Mar 22, 2007

Another Day, Another Migraine

I woke up with a mother of a migraine at 4:30 AM. You think I'd learn my lesson and just get my ass out of bed and take my medication. But it was dark and the bed was warm and I just wanted to pretend it wasn't happening. So I stayed in bed - eyes wide open, pressure building in my head and around my eyes, hoping that maybe it was just a bad dream. I finally fell asleep and awoke to my alarm at 6 AM. It wasn't a bad dream.

I took some painkillers and went to work. It only got worse. The pain wasn't increasing that much, but the constant pain was nauseating. I never used to get that nauseated when I first got migraines years ago. Back then my doctor even prescribed me Compazine, but I never really needed it. How I could have used that today.

I thought I'd come home around noon and finish my work, but I suddenly remembered that I had a project to finish before tomorrow's 8 AM Board Meeting. I thought it would be quick, but I ended up working on it for over 2 hours. Now that it is almost 5 PM, I don't think I should try to take a nap. The pain is a bit better (after a couple of more pills), but I'm at that point that if I put my head down on a pillow, I will not wake up until midnight. Then I'll be disoriented and hungry and really, really cranky (just ask Patrick). So, I should probably just try to stay awake until 9 PM or so and then just go to bed.

Sometimes I feel like I shouldn't complain about my migraines because there are so many worse problems and illnesses out there. But I've had them for 9 years. I used to just get 2-3 migraines a month, but over the years they increased to 10-12 per month. Hundreds and hundreds of debilitating migraines for 9 years. The problem with these headaches versus "regular" tension headaches is that they hurt a hell of a lot more, there are other symptoms (nausea, sensitivity to light, sound, smell), they can last from 4-72 hours, and they suck the life right out of you. That's just the day(s) you have the headaches - there's also what I like to refer to as the "migraine hangover." I liken this to what it must feel like to have been dragged behind a semi for a few hundred miles. Sore and tired muscles, a strange tingling almost pain-like sensation in your head (which of course makes me paranoid that it's the start of another migraine), extreme fatigue, and gloomy, almost depressed emotions. This is what I have to look forward to tomorrow.

The other depressing thing is that my neurologist told me that menopause should make my headaches disappear - great, I'm only 34. A couple of years ago I asked him what would happen to me if I ever got pregnant (as I have "menstrual migraines" that occur due to the drop of estrogen - yes, I brought them on myself as a result of starting bc pills 9 years ago). There is no guarantee - they could improve, stay the same, or get worse. I told him that if the only medication I could take for a migraine while pregnant was Tylenol, than I would never have children. I couldn't do it. I've been in the situation before where no medication was helping - not 6 narcotic painkillers, plus Excedrin, plus prescription migraines meds, plus IV painkillers. There have been times I've wanted to bash my head against the wall, times when I would have gladly paid someone to take a swing at my head with a baseball bat. I've shoved the corner of the remote control into the inside corner along my brow bone so hard and for so long that I've bruised myself. I've cried out of frustration, exhaustion, and depression knowing that this wouldn't be my last migraine. I've cried alone. I've cried, curled in a ball, in the emergency room while I waited for the doctor to see me and while I waited for the medicine to kick in. I've lost days to these headaches. I've lost moments in my life that I will never get back.

I have another pill with my name on it and I've got more work to finish. I pray that I don't get another migraine tomorrow. I just can't do this again.

1 comment:

ACE said...

Dear one-
I am so sorry to hear of these awful headaches. I've never had problems with headaches before, so I cannot know what it is you feel. My thoughts are with you, girl! feel better!