Migraine Destruction and Searching For Calm

A brutal migraine began last night, ripping through my skull like a freight train, as I frantically searched for an envelope of documents I have to fill out, not knowing when they are due back. I tore apart all the normal places I keep my documents which require immediate or semi-immediate attention, versus the one’s I file away after they’ve been submitted. It could be anything from health insurance stuff to a letter I wrote to a judge on someone’s behalf. It’s not linear. Because I’ve been a writer for so long, one can only describe my system as, “organized chaos”. I will try getting my shit together this year in terms of paper organization and clothing organization. I made this promise to myself about six months ago and I feel like I’m doing my best. Nothing is perfect, of course. Least of all, me.

Last summer, I focused on the small stuff, which began with makeup organization. I am slowly distancing myself from brand consulting and the beauty industry on a whole. It’s embarrassing, but much like paperwork, it was all accumulating in an insane manner, and the best thing to do was break it all down so I could see precisely what I own. Now I get to short through what can be donated or gifted. I still have a few months to deal with that craziness.

To calm myself down today, despite having to cancel my Telehealth appointment at the last minute because this migraine is unmanageable (Two doses of Ubrelvy and I am still not okay. I didn’t want to be disrespectful of his time via video when I know I’d be doing it in sunglasses, trying not to expel food onto my laptop.), I decided to call the person who needs the documents I can’t find (They didn’t grow legs, but if they’re needed before I locate them, that’s going to be a big issue.). I asked her to send them ASAP. She and I will speak at our appointed time, and hopefully she’ll have gotten my message and sent the forms back out so I can tackle them immediately. Normally, they would not be necessary, but she’s merely an intermediary on this level, so I aim to be respectful and do my due diligence.

There will always be migraines I can function through and others I genuinely can’t. Unfortunately, this makes people assume that chronic migraine isn’t a serious condition. It is. This pain is coming and going, currently taking up residence in my neck. This is the result of too much stress. I am burnt out beyond words and I still have so much I need to do. There’s no want involved in tackling things I have to do; it’s the result of having responsibilities. They must be dealt with. They won’t take a vacation, so I’m stuck doing it all until I can make time to be away.

I mentioned responsibilities for a reason. I had money set aside for a trip to Israel. I was thrilled to plan it after Covid was over. I’m not sitting on a plane for all those hours in a mask. I think I’d drop dead halfway through. No, I’m not being dramatic. Anxiety is very real and lately, I have had struggles at times with keeping myself calm. I am only allowed to wear cloth masks and they don’t always feel safe, plus, they do impede my breathing. Then I took Cat and Kitten to the vet for a checkup and their vaccinations. Cat requires non-emergency surgery. The vet told me how much it would be, and my vacation money was automatically swallowed up. That’s okay; because she needs the medical care and I’d never deny that to her. I’m not a horrible person who would abandon her because she needs a procedure. That’s like abandoning your child because they aren’t perfect. I’ll work twice as hard and when I do get to plan the trip, it’ll be an even better one. Maybe because I’ll be feeling better (G-d, do you listen to me?), or because I will feel less stressed. I might even have more energy to do the things we’d originally planned; much of which involves a ton of walking and climbing. I used to walk like the world was my playground, and now I have to pace myself for every mile I tack on. I thought about asking someone to go with me, but I am SO excited to see my best friend/sister, and feel I should go solo because I don’t want anyone to cut into my time with her, especially since she and I are a tiny team with our own language and just how we treat one another. According to my horoscope and tarot readings, it will be my last solo trip, which is empowering in so many ways because I was encouraged at a very young age not to be afraid to do things by myself. I’ve been flying all my life. Despite the extra security protocols, being searched like I was a terrorist at DFW International, and slightly at Philadelphia International, I am pretty good the second I am packed and mentally in vacation mode. It’s harder to leave my vacations than it is to pack up and go. Countries search you less when you’re leaving, but when you arrive? Be prepared for a potential hold-up. Especially if, like me, you take one suitcase that is predominantly empty, except for an extra pair or two of shoes (I always pack two pairs of sneakers and something fancier. Sometimes I will travel with the nicest pair on, to make room in that second suitcase. I’ll throw in socks and toiletries to make my intentions clear.). I do that to have room for anything I purchase while I’m away. My carryon is generally overloaded, just like my purse. It’s worth it, even though it leaves my shoulders with bruises for two weeks.

As is typical when I’m dehydrated and trying to focus on getting rid of this migraine, and a potential blizzard approaching this weekend, I am going to do my best. I can’t do more than that. I have various pieces in the works and have taken a break from the manuscripts because of how sick I’ve been. Hopefully it’ll pass soon and I will be able to return to that which is best for me.

I cannot express enough how important it is to take care of yourself, even if it means saying no, cancelling plans, etc. I honestly felt awful and apologized to my doctor profusely, but I also know he understands that if I cancel, it’s bad. His office did get back to me to say he had no openings, but that I have appointments booked for next month. Yes, I was well aware of that, and will reach out to him if there’s an issue between now and then.

I swear, January has felt like the past year. I hate it beyond words, and might touch on that in the future, but for now, I’m taking my own advice. Water. Rest. More rest. Then I am going to try tackling my mother’s vegetable soup recipe. I know it by heart, but sometimes I’m obsessed with making it perfect. However, it is healthy, comforting, nourishing, and that’s really what I need in my life right now. If I can’t get support from people who are in my life (and some who are about to get nosebleed seats), then I can at least have a huge pot of soup to sustain me. Also, does anyone else need ice cream during a blizzard? Just me? C’est la vie. We’ve all got our priorities and weird cravings.

For everyone in the path of these storms, please stay safe and be well. For those not about to endure it, count your blessings and be well and safe. None of you are alone.

Much love,

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Genetic overlap between metabolites and migraines

I share this as someone who was supposed go in for treatment this week. Fifteen minutes before I was to leave, I got a phone call letting me know my insurance had denied the coverage (after initially approving it). After three stressful hours on the phone, treatment was approved, but not for the correct day. I’ve had a migraine for over the course of several weeks, and I still have to wait until next week to see my doctor. That’s why I’ve been writing less here. I haven’t been well, or myself. It’s not just my migraines, but you get the gist.

‘There’s a lot of us out there that just can’t even get out of bed’: Living with crippling migraines

https://www.9news.com.au/national/migraine-pain-exclusive-symptoms-new-drugs-australia-mother-forced-to-give-up-job/2a86822d-4c9f-4970-8cc2-0fa505a169f4

Personally, the CGRP drugs I’ve taken have been a nightmare. One of my doctors said, “Your body isn’t a big fan of medication.” Not those that don’t fucking work!

For Your Consideration…

Working on half a dozen different things for the site. Unfortunately, I am plagued by a bout of migraines which aren’t responding to medication. I think this will be my last month taking Ubrelvy as a rescue med. 😦 Maybe my doctor will have another option when I see her in three weeks. I try not to use this stuff at all, but when a migraine hits and effects your neck, mouth, face, and the entirety of your skull, you’ve got to cut yourself some slack.

I feel bad that I’m not accomplishing anything today, but being coherent enough to write this is falling under the, “good enough” category I rarely, if ever, settle for.

Here’s an updated photo of Kitten to make up for my lack of words. She was being especially cute yesterday while I was working. I only came away from the altercation with two scratches (Her nails are currently longer than mine. Vet appointment in a week and a half for the terrors.) and a smack. She asks for belly rubs and then grabs my hand like she’s human. She doesn’t mean to hurt me. She’s quite gentle and sweet, really. Yet, like me, SHE BITES. 🙂

Have a good one. I’ll be back ASAP with something that is hopefully more interesting.

Migraines Are a Serious Problem. Employers Can Help

https://hbr.org/2021/02/migraines-are-a-serious-problem-employers-can-help

Even with a solid treatment plan that’s been in place for a few years, my migraines still plague me at times. I should be okay right now, but I’m coming off of nearly three straight weeks of intense pain and lack of sleep, so I’m in the state of waiting for the pain to return. Usually, my treatment nips long-term migraines in the bud, but this time, it didn’t. I am also on a new CGRP drug that I’m not especially happy with.