Migraines: The Bane of My Existence
They start with a black speck in my vision. My right eye to be precise. The speck slowly grows and soon I see black/white squiggly lines dancing through my vision. The shape grows, sort of like a snake unwrapping from a tight coil. This is known as an aura in the migraine world.
The queasiness sets it. (As does my irrational fear that the aura will not go away and I’ll always be half blinded).
The dancing lines last about 20-30 minutes. I stop functioning for these 20-30 minutes – I cannot see probably and the world feels unsafe. If I’m at home, I sit in the bathtub to try to find any tiny bit of comfort. If I’m not home, I sit basically still until it passes.
Within 45 minutes, the throbbing of my left temple starts. I feel like someone is slowly twisting a screw driver through my temple, right into the back of my eye. Even moving from sitting to standing turns the throbbing into excruciating pain.
My only saving grace is my migraines only last for about 6-8 hours.
The very odd time, I am able to work get through them – so long as I don’t dare read. But more often then not, I’m laid up in bed praying to all the gods that the pain stops. If I’m lucky, I can sleep through it. If I’m not so lucky, I make my home on the bathroom floor so I’m close to the porcelene throne for whenever I throw-up.
I can honestly say, parenting a toddler with a migraine might just be an extra special version of hell because I cannot just go curl up in bed.
Migraines run in my family. Interestingly, I started getting them right after my mom and sister died.
As a teenager I was involved in an medical study on migraines in children. I changed my diet, and tracked all my migraines to the 5 minutes. I did an elimination diet and noted foods that caused migraines. It wasn’t the most fun I’ve ever had, but it was helpful because I started to learn food and lifestyle factors that cause my migraines.
As an adult, for years I took prescription migraine medications when I got an aura – the horrible side effects lasted for days, so I stopped taking them. Years ago, a neurologists tried to get me to take an epilepsy drugs that’s side effects scared that crap out of me. The neurologist’s recommendations scared me enough that I re-did the elimination diet and cut everything out of my diet and added in foods 1 week at a time. If I got a migraine, I knew I couldn’t eat that food. If I didn’t get a migraine it became a safe food. Now, I do not eat
- Monosodium Glutamate (MSG)
- Sugar substitutes like aspartame
- Caffeine – no coffee for me. Oddly some chai tea lattes brands are safe, and some are not.
- Black, white or green teas – herbal teas only, and the odd green tea that I’ve found over the years.
Now, I stay away from all my trigger foods because if I eat a trigger food, I’m sick within 12 hours. But some of my life-triggers, like the day after stress, are impossible to avoid. And unfortunately, I am probably bound to get those ones for the rest of my life and I will spend the first or second day of any vacation in a hotel room.
Now, aIl I take is extra strength Tylenol and avoid all prescription drugs. Truthfully, I’m not sure the Tylenol does anything, but I figure it’s better then absolutely nothing.
I even avoid talking about migraines and never read about them, as if somehow even just the mention of the world will cause one.
Migraines are the bane of my existence. I’d give almost anything to never have to endure another one.
If you like this post, please feel free to share and please click the follow button on the side or return to myperfectbreakdown.com to follow.