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My Story - Hope it helps someone

Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by Alancolorado, Jan 30, 2018.

  1. Alancolorado

    Alancolorado New Member

    My TMS story

    I am new to the forum and writing my story to possibly help someone just like so many others have helped me on this site. At this point I don’t have a question but I may as my journey continues.

    I realized I had TMS back in October of 2017 but then back tracked and realized I have had it for many years. For years I had pain that would come and go and be quite painful for long period of times. Knee pain for 6 months, foot pain for a few months. Insomnia for 15 years and even dandruff out of nowhere that couldn’t be treated. The two major issues I have had was pain in both elbows and hip/groin/front leg pain. These are the two I would like to focus on.

    Background - I am 48 years old very successful (in business) and have been working out hard 6 days a week for 15 plus years. I suffered through all the pains described above but two years ago I suffered from terrible “tennis elbow” first in one arm then the other. My son would call it pizza elbow as I could lift 100 pounds over my head but couldn’t lift a piece of pizza to my mouth cause of the angle of my elbow. Got all the usual diagnosis and treatments. Ice, heat, massage, foam roller, took time off, etc. nothing worked at all. Two years and was just my life. Then one day it was gone (literally one day) in both elbows it was just gone. Clearly was the happiest person ever.

    Was a great few months of pain free elbows and I didn’t care about knee or foot issues . Then last august I got the worst back spasms I could ever imagine. Didn’t do anything just happened. Couldn’t sit for long periods of time, and hurt to stand after sitting. All the usual conditions. After a few weeks of no relief I heard Howard stern talk about Dr. Sarno and the process began like it has for so many of us. It made sense I knew it was me and the pain was 90 percent gone in a week then all gone in 2 more weeks. Another month or so past and felt great. Then out of nowhere pain in my groin hip and leg appeared and made my back spasms seem like a treat. For the first two weeks out of panic and fear I forgot everything I read about TMS and went back to common treatments. Chiropractor, massage, and finally an orthopedist. He did the X-ray and then MRI. While we waited a week for the MRI results I happen to read Steve O The great pain deception and it helped but wasn’t ready to fully believe. During that week I was prescribed Codine, Tramadol, muscle relaxers, etc. I was now counting on them to manage my day. The MRI results day came and it was all the bad news at once. Disc issues L4 L5 S1, narrowing of the spine, joint damage, etc. talks of Epidural shots started and I didn’t hear much else for those 10 minutes. My mind jumped to my new life of pain and no fitness. But something happened at that 10 minute mark, I realized that it was good news not bad news. Dr. Sarno talked about ruling out tumor, cancer, etc and that the abnormalities were normal. I ignored the rest of his advice left his office and stopped everything. I quit all traditional remedies to “fix” my problems that day. The next day I was 50 percent better and within two weeks I was 95 percent better. Would have a flair up but then gone in a few minutes.

    Another two months passed and that leads us to today. I am on day 2 of the exact same groin/hip/leg pain that came back while pushing myself in the gym. I am immediately turning my attention to what is going on emotionally vs last time running to the doctor. Bad news is it hurts like hell. Good news is I am more educated and think this will produce quicker results. Last time I waited 3 weeks to exercise again from fear. This time as soon as I can walk at 80 percent going back to activities as i have no fear just pain. I will keep this post updated in hopes in helps someone.

    ***update two days later. Again posting just to help if someone could possible feel better from this.

    I had a relapse yesterday where I was a beyond 10 pain. Those who have had it know what I am talking about. That brings me to the family support topic. While my family cares deeply they don’t believe in TMS they are trying to convince me of all the normal treatments (who can blame them). Anyway went to ER last night and they gave me a shot of Toredol and a shot of a steroid. Also two Valium (must admit that part was great). Got me back to a 5 pain and slept for 10 hours finally. Then gave me the standard medicine (muscle relaxes, codine and Valium for as needed). Took it for one day and didn’t really help much and made me feel like I was back to the old beliefs. So I decided to go back to my TMS beliefs asap and stopped taking them today and walked 3 miles though the trails by my house. Hurt like hell for first 10 minutes but then spoke to my brain and realized people with major injuries can’t do what I am doing. And then really enjoyed the last couple of miles. Going to do my best to stay off the pills today if possible and if it hurts bad. Walk! Also have an appointment next week with a mind body therapist here in colorado. If these updates are useful I will keep posting every few days or with new activities. Keep believing. Alan
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2018
    MindBodyPT, Khris, Jules and 3 others like this.
  2. Alancolorado

    Alancolorado New Member

    **** update another two days later. Was a hard two days with lots of pain even with the pain meds from the ER. I had my appointment with the highly recommended orthopedist yesterday. Those of you who fight TMS know how hard it is to go back to a doctor when you are trying to believe there is nothing structurally wrong with you. Took an X-ray of my hip and showed the usual ball not fitting into the socket which is the usual explanation of the pain. He also thought could be more back related so he called in his spine guy to look as well. Bottom line. They admit that it could be either, none or both (which I appreciated since the last docs were so quick to say you need to have something done). They decided to talk more next week and call me with thoughts. Something interesting happened tho last night and today. I never had a hip exam, never saw an x-ray and since I saw the “issue” with my hip on the x-ray my pain is now 90 percent hip and 10 percent groin/leg. That actually made me feel better about TMS than anything. I had a rough night last night but decided I have to get back to the gym (took 6 days off) so I did. I had a great workout and was in less pain than I have been all week. I worked out smart which means went hard but not stupid. As soon as I sat down when I got home the pain went from the 2 back to a 7/8 which is another TMS sign. It’s a great day here in colorado so plan on walking my dog a few miles to see how that goes. Hoping these updates help people. Lastly, my email is alansteinco@gmail.com if anybody has a question or needs support. We are in this together. Alan
  3. Andy Bayliss

    Andy Bayliss TMS Coach & Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi Alan,
    You are a TMS pilgram, doing the real work of exploring, addressing doubts the best you can, and experimenting. You'll become more and more confident in time, and in the future the TMS will not catch you as firmly or as believably. I am sure your experience and insights are helpful for others.
    Andy B
  4. Lainey

    Lainey Well known member

    took an X-ray of my hip and showed the usual ball not fitting into the socket which is the usual explanation of the pain. He also thought could be more back related so he called in his spine guy to look as well. Bottom line. They admit that it could be either, none or both (which I appreciated since the last docs were so quick to say you need to have something done).

    This is the same issue that I am dealing with in my hip/thigh (deteriorated cartilage and bone issues) as well as disc issues L4/l5 being dislocated (spondylothesis). I am buoyed by your attitude and willingness to try to work through the pain.

    I cannot walk well and would have great difficulty even walking my dog around the block. At this point in time the pain I have is mostly located in my thigh, lots of cracking/clicking and lots of soreness. I have just recently started a runners exercise to help alleviate the apparent tightened muscles/tendons in the thigh and this is helping. My disc problem causes no pain at this time, and my actual hip pain is superseded by the thigh pain. I refuse to take tramadol (created terrible intestinal issues 6 years ago) and also found it is not easy to stop (it IS addictive). Your return to the gym and working 'smart' gives me incentive to return to my pool exercises. I had stopped going when my pain became too chronic and hurt so badly. This pain was following some emotional traumas I had gone through for a couple years prior. I also see a masseuse skilled in myofacial release, chi nei tsang, and cranial sacral techniques. This is helping, but slowly.

    Also, families/spouses, etc, have difficulty in buying into this. We are schooled in the medical model and to stray from this makes many uneasy. Give them the names or websites of some of the current docs that are actually helping patients with the TMS protocols. This may ease them into acceptance.

    So, thanks for posting. Keep us informed of your progress.

  5. Lainey

    Lainey Well known member

  6. Lainey

    Lainey Well known member

    My response above was meant to reply to Alancolorado's posts.
  7. Alancolorado

    Alancolorado New Member

    Hi Lainey thank you for your reply/comments and so sorry for your pain. Our pain is in such similar spots right now. I can’t pretend to know how hard it is dealing for so long. I wish you luck on some exercise and the pool sounds great. I too got off the Toredol asap as didnt like the feeling and heard similar issues. I went to bed last night with such hope of a better day today. I woke up with a level 6 pain (which we know isn’t that bad compared to the reallly bad ones) but decided to go to the gym again. Wasn’t as fun as yesterday but I did it and I didnt feel any worse after (felt slightly better during some parts). I am choosing to take that as a victory that it was a day of circulation and life and didnt get worse believing my structural abnormalities are just normal. Thanks for the advice on trying to bring family friends into the process with websites/books etc. Lastly, the picture of your dog in your avatar is almost identical to my dog Roxi who we lost last summer. Just seeing that picture put me in a good mood. Thanks again. Alan
    Lainey likes this.
  8. Lainey

    Lainey Well known member

    Yes, she's a good dog. standard poodle. Very loving, affectionate and sensitive. She is adored.
  9. Alancolorado

    Alancolorado New Member

    Hi all. Been about a week now so figured I would update the post. Again just hoping it either gives someone hope or just not to feel alone. As I mentioned last week. I decided to get back to the gym and walking the dog. I do both everyday. Does it hurt at times it sure does. But I am never any worse after or the next day which tends to put my mind at ease that I am not broken. One day I tracked my steps and logged 19k steps that day and no new pain (about the same as the day before). I have also turned my attention to restful mind. I journaled everyday, found a TMS therapist (about 40 min away) here in denver and do other things to relax my mind. For example, the other day I was so cold so I decided to use a heating pad on my back but I told my self it wasn’t trying to heal my back but trying to relax my mind and really felt great. That was important to me to associate the heat to relax not the actual pain since I don’t believe that heat fixes me. I did quit all the prescription medications as discussed (anti inflammatory, muscle relaxers, pain killers, etc). However, I noticed others share the same struggle with daily usage of Tylenol or Advil or Alieve. I am also in the camp that some times these can help take the edge off a really bad day so I also take them from time to time. No idea if they work or its the placebo of them working (not sure I care at that moment). my biggest issue still is sleeping as I have either insomnia from some kind of stress or the pain wakes me up or both. Trying not to stress and just live my days the same. Hope anybody reading this has a better day than yesterday. Alan
    Lainey likes this.
  10. Lainey

    Lainey Well known member

    Thanks for your post. Your post resonates with me. It seems I am on a similar track as you. Some use of the over-the counter meds, sometimes using ice or heat, or whatever to ease into comfort. Trying to continue my life as normally as possible.
    Let us know how it goes with the TMS therapist.
    Best to you.
  11. Alancolorado

    Alancolorado New Member

    Hi all it has been almost 90 days since I posted or even been on the TMS site. All of my pain is now gone. Just like above i am only telling my story on the chance it can give someone hope. You can read the details above but the worst of my pain started last august and completely went away in early April. I am back to full speed workouts, playing golf very often and living my life. Like everybody on this website I tried everything that either didnt work of gave me brief relief but returned shortly. Nothing helped me till I made the commitment to just stop focusing on it (trust me I know how hard that is, I couldn’t even sit at one point). Stop focusing on it for me meant, back to all activity even the things that scared me in the gym, no more reading books on pain, no more YouTube videos, no more telling friends and family I was in pain, no more doctors, massages, you name it I stopped it. The only thing I did is take Tylenol when the pain got so bad I couldn’t even move. I probably took Tylenol 2-3 times a day for 2 months. Then went to once a day then none. There was no plan just told myself that it wasn’t to heal me but give me relief so I can get back to life. I had a flair up here or there after I felt better for the first few weeks but didnt pay much attention to it since I know it is TMS (since I am a true believer). So why am I back on the site writing today? All of you have been on my mind for the past month or so and just hoped that reading this could give someone hope. I realize that everyone’s pain is different and my story may not be applicable to most but was hoping a small paragraph could help just one person. I hope everyone’s tomorrow is better than today and if anyone has a question on my story but wants to be private feel free to email me at alansteinco@gmail.com. Thanks Alan
    TG957, eskimoeskimo, HattieNC and 3 others like this.
  12. Lainey

    Lainey Well known member

    Thank you Alancolorado
    Your story is inspirational. I am buoyed by your recovery. Grateful for your sharing. I will let you know when my recovery has come full circle.
    Enjoy your CO summer!

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