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on the brink, last try

Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by eskimoeskimo, Sep 13, 2016.

  1. eskimoeskimo

    eskimoeskimo Well known member

    TMS healing has not worked for me. I feel worse than ever before. This is my last appeal. Does anyone have any ideas for getting unstuck?
  2. honeybear424

    honeybear424 Well known member

    Have you journaled the JournalSpeak way as Nicole Sachs teaches at her YouTube channel The Cure for Chronic Pain?
  3. eskimoeskimo

    eskimoeskimo Well known member

    Looking into it now
  4. honeybear424

    honeybear424 Well known member

    I, too, had been EXTREMELY frustrated, but I believe wholeheartedly in TMS healing. Then I found her videos one night when she first started posting them. I watched them in order and began the journaling the next day. I still listen regularly to encourage me while I do the work. I have done plenty of journaling, but this approach has given me renewed hope. Maybe it can do the same for you.
  5. eskimoeskimo

    eskimoeskimo Well known member

    honeybear, I thought that you had already healed? Is that not so? Please don't take this as personally directed at you, just general frustration: I get so anxious when I find out that people who have 'healed' turn out to have continuing struggles or are stuck at 80% or w/e. I just don't know what to believe any more !

    Wishing you well
  6. honeybear424

    honeybear424 Well known member

    No, I have not. Honestly, I feel so embarrassed to say that because I have been around so long, but it is what it is. I was doing better, but there has been a lot of turmoil and a state of limbo in my life for the past 2 1/2 years and things have ramped up.

    No one said this was going to be a quick fix. I saw this a couple of weeks ago and it was encouraging. As is what I am doing with the JournalSpeak.

  7. eskimoeskimo

    eskimoeskimo Well known member

    I'm in the same boat honeybear, been here for ages. Really trying to evaluate if it's the place for me.
  8. honeybear424

    honeybear424 Well known member

    What are our other options, Eskimo? What else is there?

    I am the TMS personality to the nth degree. I have tons of conflicting feelings about my parents and other family members and lots of stress. Doctors never find anything wrong with me. The TMS diagnosis is the only thing that fits. So I am persistent and WILL NOT GIVE UP.
    Lily Rose likes this.
  9. eskimoeskimo

    eskimoeskimo Well known member

    I don't know what my other options are, which is why I'm panicking. This thing where TMS healing requires full surrender, full belief, full commitment... scares me. That's the kind of 'reasoning' that cults rely on. And it puts the onus on me. If I'm not getting better, it's now my fault. "Then answer's there if only you'd fully commit... if only you'd fully hear what it's saying." I feel guilty putting this stuff out there because I don't want to inspire other people to jump ship, but I'm sure other people struggle with these same feelings. We won't get anywhere by denying them. Have I only jumped on board TMS because it's the only program telling me that I can get better? Sure I fit the TMS personality, but doesn't everyone? We're all stressed.
  10. honeybear424

    honeybear424 Well known member

    I understand your frustration. Believe me, you are not alone. All of the things you are saying, though, now that's the stuff I'd be JournalSpeaking about. Just let it rip, like Nicole says.

    I watch a lot of Dr. Gabor Mate talks and have read his books. Are you familiar with him? I believe he and Dr. Sarno are saying the very same thing. I love to listen to him speak, same as how I love to listen to Dr. Sarno.

    And I meditate daily...have for the past five years. I sit in silence and accept whatever arises. I'm learning to be my own best friend, to love an accept myself and all of my emotions. I listen regularly to Pema Chodron and Tara Brach. I practice mindfulmess throughout my day more and more.

    And now I'm journaling in this intense way, doing to inner work. Persistence is key. This is not work for the faint of heart.
    westb likes this.
  11. eskimoeskimo

    eskimoeskimo Well known member

    Thanks honeybear. Let's both turn the corner
  12. honeybear424

    honeybear424 Well known member

    Yes, let's. :)

    One last thing I should mention...

    I know this round of journaling the JournalSpeak way is different. It is doing something. I am accessing the emotions at a deeper level than ever before. It is a process, though, as Nicole says. The increase in symptoms is the brain's way of desperately trying to continue to do what it has been doing all these years to protect me. I'm going to give it my best shot...and practice lots of self-compassion along the way!
    eskimoeskimo likes this.
  13. eskimoeskimo

    eskimoeskimo Well known member

    I'd welcome anything different at the moment. Looking forward to it.
  14. Steve J.

    Steve J. Well known member

    I completely understand this. I consider myself a largely skeptical, even cynical person...but the thing with TMS theory is that, when it comes down to it, it is the only one that actually makes sense. As far as I'm concerned, Dr. Sarno was a conventional physician. He certainly considered himself as such. This work is not as far out of line with 'mainstream', or 'conventional' medicine as society makes it out to be. It's just that the mainstream has gone so far along the wrong direction. That's just a fact.

    And yes, of course we all experience stress. But believe me when I tell you that not all of us fall under the TMS umbrella the same way. Many people truly do not give a shit about others, about being a good person, nor do they put immense pressure on themselves to achieve in a world in which it seems like the deck is stacked against us. And the degrees to which we all react to life unhealthily varies so greatly from person to person, which is why healing is so vastly different for everybody. I'm sure that you have many times over, but look at the success stories out there--look at the TMS wall of victory testimonials on YouTube. These are genuine, intelligent, heartfelt, authentic people. You are just like them.

    And nobody is saying that slow healing, or even zero progress (which I doubt is actually the case) is in any way "your fault." That is nonsense that your tired mind is grasping at to give you the scaries. Healing is not about trying to heal, nor is it about consciously ignoring pain. It is, above all, about complete, 24/7 acceptance...and this is often a minute to minute endeavor. This is not blind faith, or placing trust in some 'cult-like' deity. This is about having faith in ourselves, in our potential, in our fucking spirit! This is trusting that safety in an unsafe world is difficult, but possible, and even transcendental. We must know deep, deep down that we are safe and healthy. Otherwise we will be neither.

    When I recovered it was because I did nothing. I didn't think about the pain. It just. Eventually. Went. Away. It seems insane, impossible, out of reach...I know. But it isn't. You're going to do fucking do this.

    I can feel your impatience and frustration and panic from here, Eskimo, and we're on opposite sides of the country. I am struggling as well. Hang in there. We are here for you.

    Wishing you peace today, my friend.

    Last edited: Sep 14, 2016
    JanAtheCPA, Lily Rose, TG957 and 6 others like this.
  15. Tennis Tom

    Tennis Tom Beloved Grand Eagle

    "TMS healing" is a misnomer, TMS is a psychosomatic defense mechanism that is part of the human condition. As long as there are life situations that cause rage and anger that need to be repressed symptoms will persist until the emotional situations are addressed. If you're not sure what the stressful life situations are look at the Rahe-Holme List of Stressors.
  16. Boston Redsox

    Boston Redsox Well Known Member

    I have experienced the top 4 of those on that list and still going threw a couple so my rage and anger pot is over spilling ...
    Tennis Tom and honeybear424 like this.
  17. eskimoeskimo

    eskimoeskimo Well known member


    Thank you. You got right to the heart of the trickiest bugs in my software. I've gone so long without success that doubt grows and grows. It's a thing in and of itself now. I can't always even pin it down to a specific doubt, though I cited some nagging ones above. Skepticism was my first word.

    I do generate a lot of fear and resentment when Sarno and Weekes basically say to do the things and feel the things you're most afraid of doing and feeling and, if it's not working, do them more. And more. It's tough to throw all your coins in the pot that seems most dangerous. And being asked to do so triggers my doubt-radar. There's an element of faith in there that I can't swallow.

    "When I recovered it was because I did nothing. I didn't think about the pain. It just. Eventually. Went. Away. It seems insane, impossible, out of reach...I know. But it isn't. You're going to do fucking do this."

    ^^^ Now this resonates with me. The less I do, the less I think about it, the more I try to engage with the rest of the world, the less it hurts. But the pain is always still there in the background, lurking. So then I try to do the 'work.' But how can one dive into journaling and confronting fears etc etc without giving it more power, more attention? I've upped my journaling, my commitment to sitting with the pain instead of avoiding it, etc over the last few weeks. And, well, you can sense the state I'm in. Keep going or back off?

    In a way, I already healed once by 'taking' option three. It used to be my upper back, but my preoccupation with my neck became so great that the upper back pain faded into the background. Now my upper back never really bothers me.

    Thanks again Steve, you've helped me a great deal this morning.

    Wishing you peace as well! I hope today brings you a big fat dose of... nothing!

  18. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    Eskimo, I am delighted Steve's words have helped you. He is a shining light and I hold him dear. His advice is classic Wu Wei, the art of doing nothing. That is what I did by leaving the forum for two years. I did nothing but enjoy sleeping and then I embraced swimming which is a childhood love.

    Having been exactly where you are I understand the frustrations but you don't recover by doing more of what doesn't work.

    When I suggested calming this is essentially what I meant. All the doing, journalling harder, fighting triggers...is bullshit that ramps pain. Calm your nervous system down first and then the rest follows.

    Life is a great adventure in holding close all you love and letting go of the rest.
    MWsunin12, Lily Rose and eskimoeskimo like this.
  19. Steve J.

    Steve J. Well known member

    "All the doing, journalling harder, fighting triggers...is bullshit that ramps pain. Calm your nervous system system down first and then the rest follows."

    Plum Wei is spot on.

    Oh, and that little "healing" that you've encountered...the shift of pain from your upper back to your neck? Do not dismiss this, eskimo. This is so encouraging.

    I'm psyched I was able to help you out this morning. Being a source of support has turned out to be a great boon in my attitude towards my own "relapse."

    Lily Rose and eskimoeskimo like this.
  20. TG957

    TG957 Beloved Grand Eagle

    Folks, if I could throw my two cents in. It is a very interesting debate on the very heart (or the "trickiest bug in our software") of why we all are here, stuck to various degrees with TMS.

    It is in human nature to obsess, to focus, to worry, to fear. Those who were luckily born on a different side of the spectrum, who live in a moment, worry only about what happens today, not saving a buck for the future, not thinking about saying a wrong or offensive word, not feeling a hormonal rush of panic over things that may never happen anyway - they live their lives mostly pain free but facing other problems that we may never encounter.

    TMSers do not know how to not obsess, hence we obsess with our pains and our fears, which obviously inhibits the recovery.

    About 3-4 months into my journey I realized that despite Sarno's reassurances that I would not need to change my lifestyle in order to recover and live a happy life, I still need to change my lifestyle. For a reason that is very simple: I have no clue how to be happy in my life. If things are good, I start worrying that they will get worse. If things are bad, I worry that they will never get better or would get even worse.

    If I am always worried, I can't heal from doing nothing. If I could, I would have recovered 7 months ago, upon my first round through Sarno's book. My struggles in the last few months have been about finding a balance between not thinking about TMS and just doing things despite TMS versus doing the same very things obsessively in order to overcome TMS. It is all about the intent that we put into our actions. If our intent is about living in the moment and enjoying those few symptom-free minutes without anxious thought that those minutes would not last long - we will heal. If we continue worrying that symptoms will re-appear - we will not.

    Zillion times did I declare myself fear-free, only to find few minutes later that I am still a slave to my fears. A true TMS-er, I would chew myself up for fearing, for not recovering soon enough, for doing too little, for doing too much.

    The truth is that we all are very different. We should not compare ourselves to others and use other's timelines as a benchmark or to even have a timeline of our own. It is not a competitive sport, it is a personal journey. It is all about how we arrive on conquering our fears and obsessions. The path could be through ignoring pain or through relaxing until it goes away, or through journaling or through crying our sorrows out on the shoulder of a TMS psychologist - but it is only when we learn how to let our fear, anxiety and worry pass through our system without disturbing our inner peace - we will reach the destination point.

    On my way, I finally started to understand Buddhism as a lifestyle. The more I enjoy meditation as a process of its own, not as a task from the recovery book, the more I feel improvements in my symptoms. The more I learn how to relax into just being, just watching the surface of the pool on a sunny day, just swimming for the pleasure of swimming and not for the purpose of recovering - the better I do.

    I had one day last week about 70% symptom-free - for the first time since last December! Interesting enough that it was on my backpacking trip in the mountains which is the only activity in life that I seem to truly enjoy. Of course, this day was preceded by a day of severe pains in my feet and followed by two days of bad spasms in hands and insomnia, but I had a happy day!

    I wonder if I get to the point that I no longer care about whether I have the damn symptoms or not - may be then I will recover?
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2016

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