Tag Archives: tms

MBS Blog #13: How deep have you gotten? Layers of health in coping with TMS/MBS

MBS Blog  13


The layers of wellness: levels of coping with TMS/MBS



I have spoken to so many people who are frustrated that their TMS symptoms have not gotten better yet.  They have read so many accounts of people who have read Dr. Sarno’s books and immediately gotten better.  They wonder why they haven’t had the same response.  This can lead to increased worrying: worrying about what’s wrong with them, if they really have TMS or not, if they are making themselves sicker by worrying, and this vicious cycle can go on and on.


On the TMS Help Forum and other web sites, there are many excellent suggestions about methods of self-help and books that people have used to vanquish their TMS symptoms.  Most of these are great resources and can be helpful to many.


I was talking about this the other day with a good friend and excellent psychologist, Mark Lumley from Wayne State University.  He and I actually ended up writing a little poem about the layers of work that many people may need to do to get better.  I must warn you, neither of us are poets, so the so-called poem isn’t very poetic.  But we like it because it means something important to us.  Here it is.


Things to do:


Notice what has been hidden;

Understand what has been a mystery.


Speak what has been unspoken;

Confront what has been avoided.


Accept what needs to be accepted;

Forgive what needs to be forgiven.


Change what needs to be changed.


Howard Schubiner, MD and Mark Lumley, Ph.D.

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Letter to Dr. Schubiner from Paul Mazzafero

June 21, 2008


Letter to Dr. Schubiner from Paul Mazzafero, Davie, Florida



I first suffered excruciating back pain in 1984 as a 20-year-old young man. I had searing back and calf pain. I eventually had surgery in 1988 to remove a synovial cyst off my sciatic nerve. However, post surgery the pain was still there. I was scared I would be like this for life and was in pain management. I eventually picked up a book by Dr. Sarno and read it. I went to the Dr. and he assured me my back was fine. I was so emotionally damaged at this point I did not know what to do since I had already been to 21 doctors and had every test, steroid, epidural, etc. I eventually said, “I am fine and this is psychological”. I proceeded to workout like a madman and eventually the pain left me for 16 years. In fact I went on to compete as a boxer and was very active.


Fast forward to 2004, when I was throwing 100 pound logs and felt the dreaded pop and searing calf pain. “Uh oh,” I said and went to my GP and he ordered an MRI which was negative.  However, I still had the calf pain. P.T. did not work…..Epidurals did not work……Massage did not work….Chiropractic did not work….Books, exercises, you name it and nothing worked. I was on prednisone and gained weight. I stopped working and contemplated ending it all. I am a vociferous reader and came across your program and within doing the 1st night of journaling I felt relief, not 100% but I felt like a layer was being peeled off an onion. I realized I was in a miserable job when this happened and that I am a perfectionist and I could understand how these factors played an important role in my back pain. Anyways, long story short: within 3 weeks of doing the online program, I was feeling 90% better but still skeptical a little. However, after 6 weeks, I have been pain free 100%. Dr. Schubiner’s course was an introspective look at what makes me tick. I do not think the pain will come back. In fact the 1st week when I started to feel better, an old neck injury and pain mysteriously returned…..I laughed out loud. When I am stressed, I pull out my notebook and read my journal and sometimes re-watch the videos.

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