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Recurrence of Back Pain after many years

Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by ragis45, Aug 5, 2023.

  1. ragis45

    ragis45 New Member

    I had posted on this site years ago. Back when I was 28 I had debilitating back pain and after getting a diagnosis of a degenerated disc was about to have surgery. Luckily I stumbled on Dr. Sarno's mind/body approach, and as they say, the rest was history. I had been without serious back pain for years. Whenever I would feel some tightness or pain I would not be fearful and it would inevitably leave in a day or two. During this time, however, I faced so many other mind/body ailments. None of them serious, but I've had them all; GERD, prostatitis, joint pain, chest pain, allergies, shoulder and neck pain, knee pain etc. I had one point went to a rheumatologist and all tests came back normal. Bottom line is I know that I internalize emotions and stress and have sensitive neural pathways. Yet, I, through Sarno's teachings have always been able to overcome all of these ailments and have led a very active, athletic life.
    Unfortunately, since February I have been dealing with severe back pain. After it didn't dissipate after a week or so I started to get worried. It is now months and I am no closer to being pain free than from the start. I believe in the mind/body connection as I have beaten back pain and other ailments before. I have looked at my stresses and emotions and have journaled my thoughts, feelings and emotions. I have tried to stay positive but chronic pain is so debilitating. Especially for someone as active as me.
    I know that I am dealing with major emotional issues right now; retirement, marital issues, aging, self-worth etc. and am going through major change (which I clearly don't handle well). My question is. can the level of emotional distress prevent one from getting better? Back when I first beat this it seemed that acknowledging the emotional connections to pain seemed to be enough and Sarno stressed that. Now I just don't know. I am working on the emotional issues I am facing, but it is much harder to do when you are in pain.
    Any advice or suggestions would be appreciated. Like I said, I am in dire need of help.
  2. Baseball65

    Baseball65 Beloved Grand Eagle

    Might be time for a review..this is not about 'perceived' emotions like the ones you described...Like an iceberg, whatever you see is juts a fraction of the repressed portion.

    I just had a minor relapse so I reviewed everything from page one. Once again, I thought I was 'handling it' but I didn't realize how deeply angry I was about these things. The more I read, wrote and pondered, the more it became clear and of course, the symptoms went away.

    Everything on your list:
    I was/am dealing with those same issues, save the 'retirement' BUT I have found myself having trouble picking jobs and disputing wages with contractors I work for...same rage, slightly different dynamic. now that I am old, I expect way more money and I don't always get it...huge blow to self worth/primal fear of supporting myself/my dog/being a good example to kids,etc.

    Just start the work again... nobody gets exempt from repressed rage.
  3. ragis45

    ragis45 New Member

    Baseball65, thank you for the quick response. You are absolutely right about 'repressed rage'. In dealing with this debilitating bout of back pain rather than go back to the mind/body basics I started looking at (journaling, reading etc) all of the things that are stressing me now. There are many mind/body advocates out there and much literature describing how to deal with these stressors, but as you said I believe that this is only addressing the 'tip of the iceberg'. As you said though, the MOST important thing to do is to dig deeper and look at the inner child and the RAGE that one is feeling because of these life changes, challenges and stressors. And, as I believe is my case, if the symptoms don't resolve one might need help understanding why the inner child is in such a rage. For me, personally, I dealt with family issues (parents alcoholism, depression, marital issues) that left a tremendous impact on me, the child. This impact plays itself out everyday in how I internally react to stressors (marriage, self-worth etc.).
    Maybe I need to get back in to therapy ? I hope not.
    Anyway, thank you for guiding me back on to the correct path.
    Hopefully, in a few months I can post back how much better I am feeling.
    Baseball65 and JanAtheCPA like this.
  4. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

    Apart from the cost, why not?

    Let's not discount the effect that current world disorder is having on everyone. Even if you are so caught up in your private struggles and resulting symptoms that you don't think you're paying attention to the news - you are unconsciously aware. No matter what side of any spectrum you are on, it can't help but affect every one of us with existential dread. I find that I feel better just by stopping to acknowledge this semi-regularly.

    Also, don't forget to breathe. I can't seem to commit to meditation, but I've been practicing mindful breathing and feeling better. Therapeutic breathing is quick, easy, and surprisingly effective.

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