My back felt very stiff indeed when I woke up and it took me about five minutes to be able to stand unaided. It feels like all the muscles in my lower back are poised on the edge of agonizing cramp – I’m in constant pain but one false move and I’m in agony. I struggled to dress myself but I did walk all the way to the house. It took my about 15 minutes longer than usual and I was in pain every step of the way but I made it. My back seems to be most painful in the mornings and this morning it seemed worse than at any time so far. It occurred to me during my walk that, in contrast to the previous occasions when my back has gone, this time I am on my own. This time I am looking after myself. I am standing on my own two feet. Intriguingly, I seem to be better off physically if I stay standing rather than lie down.

Had a chat with Karaj. He said that all hell is breaking loose and it means that we are doing well. My mind is moving between two scenarios – ‘This is okay’ and ‘This is not okay’. The acute pain is not okay, but the lessons I am learning and the opportunities I am presented with are definitely okay. All I need to do is accept the pain, make the most of the opportunities, learn the lessons and stop worrying. I am trying to check my worrying and I have started to practice being actively not worried. Rather than struggle to stop the worry, I simply change my being to one of non-worry. The difference here is that one way is a fight against a particular mind set, whereas the other way is just choosing a different option.

During our talk Karaj told me that I do listen and internalise what he says, which is not as common as one might think, and that I have the ability to check what I am doing with my own history; I know how things have worked out in the past and I can use those results to compare the consequences of my actions when I do things differently.

I returned home at 10pm. Today has been a long day and I have achieved a great deal, all of it in pain. In fact, since my back went on Thursday morning I have been very active and very busy in spite of the pain.  It just goes to show how determined I am that this will not beat me.  Relax.

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