Thursday, March 3, 2016

Migraines and Me

I've mentioned before on my blog that I suffer from Migraines. Here's something that I've noticed lately. When I say, "I have a migraine," people look at me with pity, but not with understanding. If a person has never suffered through a real migraine, they have no idea how to empathize or sympathize with me, the migraine sufferer.
Here are some of my truths of my migraines.
Not all of my headaches are migraines, but all of my migraines are headaches. If I say, "I have a headache," I'm just saying, I have a headache. I know other people who get ocular migraines or speech migraines. These are not the symptoms that I have. If I say, "I have a migraine," I have ALL of the symptoms of a migraine headache.
My migraine symptoms make me a non functional human. My symptoms are pain behind my eyes, the front of my head, all the way to the back of my head. Sensitivity to light. Extreme nausea. Exhaustion. Fatigue for days following the initial migraine.
For a long time, I try to pretend that the symptoms are not effecting/affecting me, but they are.  I rarely call in sick to work, but if I do, I'm experiencing most of these symptoms together, all at once.
I don't take calling into work lightly. If I just have a headache, I go to work. (Unless it's lasting more than a couple days, but sometimes I still go to work in that condition!)
My Nausea has gotten extremely worse these last few times.  I used to be able to throw up and move on. The last few headaches, I've just repeatedly thrown up into for more than 12 hours. That's extreme for me.
My pain is getting worse. My migraines have always been very painful, but I have a pretty high pain tolerance. I know that sounds crazy, but I really do. The last few migraines I've had, I've contemplated going to the emergency room. I don't want to be treated like a pill seeker, so, I won't go. This brings me to the next thing.
My prescribed migraine medications are not working for me. I tried Imitrex in college. It just made me high without taking my pain away. I don't like being high. I also don't like being in pain. The combination made me feel like my heart was going to explode! I contacted my doctor at the beginning of the month with my concerns after a migraine. He prescribed a new migraine med along with an anti-nausea medication. I took these with my migraine on Sunday night, and I could not keep them down. Therefore, the medicine didn't even get the time to start working. Maybe I should have taken them sooner when I felt the original head ache coming on. My original thought process was that it was a sinus headache. I took Sudefed, Allegra, and Tylenol to try to make it subside. It didn't work. I took a nap. That made it worse. I tried to drink some caffeine and eat dinner. That didn't help. Then, I took a Frova and an anti-nausea medicine. They didn't stay down. I'll try to take the new medicines sooner next time, but it says on the Frova: Do not take it this isn't a migraine. How am I to know which headache is going to turn into a full blown migraine, and which headache is just a sinus headache? Should I treat them all the same way?
Every one thinks they have the right answer for me. I get it. It works for you. Epsom salts with lavender oil baths, feet in the tub with hot water and a cold neck compress, essential oils to rub on the temples, go for a walk outside, drink a real Coke, stop eating this, eat this, lose weight: I get that you are all trying to help, and although your suggestions are wonderful, if I feel like I'm dying, I'm not going to do any or all of these things. I can't even get out of bed. I barely make it to the bathroom to throw up. Most of the time, I end up laying in a dark quiet room with a cool wet wash cloth over my eyes, trying not to move, and trying to fall asleep, most of the time failing. Feel free to suggest all of the methods that you use, but unless you are going to come to my house and make these things happen, I can't make myself do them.  As for the diet recommendations, I know what my food triggers are. I do avoid them 99% of the time. I know the pain they cause.
You may be wondering why I'm writing all of this out. I called into work on Monday because I had been up half the night with a full blown painful, puking migraine. My boss said, "If you start feeling better, we could really use your help!" Around noon, I was finally able to shower and put clothes on. I still had the headache, but I was able to keep food down. I went into work, and I said to my boss, "At least I'm not puking anymore!" He looked at me like I was crazy, and said, "PUKING?!?!" Yes. Puking. I added, "Well, that's a part of my migraines." He again looked shocked.
I know how much migraines suck. Yes, I have headaches too, but I don't let a headache stop me. If I call into work or don't attend an event that I said I was going to, it's extremely bad.
So, please, if you don't understand, feel free to ask me questions.
If you do understand, I'm sorry that you are suffering from migraines also.