This Moment

This moment belongs to me as the quiet in my head lets me simply exist.  It’s a most precious gift this feeling of normalcy.  My brain waged nuclear warfare on me a couple days ago like never before, so the sweet nothingness is heaven.

For thirty-four years, I’ve felt the varying degrees of pain migraine has dealt me.  I thought I experienced the worst before, but this latest one definitely takes the honor.  Its sudden onslaught surprised me as did its tenacity in hitting hard and then reverberating back like a loud gong that wouldn’t stop.

I have a tmi to confess.  IBS (irritable bowel syndrome with severe intestinal cramping and sometimes vomiting) is something I also suffer from.  On Thursday, I was feeling just fine and celebrating a no migraine morning.  Then IBS took over.  All of a sudden my head began pounding heavily.  I could barely make it into the kitchen from the bathroom to press an ice pack on my head.  Nothing was making the excruciating pain stop!

For the next three hours, I couldn’t sit or lay down for more than a couple minutes.  Standing or walking slowly would make the sharp agony a little more tolerable but only for a few minutes before I’d have to sit and start the whole process over again.  It felt like my brain was swelling and could no longer be contained inside the confines of my skull.

Finally, after the three hours, I could lay on one side with my head propped up.  The pain was still sharp and palpitable but it no longer sent me to my feet.  This was a major victory.  Unfortunately, a short time later, my mowaholic neighbor decided to take advantage of Oregon’s no percipitation Thursday to mow, mow, mow while my head went pound, pound, pound.  He often left the mower idling not far from my window.  It was an hour and forty minutes of torture.

I have never been to the emergency room with a migraine.  The reason is that if I’m in unbearable pain, I don’t want to move or sit in a waiting room and go through all the things ERs are famous for.  However, in the case of this migraine I would have gone if not for this fact:

I am under a pain contract with my doctor.  I take generic Vicodin.  The total amount is 40 pills every 32 days.  Is this enough to shake a stick at my migraines?  No, it is not.  And in a few months I will have to do without any Vicodin when I go on a comprehensive migraine overhaul.  But for now, with this pain contract, I’m not allowed to seek pain medication at an ER.  How unfair is that?  I understand if I had a habit of going to ERs in pain but I have never in my life gone to the ER for myself. 

I was also somewhat afraid by the intensity and different kind of migraine I was having ~ the kind the medical books tell you to seek medical attention for.  What if this were a harbinger of a stroke?  This pain contract is dangerous in some ways.  Can’t there be a clause in it somewhere that allows for one migraine ER visit every six months if needed? 

I’m having a broken tooth extracted next week.  I am not permitted to have any pain meds filled by any other doctor or dentist for any other reason.  This is ridiculous.  What if I need a few extra Vicodin during the day or two after the extraction and end up shortchanging myself as far as treatment for migraine pain is concerned?  It’s so unfair. 

And I’m very afraid to have the level of pain I had last Thursday.  Really, at my post-menopausal age, I thought these migraines would be getting better.  They’re not.  My sisters had me ask my doctor about a hysterectomy ten years ago as a “cure” for the migraines.  I’m glad he didn’t agree because it wouldn’t have “cured” them.  But maybe I should try adding lemon drops to my water as a friend recently suggested.  Surely that’s the golden key to unlocking the mystery of migraine suffering!

Disclaimer: The treatments and “cures” for migraine described in this post are personal and are not to be misconstrued as recommendations or advice for anyone.  If you have migraines, please seek help from a physician.

About andreamarjulie

Just trying to navigate a life circumvented by chronic migraines. Sometimes I write about managing with those, but at other times I am prone to deviate a bit.
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