Monday, November 19, 2012

One Day My Blog Will Have Something to Say About This

With apologies to the Log Lady, but I've been heavily medicated today.... This morning I had my 2nd worst migraine ever. My 1st worst migraine was also my 1st migraine that I ever correctly identified as a migraine, on Christmas Day in 1995 or 1996. The paranoid part of me is suspicious; just 2 days ago I was recounting my "1st migraine story" and thinking about how far I'd come. Hubris. It figures. What made this morning's episode worthy of a blog post after so many months? Well, the pain mostly. The actual writhing in agony and blinding pain and shocking nausea, unabated by drugs nor ice packs nor ginger nor sitting up nor lying down nor lying partly down but propped with pillows nor with blackout mask nor "why don't I try walking around?" nor "bad idea, never move again ever. Ever." My cat, hoping for a snuggle, instead perched cautiously on the corner of the bed, warily watching but (dutifully? lovingly? impatiently waiting for food?) still remaining close by. The pain struck at 5:23 am, or at least that is the time I roused myself to attempt the all-thumbs fustercluck ridiculousness of opening the imitrex packaging. One helpful friend suggested opening them ahead of time, but I've been told by doctors that exposure to air degrades the drugs. And I NEED the drugs. I understood junkies this morning. I would've smoked crystal meth from a toothless whore if I thought I would feel better. At 7:12, after 100 mg of imitrex, a fiorocet, a mucinex from the orange box (just in case it was sinuses) and a lot of nausea, blinding white pain, calculations of approximate force required of head against wall to induce blacking out, phone in hand to call someone to take me to the ER, I finally emerged slowly. So, full circle or something. I still have no idea why today at 5:23 am occurred. I went over everything I ate, was exposed to, the weather, my water intake, the allergens forecast, and still no answer. All I can do it push forward and hope for the best. And make friends with someone with his/her own personal morphine drip. Ok, ok, maybe not. Onward....!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

I wanna new drug

I realize that this will sound like a #FirstWorldProblem, but by last Fall I had finally reached my tipping point of patience with my terrible horrible issue of...facial sweating. Yeah, sure, it is inconvenient and un-ladylike, but come on. I know. But being an event planner and going to speak to a client after running around the kitchen and back hallways was not always pretty. Even if they weren't noticing, I felt self-conscious and thought "Hell, there's a drug for GROWING EYELASHES, so why not for this?!"

After tons of internet research and being blown off my 3 different doctors I finally convinced one to let me try the drug Robinul (Glycopyrrolate). It is an anti-ulcer drug with a side effect of reduced sweating, especially in the face and head area. Score! I'd read that other people with "gross face" (technical name: crainiofacial hyperhidrosis) had success, and let me tell you, I would now write one million love sonnets to this drug. I only take 1/2 mg per day and it is just enough to let me get through a day with makeup and confidence intact. However, a warning to fellow migraineurs who take tripans for migraines: the increased body heat brought on by both drugs is intense. Massive hydration, perhaps even some G2 Gatorade, is recommended.

More allergies

Like everyone else across the country, or at least on the east coast(ish), allergies are hellacious this season. With a temperate winter without a few good, long freezes, all of the pollen and molds just kept growing. Now, with the trees budding, I am relying more and more on daily Mucinex and daily 24-hour Claritin. A small victory of graduating to every-other-week allergy shots was short-lived, and after a severe reaction to a shot I am now back to weekly visits. All that being said, I am remarkably not plagued by migraines. I had one in the middle of the night, but I chalk that up to a stressful day (bride test dinner PLUS a wedding reception PLUS multiple brides "popping in" -- oh yeah, not at all a hectic 9-hour nonstop day!).

Anybody else having allergy-influenced migraines?

Saturday, November 26, 2011

I think I am allergic to everything

Ok, maybe not EVERYTHING, but lately it sure feels like it. Since getting allergy tested in January at the advice of my neurologist, I've discovered that I am allergic/sensitive to: dust, yeast, mold, trees, and grass. Really.

Like migraines, figuring out my ever-evolving allergy spectrum is a tricky task. There are no set rules. I can drink one kind of beer and be ok but 1/3 of a Leffe puts me in gastrointestinal misery for 3 hours. It seems to all be determined by how many allergens are already present in my body, so the tipping point changes every day/week/hour/minute. The nurses at the allergy clinic tell me this is normal, but that fact does not make it less frustrating or challenging.

I recently suggested to my ENT Dr that she build me some sort of clean room or bubble so we can figure out exactly what my triggers are. She said she'd get right on it. I love that she at least humors me.

And so that's where I am today: trying to figure out why my sinuses are making my head feel like a block and trying to rally and get myself motivated for an active day at work. I don't have any answers today, but maybe I'll learn something. Fingers crossed.

Thursday, May 12, 2011


I already am obsessed with quinoa, but this article has me convinced to add it to every meal! I am reading more and more about magnesium and migraines, but it is still no miracle cure, which is what I'm really searching practical of me, I know.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Migraine Mania!

No, really.

I haven't posted in a while because I've been doing well, because I've been so busy going from gig to gig that if I get a migraine it usually waits until a day off and I'm so exhausted anyway that it almost doesn't matter. I'm in bed already; adding drugs and an ice pack isn't much more effort.

But now begins the Deadly Period. I have no gigs, and haven't worked for a week and a half. Stress about finances + depression = migraine cocktail. And why might depression play a role? Well, easy: when I'm already feeling down and listless, I am less likely to be aware of migraine triggers or migraine warning signs. This is why I watched half of a terrible Matthew McConaughey movie and then Harry Potter 4 again instead of seeing my favorite 3-year old for his birthday party. But somehow, my head's condition was not fitting for an outdoor party with lots of little kids. And I was feeling crappy enough here at home that Old Shirtless McSmirky was even somewhat entertaining. Somewhat. I'm not completely daft.

Now onto the mania: I called my mother for her migraine guidance, because I truly was torn about missing the birthday party. The fact that I was having trouble forming sentences should've been a warning sign. When she answered the phone I could tell that she was in some stage of a headache; I can always hear the weakness/spaciness in her voice. So we were indeed a pair trying to talk on the phone! Anyway, she told me that her neurologist said that pre-headache mania is actually a form of an aura. WHO KNEW?! I never get the auras anymore, the regular kind, so it is interesting to note that my last 3 migraines were preceded by a period of intense mania. Like, yesterday I laundered ALL of my bedclothes, comforters, duvets, etc. AND scrubbed the floors, cleaned under things, etc. Mom reported that she used a toothpick to pick at the stubborn spots in the bathroom shower tile grout. Clearly, not normal behavior for either of us!

So now a new warning sign: mania. May take the form of intense cleaning or productivity. Oh, yay!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

I was trapped under something heavy!

Wow - I cannot believe its been almost THREE MONTHS since I last wrote here. But, seriously, I was working so much and so many crazy long hours that we should all give thanks that I remembered to leave the house wearing pants. Most of the time.

The amazing thing about being completely, relentlessly, overwhelmingly busy is that your head doesn't have time to f**k with you. Mine behaved for the most part through my last freelance gig - the only few bumps were due to drastic weather changes and were solved quite quickly and with minimal drugs. I was working intense days - days in which I would realize at 2:00 PM that I was still in my pajamas and hadn't yet had a thing to eat or drink. And some days, that realization would come and go and be re-visited around 6pm, when I was feeling seriously craptacular. Nothing like freelancing and working from home. No set schedule, but that also means NO END OF DAY. Or weekends. What are those?

So, of course, the day after my big event ended I was hit with 2 migraines. I was prepared and not surprised. So it just makes me wonder: if I can convince my head, albeit subconsciously, to hold off on migraines while I am busy...shouldn't I have the same power all the time? I am in charge! Going to explore that idea for now. Any thoughts?

Sunday, March 01, 2009

More thoughts on stress

Not surprisingly, stress can do a real number on your system. We all know this fact. But WOW, have I ever been experiencing just how many tricks stress has up it's sleeve (just go with me on this one and assume that stress wears clothes, ok?!).

Since being laid off in January, I've been on a detailed tour of strange new maladies: migraines of course - those were no surprise; coming down with the flu so severely that I could barely even get out of bed for 5 days (really!); new allergies, most distressingly to my favorite perfume (sexy!); strange rashes (date me now!); vertigo (like being stuck on the Tilt-A-Whirl); panic attacks (leaving my house felt like that scene in "Beetlejuice" when the Geena Davis character tries to leave the house and the front door opens into an abyss); and so many more! FUN!!! My father offers the sound advice that I should just go take a walk, that exercise would make me feel better. Of course he is right -- but isn't taking into account the paralyzing anxiety or the unrelenting migraines that are keeping me inside.

So what is my point here? Well, something we already knew: stress is bad. But if anyone can learn a lesson from me and control theirs better than I have, well, at least I will have made a difference. Take care, everyone.