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Muscle spasms and fear

Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by Timbercat, Nov 28, 2017.

  1. Timbercat

    Timbercat Well known member

    I have been on this forum since September dealing with back and leg pain and most recently vertigo. I have had some weeks when I felt like I was making progress and other times, like now, when I have prayed for God to please ease the pain somewhat or just call me home because I cannot stand it anymore. I would never take my own life but if God decided to, well thats different. I am listening to Claire Weeks. And trying to just let the fear and pain not consume me. I have some success (short term) but I am waking up in a panic - daily. I have gone from sleeping thru 9 hr to waking up 3 times during the night. I cannot get out and do much outside of the house and any perceived threat to my independence is a huge fear. All of this pain and extra fear set in Thanksgiving evening and has not let up. Lots of low back pain and muscle spasm both upper legs. I can hardly wAlk again. I do not know what triggered it. I will have a skype session thursday with my therapist. In the meantime, please help me with some words of wisdom.
     
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  2. Click#7

    Click#7 Well known member

    If no one has found anything structural wrong than you need to keep focused....go to a pain doctor to get something to take the edge off. Dr. Sarno had no problem with that. At least to get some sleep 'eh ? Dear Timbercat I am in the same boat as you and I think we are all here to support each other. I think sleep is essential to slow the monkey chatter in our brains. Take some melatonin at night and some sleepy time tea. In the morning take a nice hot shower and then eat. Try some youtube meditation. TMS is truly painful and I can relate to the max. God bless you and I will say a prayer for you tonight. Say one for me too ?
     
  3. Timbercat

    Timbercat Well known member

     
  4. Timbercat

    Timbercat Well known member

    Click#
    Thank u for your reply and suggestions. I will try meditations. I will think about u tonight and definitely send a prayer for u.
     
  5. JoeHealingTms

    JoeHealingTms Peer Supporter


    What you did in Thanksgiving evening? Did you have some time with family members? Try to recall what you were doing or thinking the moment right before the pain started. If you had family conflicts or Thanksgiving day bring some memory or event from the past to you, that might be the trigger and it will make easier for you to recognize what feeling is behind the trigger(anger, sadness,frustration, anxiety??) Many times it is conscious anxiety, from your personality. If there are things that bother you and you realized them in thanksgiving day, that might be the cause. Let us know so we can better help you.
     
  6. Timbercat

    Timbercat Well known member

    Joe Healing
    Last Thanksgiving 2016, I was already having significant back pain and had been through all the tests and seen all the specialists with no relief...so I was really discouraged. In the evening last Thanksgiving, I developed even more pain on my right side - I could not even touch it let alone anyone else. I thought it was my back but it turned out to be my gall bladder which was removed in Jan 2017. I was remembering back to that night this Thanksgiving evening and trying to assure myself that was last year...not this year. I also was getting scared because I have had episodes of atrial fibrillation - 5 to be exact - and some of these have happened on days the family has gathered together : Valentine's Day, 4th of July, a couple of early December hospital admissions - 5 admissions over 5 years usually just overnight until I get back into regular rhythm. Everytime that has happened, it has been so frightening...and I have felt angry and alone as I am either driven to the hospital or go in an ambulance. It actually is making angry right now to write this. I have journaled about it many times. It is a scarey diagnosis to live with because u never know when it will happen. Those are the thoughts that were in my mind this Thanksgiving...very fearful. Then I actually worried about lifting a 15# turkey in and out of the refrigerator several times trying to defrost it. Yet 15# is well within what I can lift. But my brain wants to blame something on the turkey! I am just in such a fearful place again and would give anything to have even the pain level I had 7-10 days ago. I now have lowback pain which comes around my riń£ht side - and leg spasms - in both groin/thigh muscles. That is where I am and I need to find my way out of this. Thank you if you got this far.
     
  7. JoeHealingTms

    JoeHealingTms Peer Supporter

    Ok. First thing is to separate a different physical issue from tms in terms of origin. You had not mention the atrial fibrillation before so that have to be really cleared out first before dealing it as tms. How did you get this a fib diagnosed? What type of tests? Did you get more than one test and more than one opinion from at least 2 cardiologists or did you just went to an ER and they came with this diagnosis? This should be properly tested and confirmed by more than one testing method. If you really have afib then that part of your diagnosis should be treated by a medical doctor, beside your tms. Does your tms doctor knows about this afib and how you got it diagnosed? Now, could you have tms beside the afib and your afib getting worse because of tms?? It is possible, so that is why you have to rule out any heart medical condition first before going into a tms treatment. Any treatment that gets your stress down will make your heart and your general health good, but IF your afib was not properly diagnosed by more than a simple EKG, then you might be acting on fears and causing you the irregular heart beats. Panic attacks can trigger rapid heart beats, but the ORIGIN of where the irregular hearts beats are coming from need to be addressed first. I can not stress that enough.

    Now, if what you have is really tms, then you just mentioned a lot of triggers. You mentioned you have multiple fears and also anger, that goes without saying that fear by itself can cause internal rage. There is one term that I dont remember if I read it on Sarno's books or somewhere else but it is called "anniversary" pains. They normally happen at the same date that you have some traumatic event before, even if you are not consciously reminding yourself about it. Learned pain pathways from previous physical incidents or accidents can be reused by your brain in tms to distract you from the feelings that are causing the tms reaction. Now, you mentioned a self triggered episode -

    "I was remembering back to that night this Thanksgiving evening and trying to assure myself that was last year...not this year. I also was getting scared because I have had episodes of atrial fibrillation - 5 to be exact - and some of these have happened on days the family has gathered together : Valentine's Day, 4th of July, a couple of early December hospital admissions - 5 admissions over 5 years usually just overnight until I get back into regular rhythm"

    So basically you were running back your own little horror show in your mind using all the data from the last year, in an environment in which you were surrounded by (family?). So maybe, in some way you resent your family not paying attention to you and your brain is triggering an episode in which the people who is around you will give you their complete attention??? -----" Everytime that has happened, it has been so frightening...and I have felt angry and alone as I am either driven to the hospital(by family?) or go in an ambulance. "----- So let me see if I understand. You are in a situation surrounded with family, then you get an episode and when they call the ambulance you seem to be alone all the way to the hospital, and you get angry and alone because none of your family went with you in the ambulance or even to the hospital, is this what is happening??? Or you meant that you feel alone in your situation because no one else understand the pain you are going thru???? Both these situations create what you are feeling, but you have to sort out if your brain is causing the situation to distract you from something deeper that is bothering you in your subconscious or in the back of your mind.

    "But my brain wants to blame something on the turkey!"--- There you go. You are recognizing the method your brain is using to create pain and that is good, because as long as you recognize it is your brain causing the mayhem, you can use this same though to treat the tms.

    Although Sarno books aim toward getting rid of tms without placebos ( because we tend to create dependency of them), I will recommend you that you buy (after clearing completely by more than one cardiologist your heart diagnosis if you have not done so) a TENS unit. Since TMS works using your own nervous system to create trigger points and spasms on your muscles, this could be helpful in at least bringing your pain down to a level that you can relax and concentrate on the tms mind approach. There are multiple units that you can google and even the most basic one will help you . These are electrical machines with 2 to 4 electrodes that create electrical impulses at a frequency that interacts with the frequency of your muscles. It feels like a massage but they also help because the electrical impulse from the machine blocks the pain electrical impulse from your muscles. Some internet companies requires a doctor prescription for these machines and some others dont, but your regular family doctor or physician can give you a prescription. These machines start like at 40 dollars up to 200 dollars, but the most basic one will help. This is NOT a cure, but a way to bring your pain down and be able to relax and do the exercises necessary to decrease your anxiety. Also, some insurance companies cover for these machines depending on your medical history of pain and your insurance coverage.

    Another thing is that I see, is that many people come here and do part of the program or only journal when they are in pain. The tms programs are NOT a pill. They require constant repetition and learning because what we are doing is nothing less than reconditioning and retraining our brain from past learned behavior and trains of though that create the anxiety that brings the symptoms forward. Have you completed both programs in an orderly fashion or you just come and journal when you feel bad? Have you read Sarno's books completely and then re-read them until you internalize ALL of the concepts? It took me almost 3 years of re reading and listening to the books to fight my mind into believing that this was truly tms, and that was after more than 10 years of medical tests and records and more than 20 specialists having seen me. It is not that tms is difficult to understand, it is that we are creatures of routine and disbelief. One of the things that Jesus told repeatedly on the Bible to the 12 guys that were following Him and seeing the miracles every day was that, even seeing the miracles and experiencing them , they did not believe. That is exactly how hardheaded we as human beings are. I would say that sometimes we behave like human (beans),...LOL. So if you have not done so, organize your mind according to the 2 programs here and follow them to the T. Read and re- read the books and internalize what they say by feeling your pain in a relaxed state, and with your eyes closed, contemplate how your body and mind connection works. Only when you reach that point will you start to gain control. Your aim should not be to have no pain, but to see and feel how the mechanism that creates the pain works. When your brain realizes that you have uncovered its method, the pain will go down and eventually disappear. Wishing you peace and health.
     
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2017
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  8. Timbercat

    Timbercat Well known member

     
  9. Timbercat

    Timbercat Well known member

    JoeHealing
    I have to thank you for your analysis and detailed reply. First re the a-fib: yes, I have been to 3 cardiologists and I have had not only serial EKG's but echocardiograms and stress tests. I am followed regularly by my cardiologist and thankfully staying in normal rhythm. I think u make a good point about my family. Generally it has been my brother-in-law who has taken me to the hospital. He only stays a few minutes and then leaves so I always talked my way through the event by cell phone with my sister. She doesnt drive and never came with me. She will literally stay on the phone with me all night but just isnt inclined to show up. The ambulance ride was in the middle of a blizzard so no one could very easily drive. All of those cardiac admits were frightening and I felt very alone. I guess I havent processed it yet.
    I understand the concept of "anniversary" pain even though I never heard that term before. I can feel my body trying to slip back into pain pathways from last year and from this past spring.
    I would very much consider a TENS unit. PT has used this on me, and it felt great even though it doesnt solve the real issue.
    I completed the Pain Recovery Program and 3 weeks of SEP. I stopped because I didnt know what to do with the issues that were coming up in the journalling. That is when I contacted PPC and connected with a counsellor by skype. I just felt stuck. You have helped me re-think a few things. I am very grateful for your response and suggestions. Have you been able to heal and not relapse? I hope so! I wish you good health as well.
     
  10. Click#7

    Click#7 Well known member

    Wow I want you as my therapist LOL.
     
  11. JoeHealingTms

    JoeHealingTms Peer Supporter

    If I can be of support or any help just PM me. Sharing what I have learned might help others, and also help me to affirm the diagnosis.
     
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  12. JoeHealingTms

    JoeHealingTms Peer Supporter

    I have been on that hospital situation a few times before, alone just like you and yes it can be frightetning. To the point that one day I gave up and said to myself " If I am going to die here, well , let it be. " -- It was actually liberating, because the fear went away. It was like telling the symptoms " you want to mess me up? Common do it." That was when I realized that this was not going to kill me. Like you I also have a heart condition that the doctors told me that is not dangerous now but I have to monitor every few years, so I know the protocol of all those tests. The funny thing is that no cardiologist believe that stress alone can do any of this, but I read a few good books written by other doctor that bring forward evidence that stress directly affect our hearts. Most cardiologist wont accept it because the stress lowering methods does not sell statins, which are a really big business for big pharma.

    The issues that are coming in the journaling are to be felt in a safe enviroment, and some others to just be taken out loud when they have been repressed. You dont have to do anything else. The thing is to get to the full recognition of the mechanism of tms. When you face an old fear or sadness, and when you realize what it did to you and what it does now, you have the connection. For example, you face an episode of rejection when you were a child. You re-live the moment and then feel again that someone neglected or rejected you. That is your inner child in your subconcious which is feeling it, and now you can consciously feel it again but this time you know you are safe. You now can analyze that maybe it was just your perception of rejection at that moment or that your parents were not as good as communicating as you wanted them to be. Now you can soothe your inner child yourself, and tell her that you are ok now and that you are safe, and that you are going to love yourself and not allow yourself to feel that rejection again. Now your brain have no power to activate that pain that was coming because of that particular feeling of rejection, because you have faced it and neutralized the fear and sadness and the rage. You faced what your brain was trying to shield you from, so there is no point in bringing that pain again. The thing is that,.. you probably dont have just a single incident in your childhood and development, but a lot of them. And your perception of how you were being treated is what stored that feeling in your subconcious. You have to learn to let things go, because mostly what will activate these things now that you are an adult, is your personality, which is conscious all the time.

    I suggest that you continue the program where you left off and continue journaling. Journaling is to take things out of you. Do not pay attention to your grammar when journaling. Just write what comes out of your mind and dont try to push it into a particular direction. This will help for you to get out what is bothering you at the moment, which is most of the times what triggers the episode. Sometimes your past will come to your mind as well, because when we experience during any day a "shadow" of a negative feeling we had before under a particular situation, it activates the tms mechanism. It can be something that happened 20 minutes or 20 years ago. That is irrelevant. The idea is to recognize where it came from and to know that after facing it, it is not necessary to keep considering the situation or bad feeling that came because of that situation.

    Regarding my healing, most of my healing have not relapsed, at least not to the point of before, where it will completely cripple me. Now I can recognize when a pain or sympton is tms, and that not always take the pain away, but it takes the ANXIETY away, which is what makes the pain feel 10 times worst than what it really is. After some time of knowing where it comes from and ignoring it, it goes away. The funny thing is that the brain immediately try to bring other symptoms and it is almost a joke. It is like a child trying to play a trick on you. I do get certain light symptoms, but now I stop what would otherwise be a very bad episode in its tracks by using the relaxation and recognition methods.

    Most important,.. REMEMBER TO BREATH. When people get anxious, the first thing that happens is that the muscles of the neck, back and chest spasm, and people stop breathing properly,which makes them feel like they are going to die, which brings more ANXIETY, which again brings a bigger muscle spams, high blood pressure>>> ad nauseum, and the next thing is that you provoked yourself a heart related episode. This can happen in people that have no heart conditions at all. Breath deeply and slowly. There is a book( people is tired of me recommending it), that is called the genie within --google it--, and it have specific exercises to relax yourself into alpha mode and from there it is easier to reprogram your subconcious and relax your muscles. I highly reccommend it as part of your healing program. Many people here recommend "Unlearn your pain" , but I have not read it so I can not say how good it is. I hope all this help you in some way. Keep doing your journaling, relax yourself by the method that better suits you, and from that relaxation reconsider all these points. I am sure they will effect a positive change in you.
     
    Last edited: Nov 30, 2017
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  13. Timbercat

    Timbercat Well known member

     
  14. Timbercat

    Timbercat Well known member

    Joe Healing,
    Once again, I want to thank you for taking time to respond so thoughtfully. Today I did continue on in sep and did some journaling on my own. From this forum I have gathered quite a few suggestions for books to read, and so I look forward to working my way thru those. I can identify what I'm afraid of or what I'm angry about. And Steve O says to ask yourself why you are afraid or angry. So I' ve been trying to do that too. Now what?? Still in a lot of pain . Sometimes I cant understand why after I've put my time and heart and effort into this journaling process
    - the pain does not get better. Everyone who has been successful on this forum says the pain will get better. And so I will keep on trying to heal.
    And BTW, I couldn't agree with you more re stress and heart conditions
    . I think physicians should be asking about stress levels before they ask anything else. They won't because they don't know what to do about it. But a huge factor in any heart condition in my book. Best of luck to you and many thanks.
     
  15. JoeHealingTms

    JoeHealingTms Peer Supporter

    So, you asked yourself, but did you find why? Once you know why, you can direct your effort at dealing consciously with your personality traits that makes you be afraid or angry, and then modify your perception to make yourself less sensitive to them. You seem to feel that journaling is hard, because you consider that time and heart and effort put into it will be a waste if the pain just do not go magically away after journaling. Remember; the journaling , the relaxing exercises, the meditation, it is all part of taking out of yourself what loads your brain and feelings, and it is aimed at relaxing you. You need this relaxation for the pain to start to go away, because the pain is because of mild oxygen deprivation to your muscles which causes muscles spasms, as Sarno explains in the books. That is why I told you that the point is not to not have any pain, but to relax WHILE you are in pain and explore from a relaxed mind standpoint how the pain moves in you. If you get to do this you will "see" that most of your pain is anxiety driven, and that when that anxiety goes down, your whole body also relaxes and the pain comes down. Part of bringing that anxiety down is relaxing using meditation and then when you reach a point that pain is less, ignore the pain. It wont happen instantly so do not get discouraged and keep the journaling without putting so much effort into it. It should be an exercise to relax, not to worry or stress over it. Do not journal thinking that at the end of your journaling you will be pain free. Think more like when you finish journaling your mind will be at ease. If your pain is no much that you can not even get to relax a little bit, use some placebos at first, like the TENS machine I recommended, or maybe a very low dose anti anxiety pill that your doctor can safely prescribe you. Then as you can get to relaxation by meditating use less of the placebos until you can get to a point of not needing them at all.
     
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  16. Click#7

    Click#7 Well known member

    JHT..what is your story ? If you have a PDF file on "the genie within"...could you send it to me ?
     
  17. JoeHealingTms

    JoeHealingTms Peer Supporter


    I never had posted my whole story here, but I had posted a lot of bit and pieces in my posts. To resume it in a pin head, I had multiple symptoms and was involved in a lot of struggles for more than 15 years. It involved a back incident and then a car accident and them multiple stressful life situations that were ongoing. I also had a difficult upbringing and a dysfunctional family, including divorce of my parents when I was a child, and the resulting fight for the "prize" between my mother and father about who would keep us. Maybe I could write several books about all these some day,...lol. The thing is that after both incidents that I mentioned before, the TMS seem to have exploded in me. I had the first of what would be multiple crippling episodes that had multiple symptoms. It felt like a heart attack, it felt like dying, it felt many wrong things at the same time. I went thru the downward spiral of medicine. Hundreds of tests all this time. More than 20 specialists including at least 3 neurologists, 2 neurosurgeons, countless pain management physicians, therapy, more therapy and after that then more therapy, trigger point injections, alternate healing methods, multiple diets, ad never ending, until I hit a wall. About 3 years ago I read Sarno, but did not entertain it. I could not believe it, so I continue reading but not with the hope that it would do anything. After a few years o analyzing it, digesting it and finally believing it, I started to see changes. My pain and problems have lowered about 70-90%. There is a residual pain that I been dealing with, but I know exactly why I have it. Someday I will post my whole story with details, but I really do not have time now. To answer your other question, yes I do have a pdf copy of the book. PM me where I can send it to you and I will. Hope this helps. Joe.
     
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  18. Timbercat

    Timbercat Well known member

     
  19. Timbercat

    Timbercat Well known member

    OK Joe, I am going to try your suggestions with the journaling and relaxation. I thank u for your explanations. I'll let u know how it goes.
     
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