Mulling Over a Migraine

Sorry for the radio silence on the blog the last few days...

I was busy dying.

Okay, not really.

I was in the throes of what is undoubtably one of the worst, and longest-lasting migraines, of my life.

I've had migraines for my entire adult life, since I was 18, and the first time I had one, I really thought my brain was exploding inside my skull.

The second one, I remember crying because a television had been left on - on mute - on the other side of the room, but the hissing of the set and the light from it made it feel as though my brain were on fire.

It didn't take long for a doctor to diagnose, and since then, I've been a slave to my ill-wired brain - and the medicines that control it when I feel one coming on.

But medicines don't always work, as was the case this week. When the medicine doesn't touch it, all you can do is retreat to a dark, quiet room and....I don't want to say "go to sleep", because that sounds passive, but more like pass out, in order to avoid the pain, and hope that when you wake up, it will be past.

This time, it just wouldn't pass, for reasons unknown. Instead, I spent two days alternately sleeping, trying to eat, vomiting, trying to drink water, vomiting, sleeping some more, pressing an icepack to my skull, and crying when nothing worked - not even the vomiting, which strangely usually helps a migraine feel better.

I know my triggers, but I only have control over some of them - I'm regimented about going to bed and getting up at the same time every day, I try to avoid long naps, and I get eight hours of sleep a night, or else I'll get a migraine.

I try not to get too hot, or overexert myself in the summer (think mowing the lawn on a hot evening), because I get exertion migraines when it's hot.

But the big one, the one I can't control, is the weather. I'm like a human barometer - as soon as the pressure changes, or a storm is coming, I know it. There's only so much you can do when you know a storm is going to bring you a headache, other than take you meds immediately, rest, and hope for the best.

Sometimes, it just doesn't shake out, like the two-dayer I'm just coming out of.

I've always said everyone should get a migraine once, just so they understand what they truly feel like - I get so upset when people say it's just a headache. 


A headache doesn't make you literally pray for death.

A headache doesn't make you vomit so much you damage your vocal cords for several days after.

A headache doesn't go away with two Tylenol (or that joke of Excedrin Migraine).

A migraine is ruthless, unforgiving, rude, inconsiderate, and a pain beyond that which a normal person should have to bear.

But they end eventually, thank goodness, and life goes on.

And at least when they do end, at least I have this to wake up to:

Migraine Companion

(Hey. Human. Are you okay?)

And even a little lap snuggle after I emerge from the cocoon of my bed...


And though there is the inevitable "hangover" from the headache, I'm so glad to be back on my feet again...

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