1. Alan has completed the new Pain Recovery Program. To read or share it, use this updated link: https://www.tmswiki.org/forum/painrecovery/
    Dismiss Notice

Who's tugging your leash?

Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by North Star, Jun 1, 2014.

  1. North Star

    North Star Beloved Grand Eagle

    It's been pretty intense around here with my daughter getting married this coming Saturday. And yup…my TMS can testify to the tension it's been causing.

    I've been walking through Dr. Schubiner's 28 Day program; I've made it a priority even during these hectic days.

    One of the exercises he has you do is visual your pain and then visualize attacking it. And here's where I usually get stuck. I think in all my right-brain processing, my creative side has been silenced.

    As I played around with this, I tried to describe my pain. Choking and at times, sharp pain came to mind. Some of my most severe symptoms affect my neck causing headaches.

    Anyway. I came up with a picture. And it's thanks to that adorable little furball you see in my Avatar. Daisy is my 4-month-old puppy and we just finished her first puppy kindergarten class. Even before this class, I read a few books on puppy training and watched Cesar Milan videos

    The experts agree- if you want to have a happy, well-trained pooch, you must train with great love and patience. Leash corrections are not meant to be punitive.

    Ah! A leash! I can picture a leash with a collar around my neck. A training collar. But this collar is a cruel one. It's full of metal barbs and sharp pieces of glass. And the training approach is more like the abuse dealt to wild animals forced to perform in circuses.

    At the other end of the leash is my mother-in-law. She's been tugging on my leash a lot lately. Her capacity to say stupid and mean things is endless. And I just stand by silently. I've been well trained. I've been surpressing a lot of rage towards her.

    My imagination continued. I rip the leash out of her hands and throw it on the ground. I tell her to take a hike. (Actually, it was pretty nasty what I had to say but I won't repeat it here. ;) )

    But the pressure and pain are still in my neck. That damn collar is still hurting me.

    I looked around to see who was pulling on it and I realized….with shock…it was I. I was holding the leash.

    My self-critical thoughts. My addiction to self-improvement books. Years of religion telling me what a sinner I was. Media always bombarding me with messages of insufficiently. Self-loathing.

    This was a huge revelation to me and I will practice remembering this picture especially when someone or a circumstance is tugging at my leash. But even more so, I am trying to be more kind and loving toward myself. I can inflict the most painful tugs.

    As I train my little pup, I am learning HOW to love myself. To learn that correction is merely a reminder that something isn't working right…it's not a value judgement of myself. And to be kind to myself and use positive words towards myself. Especially when I do things right…such as working on healing from TMS.

    I've just started unpacking this box and I'm eager to see how this new avenue toward pain-free living unfolds.

    Thanks so much to this community for being such a safe and loving place to land.

    Sending love and hugs to you all!
    sparkle and tarala like this.
  2. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    hi, North Star. I love your thinking about training Daisy and to treat yourself with the same patients, love, and kindness
    as you train her.

    My sister's mother-in-law sounds like yours. The woman was just jealous of my sister for marrying her son.
    We loved the son but he was no bargain. Your mother-in-law may be jealous of you, and that's her problem, not yours.

    I hope the wedding goes off well and you have a good time. We're not supposed to live in the future, just the present, but
    maybe living in the future for when your mother-in-law leaves will help you.
    North Star likes this.
  3. North Star

    North Star Beloved Grand Eagle

    Walt, I've come to the same conclusion reflected in your advice - I DO ponder happier days when there are many miles between me and my MIL. I'm convinced she has growing mental health issues. The narcissism and paranoid chatter just grows… GAH! And yeah, she is constantly in competition. (Really? At nearly 70, I thought most people out-grew that childish behavior.)

    Oh well. Daisy is teaching me plenty about being loving and patient.

    I so appreciate your friendship, Walt. You are a special gift! xo
  4. tarala

    tarala Well known member

    Hi Northstar, I love your image of the chain around the neck that we can use to tug ourselves. I get headaches when I am putting pressure on myself (no one else around me does it) and I've begun to visualize it as a headband that could be pretty, except I keep making it tighter and tighter. I'd better just take it off altogether fingersinears
  5. North Star

    North Star Beloved Grand Eagle

    That's really good, Tarala! I like that picture too and will have to use that one. One of my mantras that I keep repeating over and over is "I am stronger than I realize!" We ARE empowered to take control over TMS. It's a battle but anything of value usually involves a price.
    Eric "Herbie" Watson likes this.
  6. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    Eric "Herbie" Watson likes this.
  7. sparkle

    sparkle New Member

    "I looked around to see who was pulling on it and I realized….with shock…it was I. I was holding the leash."

    Beautiful! I think this a very profound recognition. It reminds me of the famous Eleanor Roosevelt quote, "No one can make you feel inferior without your consent."

    I believe that ultimately we choose our reactions. (Not that we might not have been influenced in certain, sometimes overwhelmingly strong, ways. It's not what happens to us, but the story or meaning we make out of it, that gives rise to our reaction. So many examples abound of how our perceptions are choices and our reactions too are choices we make, consciously or non-consciously.

    Of course, it can be quite a challenge to have the awareness of this and the resources to address it! That's kind where each of us has our work, eh?
  8. North Star

    North Star Beloved Grand Eagle

    Nice to meet you Sparkle! Thank you for your kind comment too. That Eleanor Roosevelt quote is a classic!

    Walt, awwww…what precious pictures! I downloaded this photo to my computer the other day. I can't help but smile when I look at it. :) hedgehog.jpg
    Eric "Herbie" Watson likes this.
  9. Tennis Tom

    Tennis Tom Beloved Grand Eagle

    From my observations, I think it's the opposite, they regress back to childhood, the third grade in my parts.
    Eric "Herbie" Watson likes this.
  10. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    Such tiny darlings. And a sweet smile on the mother's face.
    She knows she won't have to clean diapers.
    North Star likes this.
  11. North Star

    North Star Beloved Grand Eagle

    Tennis Tom, LOL! Yes, we have observed that is well. Who was it who said, "As we get older, we become more like ourselves"?

    Richard Rohr says few people become elders…they become elderly.
    Eric "Herbie" Watson likes this.
  12. Peggy

    Peggy Well known member

    Those animals don't look like they have TMS. They look very relaxed and don't even have any special pillows so their neck and shoulders don't get sore. And their backs, hanging over branches and sleeping! No special bed for comfort? Wow! We can learn a lot from those furry creatures.
    Eric "Herbie" Watson likes this.
  13. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    We sure can learn a lot from our animal friends. Both when they're awake and asleep.
    Eric "Herbie" Watson likes this.

Share This Page