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

Day 1 - Excitement and Worry

Discussion in 'Structured Educational Program' started by laurafaith, Jan 19, 2016.

  1. laurafaith

    laurafaith Newcomer

    I don't know if anyone who doesn't have back pain will understand how happy I am to find this forum. I'm 25 years old and have been suffering from severe lower back pain for the past 4 years. It was diagnosed as a herniated disc. I've tried everything. Steroid shots, acupuncture, acupressure, physical therapy, Chinese medicine, rest, NSAIDs, spine doctors. I thought the second round of physical therapy was helping until I had a severe back spasm on Christmas morning that is still lingering today. My physical therapist essentially told me the only thing that was going to change this was to strengthen my ab muscles, and then sent me on my way. My dad is convinced that compression therapy will be the cure all. I'm just happy I found this book.

    I started reading "The Mind Body Connection" by Dr. Sarno yesterday in Barnes & Noble and cried within the first four pages. It described everything that I couldn't describe or understand myself. I didn't know that there was hope for me. I always assumed that I was going to have to deal with this for the rest of my life. Right now, I'm on day 1 of the treatment. I've never been so willing to do anything in my life. I want this pain to end, now. I don't want to have pain while I'm in my 20s, or at any other point for that matter.

    I've been thinking about this all day after I finished the book last night. I know in my heart that this can be what cures me and I've already started journaling on my own. But I worry that I've conditioned myself so much over the past four years to think that this is going to be the rest of my life and that I won't recover. How do I get past that? Am I going to get past that? The pain is still here today, but there have been points of freedom and I can't wait for that to be my whole life.
    KevinB likes this.
  2. ElizabethG

    ElizabethG Peer Supporter

    So excited for you! You will be able to recondition. You've already started. You are on the right path. There are so many stories to draw strength from while doing the program and I have found much encouragement from the people on this forum. There is such a support network here. :)
  3. Moppy

    Moppy Peer Supporter

    Hi and wecome laurafaith. I agree with ElizabethG, this is a great support community in this forum and like you, many of us have been quite desperate by the time we found it. The daily activities and readings thru the SEP program are really helpful, and will guide you
    In your journey of self discovery that will lead you to healing. I've found the personal encouragement and generous support from other TMSers on this forum quite mindblowing at times.... its so good to know that we are not travelling alone. Take heart, you have already begun your journey to health and i wish you the very best ☺
    ElizabethG likes this.
  4. KevinB

    KevinB Well known member

    Yep, you're in the right spot and you can/will improve. Have you read Dr. Sarno's Healing Back Pain? It's very good. And also Steve Ozanich's The Great Pain Deception is very insightful. I've found that doing the reading while doing the SEP (structured educational program) very helpful. One of the biggest challenges most of us face is letting go of all the nonsense doctors and the like have told us regarding our backs. For instance, your physical therapist stating you need to strengthen your abs - and this is based on what? What in the world do abs have to do with back pain? The modalities used in modern medicine for pain treatment are ridiculous.... but you'll come to see that as you educate yourself more on TMS.

    Good luck and I look forward to reading your progress!

  5. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi, Laurafaith. I echo what the others have written to you. MRIs and X-rays may show structural problems such as herniated discs, but as Dr. Sarno writes, they may not cause pain and that pain is often caused by repressed emotions (TMS). The SEProgram will help you discover those emotions.
    The essence of Sarno's healing philosophy is in his 12 Daily Reminders from his book Healing Back Pain. One of our most helpful TMS friends, Herbie, wrote a longer version of them which I want to share with you and urge you to practice:

    Herbie’s Extended Version of Dr. Sarno’s 12 DAILY REMINDERS

    1. The pain is due to TMS. This is real pain or anxiety but it is caused by subconscious tensions and triggers, stressors and traits to your reactions and fears and also when at boiling point your conscious tension can and does also cause real pain.
    2. The main reason for the pain is mild oxygen deprivation. This means that when you get in pain or anxiety then the blood is restricted from going to your lower back, for instance. The blood being restricted causes oxygen deprivation which causes the pain. Remember, where there is no oxygen then there is pain in the body. Also, the pain stays because of fear.
    3. TMS is a harmless condition caused by my REPRESSED EMOTIONS so even though you think you can harm yourself from the years of pain you have felt and how you feel in general -- so far no reports have been heard from TMS healing knowledge causing damage to anyone, it only helps.
    4. The principle emotion is your repressed ANGER -- this means under your consciousness lies something that happens automatically to everyone. TMSers have repressions that are stored because of our personality traits, traumas, stressors, fears, strain, etc... When these stored repressions build and build, then eventually they cause the brain to send pain into your body to keep you from having an emotional crises. The mind-body thinks it is helping you.
    5. TMS exists to DISTRACT your attentions from the emotions, stressors, tensions and strains of your personality traits because if you can get distraction then you won’t have to be in emotional turmoil. When you don't face and feel your emotions and they get repressed because you didn't want to deal with something -- they are just adding up in this beaker, ready to pour over and create real pain and anxiety in your body.
    6. Since my body is perfectly normal, there is nothing to fear. So in reality when I fear the pain or anxiety I just cause myself undo strain and tension adding to the beaker of pain. If I fear, then I feed the pain, If I fear, it’s impossible to recondition. Fear keeps the pain and anxiety alive in the body through focus.
    7. Therefore, physical activity is harmless. If I want to work against the pain I could but it’s better to lose some of the pain so when I start my life over I have to be in pain trying to heal because facing the repressions and all the other activities that cause the pain and reversing my fear and focus to them, then I can heal.
    8. I am resuming all normal physical activity. I don't fear moving anymore. I believe in my body’s ability to heal now. I can move as I want. I will not fear moving with a bent back anymore. I will also practice going out and acting normal again, not in fear of what pain might do to me.
    9. The pain is unimportant and powerless. Its only power is how it is hidden -- its illusion, its fear.
    10. I will keep my attention on the emotional issues. I will think about my emotions and feel my emotions throughout the day. I will not judge, criticize or fear my emotions. I will not run from my emotional issues but face every one of them. I will feel my emotions fully and cry if I need to. Then I will release the emotion and get my mind and thoughts back to my life and living in the present.
    11. I am in control of all of this. This is how I recover.
    12. I will be thinking PSYCHOLOGICALLY AT ALL TIMES. This means I will keep my thoughts on psychological issues like happiness, fear and anger -- traits and triggers, conditioning and journaling -- The science behind mind-body/TMS healing, etc.... This way I will not feed my thoughts to the body -- that is a trick of TMS. TMS will always try to get me to focus on the body caused by the pain until I break its show and flair. When I get my attention off physical symptoms and on to emotional issues and psychological issues then I will not feed the fear of the physical issues anymore, thus making the TMS of no pain effect on the body. This will in return, give us the cure and become pain-free.
    KevinB likes this.
  6. laurafaith

    laurafaith Newcomer

    Thank you to everyone for your support. So glad I found this community.
  7. MellieV

    MellieV Peer Supporter

    Hi Laurafaith! I am starting today, so I'm hoping since we are starting about the same time, that I can kind of partner up with you on here. Your physical and emotional story sounds almost identical to mine, complete with failed physical therapy and crying after I listened to Dr. Sarno's 2 hour lecture online. It was me repeated over and over on each slide. Good luck, and I hope to talk to you soon again.
  8. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi, laurafaith and MellieV. I hope you do become "painpals," sharing your progress in the SEProgram. Share your techniques for relaxing and healing.

    Here are some thoughts on keeping positive:

    The 10 Best Quotes on the Power of Positive Thinking
    From Susan Albers, nutritionst

    What do you notice about these 10 famous quotes? They point to one important idea—the notion that what you think shapes who you become and where you go.

    It makes a good case for being more mindful of your thoughts. Today, take a moment to check in with your thinking. What direction are your thoughts pointing you toward—success or failure? If your thoughts need to do a 180, pick one of these and repeat to yourself.

    1. We become what we think about. –Earl Nightingale

    2. If you hear a voice within you say “you cannot paint,” then by all means paint and that voice will be silenced. –Vincent Van Gogh

    3. The mind is everything. What you think you become. –Buddha

    4. Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it. –Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

    5. Whatever the mind of man can conceive and believe, it can achieve. –Napoleon Hill

    6. The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don’t have any. –Alice Walker

    7. I have learned over the years that when one’s mind is made up, this diminishesfear. –Rosa Parks

    8. If you can dream it, you can achieve it. –Zig Ziglar

    9. We must believe that we aregiftedfor something, and that this thing, at whatever cost, must be attained. –Marie Curie

    10. “The greatest discovery of all time is that a person can change his future by merely changing his attitude.” –Oprah Winfrey

    I would like to add an 11th quote related to positive thinking:

    Fear is another important equivalent of pain that may be more effective than the pain itself to achieve the mind's goal of distracting attention from repressed rage. Thefearof pain, physical activity, injury, or spinal abnormality is enough to perpetuate TMS, even in the absence of pain. The mind is interested only in keeping our attention on the body; the fear of any of the phenomena will accomplish that as well as the reality of pain itself”

    -Dr.John Sarno, The Mindbody Prescription, page 31-32
  9. laurafaith

    laurafaith Newcomer

    Definitely! It would be awesome to have a buddy because I've been so busy that I feel like I've fallen a bit behind with this. How are you doing? What day have you completed? I'm on day 7, trying my hardest to stay on track!

  10. MellieV

    MellieV Peer Supporter

    I'm on Day 5 today. Having definite improvement, especially in my mood/outlook.
  11. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi. Mellie. It's good to see that you are noticing improvement with your pain and in your mood and outlook. It really is all in the mind... how we live, how we react to emotional stresses, how we discover the emotions that cause us to be fearful and worry. Keep positive. Find ways every day that make you feel good about life and yourself and that help you to believe that you are not only going to be well, but the best is yet to come.
    MellieV likes this.

Share This Page