October 8th, 2013
You may have heard the old saying about the Chinese curse “May your life be interesting.” Because we all know that often when life is interesting, it can be interesting in very…NOT so pleasant ways.
Well…life has been…interesting.
The most recent development in the health landscape of my life has been the onslaught of severe migraines I’ve begun to experience. We – we being me and my doctor – don’t know what is causing them. All I know is, they’ve only recently begun, and the pain is absolutely excruciating and almost unbearable.
The first night I suffered through one, I really didn’t know what the hell was going on. I thought it was a sinus headache that had taken a turn into hell, although it didn’t seem to make sense that my scalp felt as though it was being PEELED OFF. I couldn’t sleep, and the medications – sinus pain, ibuprofen – were like friggin sugar pills for all the help they gave me. The only thing that gave me the slightest semblance of relief was placing a bag of frozen vegetables on top of my head, and even that was only mildly helpful because I have such thick hair. I seriously thought about cutting it off.
After suffering for over a day I finally decided to visit the doctor, she diagnosed me with migraines, and gave me medication which actually helped. And so over the past few weeks I’ve been on the journey of discovery with migraines – trying to learn what causes them for me, how to identify the signs of an impending migraine so I can treat it before it get severe, and trying to learn what I can do to prevent them.
I’ve come a long way. One thing was that wonderful was walking into the library and right there on the New Book shelf, was a book written by a doctor, The Women’s Guide to Managing Migraines. Literally a godsend, the book was there waiting for me and it has given me quite a few helpful tips on how to do all the things I listed above.
My doctor tried to send me for a scan of my brain and insurance turned me down. This is my first experience dealing with that kind of thing – whenever I’ve needed to have shit done, it’s gotten done. So having them say NO was a bit of a nuisance. Apparently, I’m not in enough fucking pain to satisfy them, or I haven’t been in pain for LONG enough. So if there’s actually a tumor in my head or something, they’d prefer it to grow and have time to get all nice and fucking comfortable before any doctor can see it.
There’s been other stuff but I guess because I actually have a headache RIGHT NOW, that’s the primary thing on my mind. But suffice it to say that yes, life has been pretty interesting. The pain has made me scared, cranky, irritable, and at times, it has actually immobilized me. It is scary for my children to see.
And it is scary for me to see them being scared, especially when I don’t know what the fuck is wrong and cannot with 100% certainty say to them, no, mommy is not going to die from a tumor in her head. Not that they know about that possibility, but…I’d just like to be able to say, “This is temporary, don’t worry, Mommy will be back on her feet and life will go on as usual.”
But unfortunately, “life as usual” has become, for me, life with pain and fatigue, and I don’t like my quality of life anymore. It feels as though I am just…existing day to day, waiting for bedtime to come so I can collapse into the arms of some medication that will help me to drift off into painless sleep. Morning is pretty much the worst time of day for me, because at that point I still have a whole day looming ahead of me.
Well, that’s my story for today, folks, and it goes some small way to explaining why you haven’t seen me much here. I haven’t been much in the mood for writing, not here or my fictional work, and that bothers me too. I’m going to have to garner the strength to write through the pain, since waiting for pain-free or fatigue-free days may well be pointless…
- Migraine Awareness Week (expresschemist.wordpress.com)
- Migraine Gem – Sinus Headache? (puttingourheadstogether.com)
- Sex Matters in Migraines (scientificamerican.com)