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Symptoms increase during vacation

Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by Matthew419, Jun 24, 2020.

  1. Matthew419

    Matthew419 New Member

    I have been dealing with persistent low back pain for over 2 years. I started exploring TMS about 4 months ago, initially by reading Sarno's books, then by seeing a TMS specialist in NYC, and now by working through the SEP for the last month or so. In retrospect, I realize that even prior to low back pain, I had other symptoms of TMS going back at least 10 years.

    The purpose of the present thread is to ask whether any of you have noticed your pain symptoms increase during periods of vacation, and if so, if you have any insights into this connection.

    I work a high-stress job in a leadership role, and I have some perfectionistic personality traits. I have noticed a pattern in my pain symptoms over these two years, in that my pain tends to begin when the work week does, and builds throughout the week. Then when the weekend comes (and I am intentional about taking a rest from work), the pain diminishes significantly. I recently even had two or three pain-free days for the first time, on the weekends. But I am also noticing another pattern: whenever I take vacation time, and stop thinking about work for a week, it seems that my pain symptoms increase. I am currently in the middle of a 10-day "staycation" (we live near the beach, and spend lots of time on the water). Logically, it would seem that if my symptoms increase with work, they should decrease when I have extended time off. And yet the opposite has been true. Does anyone have any insights or suggestions?
    TG957 likes this.
  2. Mala

    Mala Well known member

    I don't know if u have read any of Sarno's books but he mentions that weekend pains r a strong indication that what u have is TMS.

  3. Baseball65

    Baseball65 Beloved Grand Eagle

    Sarno goes into that on pages 18-20 of "Healing Back Pain". It's called the Vacation syndrome. He posits that people who are super good worker types burn up a lot of their anxiety during the week, but when they try to relax and have nothing to distract them it 'gets their attention'.
    A lot of my mini-relapses have been of this type. I have no problem carrying around plaster and heavy 5 gallon paint buckets all day long, but the second I lay down to read a book my foot or butt cheek hurts.

    Sarno himself wrote later in his life that he had a TMS attack himself when he was going on a cruise he had promised his wife they would go on...After a lot of contemplation , he realized that he really didn't want to go on the cruise, but would rather stay home and be writing his NEXT book...totally compulsive worker.

    Last week I had a small accident in my car, construction going on next to my house from sun-up to sundown and had to fire two people from a job because they weren't cranking it out fast enough. I Loathe being foreman BUT I am the oldest,fastest most experienced guy on the job.... the boss presses me to 'step up'
    Not too mysteriously my wrist began to bug me, on FRIDAY when it was all over. I ignored it and began to write down a list of all my current ragemakers (even though they were 'over').

    The Job thing was probably at the root of the problem. I hate managing others at work because it breaks my mojo and then I can't get as much done.... Narcissism, vs. Low self esteem, vs Perfectionism...all scrapping it out in there. ... And NOW I have to be the BAD guy??? Screw that! (ouch)

    It went away as soon as I reviewed that. I always find it interesting that 21 years into this deal the mechanism hasn't changed one iota. Sarno was truly an insightful man

    That's the 'old logic'. I still use it to figure out how to build stuff, estimate supplies and budget. But the NEW logic is seeing how the old logic runs into very frustrating, very real obstacles that it can't solve...usually around personalities and human shortcomings.... So when the old logic gets stuck, I whip out Sarno. It took me awhile to get here and be able to defuse the situation this fast, but I am sure you will get here too...

    Uh oh... there goes the guys nextdoor. Time to whip out some Sarno!


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