LHB Blog

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The frustrations of the Migraineur

Alternative title: A migraine is not ‘just a headache’…A migraine is the equivalent of having sledgehammers smashed repeatedly against your head from all angles for multiple days while you try to figure out the most elegant way of vomiting your insides into a bin and you slowly start to give some serious consideration to ramming a spork into your eyeballs just to give them something to scream blue bloody murder about!

 

I fully understand that to some the notion of a migraine and what that rabbit hole entails is limited to the “not tonight darling, I have one of my bad heads coming on” jokes that did the rounds when someone wasn’t in the mood to bump uglies. I know that to others, a migraine is “just a headache, I had one of them once before I think”…Trust me, you would know about it if your brain was threatening to tear your skull apart. I also know that (to the Migraineur) when faced with the prospect of a migraine, rolling around naked in poison ivy is a preferable way to spend an evening.

With that said, if you slap me at the back of my head while I’m in the prodrome phase, be fully prepared for me to rip your arm off at the shoulder joint and for me to beat you across your own head with the wet end while shrieking “does this feel like just a headache to you?!” …(You listening S? Jolly good).

I have experienced migraines since the age of 15 (this was the age I was officially diagnosed by a specialist), I was that awkward kid at school that would have to shove two horse pill sized co-codamol tablets into a very small amount of water just to function long enough to crawl under a desk and weep quietly. I experienced relentless sickness and various other fun side-effects when faced with Triptans, Amitriptyline produced a detachment from all emotion (freaking weird experience!), Pizotifen worked for a little while and then abruptly stopped (I noticed this effect with recommended over the counter medications too)…I have also tried dietary restriction (as there was a lot of focus on dairy, coffee and chocolate being possible triggers), Magnesium supplements and Acupuncture

Yet, nearly 15 years on from diagnosis, migraines and I are still as close as we ever were.

It shows up (usually on the only sunny day we get here in Lancashire) with a “oh hai, you’re enjoying your day huh? Is that ice-cream? Mint choc chip you say? Well I just thought I’d drop this bag of rabid hamsters into your noggin to run riot, tip shit over and scratch behind your eyes…You’re welcome!”

Or, while tapping away at the keyboard at work you hear the familiar “that lighting is a bit naff wouldn’t you say? Just long tubes of brightness beaming down on you…You know what would really kick it up a notch? Hell yeah baby, I brought you your own personal fireworks display. Do you know what is so awesome about that? I’m using your own sense of visual perception to cause it! Isn’t that fab? Once the migraine kicks in with it’s wicked unce-unce-unce noise it’ll be like being at a rave! Woop woop! Glow sticks for the win!”

And a favourite has to be being woken up at 2am to “ah man, you are so going to love sleeping on the bathroom floor covered in your own vomit…See, you can have the whole drunk as a skunk experience without having touched a drop of alcohol! Great huh? Easy on the wallet and liver, though your stomach won’t be too happy…Hope you didn’t have curry for tea!”

 

The light - it BURNS!

Argh! The light! It BURNS!!! … (Yes, even this light is awful if you’re photophobic)…Still, this is a photo of Lancashire WITHOUT rain, I should be framing this not Instagramming it (is that even a word?)!

 

I would much rather have ‘just a headache’…

In conclusion, migraines are for life, not just for Christmas (or something like that)…This is just the type of shit that happens when you forget to pick up your receipt.

R x

PS – Interestingly, I’ve read recently that there is a co-morbid relationship between migraine and hypothyroidism (lucky me huh? Both my brain and my thyroid are in cahoots to kick my ass!). Do any of my fellow Migraineurs have hypothyroidism too?

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12 Comments

  1. Hi Ruebi *waves*…. I hope today finds you migraine free, I’ve had them myself, more often than I care to mention (though not as frequently as you) and they really are the Mother of all headaches o_O

    I’d rather any other pain than a headache, because a headache interferes with everything…and I’d rather any headache than the migrainy type.

    At least with back ache ect one can still sit on ones behind and enjoy TV, writing (Twitter :O) ) Not so with head pain!

    Take care, Kimmie x

    Hopped over (though I had read this one before) from the #Weekendbloghop πŸ™‚

    • Ruebi

      Hi Kimmie *waves*

      I am migraine free today thankfully! πŸ˜€

      I’ve decided to make an appointment with my GP in a couple of weeks time to work out what else I can try re: migraines (have a thyroid check to get sorted first – sigh. Can I trade my body in for one that actually works?). Tempted to ask for a referral to a nutritionist and food allergy tests, last time I did the dietary restriction test I was newly diagnosed so I’m guessing that tolerances to food change as we age. Also I’ve read that certain foods can have a negative impact on thyroid function so I don’t want to put either at risk…Be useful to have a professional help out with it.

      Anyway I’m waffling on! How’re you?

      R x

  2. Ouch πŸ™

    I also suffer from them, although by the sounds of it I’m getting off lightly in comparison to you.
    I was put onto Propranolol when I was diagnosed with migraines and they brought it under control within a few days. Now, if I feel it coming on I just start with the propranolol and it heads it off. So to speak. Dunno if you’ve tried those but maybe worth mentioning to your GP?

    • Ruebi

      I have tried Propranolol, my GP moved me onto a different medication but I can’t remember why now. I’m glad it works for you though! πŸ™‚ …I notice certain triggers (lavender is a major no-no for me!) but other times they just show up without me being anywhere near a recognised trigger (seems that there are others at play) and I just have to accept that I’m going to feel awful for a while. Co-codamol seems to help a little and allows me to actually sleep. Sleep is brilliant when the brain is throwing a tantrum.

  3. Hey guys,

    Only ever had ONE, and I am so grateful for that. It was while I was pregnant with #1 child, I thought I was dying and loosing the baby. Nope just the ugliest thing ever. I would rather go through child birth than that.

    Ok for what it is worth…. As I don’t suffer from them, my girlfriend and neighbor right next door for the last 12 years has had them. Multiple days off work, and days where I have had to get her child from school and cook dinners for the family. She last years started the Paleo Diet…. Caveman diet??? She says after all the years of bing on drug after drug that her migraines are less frequent and also less painful. So just a thought. Also supposedly CNN just came out with a piece about Almonds being good for migraines.

    Any how if this is helpful, jolly good and if not… Sorry guys. πŸ˜‰

    xoxoxo

    • Ruebi

      Hello m’dear! πŸ™‚

      I’ve heard some folks say that the Paleo diet worked for them, others say that the Vegan diet helped…I’ve booked in to see a GP about them to see what she suggests nutrition wise, with my Thyroid being screwed up already I don’t want to leap right into a diet that could be detrimental to it. Can I trade my body in for one that actually works?!

      I’m willing to try dietary changes! (Though I hated the restriction diet the first time round…Nearly cried over the loss of the chocolate biscuits. Also how many stroppy posts will come about when I can’t touch a bacon butty?! Eep).

      x

  4. Hello, fellow sufferer – and how I wish that neither of us were suffering from it!
    I’ve been having migraines since I was about 7, there is a family history of it on my father’s side, but it got worse when I reached puberty. The doctors console me that it might get better when I hit menopause – gee thanks, so half of my life wasted then…
    I used to get them about once a month, every 6 weeks, for about 3 days (of shunning light, throwing up constantly, hammering drills, brain like cotton wool – everything you describe). But lately they’ve been getting more frequent and lasting for longer. The blood tests came back all right so my GP is considering sleep apnea and other outlandish reasons why it’s got worse. I take Naratriptan on prescription, which sometimes works, but can create a dependency, and there are some identified triggers but also plenty of unidentified ones. So it’s a lifetime struggle, I’m afraid!
    Not much of a consolation, but I wish you the very best in finding something that helps you to function at least most of the time.

    • Ruebi

      Hi Marina! Thank you for stopping by…

      I wish neither of us had to suffer with migraines either! I’ve been told about the menopause thing too, doesn’t ease the fact that we’re suffering with them for a huge chunk of our lives before then (and even then there is no guarantee that they will stop). One GP once told me that they were purely hormonal and that as a woman I just had to deal with them…Considering my migraines hit whenever they please I’m pretty certain that periods are not the cause (or sole cause)…In fact I know they aren’t as Lavender is a major trigger for me.

      Sometimes it’s like screaming into a vacuum trying to get medical professionals to pay attention!

      It’s good to hear from other migraineurs, it means that there is someone else out there that understands what I mean when I say “I have a migraine”…But at the same time I really wish there was far more research and help out there for us!

  5. Oh I feel for you! I had migraines as a teenager and they were awful! I had the aura before as well, which used to make me feel so sick. No medication worked with my migraines, I just had to try my best to sleep it off. Fortunately I grew out of them when I was 18. Nearly 10 years without one!

    Thank you for linking up with the #WeekendblogHop

    Laura x x x

    • Ruebi

      The aura is such a weird thing, I describe it to people as “my personal light show” (though I end up closing my eyes to try and deal with it and people assume I’m winking at them which is all kinds of uncomfortable)…Sometimes it means I get a chance to take some painkillers before the migraine takes complete hold, other times it makes no difference.

      Thank you for stopping by from the #Weekendbloghop (and I’m thrilled you’ve been migraine free for 10 years) πŸ™‚ x

  6. I didn’t know about the thyroid and migraine connection. Both run in my family. Thank you for connecting with #LinkYourLife.

    • Ruebi

      It makes for interesting reading! I’ve only recently started researching Thyroid Disorders and Migraines…I should have done it years ago!

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