I’ve been on my pain journey since 2015 and joined the forum about 12 months ago. I have a few issues which mostly stem from stiff neck and face nerve damage and occasional anxious feelings from being pissed off with pain. I am most probably deeper in the mire of pain, however, I feel much better about my attitude to the pain and all it entails. I feel I am a better person, kinder. I have realised that I have learned/earned many positives, compliments of my TMS journey and thought a Positive post might inspire some to think about their situation and add to the list. I have embraced Empathy and Sympathy. I’ve always felt I had the traits, but they just sat there, never floating to the top perhaps because they weren’t needed. Now I can reach out to anyone in need of anything because I understand. A big one for me was Forgiveness – especially to myself for past errors in judgement and to those who don’t TRY to understand. The big one for me was to the one who I felt was the bully who got this ball rolling. Forgiveness is always a work in progress, but worth pursuing. Patience and Tolerance. This was compulsory, so I didn’t fight it. Trust in those I didn’t even know. Those who are untried and untested. It took a while to turn to fellow Wiki members for help and that definitely paid off. But I’ve also followed up on asking for favours, etc. and it’s actually not that hard. And very important, I’ve learned to ask for help. How, When, Where ever. Someone will pick me up, and that would be without actually asking. I have found a special pen-pal from Wiki and she gives me a kind ear, the occasional reminder and a lovely note to wake up to. Faith and Hope were a bit trickier when I felt dumped by the universe. But I doggedly stuck to “Tomorrow WILL be better”. Now this particular “tomorrow” might not be the one which arrives when I have woken up, and it could be the tomorrow which follows the last Monday in January 2020, but a tomorrow will be better, and this is where my newly learned patience comes in handy. The opportunity to learn and boy have I learnt. Not just about TMS, but human nature. And about myself, although I’m not too sure that Introspection is all it’s cracked up to be, although the positives I unearthed outweighed the negatives. It’s found/find it hard being joyful when I am in pain and I figured that’s OK. And it’s OK to not force it to be there. But it’s amazing the tiny little things that I have been able to find joyfulness in. One kind word, one bird chirp, one funny text. They are all there for the taking, remember the negative straw that broke the camel’s back; on the reverse, well maybe a pile of teeny tiny joys can mount up to one big joyful day. Gratefulness. I’m grateful for what I’ve got and what I haven’t got and I’ve accepted the hand I’ve been dealt (well …. Sort of). I appreciate that I don’t have low back pain, I appreciate it a lot! It might be better than TriGem but it might not be. I am now very careful what I wish for. Assertiveness. This one is a serious work in progress, although I have acknowledged it as something I need to practice. Being a Goodist is so overrated and I’m trying to Break Bad, but still can’t leave a trolley in a carpark, although my bucket list includes defacing a road sign with a happy face. I’ve learned to lie, very well actually, and the skies have not fallen in. “How are you?” “Extra Good”. Not really lying, since I figure my spirit is extra good. “Fancy coming out tonight?” “I’d love to but I’m caught up” (I really can’t see straight tonight, but you don’t need to know that) I can handover control. That was something I thought I would fight tooth and nail, but I learnt to delegate and without judgement. Learned it is OK not to have a nutritional meal on the table and the housework done. And the Big One ………. I have now taken on board a new vocabulary, and such a release it is. I’m no sweet talking angel, but it is a wonderful sense of freedom to swear like a trucker. I’ve taken to it like a duck to water. Triple check …………. It’s OK, no just one more look over ………….. just post it will ya!