This morning I was on day 3 of waking up with throbbing in my skull, the sun feeling like it will burn my eyes out of their sockets, and that my brain has been hit with a 2x4, I drag myself out of bed and to the doctor's office (for what has become a normal visit in my life to treat a migraine). Ever since I was a teenager, I have suffered from chronic migraines, the type that incapacitates you for days on end, lying in bed, hiding from light, sound, and having to move. Despite controller medications to keep them at bay, medications to stop them when they start, and the "last resort" medications before I call to make a doctor's appointment, teas, home remedies, cold compresses, hot compresses, etc. nothing ever really stops the painful and annoying existence of a migraine.
- Pain on one side or both sides of your head
- Pain that feels throbbing or pulsing
- Sensitivity to light, sounds, and sometimes smells and touch
- Nausea and vomiting
- Blurred vision
Migraines also hinder our daily lives and the people we share it with. While we classify chronic migraines as severe headaches that happen 15+ times a month and can last several days, this large number impacts daily schedules and activities. Lives come to a halt and the world can no longer function as it should.
Remember that paper due in Chemistry lab first thing today? Did you have a conference call at 9 this morning? Are the kids demanding breakfast as they run around screaming that the aliens have invaded? While all of this may have been a normal morning yesterday, today you have a migraine that has confined you to bed, and there is nothing to change this. Maybe a friend, boyfriend, or husband can help with the kids, a co-worker who can cover the call, or you can simply reschedule, and your Chemistry teacher will give you an extension on the paper. However, if this happens every month, even weekly…. People become less understanding and often cannot make time in their schedules as easily. We can't just "take medicine" such as a magic pill, and it will go away, and this isn't just a "bad headache" like when your annoying aunt comes in for Christmas every year (we really wish it was).
Chronic migraines are a part of life, we learn to maneuver around and sometimes, if we are lucky, can control the frequency with medication to an extent. To the remaining population who has never had to experience a migraine before, count your blessings and each day you wake up embracing the sunlight and the noise of your life. Just because you may not understand the reality or severity of our pain, please understand that it is real to us and the disruption to our lives and our loved ones. We would gladly live life without having to experience migraines and the pain that comes with them.
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