I’ve heard how athletes are incredibly superstitious. They all kiss a certain sign on the way to the field or rub the head of one of the managers as they go to bat or wear the same swim suit since they were 10. I’ve always thought they were nuts.
Until I realized I do the same thing but not with sports… with migraines.
I started getting migraines when I was 14 and they didn’t know much about them and I was given Tylenol 3 which did NOTHING for me. I would get about one a month. I stopped getting them when I was about 20. I got one each time I was pregnant and then one after giving birth, but nothing too significant to really worry about. I thought they had something to do with hormones and didn’t think about it.
THEN (insert sinister music)
Last year I had 7 in 6 days. But that was it. A fluke, I’m sure. It was the worst week of my life and I spent it in a dark room bemoaning my fate and yelling at my children. But a year went by. All is well. Or is it?
I’m getting them again and this time they’re random. I had 2 three weeks ago, 1 two weeks ago and 1 this week.
I don’t mind the vision issues, the vomiting, or the fact that the left side of my body goes numb. I can handle those things. It’s the unknown pain factor. My vision blurs and I panic because I don’t know how bad this one will be.
Will I be able to function or will I be rolling around in bed wondering exactly how many pills I can take before I cross the line? I hate that unknown.
And so I’ve become superstitious. I’ve cut out Diet Pepsi because caffeine can cause migraines. I’ve stopped wearing a swim cap because it’s tight and maybe the pressure is causing migraines. If I don’t fall asleep by 11:30 I take an Advil PM because lack of sleep can cause migraines. I’m drinking water as much as I can because dehydration can cause migraines. The hardest one is that stress can cause migraines but the fact I keep worrying about getting a migraine is WHAT IS CAUSING THE STRESS!!!
But I still live in constant fear that all of a sudden my vision will blur and I know I have 15 minutes. 15 minutes to take meds and find a dark room and get someone to pick up my kids or watch them and to contact my husband and let him know that I’m out for the rest of the day.
And I have to be out for the rest of the day because I make really bad decisions when on pain meds. I’ve promised my eldest a car if he’d just be quiet. I told my daughter she could raise a pony in her bedroom if she would go to a friend’s house. I may have told more than one medical professional I would be their love slave if they found a cure. (What really worries me about this last one is that I remember saying this to a couple people. I just don’t recall who those people are…)
But if one of them found a cure, I’m pretty sure I’d follow through.