Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Pain, Destiny, Fiery coals, and other such banalities

Such intense ups and downs have been going on over here.
First of all, I want you to know that Robert & I are on a much better wavelength, and are both working on ourselves at a new level. Thank G-d, we're good.

It's all about faith, and reaching higher to connect with G-d. It's all from G-d, even the pain. It has come to teach me something.

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Things going on with my pain situation are less stable, though. I have now had three treatments with Dr. S, the new pain doctor, and so far there hasn't been improvement in my symptoms. I'm still quite incapacitated with pain most of the day, unless I am lying down. I do think that my talks with him have helped me to internalize that there is not likely some malignant process hiding inside me. The symptoms just don't add up. He is helping me to realize that this CAN go away, and he believes it definitely will. But since it hasn't yet, I'm not there. I am just feeling a little better emotionally believing that what is happening with this pain is purely mechanical and not -dare I say the word- cancer.

Dr. S has strongly recommended I start therapy with a therapist he knows. She specializes in NLP (neuro-linguistic programming). He feels like it must go hand-in-hand with his treatments as well. So, I met her for the first time the other day. Neuro linguistic programming is a bit like the ideas behind the Dr. John Sarno book "Mind over Back Pain", who's ideas and theories got me out of back pain completely in 1990 when I was out flat on my back with blinding back pain and herniated disks. I have even more herniated disks now (as seen in my hip MRI's), as well as many herniations in my cervical spine in my neck (which is making my swallow have that "click"), yet these herniations are not causing me any pain whatsoever. People with situations like me often go in to surgery for spinal fusions and cervical spine fusions. But I have no pain, go figure. Is it because of what I learned in that book by Dr. Sarno? Maybe.

This NLP therapist told me she walked on fiery coals and it did not hurt or scald her feet at all. That is the power of our mind to overcome pain. She honestly did it.

She wants to teach me how to "dial down the pain" like a volume dial on a radio. I'm open to learning! I am very cautiously optimistic.

My meeting with her was astounding for me. She thinks I'm an amazing person with such tremendous potential and purpose in life. She saw a clear destiny for me, that I am supposed to be a nurse. It may have influenced her when I joined in a conversation she was having before our meeting with a pregnant woman, and I offered to help her with her fears and relaxation techniques during labor. Interestingly it was the second "call" that day to help a pregnant woman who has fears of giving birth. I agreed on both counts to talk to them as much as they need. I love helping pregnant women feel confident. So, the therapist heard this part of the conversation, and perhaps got her notions of me being a medical care-giver from that. But she said she felt it so strongly that I am supposed to go to nursing school and help others the way I help laboring women, and also Sabrina with her awful open wound/fistula problems when her bandage would fail. I can do that- I can be in there with the bodily fluids and whatever- I see only the person beyond what their body is doing.

I think that is how this therapist saw me. She saw the person beyond what my body is doing (and has done). But at the same time that that is so optimistic, I also felt that she didn't hear me- I'm in tremendous pain all my waking hours, unless I can lie down. Be a nurse? Doesn't sound like I can do anything on my feet unless I am released of this pain. I appreciate that she sees a wonderful destiny for my personality, but I'm stuck in MUD. I've been through HELL.

She just kept seeing beyond that, but my life is /not/ beyond that, not yet. I appreciate her vision, but we need to deal in the now reality.

We talked a lot about all my recent grief (even before my father passed away). Losing my mom, then jumping into Sabrina's world and sticking with her until the bitter end. Then the loss in a way of my dreams of eventually adopting Tessa, her daughter. It was a HEAVY year of loss. My father passed away 7 weeks ago, but I already had this pain since September.

Know what's interesting, though?
I went off my migraine meds, right? I'm still off them. I have had a few mini-migraines, but no knock-down-drag-out-blinding-vomiting migraines. I have been able to get rid of them with Excedrin and sleeping pills. That was NEVER the case before. Has this belly pain taken over my unconscious, to make me focus on it rather than the emotional pain of life? That is the theory behind Dr. Sarno's book ("Mind over back pain"), and NLP. It's the idea that often if we have huge emotional things to deal with (emotional pain), our bodies protect us from that by redirecting the pain to the body, causing us to focus on that instead of the emotional grief or trauma. I saw it work with myself in 1990- I did a three-day seminar with Dr. Sarno teaching at NYU, and within a week my back was completely out of pain. It was nothing short of miraculous.

So is the belly pain just misplaced migraines? Isn't that interesting? And if the belly pain goes away, will the migraines return???

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I must cautiously report today, after now that I have been out to the mall with Shifra, and down town with Azriel to get his hair cut, I am clearly and undoubtedly in LESS PAIN today.
Last night I came home from the treatment with Dr. S in tremendous pain. I wrote him a very despairing letter. But today... the pain is a notch down. I'm positive. I can breathe easier, and move easier, and I am in less pain today. I am also in complete shock about it.

If this continues, I may just sign up for nursing school.....


  1. Glad to hear that something positive is happening!

  2. You're really onto something, Sarah!

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  4. Thinking of you Sarah... Want to pass onto you some spiritual strength.
    1) I know someone whose life of debilitating pain was changed after reading the book "It's All in Your Mind" by Rebbetzin Sara Yosef (daughter-in-law of Rav Ovadia Yosef zt”l). He eventually was able to get off of painkillers and is a changed person. I can put you in touch, if you'd like.
    2) Since Dr. John Sarno's book helped you 20 years ago, he has published other books more recently, including "Healing Back Pain: The Mind Body Connection".
    If you'd like to talk, please PM your phone number.
    Love, Fonda xoxoxo

  5. May the pain continue to lessen, and may it do so speedily and completely!