I haven’t shared much publicly about my struggle with chronic migraines but the struggle has been pretty bad since about September of last year.
Before I really get into this post I want to put it out there that I respectfully ask for no “cures” or “suggested treatments”. I want to simply share about my struggle and how I’m working to overcome it and if it helps someone else with chronic illness then I feel like I I’m doing something to help others.
I have had migraines since I was very young. Everyone that has migraines has very distinct triggers and very distinct things that relieve their symptoms. It’s kinda like a migraine fingerprint. Finding the right primary care doctor, emergency room, and neurologist is a huge key in creating a support system to help you function. When we moved to Richmond I was able to establish this group for myself. Also having a strong family support system has been one of the only ways that I have made it through the many many bad migraine episodes. David is a saint when it comes to taking care of me. I can’t tell you how many times he has woken up at 3 am to take me to the ER and sat by my side for hours and hours as I was given meds. He is my advocate when the migraines are so bad that
I can’t even talk to the doctors he knows exactly what to communicate and how to advocate for me. I am extremely blessed when it comes to him and I don’t know if I would even be able to live somewhat of a normal life without him.
The Rebound Cycle:
In the past I have had what I call migraine cycles. I am what they call a rebound migrainer. So I can have a migraine, get it treated then end up with the same migraine over and over as the meds wear off. I once had this happen to me for almost a year. The only way to stop a really bad cycle is to literally stop and drop everything. I have to go off all emergency meds and ride the migraine out until its fully gone. I also can’t be around anything for a while that can trigger a migraines or decrease the triggers around me as much as possible.
In September I experienced a series of triggers that started me off on a pretty bad migraine cycle. Sometimes it takes me a while to even see that I’m in a cycle. You just get so caught up in surviving the day or making it through the week you don’t realize how bad things really are. Well, since September I have pretty much had the same headache over and over again. I missed a ton of work, exhausted all my FMLA from work and my paid time off.
I finally started to see the patterns and put the pieces together. I met with my doctors this past week and we all agreed its time for me to take another break. Detox and rest my body and eliminate all triggers that I can control. So as of today I’m on day 6 of this process. Which means my work has arranged for me to be on short term disability for about the next three months.
It feels really weird being on a break. I don’t know what to do with my time. I need to rest but I also need to keep my mind entertained. So I’ve come up with a few house projects to work on and some writing projects all with the focus of taking it slowly. We have an upcoming vacation that I know will bring some spring into my step. I can’t wait its going to be an epic trip. I also now have the time to really focus on my health and eating habits during this time out. I’m starting out with some yoga and some light cardio. (I like to think that some light housework is cardio).
So for now I am going to take the small things and count them as victories. Today I managed to get up at a decent time which is always a struggle for me on breaks. I also tried a beginners yoga video. I was so awful at it I quickly realized it was too advanced for me and am looking into some other video options for yoga. I would LOVE suggestions on this. Then I did my one small housework task re arranging my desk in office to get it set up for writing and working on projects.
I’ve been so quiet for a while especially on social media so I figured some of my friends were wondering what is going on with me. So if you want to follow along with me on this journey I’ll be blogging my wins and my losses. I’m looking forward to feeling more myself and feeling better overall.