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Monday, September 16, 2013

Lets Get Candid and Talk Abit About Migraines

Do you mind terribly if we take a small pause from Art, Bunnies & other Goodness
to talk about migraines and headaches?
It's been awhile since I last spoke about life with them.
 
Let me start by making it clear that while migraine headaches
do make up a very large part of my life and how I function in this life...
they are, by far, not all that I am, nor the biggest part of my life.
I still lead an amazing & abundant life despite the pain I live with.
 
Now, I don't have a sore head every single day.
Sometimes I can go a whole two weeks with next to no head pain...
(that's not common but still, it happens.)
But truth is, most of the time, I do have pain in my head to some degree.
They range from mild to puking bad, sometimes just for a few hours, sometimes for days on end.
 
Being a severe chronic & acute migraine sufferer is hard...
there is no reason to lie about it...
it sucks big time & yes, it's really awful at times.
I can get pretty down when I have good bouts with no pain because I realize just how much
I could achieve if I were not plagued with this problem.
But it's just something I have to deal with...
hopefully someday they'll just go away!  (That happens for a lot of women after menopause!)
For now, I try to work out a good balance of being super tough & working despite any pain
and also being easy on my body and taking care of myself the best I can when it gets too bad.
My stubborn side doesn't always do super well with stopping when I should of course, ha ha!
 
I have cycles.  Months where I do a lot better than others...
For me, right now, "better" usually means,  pain only 3 or 5 days a week instead of 7 days a week!
 
The thing I want people to understand about migraine sufferers
is that some people just get head pain, 
We aren't doing anything wrong necessarily.
It is just a health issue some people have to deal with....like asthma or fibromyalgia...
it just happens to you & you just have to deal with it the best way you can.
 
As my neurologist & doctor put it, I am just one of "The Cursed".
 
 
I don't ever want anyone to feel sorry for me.
That's not why I share this with you from time to time on this beloved blog of mine.
I share my story of pain and my struggle as an artist living with severe migraines because
I know I am not the only one out there dealing with it.
Millions of people suffer.  Some much more and some much less.
 
I've received such kind letters from people saying I am an inspiration to them & I love that...
I want to show fellow sufferers & everyone else that life can still be
amazing and beautiful and abundant despite the pain we suffer.
In fact in some round about way, my life is even that much sweeter because of the pain,
because I can see how the pain free days are that much more amazingly awesome and I can soooo appreciate them that much more.
Like everyone else...I can get stuck in the busy-ness of life,
But the pain forces me to slow down or halt to a full stop where I can see all the beauties in life,
The beauties that I may have been missing out on because I was too busy being busy!
 
One of my biggest problems though is that I have to be very flexible in my commitments..
 I am only human and only have so much energy...
the pain depletes that energy very quickly some days....
many times I have to change or cancel appointments and plans.
My circle of friends is very very small because most people
just can't be bothered to understand or have patience for me and my headaches.
 
But, some commitments are too important to break...
so I put on a strong smiling face to cover up the thundering storm raging in my head,
a lot of times people have no idea that I am standing there in front of them
on the verge of puking cause the pain is so sharp & deep.
Some commitments are worth going through that and sometimes there is no choice
Maybe it's a concert with tickets already purchased,  that you just can't miss...
or going to a shelter to adopt a rabbit!
or getting a picture done for a client...that's always top priority for me & I always seem to manage.
Or maybe it's a friends wedding & your the photographer!
Some things are worth the smiling face followed by the complete collapse in a dark room,
when I am back in the shelter of my sweet cozy home & in the gentle hands of my honey. 
But goodness knows, no matter how tough I want to be,
sometimes I just can't get out there as I want to.
I can't tell my best friend that I'll come visit for a week or two to help out with the new baby...
 because it's too hard to be out of the comfort of my own home when a bad bout strikes...
and I never know when they'll strike!
I find that part of being a sufferer very difficult to accept & almost worse to deal with than any pain.
 
 I want people to know that there is currently no cure for migraines,
only pain management and
sometimes even the best of meds don't help at all,
sometimes we just have to wait for the throbbing's to pass.
 
There are support groups...
The National Migraine Association http://www.migraines.org/
or The National Headache Foundation  http://www.headaches.org/
I tend not to take part in them but they are good for some people & it's nice to know they are there.
 
So next time your around someone who has a migraine or a headache (which can get just as bad)
Try not to say "Well have you tired this or have you tried that"
Chances are very good that we already have tried it and much more!
Try to not make the person feel as though they are broken or like it's our fault,
We most likely already feel broken & desperate to get rid of the pain even just alittle!
Just be gentle and understanding
and know your lucky if you don't suffer too.

Thanks for listening.
If your a fellow sufferer do get in touch & let's chat.

XO
 
 

3 comments:

Aline said...

Dear Mandy, your strenght, determination and passion for life despite your suffereing is what I admire the most about you, "not to mention your outstanding talent as an artist". That is why I reached out to you a few years ago. I wanted to let you know the impact you have on others without even knowing so. Your friend, Aline xoxoxo

Natascha said...

For me its chronic neck pain from a car accident that then causes migraines. Its not as frequent as yours though. You achomplish so much and should be proud. Hope it will let up for you! :)

Deyfenn Slayd said...

Couldn't say it better myself Bella.