Chronic Migraine is a Bitch

Chronic migraines impact every part of my life.

Every. Part.

Add in the depression and anxiety, those comorbid disorders, and you end up with a steaming pile of … well, you end up in a sucky mess.

I’m not sure many people can even tell how miserable I am sometimes. I like to joke around. I’m sarcastic and witty. I amuse myself which tends to amuse others.

I seem like a normal, happy, fun person.

At least, I think I do.

Then there are those people who know that I’m good at hiding just how crappy I feel. That I can function in a mostly normal fashion even when I’m in terrible pain or feeling incredibly anxious or depressed. Those people it’s harder to convince that I’m fine. I’m ok. Well, I’m ok enough.

I was describing to a friend the other day how I can push through many of my anxiety attacks, and no one is the wiser. I’ve had a lot of practice. I recognize what’s happening and can breathe through and ride them out. Most of the time.

But I still avoid my biggest triggers. And I let them swallow me when I’m home and safe when I’m tired of fighting them off.

It’s similar with depression. That monster is so familiar that I tend to let him hover for a while and talk it through with my husband to keep me from letting it completely distort my thinking.

I have many coping mechanisms I’ve developed over the years that work pretty well. Although I wish I didn’t have to do all these mental gymnastics to get through life, I am grateful that I have them and I do get through.

I have less control over my migraines.

After 20 years they are still an enigma.

Sure I know some triggers and have a lot of tricks in my bag to deal with the pain but I have yet to find a way to really, truly cope with them.

I function. I function pretty well to the outside world. But at home they know how crippling my pain can be. How I can sit on my ass all weekend because doing anything just makes it worse. Plus I have to save up my fight for the week when I have to work and get the kids where they need to go.

You know, when I have the outside world to answer to.

I often feel like I am letting down my family. They suffer as much as I do from my lack of function. Maybe more.

I had some good weekends over the last few months and I actually felt normal. I participated. It was great.

But it was fleeting.

Chronic migraine is a bitch.

I wonder how I can continue to let those I love most down. I wonder when they will give up on me. Maybe they should give up on me.

Maybe I should just be alone.

I don’t want that.

I’d say that is my greatest fear.

When Love Won

After reading this post from Katie, I thought it would be nice to document what we were doing when Love Won.

We were on vacation and I didn’t realize that the SCOTUS was handing down decisions. Luckily my near constant need to check social media kept me in the loop.

I saw that SCOTUS had upheld a key part of the ACA and breathed a sigh of relief. This one seemed logical but I was still concerned it might not go the way it did.

Then I saw a friend on Facebook say “Marriage Equality decision coming soon”.

So I refreshed madly until I saw the decision and tears welled up in my eyes.

We were walking through Universal Studios for the next fun thing and I’m starting to cry. I’m thinking how much I was afraid the decision would go the other way and about my relief that Love Wins.

My feed has been mostly glee and happiness with a sprinkling of posts I preferred to skip.

In the following days more and more people added rainbows to their profile photos to show support for Marriage Equality throughout the land.

I am so happy.

Love Wins.

My thoughts on that flag

My dad is a big history buff. Growing up I remember him playing war games and we frequented the nearby Civil War battlefields where he would tell us all sorts of tidbits he knew about each battle. We even went to a reenactment of the battle at First Manassas one extremely hot summer day. My […]

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Anxiety Sucks

I felt it bubbling under the surface. I was a little dizzy and felt off. But I had things to do so I pushed through. But it still simmered. I could feel it wasn’t going to just pass. Then I made the mistake of reading a book on mental illness, a collection of personal essays, […]

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A Trip To Georgetown Headache Center

A few months back my neurologist suggested I go to Georgetown Headache Center or to Jefferson Headache Center and since the former is much closer, I decided to make an appointment. I had gone there early on in my headache trials and tribulations but all I remember is that the doctor made me stop taking […]

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We are now an RV family

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In 2005 we went to Alaska for two weeks. A was only two months old at the time and we decided to rent a class C RV for the duration of the trip so we could minimize unpacking and moving all our junk from place to place with all the kids. The RV fit us […]

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Hopeful and Hopeless

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I’m sitting here with ear plugs in because we have power tools running every so often in the house and the sound is just enough to pierce my brain. I have my neck warmer on and a can of caffeine. I already zapped my brain with my Cefaly device and now I’m calculating how long […]

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Migraines, oh how I loathe thee

I’ve reached the point where it is hard to remember what those glorious days were like just after my IV infusion therapy.  Actually, I reached that point not very long after the therapy.  I am so sad at how little difference it made afterwards. Probably the one plus is that my rescue medications work better […]

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IV Infusion Therapy For Migraine

I saw my neurologist early this month and told him that I have reached a point where none of my normal medications are working for my pain.  Although I try to keep from taking too many, the sad reality is that I have been taking more and more as preventatives have not worked.  I still […]

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It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas

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Now that Thanksgiving is done, it’s time to decorate for Christmas.  Our youngest really loves decorating for any holiday but Christmas is her favorite.  We used to get live trees (with the tree ball) so that we could plant the tree after Christmas is over. Once we had several in the yard, we decided to […]

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