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Name: Raven
Home: Ohio, United States
About Me: Married, 2 kids, 3 step-kids, 3 cats and a mini-doxie
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Monday, August 15, 2005
Hardwired wrong
I have had headaches most of my life. Some of my earliest memories also include my head pounding. In the last couple of years there has been a new category of headached established, chronic headaches. My neurologist believes that is what I fall into. For the most part, they are not dehabilitating, just annoying and painful. If I have them for several days in a row they can wear me down and make me feel tired and ill.
I also get migraines. There are different levels of these, for those of you not afflicted. There is the standard, locked in a dark room, don't speak above a whisper, throw up if you eat level...then there are several lesser variants. I do not get these nearly as often as I used to. I have learned my triggers and avoid them whenever possible. Occasionally though, one will creep up on me and I have to make the best of it if possible. With such a large family, it is hard to put my life on hold because my head hurts.
Last Friday we celebrated my father's 60th birthday. I was pretty enthusiastic about this all week. On Thursday I had a ton of running around to do. I had to get Dad's present, get a new rug for the living room, do a mystery shop, and a few other odds and ends after work. My head was already hurting but these were things I could not put off. So, I went out and did my running around. The pain got worse and I new I was courting danger by having this turn into a full fledged migraine. When I got home I took a bath to try and relax and get the pain under control, but it was too late.
I got up the next morning and my head was still killing me. Hubby suggested I take the day off work, but I took so much time off to go to Phoenix, and I am still pretty new on the job, I didn't want to do that. So I dressed in comfy clothes and off I went. I kept the light off in my cube, and turned down the contrast on my computer screen. I also turned down the volume on my phone so I did not have people screeching in my ear. Thankfully these things helped and I did not get much worse for working all day. I get home, and because of the nausea did not each much dinner, then we went over to the parents house for cake and ice cream and celebrating Dad's birthday. Here is the meat of the story.
My Mom has two yappy dogs. They were OK when when we first got there. But soon they saw the kids and started yapping to be played with. Every yap felt like an explosion in my head. Complete with little sparks and a moment where it seems all the air has been sucked out of the room. I finally asked if we could put the worst offender somewhere...Mom looks at me and asked where I want to put him, back to the vet (where the dogs stayed while they were on vacation.) I just looked at her and then turned away. At this point she headed into the living room. I got a hold of hubby and literally broke down for a minute. Started crying. This is a big no-no with migraine, it just makes them worse. So I got myself under control.
I was very unobtrusive during the evening about my migraine, when the lights in the living room started to bother me, I would quietly get up and go into the dining room or kitchen where the lights were off. I told the kids to watch how they played with the dogs so they wouldn't bark. I did not eat any cake or ice cream because I was afraid the nausea would make me have to leave.
We open presents and do the cake and ice cream and are talking when Mom makes a comment about starting a fire (the have and outdoor fireplace on the backyard patio) I figure I better let her know that my family will not be staying that much longer and I need to get home and lay down. She looks at me and states, well what about the other people, the world does not revolve around you. At this point I am again stunned but I have already been hurt beyond measure, so I just look back and tell her then they better be ready to walk home, because I'm not.
At this point my husband has had enough of my being abused and states we have to get up early the next day to clean and be ready for our new couch that was being delivered.
Now a quick analysis of my mother here...which never gives me any insight, but I keep trying. My mother raised me...she knows about my headaches and migraines. Some of my first sentences were along the lines of 'head hurts.' When did she become so unsympathetic or at least nice?
The main moral of this story is try to be understanding of those with chronic headaches/migraine. Most of us just want to live our normal lives and be productive people. We do not want to be different because of this bad hardwiring in our brains. Simple things such as a lower level of light and no harsh noises would help. Just being understanding is more of a help that you can realize.
posted by Raven @ 6:37 AM  
  • At August 16, 2005 2:01 AM, Blogger Latin Lover said…

    I feel for your pain during migraine attacks, I get mild attacks, but nothing chronic. It's true that the little things help. I hope more people will learn to realize or at least understand what it's like to go through a migraine.

  • At August 19, 2005 5:38 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Gaah... headaches... I recently bought some oh-so-stylish WELDING GOGGLES off eBay for those weekend days when we're merrily motoring all over greater Jax and the sun bouncing off the H2O or the highway burns my retinas like 2 eggs on a hot griddle-- you might want to think 'bout getting some.

    Also, what about DRUGS? i LOVE Imetrex (sp?) and it works wonders for me. They've got a NASAL SPRAY version of the stuff, but it dripped down my throat and was so awful and bitter that I almost prefered the headache (it did work, though).

    know what REALLY works for the minor ones? BC Powders. That is, crushed aspirin and caffiene that comes in these lil' celophane envelopes (looking suspiciously like coke-- I don't carry them on me when I go through airport security). Because the aspirin is already crushed, it goes into your system IMMEDIATELY (if you can handle the bitter taste of the stuff).

    One problem, BC's are strictly southern: you won't find 'em north of Tennessee... all the MORE reason to come an' visit!! We'll stock you up!

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