The first specialist/surgeon I was referred to in 2007 for my severe back pain was a brusque older gentleman (probably not much older than me). He strongly recommended surgery (probably a spinal fusion) and seemed to take excessive delight in describing the gruesome details of what he would do. When I told him that I would need to seek other opinions before having surgery, his parting words to me were "Don't fall." He made his meaning clear: because of my severe lumbar stenosis, a fall could paralyze me. That terrified me, but two other doctors just laughed when I told them what he had said. Maybe he did me a favor because his words angered me and ultimately led me to take charge of my own treatment and my life. Although I have at times focused on the physical, with PT, acupuncture and massage, I have not had surgery. I have fallen several times without consequences. However, his words are still in the back of my mind and I am extremely careful in my movement. Just last week I had testing done because my hands are tingly and get numb when I use them, especially my dominant left hand. This doctor told me I would lose the use of my left hand without carpal tunnel surgery. Again, very scary and disheartening. But it motivated me to go back to looking at TMS for the first time since 2010.