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Symptom Imperative

Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by FrenchToast, Dec 31, 2022.

  1. FrenchToast

    FrenchToast Newcomer

    About 6 weeks ago, I decided I was going to stop Physical therapy, I spent the whole weekend reading everything I could about TMS. I was doing the work. The next week, my symptoms got worse than they have ever been. I woke my wife up in the middle of the night crying.

    I start trauma work with a therapist and have been alternating between lucid pain free enlightenment moments to periods when the pain doubles down and intensifies to both side of my body, and now has impacted my walking such that it looks like I am intoxicated.

    On top of all this, my responsibilities at work continue weigh on me and I feel like my relationships with my family are suffering as a result of all this too. I’m not sure if I have a purpose in writing this. I just feel stuck.
  2. Ellen

    Ellen Beloved Grand Eagle

    I've noticed a lot of people posting here recently are feeling stuck. It happens along the journey, and the symptom imperative sucks. This can be a difficult path, but it is the only one that leads to recovery in my experience. And I tried everything else first.

    But the fact that you are having moments that are pain free is wonderful! It is showing you it can be done. Hang in there and those moments will become minutes, then hours, then days. Recovery is possible.
    JanAtheCPA and FrenchToast like this.
  3. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

    @FrenchToast, these setbacks shortly after starting the work are actually great proof that you are dealing with TMS. This is really common, if not universal. Your TMS brain mechanism is in a full blown panic and is desperately fighting back to get you to quit. Instead of giving up you posted here, which was the right move, because we are here to support you and assure you that you're definitely on the right path!

    Have compassion for your poor primitive fearful brain, and try some self-calming techniques. Breath work is easy to find on the web and is very effective. So is the little book "Hope and Help For Your Nerves" by Claire Weekes.
    FrenchToast and Ellen like this.
  4. allthehealingplease

    allthehealingplease New Member

    Hi! I know I am new to the forum here, but I have been doing alot of trauma work, and I was wondering if you have looked into or heard about somatics? I have been finding them very helpful in helping to calm down my nervous system. If you have alot of trauma in your background, then it will take time to rewire your system into something new, and like @JanAtheCPA said... when you have symptoms like that- it's an extinction bursts and it's a sign that you're on the right track. It's hard to believe that when you're in those moments of doubled down pain, but it's the truth. Rewiring your nervous system takes time. Which is what is essential to healing trauma and TMS. I haven't seen people talk about it (somatics) alot here on the forums, but if you're interested, Sarah Jackson Coaching, Irene Lyons, or MMMFT/Liz Stanley's widen the window are great materials to look into. Somatics is just a fancy word for "body" and these are more ways to calm down your nervous system (calm down the fear and anxiety)- which is what @JanAtheCPA is suggesting with the Breathwork. For me personally, I needed more than just breathwork (although breathwork is super helpful)... and somatics was the key to that.
    FrenchToast and JanAtheCPA like this.
  5. Ready2heal

    Ready2heal New Member

    I'm about 3 weeks into the educational program and am having the same experience as you. I have occasional moments that are symptom-free (which is exciting) but mostly my pain is worse both in existing pain locations and in new locations.

    But, I'm also realizing just how deep my trauma really goes—realizing this has helped me be more patient with myself and understanding that my journey may be more difficult.
    FrenchToast and JanAtheCPA like this.

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