If you know anything about me, you know that I suffer from migraines. It’s not something that I wish upon anyone. It’s not something that I can just turn on or off. It’s not something that I can see coming, or can try to prevent. It’s something that just happens, and it’s something that I just have to live with.
Contrary to popular belief, migraines aren’t just “really bad headaches”. I can’t even begin to tell you how many times I’ve gotten that response. “Oh yeah, I feel your pain. I get really bad headaches too.” Migraines differ depending on the person. They can range anywhere from having extreme pain in multiple areas of the head, to sinuses, blurred vision, extreme nausea, vomiting, sensitivity to light and sound, and dizziness. And these are only a few of the symptoms that are commonly documented with migraines. My migraines typically include all of the above.
The one thing the doctors or websites don’t tell you about is the fear. Sure, I might not have a migraine while I’m typing this right now, but I could get one in the next five minutes. You know what else is scary? Being late for class and having to skip breakfast, but getting a migraine in class. You can’t take your medicine in class because you can’t take it on an empty stomach and if you wait any minute longer it could just make your migraine worse than if you just don’t take anything at all. Another thing? The medications that help treat and prevent migraines have side effects like depression and taste change. So maybe my migraines go away, but I’m not as happy, and my food tastes not so great.
Believe me, I’ve tried my best to live with them. I’ve put a smile on my face and kept from crying through the pain. I’ve taken exams, performed on stage, accepted awards, given speeches to hundreds of esteemed women, and sat through a rehearsal dinner 2,000 miles from home all while enduring the pain. It’s heartbreaking that I’ve had to miss spending time with people that I love because of my migraines. But what’s more heartbreaking is that the people that I love can’t see that this condition is painful to me, and that I really am trying. I’ve heard what people say.
“She probably has a migraine, again”.
If I could control when I had them, I would never have them.
I’m doing everything I can to stop the migraines. Earlier this summer, I had a migraine every single day for a week. That was when I really decided that the Excedrin Migraine wasn’t cutting it. Fortunately my neurologist was able to prescribe some preventative medication and order some blood work and MRIs. Let’s see if I can beat these migraines and stop living in fear.
“I am not as fine as I seem” -twenty one pilots, migraine