ride Spin bikes (I'm 5'3 and petite, but I don't consider myself to be that much out of the ordinary in terms of size). She said they weren't built for people my size and that I was in pain because everything was out of alignment, etc. I was crushed. Over the past 10 years, I've been gradually cut off of physical activities for various reasons fed to me by doctors and PTs: I'm too small; my pelvis is out of alignment; I'm not built for running; I have hypermobility syndrome, so I can't control my body in space; I can't do yoga or pilates because I'm misaligned and I'll use the wrong muscles and my core is weak; I can't play softball because of the inflamed bursa in my shoulder that was diagnosed 10 years ago; etc. etc. etc. This week, I decided I'm officially done with this. I rejoined the gym and I went to Spin class - TWICE!! My back did not hurt at all during the classes. I actually found myself in tears while I was on the bike out of a combination of fear and feeling liberated because I was on the bike again despite what that doctor told me. The fear stems from all of those things the doctors have told me and the fear that the pain would come back as a result. But I vowed to keep pushing through and not let the pain intimidate me and I went back for a second class last night. I also took Zumba class this week. I absolutely love dance classes, but was told at one point that I should not be doing them because of the way I'm built. My knee also feels fine despite these difficult workouts. Today, my shoulder is bothering me again, despite the fact that it's been much quieter in recent weeks since I started reading the forums and really focusing on journaling when the pain acts up and telling myself that it's all programmed. I know that I am repressing a lot of emotions. I fit Sarno's TMS personality description perfectly. I'm a perfectionist who doesn't like to cry, etc. I worry all the time, etc. I have a long way to go in terms of dealing with my repressed emotions and I am working very hard on this. Thanks to this forum, I bought Dr. Schubiner's book and about 6 chapters in. I have been putting the puzzle pieces together for the past few months on my own. His workbook is helping me see it all on paper. I guess I'm writing on this forum to just say thanks. And I want others who have had similar issues to know that they're not alone. I have made a lot of progress and I have learned an incredible amount about myself and all of the factors that have contributed to my pain over the years - and now - that I was completely oblivious to. I feel like this is changing me as a person for the better, but I still have a long way to go and this will be a constant challenge for me. The fact that I am sitting in my chair at work typing this with no back pain is almost mind boggling. I've suffered every day for so long. The final hurdle is to cut off the programming related to my shoulder pain. It's extremely frustrating. I feel like joining the gym again and taking these classes that really challenge my body will help hammer home the message to my brain that I'm not going to take this any more and I'm not going to be fearful any more. Would be interested to hear similar stories. Thanks again for listening!
    Lala and veronica73 like this.
  2. veronica73

    veronica73 Well known member

    Dee, it sounds like you are doing great! Welcome to the forum :)
  3. honeybear424

    honeybear424 Well known member

    Glad to hear of your success. Good for you! You are definitely doing the right thing by challenging what the doctors have told you. I practice yoga regularly and I can't believe you were told that you couldn't do yoga or pilates because you are "misaligned". That sounds crazy to me. Keep pushing on! :)
  4. Stella

    Stella Well known member

    I too have ALL the personality traits. I am working the Structured Education program. I am making progress. I am going to get better. Now I am trying to connect my emotions to my pain.... not so easy. But I will figure it out in time. You will figure it out too.
  5. Ricky32

    Ricky32 New Member

    Just felt like sharing my story. Over the years, I had developed a real bad stomach because of my faulty eating habits. After 15 years of a gruelling marketing job that kept me on my toes, I discovered that severe indigestion had taken roots in my system and my stamina had suffered a lot. The Doctor advised me to consume boiled and such other light stuff only. It was then that I came to learn about a secret panacea that cured me and will certainly work in any similar case also.
    I included some yoga & breathing techniques in my daily schedule and it was the start of a journey to achieve a harmonious bond between the body and the mind. With yoga postures, the body felt light and flexible.
    Inhaling deep breaths and exhaling for a longer time, resulted in a real peaceful state of mind. My metabolism returned to a perfect state. I had been maintaining a balance of Yoga and aerobic workouts on my exercise bike. Now, I keep pushing my stamina ahead with my sessions in the spinning class regularly. My body guides me about what is good and what is not for my system. I learnt to listen to the signals my body provides. In short, Yoga made me alert and aware in the real sense.
  6. Lala

    Lala Well known member

    sounds like you are kicking some but...i say rejoin that gym and work your ass off...get in the best shape of your life....you can click on people to read their stories and also check out the "success stories on this forum." I too have suffered for many years and am now winning!
  7. Beach-Girl

    Beach-Girl Well known member

    Welcome Dee;

    Your story is inspirational. Perhaps more yoga and meditation will connect the dots for you - so you'll kick the shoulder pain. Thank you for sharing your story.

  8. Lori

    Lori Well known member

    Hmmm, 5'3"--that's a pretty normal height and I can't believe a doc told you bikes weren't built for someone your size! sounds like she didn't know what else to say. We have spin classes here and petite and tall people ride the bikes just fine!

    Thanks for sharing your progress. You too can be pain-free!
  9. Dee

    Dee New Member

    Thanks, everyone! I have now been taking Spin classes for about a month and I feel great - just out of shape :) I am meeting with a yoga consultant tomorrow to find out what type of yoga is best for me. We have a great yoga center down the block from us. I told the consultant I'm looking for a type of yoga that can help calm the mind and educate me on meditation/breathing. I don't necessarily need fitness yoga. I need something that helps me deal with my racing thoughts and generally anxious personality. I've taken yoga before, but I always looked at it as a fitness vehicle. I've never really gotten the mind-body aspect of it. So I want to find the right class this time around and work on quieting things down a bit. I've also taken Zumba class several times. It's all going very well. I feel more confident in my physical abilities every week. I think I'm on the right track.

    Also, I went home to Indiana (I live in Minnesota) to visit my family for Thanksgiving. Unfortunately, my grandma passed away two days before Thanksgiving. A lot of my pain stems from the death of my mom nearly 8 years ago from breast cancer. I already dread going home for the holidays because it's just not the same. Then I had to deal with grandma's funeral on top of that - and seeing family and friends I haven't seen in eight years since mom's funeral. I knew it was going to be an emotional battle for me and it was, especially considering my family is very stoic and unemotional, which is why I have such a hard time showing my emotions and have been conditioned to be this way my whole life. But I am learning to let emotions out versus pushing them away. It's tough for me to do, but I am trying really hard to face my emotions rather than run from them. I was fearful that my pain would act up again, and it did a little bit. But I think it was minor compared to what it would have been if I hadn't been doing all of the work I've been doing for the past 10 months. When my back or shoulder hurt, I wasn't afraid or sad about it. I could point to all of the stressors associated with being home for the holiday and grandma's funeral as the real culprit and the pain would go away.
    Beach-Girl likes this.
  10. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    For everyone who is perfection stressed...

    My Favorite Prayer
    Fr. Robert J. Spitzer, S.J., Ph.D

    The prayer I've probably spoke about most frequently is: "Thy will be done." I've found that this prayer brings God's peace and calm and enables us to move beyond attachments and fear by letting go into God's providential hands.

    His peace and calm are essential to the freedom to see myself as I really am. I don't have to be the Messiah, I don't have to be the greatest, I don't have to be an ultimate, and I don't have to make other people think that I am, because God is at the center of my universe, and God is taking care of what I cannot do for myself. When people confront me and ask, "Spitzer, how worthy are you?" I can simply respond, "As worthy as God wants me to be, and I suppose that's enough." I don't have to worry about being more worthy. I certainly don't have to worry about being most worthy.

    "Thy will be done" does not vitiate my desire to make contributions when it brings peace and calm. It frees it to see clearly what is true and what is false, what is worthy of pursuit and what is not, what will lead to life and what will lead to death. Peace does not kill zeal; it purifies it. Calm does not enervate; it energizes.

    The peace of which I speak does not come from an absence of pressure or fear. It is a peace filled with Truth that is so grounding, I no longer need to trumpet my success, to build my myth, or to garner other's approval of it. "Thy will be done," said at the beginning of the day and frequently throughout the day, is God’s peace filled with grounding Truth, energizing me to contribute, befriend, achieve, compete, and create."

    veronica73 likes this.
  11. Explorer

    Explorer Well known member


    Welcome to the forum! I agree with Lara, join the gym and really go at it. I recently rejoined my gym after a year off. My TMS started years ago but became extreme in June. I feel great hitting the gym now. I focus on how strong and healthy my body is as being present and visualization is a HUGE part of my recovery.

    I used to take spin as well and one of the instructors was less than 5 feet tall. I remember she would joke about it.

    Sorry to hear about your grandmother. Very sad.

    Walt - I love the prayer.....


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