Dear Doctor,

I am here today to discuss what has been bothering me for months—years—my pain. I've done all that I can do: rest and every medication you can think of. I am consoling to you because I feel pinned against the wall. Please tell me what can be done to fix it. I'm running out of options.

Just because you cannot physically see migraines, it doesn't mean they're not as awful as any other disease or syndrome. In fact, it's worse. You're fighting your own body day by day in silence. Nobody knows but you unless you speak up. That is what I am doing by sitting here; speaking up for my body and my mind.

My pain cannot be put into words. It feels like someone shoved my brain into a box that continuously gets smaller, and doesn't stop compressing. The pressure can be sharp as knives, or dull as a cloudy day. It's not in one place, it's all over.

Stars and squiggles dance in my eyes like I'm in a night club. I am light as a feather, but due to being lightheaded, not happy. My sleep schedule is all over the place. It's cumbersome to feel out of sync with my body. I feel dissociated.

Doctor, please tell me what's wrong. What's the reason(s) behind all of this? What is driving my body to react to how it is? I just want to feel normal.

I cannot feel normal if you don't believe me or how severe my pain is. Is a visit to the emergency room not enough? Is experiencing pain of 10 on a scale of 1-10 for two weeks, not enough? I'm doing the best I can to translate what my body is communicating into human language.

Yes, I need that medication: nothing works. Yes, I need a referral for a neurologist: I’m seeking further advice on how to stop the madness. I'm not lying or a hypochondriac. I'm desperate, and I'm willing to do anything to go back to painless days.

Doctor, I don't care if the wait is 6-9 months. I don't care if I don't fit all the characteristics in order to consider being qualified to see a specialist. Please listen to me. I'm crying out for help.

This attitude can hinder the spirits. I've slowly started to accept my new reality. All I want is someone to listen and say, “I'm sorry you're feeling this way, and I'm going to put an end to it." I feel myself slipping away into a black hole of a person that I don't recognize. Doctor, save me before it's too late.

Doctor, I've left feeling more pessimistic than optimistic. Empty-handed and empty-hearted, medical training and guidelines got the best of me. What's next in my deck of cards? It looks like history will repeat itself.

Doctor, you're used to looking at patients with a clinical perspective. Take off those glasses and switch them for one minute. Put yourself in the patient's shoes. Imagine how they feel. Then, do everything in your power to alleviate their sorrows.

Doctor, the condition is beginning to eat me alive. Everyone I know has been saying that recently I've been angry and sad all the time: this isn't me. I'm keeping my head above the water, but pain pulls me under again. I'm withdrawing from my life, and I'm becoming a wreck.

I'm hungry to do what it is I enjoy to do. School work is difficult to manage when all you want to do is sleep. Working out is out of the question if you can barely walk or stand without feeling dizzy. My energy is too drained to feel up to attending social activities with friends. My cup is empty, and only you can fill it up, Doc. I can't live my life if I have to lock myself up in a dark, quiet room and sleep 24/7.

Doctor, although I enjoy your company, I would rather spend less time in your office. I want to be out in the world accomplishing what I want to do. I'm tired of feeling the way that I do. I'm being swallowed whole.

My pain is real. It's so real it slaps me hard in the face. It sneaks up on me and strikes out of nowhere. Fight the demons, Doctor. Don't side with them. They'll win. I'm screaming out but nobody can hear me; my voice is silenced.

I'm going mad. I feel alone because nobody understands me. I'm stuck and I feel that I'm going nowhere. You're the only one that can relate to me, and you do not even do that, Doc. I don't understand, you're supposed to be there for me when nobody else is. Even you've turned your back on me after all this time.

The bottom line is this: I'm done not knowing the root of problems and being in pain. I'm taking action as much as I can, but I cannot do this alone. I'm clawing my way to health, but I get pulled back if I'm not treated. My trust as a patient has diminished, Doc.

Doctor, don't minimize my pain. I won't get better.