1. Alan has completed the new Pain Recovery Program. To read or share it, use this updated link: https://www.tmswiki.org/forum/painrecovery/
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Day 1 post on Day 8

Discussion in 'Structured Educational Program' started by Celia, Nov 10, 2016.

  1. Celia

    Celia Newcomer


    this is my first post though I am at day 8. It took a while to have my account proved.

    So I would like to start with an introduction.
    Hello! I am Celia and I have chronic pain!
    I am 30 years old, and I started having problems with my lower back 5 years ago. That was the time when I started a PhD abroad (new environment, new culture, new language, new position, new boss, new relationship, new challenges). At first, it was just tensed muscles at my lower back. I thought it is due to too much sitting and stress so I started to go to a gym. The pain was in and out of my life, mostly just annoying at the beginning, but the pain attacks started to be more and more frequent. Visiting doctor was not helping at all, prescribing some pain killer and physio was the medical "solution".
    A year later (2013) I ended up in the hospital because of unbearable pain in lower back and in left leg, there was no accident nor wrong movement. The pain was just developing by working in the lab in one afternoon and I could walk home just like a penguin. I was diagnosed with disc herniation. 2 weeks hospital pain therapy, some physio after, slow recovery process. 3 months later a wrong movement (standing up from a chair) and the pain was back again together with the fear. I had to go to the hospital again because I could not deal with the pain at home. This time after the pain treatment in the hospital I was able to enroll to a 4- week intensive rehab program, which helped to recover almost perfectly. A whole year without any series issue, of course, I continued my back exercises and was super careful all the time. However, one day on my bike the terrible pain started again, focusing on the left leg. Again hospital and rehab... This time after a new MRI showing bigger herniation, 8 weeks taking morphine and consulting with 2 different spine surgeons and still being in pain, I decided for a surgery. It worked for me. I needed a couple of months, but my life was back on track. I made some huge changes in my life, I tried to listen to my body and to my soul without hearing about TMS. I started to exercise more, eat healthier and meditate daily. I got married, I quit the PhD program (which caused the most of the stress), we moved to another country, we started a new and more balanced life. I started to do yoga, I visited often the swimming pool, meeting new people, life was adventurous in the new situation but I felt great. However, in February this year, a couple of months after our relocation I had a relapse with my back. Nothing too serious, but it really scared me, I tried to blame on the positive stress. Unfortunately, things were not really improving. I started to go down on the evil spiral of fear (I guess most of you know this negative spiral quite well). I found a massage therapist who suggested more stretching, and seeing a chiropractor, the chiropractor promised me relief but it was just getting worse and worse. I had to skip more and more asanas during my yoga practice and my mobility reduced as hard as I tried to do everything right. Stretching more, relaxing more, working less and stressing less... going more often for massages and chiropractic adjustments.
    The last couple of weeks, I spent again on morphine with sciatic pain away from my beloved work. Similar symptoms again, shifted body posture, pain in the left buttock and leg. I was devastated. I felt angry, hopeless, lost, pain. My chiropractor was who mentioned to me to look for solutions on body-mind level. And one night when I could not sleep, I found a blog post (I could not find again since) that mentioned dr. Sarno's work and a magical recovery. That was like 10 days ago, so TMS is a really new discovery to me. Since I read Healing back pain, I am half way done with Divided Mind and I am at Day 8 in this program.

    I understand, accept and find fascinating the TMS concept. It makes sense so much and it is so motivating to read success stories. Here, I would like to thank for creating this site. I am wondering how I never came across it during the last 5 years.

    However, I have my own doubts and fears still, which I believe normal. I guess not everybody can have a magical recovery just by reading a book(-: Do I really have TMS. I live in Ireland and finding a TMS specialist who could see and diagnose me is pretty difficult. I can convince myself most of the day that I have TMS, but because of visiting many doctors and therapist before, hearing so many diagnoses, suggestions, dos and donts about my disc herniation and my lower back, there are moments when I have doubt and that is the point usually when the pain kicks in even harder and starting the spin downward taking me with it.

    Looking for possible causes of my TMS, I started to use a journal (handwritten, somehow is more personal). There are small things so far in my past, some sad breakups, betrayals from friends, really stressed work and living situation during the last 5 years. However, my worst fears and memories are related to the pain.
    When I think back, my pain attacks really make sense with the past events. The first happened when I had to turn back to the real life from a vacation, next ones were either before starting or finishing a big field measurement campaign. But why now again, when I felt so in balance?! I like my new project, my new boss, my new coworkers and my new home.

    There are no real questions or conclusions in this post. However, it simply feels good to share here my thoughts and worries. Because also one of the things hurts most about suffering from chronic pain is being not understood. Friends and family are suggesting just to go and see a doctor or another doctor. At least my lovely husband is at my side! My biggest support!

    Thank you for your time reading my story, the actual state od my story.
    I wish you all a lovely pain-free day!
  2. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi, Celia. Welcome to the TMS community and the SEProgram. You have come a long way already toward healing. Disc malfunctions are very common and as Dr. Sarno says, often do not cause pain. You were under a lot of emotional stress in your work and life before and that most likely brought on the pain. Now you are embracing TMS as the cause of your symptoms, and you will heal, as I did and many others. It's great that you have the support of your husband. Don't expect it from everyone... the concept of pain being structural and not psychological is very old and ingrained in most people. They only think in terms of doctors and medication or surgery. There is an alternative.... elieve in TMS yourself, 100 percent. Then you will heal 100 percent. Keep positive and keep journaling to put on paper thoughts that have b een repressed, probably for years.

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