Hello all. I am so happy (and scared) to be here. I will try to make this as brief as possible. I am 32-year-old woman and have been on a mysterious health whirlwind for the last 2+ years. At the age of 30, just weeks after graduating with my Master's in Social Work, a slew of 50+ symptoms came on that I have been working to find their root cause ever since. From needing to sleep 20 hours a day, to not having the energy to stand up, to roving body pains and numbness, ear ringing, dizziness, severe nausea, you name it, it was there.... There have been no simple answers, and I have done tons of research on my own. I have slowly regained my ability to do most things, but I still suffer from chronic fatigue and sleep issues, brain fog, extremity numbness, TMJ, chemical and food sensitivities, neck pain, and other symptoms depending on the day. My first diagnosis came a year and a half ago as Hashimoto's autoimmune thyroiditis, but with treatment (from levo to Armour to a very lose dose compound hormone now) that has not seemed to be the culprit of the symptoms. I have continued working my way to more answers, depending on expensive out-of-pocket functional medicine doctors, supplements, and organic autoimmune diet healing foods to see very marginal progress. In the fall I was diagnosed with arthritis in my upper cervical spine and my chiropractor told me I would need to see a chiropractor every month for the rest of my life due to its severity. At the same time I was diagnosed with CIRS due to mold biotoxin illness (and associated yeast, bacteria and parasites). I have been working on a detox regimen to rid my body of the mold biotoxins for the last 2 months, but the detox itself makes me so sick, no matter how slow I go, that I'm questioning whether this is the right path for me. Last week I stopped the detox and restarted Dr. Sarno's book which I had barely broken open based on a friend's recommendation this fall. Long before I had these major issues, I had more minor ones: anxiety and depression including panic attacks from age 10 on, IBS from age 16, and severe gut issues upon living in China and returning at age 24. Haven't had a normal poop since. I was also put on prozac for anxiety at age 16 and have unsuccessfully tried to get off it a number of times, so I realize that the symptom imperative here is very real. Reading the Divided Mind has been emotional for me - both very exciting/hopeful, and also fear-inducing. ('What if it won't work for me?') The TMS reasoning makes absolute sense. I am an extreme perfectionist, overly caring (social work, hello), work myself to the bone for my jobs and to meet my family's expectations, and had a very difficult childhood emotionally. For me, the hardest part of beginning this process is how the discussion is centered around pain, and my symptoms are many things but infrequently actual pain. I keep thinking "I don't have back pain - I have mold spores growing in my gut!" It is probably not helpful for me to zero in on my discordant experience, but every time it's stated that I must fully embrace the diagnosis I fear my doubts will prevent it. I do know I'm tired of playing the medical tag you're-it game and tired of hearing these tragic life-long diagnoses. (For mold, I am supposedly "genetically" unable to live in over 90% of buildings, or even spend more than a few hours in them, because of my sensitivity to mold and how prevalent it is in indoor environments. For me, someone who lives to travel and explore and rarely stays in one place more than a year, this is like a deathwish. What's the point of living if I can't feel like I'm living?) I'm so ready to take my healing into my own hands and mind, and hope I can do that here. I'm willing to do whatever it takes. Thanks for reading this far if you made it through, and here's to be hopeful if still trepidatious!