Monday, February 19, 2007

Magical Mondays: Mind Over Matter

Since I've been blogging a lot about the power of belief lately, I thought I'd share this experience.

Last summer, I was having a lot of chest and back pain. I'd had back pain for many years but had resigned myself to living with it. Well, one day at work the pains were particularly bad, accompanied by symptoms of a heart attack, so I called my doctor and she sent me to the emergency room.

Fortunately, it wasn't a heart attack, but they found a fracture in the upper middle of my back (which explained the chest pain). They also saw degenerative disk disease, arthritis, pinched nerves - you name it, they found it. I went to a spine specialist who looked at the xrays and took some more of his own, and he wanted me to wear a brace. He also wanted to run some more tests, because he thought it looked like I was born with spinal deformities. So, I had to go someplace else to pick up the brace--they aren't in. I had to schedule more tests and an MRI -- they couldn't get me in for three weeks.

In the meantime, I was in a lot of pain. I remembered listening to a Wayne Dyer tape where he talked about his wife shrunk a thyroid tumor through visualization and diet. So every day I started telling myself I was not in pain and there was nothing wrong with my back. I pictured it healed and healthy. If I walked and felt pain, I kept saying to myself that I was NOT in pain and after a few minutes, I wouldn't be. Every night as I went to bed, I'd lie there for a long time telling myself there was nothing wrong with my back, picturing it as perfectly well, and saying "thank you" to the powers that be for healing it.

Three weeks later, I had the other tests. There was nothing wrong with my back - it was just fine.

Right now I have a bit of a headache and stomache--but no, that's NOT true... repeat after me: I am NOT in pain. :)


  1. Kate, I read a book years ago, I think the title was NO MORE BACK PAIN. Something like that. Basically the doctor said that back pain was all in our minds. I'd been getting lower back pain every day for weeks, and as soon as I read that, the pain went away.

    I do get lower back pain once in a while now, but that's usually when I sit too long at my computer.

    I have a migraine now that's awful and I'm trying not to take Imitrex. I'm going to keep telling myself that I'm NOT in pain, and see if it goes away.

  2. I forgot to say that the xrays and tests were proof that you had a back problem ... and then proof that you'd willed it away. Visualizations and affirmations really work!

  3. How interesting, Edie! If I'd read that first, it might not have taken me so long. :)

    It really is fascinating how much our thoughts can affect our bodies. (Like the exercise article link I put up a few days ago.)

    After I wrote this blog, I remembered a time when my mother and I went to visit a couple of her sisters one winter.

    We were all freezing, and there was a small space heater nearby. We took turns standing by it until we got warm. My one aunt even got too hot and moved away from it because she felt like it was burning. Not long after that, I noticed something--it wasn't even turned on and hadn't been the whole time! But because we expected to get warm, believed we would get warm, we did.

  4. That is awesome! I totally agree, but ... I have to tell you. I was really sick for about eight years. I did learn to block pain really well, but I also (when I was in school) confused everyone. In my determined effort to will away my illness, I spent weeks "pretending" I wasn't sick. Then I'd just collapse. It was an exhausting mental cycle, because then I'd blame myself and beat myself up for not being able to will it away. Ugh. I'm so glad I'm past those days!

  5. I'm sorry to hear that, Spy. I can see how that would happen too. Glad you're feeling better!


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