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Pain vs. Anxiety

Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by LindaRK, Mar 19, 2014.

  1. LindaRK

    LindaRK Well known member

    A new member just posted something similar to this - I'm on day 39. My pain has moved around during this time - it's definitely TMS. I've had it since 2006. At this time, it's pretty darn minimal. What has increased during the past 2-3 weeks is my anxiety. Yowee! I'm using the tools in my toolbox, getting back into mindfulness and meditation, journaling, doing my treadmill daily, but wow. I keep thinking that the child in me must be pretty uncomfortable with something right now to bring this much anxiety to the plate. My days seem consumed with monitoring my breathing .... ugh. I've had this before, but not this bad or this long. And, of course, my mind goes right to health issues, even though I just had my annual physical and everything is fine. I think the worst part of this is that I feel like I've come so far the past few months - feeling good physically, energetic, etc. and now this.

    What do you tell your child when feelings like this come up? I've been telling myself that "it's okay, I'm here for you, everything is going to be okay, I'm going to take care of you" ...... I just want this to be gone. Maybe that's the problem .... it's grown to be a sort of calendar thing. Any help would be greatly appreciated!
    Msunn likes this.
  2. joseph32

    joseph32 Peer Supporter

    I have had a similar issue. I have had chronic pain since 2006 and recently had a flare up in my lower back in October. The pain is now manageable and sometimes none at all. I even stopped pain medication 10 week ago after being on for 5 years. But, something that has come up and I never experienced was the anxiety. It was pretty brutal. It has been better and easier to deal with. I notice it in the morning and seems to be consistent for some time. It is like underlying anxiety and not anxiety attack. I just think its all part of this "wonderful" journey and I just float with waves. I continue to journal and meditate when necessary. I do like your affirmations. I hope it will ease up for you. Be patient and good to yourself. It would be good to hear of others that experienced this and their experience.
    LindaRK and Msunn like this.
  3. Msunn

    Msunn Well known member

    I've had the same experience Linda. I think anxiety could be considered part of the symptom imperative. I've been using a mediation called Soften Soothe and Allow which has helped a lot. I can give you a link if you are interested. It's free by the way. The Claire Weekes material is also great. you've probably looked that over. Other than that I just try to calm myself, say encouraging and positive things, and realize my anxiety is way out of proportion to the physical symptoms.

    The other thing that has helped me is realizing I may not be able to stop the initial anxiety but I don't have to add to it with secondary fear. In other words I don't have to be fearful or anxious about being anxious. I think some of this in my case, is primal, maybe even pre-verbal, since I grew up in a very dysfunctional family, so I'm trying to be very kind and nurturing to myself.
    All these things have been helping. it still comes up but not to the degree it had been before..

    This too will pass

    Take Care
    LindaRK and Ellen like this.
  4. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    Msunn, thanks for telling us about "Soften, Soothe, and Allow" meditation.
    I checked into it on google and here it is, for anyone looking for ways to meditate. I like it.

    Soften, Soothe and Allow
    Please find a comfortable position, close your eyes, and take three relaxing breaths. Place your hand on your heart for a few moments to remind yourself that you are in the room, and to bring kindness to yourself.
     Now let yourself recall a mild-moderately difficult situation that you are in right now, perhaps a health problem, stress in a relationship, or a loved one in pain. Do not choose a very difficult problem, or a trivial problem—choose a problem that can generate a little stress in your body when you think of it. Now clearly visualize the situation. Who was there? What was said? What happened?
     Now see if you can name the strongest emotion—a difficult emotion—associated with that situation: anger? sadness? grief? confusion? fear? longing? despair? Repeat the name of the emotion to yourself in a gentle, understanding voice, as if you were validating for a friend what he or she is feeling: “That’s longing.” “That’s grief.”
    Mindfulness of Emotion in the Body
     Now expand your awareness to your body as a whole.
     Recall the difficult situation again and scan your body for where you feel it the most. In your mind’s eye, sweep your body from head to toe, stopping where you can sense a little tension or discomfort.
     Now choose a single location in your body where the feeling expresses itself most strongly, perhaps as a point of muscle tension or an achy feeling, like a heartache.
     In your mind, incline gently toward that spot.
    Soften, Soothe, and Allow
     Soften into that location in your body. Let the muscles be soft without a requirement that they become soft, like simply applying heat to sore muscles. You can say, “soft…soft…soft…” quietly to yourself, to enhance the process. Remember that you are not trying to make the sensation go away—you are just being with them with loving awareness.
     If you wish, let yourself just soften around the edges, like around the edges of a pancake. No need to go all the way in.
     Soothe yourself for struggling in this way. Put your hand over your heart and feel your body breathe. Perhaps kind words arise in our mind, such as, “Oh my dear, this is such a painful experience. May I grow in ease and well-being.”
     If you wish, you can also direct kindness to the part of your body that is under stress by placing your hand in that place. It may help to think of your body as if it were the body of a beloved child. You can say kind words to yourself, or just repeat, “soothe…soothe…soothe.”
     Allow the discomfort to be there. Abandon the wish for the feeling to disappear. Let the discomfort come and go as it pleases, like a guest in your own home. You can repeat, “allow…allow…allow.”
     “Soften, soothe and allow.” “Soften, soothe and allow.” You can use these three words like a mantra, reminding yourself to incline with tenderness toward your suffering.
     If you experience too much discomfort with an emotion, stay with your breath until you feel better.
     Slowly open your eyes when you’re ready.
    LindaRK likes this.
  5. LindaRK

    LindaRK Well known member

    Thanks for your posts .... as odd as it may sound, it's actually comforting knowing others have or are experiencing this.

    Walt, thanks for this information - I just printed it out and will try it today.

    I only realized about 10-15 years ago that my mom was a hypochondriac and most likely had anxiety issues. Yesterday, my therapist basically said I "marinated" in all of this growing up and we discussed how to deal with it, among other things Thank you, mom ..... yet another legacy my parents have left me. Sometimes I wish I had something I could just plow my fist through and destroy. I think it would make me feel a little better and release some of this anger in a physical way. Don't worry - when I say "something", I don't mean a person. :) Throwing some china sounds pretty good to me.
  6. Msunn

    Msunn Well known member

    Your welcome Walt. I really appreciate your great advice and how you help so many here.

    You can also download or listen to the audio of that meditation on
    the website. I don't have a link handy,
    I'm away from home maybe you could post it when you get a chance.
  7. Ellen

    Ellen Beloved Grand Eagle

    Msunn likes this.
  8. Msunn

    Msunn Well known member

    Thanks Ellen!
  9. LindaRK

    LindaRK Well known member

    Thanks, Ellen!
  10. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    Ellen is always on top of things. What a great team we have!

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