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Migraine Absurdities

Migraine Absurdities

Laughing at the absurd things I do because of migraine keeps me from crying about them. Here are some of the migraine absurdities that amuse me. Please share your own in the comments!

  • Holding your breath while walking by the cleaning supply aisle at the grocery store.
  • Wearing earplugs while clothes shopping to dampen the sound of hangers screeching across metal racks.
  • Circling a doctor’s waiting room to find the chair farthest from patients drenched in perfume. (Bonus points for getting up to move when that person sits next to you.)
  • Wishing the little boy next door would use his inside voice when he plays outside.
  • Pausing four times in a single sentence to remember the point.
  • Avoiding a formerly favorite store because it started carrying scented candles.
  • Substituting blatantly wrong words, like dishwasher instead of drawer or oven instead of toaster.
  • Resorting to descriptions of everyday objects, like calling the refrigerator the thing that keeps food cold.
  • Always turning down the music.
  • Wearing underwear inside out to avoid feeling the seams.
  • Daydreaming about having a toilet installed beside the bed.
  • Running a fan for white noise to drown out the chorus of neighborhood dogs.
  • Preferring to wear clothes without a waistband.
  • Shirking jewelry because it’s too uncomfortable against sensitive skin.
  • Grilling restaurant servers about every ingredient in a dish.
  • Asking your partner if the smell of cigarette butts in the clothes dryer is real or a hallucination.
  • Worrying that a good mood is an indication an impending migraine.

What about life with migraine strikes you as absurd?

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The Migraine.com team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

Comments

  • Lee614
    2 weeks ago

    I often cannot put my hair up because the clip hurts too much. Braiding is my friend in the hot weather.

  • Lee614
    2 weeks ago

    Everything mentioned in the article and here’s a few more:
    Desperately trying to get something done before I forget it. Forgetting what I need to do in a second.
    I’m so used to going to an appointment on the wrong day or time that it’s my normal.
    Putting signs up on the exterior door to remember to take my cell phone and to do list and attaching paperwork I need to take with me to the door.
    Carrying multiple sets of earplugs and sunglasses in different tints always.
    Avoiding the Sun like a vampire.
    Waiting in the car instead of a waiting room when I go with my husband for a medical test or dr visit.
    Turning around and leaving when I go into a room full of people.
    Leaving an event before it’s over because it’s just too much.

  • Theresa
    2 weeks ago

    I am super sensitive to everything including how my clothes feel, how items feel in a store. Buying clothes that are soft. Hearing all noise. Yes I run that fan too.
    Some days I can’t stand to be touched. Allydinia causes the ends of my hair to hurt too. Light sensitivity too.

  • glassmind
    4 months ago

    Asking friends ro switch seats as ligh conditions change.

    Muting or switching the t.v. to dvd mode during commercial breaks to avoid load, flashy commercials. (This has confused many a guest) Generally only watching commercial free t.v. or dvds. At other people’s homes always staring at art or out the window during commercials. And chosing seats in public places to avoid t.v. screens or asking for them to be turned off.

    Quickly raising my hand to block someone else’s device when they suddenly want to show me something on thier phone in low light environments or think they are being helpful by using rhe flashlight feature on my menu, etc. I look like a vampire. “Ah, the light! Not the light!” Lol

  • Lee614
    2 weeks ago

    I especially can’t take it when the news shows the police vehicles with the flashing lights on in a night scene.

  • Msmmain
    2 weeks ago

    Or actual police lights any time of day (but night time is the worst!).
    Sometimes I wonder if the police think I’m a fugitive because I always cover my face when going by them, if I’m a passenger; or putting my hand so I’m shielding my eyes from their lights as a driver and turning away as much as safely possible….

    God forbid I ever actually get pulled over… Their lights lighing up my whole car and all mirrors might actually kill me (and will for sure require paramedics)

  • glassmind
    4 months ago

    Only buying clothes that are sensitive skin friendly (thank you inventor of seamless undergarments!)

    I get bonus points! Not only will I ubruptly change seats for strongly scented people, but also ones using loud or bright devices. Yep, I get “looks” for moving as far away as I can. And extra “looks” if the person is a different gender, race or age bracket. Sorry, I am relocating because you are a migraine trigger, that’s all.

    Also, changing tables at resteraunts, adjusting the blinds, etc to minimize triggers.

    Fast walking through places like the cleaning supply aisle, perfume counter, auto supplies, etc. I generally just avoid them, but they may be the only clear path. I know I look odd hustling through and then resuming a normal pace.

    Abruptly leaving a social event. Suddenly sidelined by a migraine and unable to even politely excuse myself.

    Circling the interior of a resteraunt, theater, library etc, trying to find the zone-of-least triggers in which to sit.

    Generally seeming absurdly high-maintenance.

  • Msmmain
    7 months ago

    I can relate to these for sure, especially the aphasia, where I can’t remember the right word for things or my mouth speaks a different word than the one I’m thinking; as well as pausing three-four times in a sentence because I forgot what I was trying to say in the first place. (ADD + Migraine brain fog = a fun combo of strange mental gymnastics)

  • Sherrell
    8 months ago

    Making sure I have rescue meds in my desk at work, in the car, in my purse and in my pocket.

  • RobinfromCA
    10 months ago

    • Asking everyone if they smell cigarette smoke

    • Wearing earplugs in movie theaters – assuming I actually get there

    • Wearing special tinted sunglasses in stores, in church, at night

    • Always, always having an emergency Coke stashed close by.

    • Checking, checking again, checking once more in the car to make sure all my meds are with me when I leave the house.

    • Figuring out exactly which clothes I can get away with when I absolutely cannot stand the thought of a bra.

    • Cutting all the tags out of all my clothes.

    • Wondering if I’ve got aphasia or dementia.

  • Lee614
    2 weeks ago

    I’ve found that wearing a soft cami under my tops really helps with comfort. Bras are not my friend either!

  • mkd3702
    10 months ago

    Wearing only v neck t shirts or button down blouses to keep the necklines from being up around your neck when a migraine hits.

  • nosirrah
    10 months ago

    Wearing specially tinted glasses and a ball cap while sitting at desk at work to reduce the impact of the Florescent lights.

  • bcavanagh
    10 months ago

    Is this an active site? I noticed comments were about 1 to 3 years old.

  • Joanna Bodner moderator
    10 months ago

    It sure is! We publish new content daily and some of these “older” articles like this one here still continue to receive comments & we thank you for joining in on the conversation on this one! Glad some of these comments resonated with you! Take good care. -Joanna (Migraine.com Team)

  • bcavanagh
    10 months ago

    My Dachshund helps me with bio feedback. I just lie down with her and rest my hand on her rib cage. Their breathing and heartrate are slower, and it relaxes me faster.

  • bcavanagh
    10 months ago

    Taking my Migraine meds, only to have people say “throw that crap out, you don’t need it!” What RXs besides Sumatriptans, I’m highly allergic, does everyone else take, is it working?

  • Lee614
    2 weeks ago

    I take Fioricet without codeine too. The doctors do not like it because it has caffeine in it and can contribute to rebound headaches. But, if the Sumatriptan doesn’t work, I take Fioricet and that always works for me. Just don’t take it too much. It also will make me very sleepy after it wears off.

  • bcavanagh
    10 months ago

    I have a bad migraine. Just forgot what I was going to write. Oh, yeah, Trying to put earrings in, for a wedding, only to discover that my earring holes have closed up, due to never wearing earrings, because of Migraines!

  • Lee614
    2 weeks ago

    I had to take out my earrings and let the holes fill in too. They just hurt too much.

  • blinkylights
    11 months ago

    I’ve been know to cook an entire meal a day in advance of company coming in case I get an attack.

    How about bursting into uncontrollable laughter? That’s better than tears!

  • Lee614
    2 weeks ago

    Uncontrollable crying. I cried for over an hour between Yellowstone and Driggs, ID, when my husband and I were on vacation. But, that was better than being curled up in a ball in pain in the passenger seat which has also happened to me.

  • bcavanagh
    10 months ago

    Go you! Great idea!

  • sc_2c70db7cc046022912bd60e7de491a98
    11 months ago

    Aphasia is not my friend, but my frequent companion. Cannot remember words or names, even my children: the big furry one (James, with the beard), gesturing tall with my hand- red one(Lori, with red hair), gesturing short -red one(Molly), you know the not red one – girl(JoAnna), the not big furry one(Thomas), the other one-not you one – gesturing tall(Robert). LOL The kids give me so much hassle over it, but they love it when I call the fridge a tv or the oven a dryer. Fits of laughter!

  • bcavanagh
    10 months ago

    I never knew of Aphasia, or that it was connected to Migraine. But, I’ve certainly had it for a long time!

  • maxgordon
    2 years ago

    All of the above. And more:
    • Winter: slipping rescue injector into sock (under long pants) to remain hands- and purse-free in a social setting
    • Summer preferring baggy, minimally attractive cargo shorts just so I can carry rescue injector on my person
    • Wearing sunglasses in the house
    • Avoiding certain roads because light flickers through trees and strobe effect sets off migraine
    • Closing my eyes when strobes, like emergency lights or stage lights (even if they are on TV or movie screen)
    • Wearing headphones, listing to “babbling brook” or other white-noise-ish nature sounds to drown out neighborhood’s leaf blowers, snowblowers, lawnmowers, and yacking neighbors (and even birds, on a bad day)
    • Closed the windows to keep out cigar smell from house many yards away
    • Worn sunglasses in bog-box stores, grocery stores, etc., because of the lighting
    • Prefaced every RSVP with “Assuming I don’t have a migraine…”
    • Thrown up, napped, and acted weird in public places
    …and on and on and on

  • Lee614
    2 weeks ago

    I’ve learned to take it in stride when I have to ask someone for help in finding the correct word to use. I just describe it the best I can until they get it for me. The last time was yesterday talking over the phone with the auto repair shop man about “synthetic” motor oil. I had to say, you know the “man made” oil.

  • bcavanagh
    10 months ago

    Me too to many.

  • Major Migraine
    2 years ago

    I absolutely love this site! It makes me laugh and cry (but it depresses my mom when I read anything outloud).
    -all the smelling absurdities are right on. One time making up a test, that I missed because of migraines, I asked to change rooms because the other person REEKED of dryer sheets. I cried taking the test in another room because the damage was already done. Oh, and I smell beeswax…

    -controlling my friends and family by telling them what products they can use/things they can listen to/play if they want to be around me.

    -Always wearing my sunglasses, even in chemistry labs under my goggles. Most people assume I am stoned all the time, but I am from and live in northern CA so it is not unreasonable.

    -I have different pain modes, but the really fun one is hyper pin mode. That is when I can’t stop (whatever it is) because then I will have to deal. One time I was in lab and I couldn’t stop talking to a classmate and I have no filter so I overshared a lot. My sister came a rescued my classmate…I apologized many times that and the following days.

    There are so many more from my 18 years of one constant f**king migraine, but head hurts too much to think of them, partly because I spent so much time reading all the comments and the screen time makes my migraines worse.

    Thanks for letting me know I am not as “unique/complicated/difficult/different” patient. Besos

  • kateymac
    2 years ago

    Wearing earplugs, typically made in bright orange, in shopping malls, ESPECIALLY at Christmas, which starts very soon in stores.
    Looks ridiculous but if I can get out for a day, then I have to get the job done – goofy looking or not!

  • kateymac
    2 years ago

    Avoiding showers for days on end because
    a) it’s too exhausting to take a shower when you have chronic migraines
    and
    b) the water irritates/hurts my skin

    Used to love a nice shower.

  • Lee614
    2 weeks ago

    I’ve gone through shower heads until I find one that I can tolerate. It has to be the Goldilocks one: not too hard that it hurts, but not too soft that it doesn’t get my hair clean.

  • bcavanagh
    10 months ago

    It’s trying to rally to get in, then I feel better. I’m with you.

  • kateymac
    2 years ago

    I yell at my migraine when I first detect it:
    “no no no NO NO NO NO!!!!
    not NOW! NO! Don’t even THINK about it! NO NO NO NO NO!!!”

    Guess what – migraine doesn’t obey.

  • kateymac
    2 years ago

    I can’t stand air conditioning:
    A) the movement of air annoys, almost hurts, my skin
    B) the coldness irritates/hurts my skin
    C) the NOISE of it is like being in a stadium full of screaming people, (something I used to love,by the way – stadiums, loud concerts, screaming people…)

  • bcavanagh
    10 months ago

    And yet I LOVE a/c (live in Fl), fans and even used to get oxygen, which really helped, when insurance used to cover it. The steamy, hot, bright, or stormy, outdoors gives me a Migraine. I hibernate all summer inside.

  • Lee614
    2 weeks ago

    I live in FL and I consider summer to be my winter. Time to stay inside.

  • Cindy
    2 years ago

    I have become obsessed with finding dresses/tops that can be worn without a bra. And since I am not an A or B cup (even after a breast reduction), it’s not so easy. I have tried on almost every style of bra, all increase my head pain. Luckily I have reached the age where I don’t care anymore!

  • Lee614
    2 weeks ago

    Totally agree! I’ve found a very soft version of a sports bra that I can tolerate for part of the day. Now, it’s my panties that are hurting me around the leg opening. I’m switching to extra soft boy type of underwear.

  • bcavanagh
    10 months ago

    Overalls are good. Spaghetti strap tanks with shelf bra, is comfy.

  • homemademom
    2 years ago

    My aphasia has gotten worse, through the years of migraine, and I often catch myself trying to use hand signals instead of trying to talk.
    My adult daughter told me, recently, that she finds the background music to her husband’s video games really annoying…she never heard it, growing up, because I always made my kids turn the sound OFF.
    I sleep with 8 pillows on my side of the bed…different kinds of covers…different softness-es…so that I can choose how to cradle my head. My poor husband often wakes up to a “wall” of pillows between us!

  • RobinfromCA
    2 years ago

    Questions that swirl around in my brain: Do they have to use leaf blowers? What ever happened to brooms and rakes? Who neglected to tell the car manufacturers that those new super duper colossaly bright headlights were a danger (and a trigger) to migraine sufferers? If I bang my head on the wall really hard will it hurt more than the migraine and replace that pain? I’m right here, do you have to yell? Hey! Why is your cigarette hanging out your car window? If you can put it in you lungs why can’t you put it in your car?

    The most obsessive thing I do is make sure I have my “kit” when I leave the house. Anti-Nausea meds? Check. Blockers? Check. Pain meds? Check. Something to use as an ice bag? Check. Ear plugs? Check. Then I get in the car and recheck it all over again.

    Oh, it’s wonderful to know I’m not alone in all of this!

  • glassmind
    4 months ago

    Seriously what happened to brooms and rakes?

    Lol

  • bcavanagh
    10 months ago
  • Jessie
    2 years ago

    My HOA has people outside mowing and using a leaf blower for HOURS on my days off. I recently bought noise canceling headphones (like someone would use at a shooting range) and wear them to keep my head safe!

  • TrishaNP
    2 years ago

    • Drunk Tounge – I often sound like I have finished off two or three bottles of wine. So bad my husband has to talk for me in public when a migraine hits.

    • Side Walking/Stumbling – Refer to number one but change sound to
    Walk/stumble.

    • Wishing there was an unlimited number of ice packs and sleeping masks. That were perfectly molded to me!

  • TrooperAngel
    8 months ago

    Try The Headache Hat. The best investment for icing your headaches. Velcro closure, wear it up on top of head like a hat, or pull it down over your eyes to block out light. They were $45, but definitely with it

  • Jim
    2 years ago

    -Seriously considering “acquiring” a hard shell deep dive suit to avoid barometric pressure fluctuations.

    -Wanting to put my head in a vice to see if it does indeed feel like that.

    -Wanting to attend what sounds like an automobile race that only seems occurs when I have a migraine.

  • TrooperAngel
    8 months ago

    Barometric pressure is definitely the enemy! Migraine when they are there arriving and when they leave…
    I feel your pain! I’m so sorry you have them 2

  • jerseygirl57
    4 years ago

    -Wearing sunglasses when the car headlights are on
    -Being a language teacher who has such difficulty finding the correct word
    -Always smelling something that isn’t there (usually smoke or Chinese food)

  • wendy
    4 years ago

    Calling the fire department because the apartment reeked so strongly of gas I thought there was a leak (then lying later after they came and couldn’t smells anything, “no, I don’t smell it anymore,”); slurring my words, not on purpose to make or sound like a “perfect Irish brogue” (not Irish, haven’t been around many native Irish people much), and of course sunglasses, everywhere, all times day/night.

  • RobinfromCA
    2 years ago

    Oh, my gosh, I did this! I was sure I smelled a gas leak in our neighborhood and called 911. The fire department came out and four guys sniffed all over our front and back yards, out into the street, into our neighbor’s yards. Nothing. I was saying, “There, right there. You can’t smell that?” So embarrassing!

  • solove0611
    4 years ago

    My husband has to get my hair stuff because I can’t walk down the aisl, oh and my lotions too. Sure he loves it I also tend to turn down offers for plans if they sound super sunny and hot (two huge trigger). I have a migraine today and am being reminded of all the cognitive side effects so if non of this make since I will redo later lol

  • Lee614
    2 weeks ago

    The vampire effect! I can relate to having to decline invitations to anything that would have me in the sun or heat.

  • Tim Autry
    4 years ago

    Yes and many more of these apply. Like you only need to ring the doorbell once, not a half-dozen times following up with a half dozen knocks on the glass. Why can’t they put quieter mufflers on the cars, don’t they realize I’m trying to drive and the noise makes it harder to concentrate. Oh please where ever you are, turn down the boom box music from your car stereo… I know you are trying to be cool and it is ok if you want to blow your ear drums out, but I’d like to keep mine intactd and the noise if killing my head and causing my heart to flutter (while sitting at the red light). Do you have to roll down your window when you smoke and exhale while we are stopped right here at the red light, what an awful smell (and I used to smoke 20+ years ago). Just how much noise are you going to make pushing the buggies you collected from the parking lot back through the door for customers to you. Dude and/or Lady, please have your kids use their inside voice in the grocery, clothes or hobby store. Yes, I think of these and many more, but I wish to avoid confrontation so I only mention these things to my wife after the fact or latter at home while eating or getting ready for bed. Oh and the biggest, dude did you have to bring your sub back to eat at your desk, it reaks of onions, peppers and garlic, though I eat onions and garlic, I don’t bring it back to the office to eat and I brush my teeth and have a mint afterwards. But I take it in stride even though all those things make my migraine headache attacks more unbearable. Another issue I have in the Aura stage is time seems to slow down, as in what is taking the light so long to turn green, why is this driver going so slow, what shade of green are you waiting for, how long does it take you to figure and count back my change from $20 bill on a $5.05 purchase?

  • RobinfromCA
    2 years ago

    I don’t think the general public is aware (or grateful enough) that migraine sufferers don’t just smack them sometimes.

  • TrooperAngel
    8 months ago

    I didn’t have many migraine b4 my accident (bad headaches I thought). Anyway I was a state trooper, so yes, these folks were very lucky we didn’t smack them… The stupidity, drunks, asshats “You pulled me over bcuz you have PMS”… He was that obnoxious.
    Love this site!

  • bcavanagh
    10 months ago
  • DonnaFA moderator
    2 years ago

    That gave me the mad giggles, RobinfromCA! We do have above average restraint 😀 -Warmly, Donna (Migraine.com team)

  • RitaCarol
    4 years ago

    Posting a sign on my front door that says anyone wearing a fragrance of any kind is not allowed to enter.

  • T Thomas
    4 years ago

    Taking my shirt and pulling it over my nose in an elevator b/c of a bad smell. Lingering cigarette smell or bad perfume or simply b.o.

  • bcavanagh
    10 months ago

    We’re like canaries for so many things that are bad for us, people should thank us!

  • SleepyBri
    4 years ago

    As always, an excellent post to remind us all that we’re not alone.

    I have used some absurd prodrome symptoms for good things.

    I get bad aphasia, and tell people around me to let me know when I ask them to ‘grab that thing, that’s about this big, and like, colored, and, um….it makes things easier to see??’ Instead of highlighter. I typical notice the decline, but when someone I work with says something, I’m going to do something about it.

    However, and I don’t know if anyone else experiences this, during the prodrome my brain seems to process things quickly. I can do mental math, spot errors, etc that I normally wouldn’t be able to do.

  • Lee614
    2 weeks ago

    I call it a lapse into my old world when I can suddenly think clearly and sharply. If it lasts for very long, I’ll start to think that I could go back to work or university. Then, my new normal sets in and it’s very disappointing.

  • solove0611
    4 years ago

    That is wonderful, my predome, my actual migraine and the after effect always cause me loose words. Like you I have to describe in a lot of depth when I’m just talking about a pen or something lol

  • 5nb7lv
    4 years ago

    I love being part of a community! I feel comforted somehow hearing from everyone and realizing it’s ‘not just me’. Especially losing my train of thought mid-sentence, I mean, really drawing a complete blank. Can’t even fake it. This is a new phenomenon for me after suffering with these for 42 years.
    But to add to absurdities…
    I cover my left ear anytime a loud noise is coming, such as a siren or big truck whilst driving.

  • solove0611
    4 years ago

    Hi!! Wondered if you were taking any new medicine? Depakeen and depakote made me crazy. Was at work on phone with customer and all of a sudden I couldn’t find words-been with company 5 years and I was so lost. When I stopped the depakote the symptoms went totally away. It’s weird now I’m taking depakeen but just as a rescue. Good luck to you!!

  • JenniferK
    4 years ago

    I often walk like a zombie. Barely shuffling forward because it’s too much effort to lift my feet. I’m new to this site and was thrilled to learn so many have the same word scrambles. I felt like I was losing my mind. Now I know it’s temporary and there are orhers like me. It’s like finding where I belong.

  • RobinfromCA
    2 years ago

    I am new to this site too and couldn’t be more relieved to find others who have the same experiences. I honestly was worried that I might be heading into some sort of weird, early onset dementia or something.

  • DonnaFA moderator
    2 years ago

    Welcome, Robin! We’re so glad you found us, and that the article validated your experience. I also wanted to invite you to join the conversation on our Facebook page. Just check the right-hand column and click in the the heading “Socialy Accessible”. Thanks for being here! – Warmly, Donna (Migraine.com team)

  • Mr FBP
    4 years ago

    Buying a bright pink deoderant from the women’s toiletries section, because none of the mens brands include an unscented option.

  • waterlilykari
    4 years ago

    Ha! Wanna talk about the “Word Salad” syndrome? I inadvertently referred to the Pack’n’Play portable baby pen my friend brought for her baby to nap in while visiting recently as his ‘crate’ (like a dog crate) because a migraine had set in earlier in the day, and while pain meds were able to negate the pain enough to still be able to see my friends when they dropped in, it was not enough to rid me of the other factors associated with my migraines. Thankfully, my friend has a great sense of humor and is also a migraineur so she understood once I explained why everything was getting so jumbled in my mind and we were able to laugh it off. Still, talk about mortifying!

    I travel with AT LEAST two different styles of earplugs as a minimum because my son is very sensitive to sensory input as well and will often also require use of them at times I will need them to prevent a migraine (such as a movie theatre with ridiculously loud volume) and I got tired of loaning mine to him then not always getting them back afterwards from him and the next time I needed them, they would not be there to use. My husband scoffed when I ordered several different styles from Amazon before a recent trip to Disneyland but as soon as we entered the lines for the rides in the enclosed spaces where the sound effects or theme songs were played at full blast, the noise of all those people practically having to shout to be heard over said sound effects, and to it off, the enclosed spaces caused it all to echo even worse, the earplugs were a godsend.

    I have certain areas of the house where the only lightbulbs anyone is allowed to install are those CFL “daylight” bulbs because the version of lighting the house came with was so garishly painful to my head that I would get an instant migraine from just entering those rooms. The CFL bulbs are the only ones that fit the older sockets but don’t put out the same harsh light as the old bulbs did.

    I don’t leave the house between dawn and dusk without sunglasses, even on cloudy days – not even a quick out to the car and back or “just to take out the trash.” For the record, it was totally worth it to pay for the second pair of prescription sunglasses so even if one got lost or forgotten somewhere, I still had another.

    I cannot even have a single scented spray, lotion or body wash in my house. What does my Mom gift me every year at Christmas? Lotions and body washes from the store we used to shop at years ago before I figured out that even their more lightly scented products were contributing. (I used to be able to tolerate some products but not others and now its an across the board “Nope! Not happening!” if I want to avoid a migraine.) I wait until her birthday in May, say they had a clearance and I couldn’t resist adding a couple to her gift and she gets the same ones back a couple at a time that she gave me at Christmas. Tacky? Yes, very. Essential self preservation? Also a ‘Yes!’

    My dogs will be extra protective of me when I am not feeling well. Usually one or the other will stay with me at all times. They almost work in shifts, one never leaving unless the other has come in to take over before getting up and vice versa. I have never trained them to do this but they do anyway and I am extremely grateful.

    Some days will find me having coffee with dinner or beyond because the caffeine helps. Even times I cannot stop to make coffee such as at work, I have those Starbucks Refreshers packets to mix and drink. If I can’t stomach anything else, I can usually at least handle drinks and this way I also am not taking meds on an empty stomach (which means the meds are not as likely to come back up)

    Among many other reasons why I am glad I work in animal medicine and not human medicine is specifically because “dirty/smelly dog” is not a trigger. However, “dirty smelly human drenched in perfume/cologne in an attempt to hide their lack of hygiene” truly IS a trigger!

  • bcavanagh
    10 months ago

    My Dachshund helps me with bio feedback. I just lie down with her and rest my hand on her rib cage. Their breathing and heartrate are slower, and it relaxes me faster.

  • Lee614
    2 weeks ago

    It’s so awesome how our pets know when we need watching over. I keep the door to the bedroom open so my dog can check on me when I’m in bed. When I broke my ankle and was stuck in bed for weeks at my daughter’s house, both her dog and my dog flanked the bed everyday.

  • LMB
    4 years ago

    1) Fluorescent Lights-It used to be that it was only in high school gym class and certain stores but now they are everywhere. I am all for lower electric bills but I cannot tolerate compact fluorescent bulbs.
    2) Certain Colors-I started having migraines as a small child and I remember, in particular, a chair that was a putrid red/rust/burnt orange color that made my brain hurt. I would avoid the living room once the migraine started. The doctor told my mother I was a hypochondriac and I watched too much television with pain relief ads.
    3) Tastes-Along with the smell & possibly, the artificial color, anything “Fruit-Flavored” like Fruity Tums, Gummy Vitamins, Liquid Medications, Candies, Jello and the like. The BIG one was the “Fruity Children’s Tylenol,” which was pretty much IT in the 70’s.
    4)Musty Mold & Mildew Smells-House hunting was a nightmare for me! Closed up homes with mildew problems, tours of basements, etc.
    5)Reading in very low light-until age 45, I had 20/20 vision but just prior to a migraine, I couldn’t even flip through a magazine unless I was “Reading in the dark.”
    6) One of my dogs won’t leave my side and is grouchy with family members when I am getting a migraine. He doesn’t ask me to take him outside, he is more patient with me than other times.
    7) Onions!!!-They might be a trigger? Maybe? I cannot eat raw onion and sometimes, even a tiny, accidental bite causes problems. If I’m already leading up to a migraine, even the wafting of fajitas in a restaurant can give me a headache before I leave the place. I do like onions and I frequently cook with them. Sometimes, it is just too much.
    8) Coffee-When my regular cup of coffee has an “off sort-of taste,” I know something’s up.
    9) Hormones-I have never had a 28-day cycle, NEVER. My period was always very heavy, too. Last year, I had a uterine ablation that made my period go from one extreme to the other. It’s light and lasts for one day BUT the migraine comes on as usual, sometimes the first sign, since I’m not a 28-day cycler.

  • Lee614
    2 weeks ago

    I’m the same way about onions. Just one tiny bite can set off a migraine. I spit stuff out in public. I try to be discrete about it, but I’m not going to consume something that can make me sick.

  • Melanie
    4 years ago

    I avoid talking while a migraine is brewing because of the “word salad” symptom.
    One of my smell triggers is nail polish, nail polish removers and that foul glue they use to put on fake nails. It makes trips to shopping malls impossible since that smell seems to be every where. I will hold my breath and walk as quickly as I can to get away from it.
    When the nausea hits I will go to the bathroom and smoke a cigarette, it at least causes me to vomit and then I keep bottles of water or Gatorade bedside so if I get the dry heaves I can at least vomit up something.
    I don’t have any issues with heat making things worse, it’s the cold that gets me. Air conditioning is a trigger, and I refuse to spend much time in air conditioned places as possible.
    I do hold my breath walking past my neighbors house since they must bathe in AXE body spray. One whiff of that and I can feel my head become a huge throbbing ball of hateful pain.
    On a side note, I have found that a whiff of skunk spray during a migraine will about kill it. Unfortunately there aren’t many skunks where I am.

  • T Thomas
    4 years ago

    It is so difficult to comprehend words and talk, I understand during an attack.

  • Cookie
    4 years ago

    I learn how normal I am every time I read more of the comments on this site. Well, perhaps ‘normal’ is a bit strong…
    I never knew others suffer from olfactory hallucinations too! I didn’t know there was a connection. Besides avoiding cheap candles, lotions and perfumes, I cannot bear to walk into the tires section at tractor supply or where the rubber boots are displayed at Walmart for fear of the smells triggering vomiting. A car went whizzing past me yesterday on a country road and the smell of their car deodorizer almost knocked me over!
    I’ll have to pay closer attention to my word salad moments too. Again, I didn’t know…
    Does anyone else become super sensitive to “excess heat” on their skin? I can tell when I’m heading into an episode if while washing my hands, I can feel the hot water molecules and the cool water molecules individually. It feels like the hot water will peel my skin away if I’m not very careful with the water temperature.

  • solove0611
    4 years ago

    Very interesting!! The last three days doing dishes at home I figured hubby had upped the water heater–have to ask him, my hands in what normally wouldn’t be hardly anything we’ve got kids so its low but my skin felt like it was melting off lol

  • Diane M
    4 years ago

    I have an extreme sensitivity to hot water after I take my Imitrex. I can’t bear to shower or even wash my hands with even slightly warm water. It feels like it is scalding hot. Washing dishes is out of the question. I told my neurologist about this and he just looked at me like I was an idiot. (He does this quite often anyway so I am looking for a new neurologist). He said he had never heard of that before- thus to him I must be a nut or making it up.

  • Lee614
    2 weeks ago

    I’m going to print out all of this article and the comments to take with me to my Dr appointments. This provides some support for us not being crazy or over stating our symptoms. I am so thankful for everyone sharing!

  • shariwismer
    4 years ago

    I absolutely despise getting my words all jumbled up. It’s so embarrassing. When that happens at work, I know I have to go home. That’s it for me.

    I have learned to find humor in the most disgusting absurdity of my migraines, the vomiting. Barfing in public is awful and it is humiliating. The security staff at my job must have a gag reel of security camera footage that is just me barfing into various found objects in my car. It’s happened that often. I used to have a very pretty black floral lunch bag. Sigh. If I couldn’t find a way to laugh about that, I’d end up crying in a corner somewhere for the rest of my life.

    Thank you for sharing these absurdities. It makes me feel so much better knowing we are all suffering together.

  • solove0611
    4 years ago

    Just wanted to say hi and you’re definitely not alone

  • Candy Meacham
    4 years ago

    It all sounds very familiar.
    Carrying a tiny box of earplugs on my key chain so they’re always with me.

  • 23r1c5h
    4 years ago

    Reminding the fiancé when he has friends coming over to have them sit down quickly and keep the conversation quiet because I’m in the middle an attack. Most of the time he keeps them outside.

    Wearing earplugs or listening to my white noise app on my phone through earbuds when I am trying to sleep and he’s wanting to watch TV.

    Covering my head with a pillow when I am trying to sleep because I can see the flickering of light from the TV screen behind my closed eyes while he’s watching TV.

    Telling my fiancé in a very sweet but commanding voice to shut up for a minute and let me finish my thought when we are talking during an attack and I am a quarter second away from losing the entire sentence. Then forgetting what we were talking about because I had to stop him.

    Seeing the weather forecast that storms are moving in and having to text everyone ‘I’m out of action for a few days, guys’ with a link to the forecast so I don’t get the bazillion texts, emails or phone calls from everyone wanting to check in to make sure I’m okay. Turning my phone off is NOT an option, I found that out quick.

    Running up to the receptionist at the doctor’s office and telling her I will be outside because that one kid is being exceptionally loud and the woman playing bingo on her phone with the volume on is about to make me pass out and I forgot my ear plugs. Then making a nasty comment as I walk out of the office that doctor’s offices are meant to be quiet because people are sick and don’t want to listen to loud, obnoxious kids or inconsiderate blankety blanks that want to pass the time playing on their phones. I get extremely defensive when I have an attack coming on, sometimes I forget to put the censor box over my mouth. Usually when I come back inside after ten or fifteen minutes outside, I suddenly find the office is as quiet as a tomb and everyone is staring at me like I am the spawn of Satan himself.

    Explaining for the 97,802nd time that no, I’m not having a stroke and no, I don’t need an ambulance when the left side of my face suddenly drops and I start to slur my words in public. ‘I have had a stroke but what I am having is a complex migraine, now please step away and stop talking, your voice is drilling a hole in my brain’.

    Having a store employee or more recently, a sheriff’s deputy follow me around the business expecting me to be a shoplifter or worse because I am wearing my sunglasses indoors and AGAIN going through the explanation of why they’re on. Exceptionally hard to do when it’s a deputy, I want to snap his head off but certainly don’t want to be escorted out of the store and tested for drugs or alcohol.

    There’s more but my brain is going to mush, I need to get to sleep.

  • Lee614
    2 weeks ago

    I’ve stopped saying that I have a migraine to strangers. If I feel I must because of my obvious symptoms, I say I have a nurological disability. The term migraine has been misused too much for a bad headache or just as an excuse for not feeling like doing something.

  • Diane M
    4 years ago

    I feel so rude sometimes because I am always interrupting people mid sentence during a conversation because if I don’t speak RIGHT THEN then I will forget completely what I wanted to say. Then of course whatever I do say comes out in a complete jumble and missing words and full of descriptions instead of the intended words. I have gotten to where I don’t even speak to people at all anymore during the prodrome stage of a migraine because I feel so stupid that it literally embarrasses me into a silent recluse. And since I have so many migraines a month, I have just really stopped making phone calls to people unless they are VERY familiar with me and my migraines because I don’t want people to think I am mentally impaired.

  • Bill_in_336
    4 years ago

    Anger during prodrome. Not always, but often. I simply get angry over anything and nothing at all. I only recognize it some of the time. My family has learned to bring it to my attention rather than run and hide.

    Crowds of people. I used to enjoy crowds, but now crowds can send me into a headache in no time. The roaring of the conversations, people who seems to think they need to bathe in perfume or cologne and just the feeling of all those people around.

    And a lot of things others have mentioned–the fog, the phantom smells and noises, doing odd things to avoid bright lights. I guess we look like an odd bunch to non-sufferers.

  • 5nb7lv
    4 years ago

    Until reading all this I had no idea it was related to my migraine.
    Word salad: I use this term when I substitute one noun for another.
    Sharp noise levels: I cover my left ear when a siren or large truck goes by.
    Brain fog: I feel like I’m doped up when I am so not. It is silly at times but really bothers me that I can’t seem to concentrate enough to blow away the fog
    Talk: cannot tolerate any loud noise including some conversation, I have had to be a little assertive and ask for a lower voice, politely.
    Thank you all for sharing this. Migraneur since 1978, I am now at the stage where I am getting H/As 4 days in a row 2-3 times a month and am starting to despair. However continuing to work with my neurologist

  • solove0611
    4 years ago

    We need to all get together for a migraine tolerant bar lol low lights music at a seven love level and put a sign that says ABSOLUTELY NO PERFUME OR COLOGNE good luck to you. Glad you’ve found this place it’s amazin??

  • Sheila K.
    4 years ago

    Avoid looking into the eyes of friend wearing glasses while talking to them

    keeping my head down in rooms with ceiling fans flickering shadows everywhere

    covering up a shiny car in the garage, so I can move around to work out

    constantly scanning my environment for light reflective surfaces the split second my neck starts to stiffen

    wearing too revealing of clothing in the summer just to avoid nausea and attacks

    taking glass covered pictures off walls when told to do what I must to avoid attacks

    throwing all sorts of materials I keep on hand over reflective leather, glass tables and shiny flooring, again so I can move around the room without getting sick.

    keeping a specific blend of Starbucks on supply and will become extremely distraught over my stomach being forced to tolerate other coffees.

    emptying any container of sitting fluid that reflects light..left sitting around or in the sink

    workouts are done with mechanic stool and 3 fans in a garage (when blessed to have one)

    hanging dishtowels over reflective appliances

    arranging furniture and lamps to minimize light reflection on floors and walls

    drive patterns are open roadways ( 4 lanes are perfect) with street lights at night and avoiding sunrise or sunset glare and flickering issues

    extremely short shopping lists or no shopping at all

    shops with carpet make me smile..love CVS

    will ask a ‘hand talking” friend to stop using hands so I can listen and focus on them , instead of stopping a migraine…only ones I can trust to say that to..otherwise

    finding a spot to stare at when listening to a friend talk because they are sitting in position of moving or reflective stimuli

    only wearing cotton and take a cotton light weight cardigan to sit on (if seats are leather, plastic or vinyl) in summer time to stop overheating

    bolting out of any room when it gets above 74 degrees

    holding my breath when exposed to fresh mowed yards

    sealing off heat blowing vents in my work and rest spaces at home

    throwing pillow cases over lamps when super super sick

    avoid sorting items or sorting papers while sick

    watch movies to avoid flashing commercials or floating camera shows

    that’s just the absurd list. lol

  • Lee614
    2 weeks ago

    Ceiling fans! They can also trigger vertigo for me.

  • solove0611
    4 years ago

    Really good list. I’d never thought about they’re smaller therefore not so much stress and awful lighting. Plus fewer people!!! Definitely have to keep in mind!!

  • seagypsy
    4 years ago

    I thought of a couple more weird ones.

    -I can taste and smell the bleach they use to clean the cutting boards and tools in the restaurant on my salad. No one believes me, even when they have the same salad.

    -I have had fluid (not mucous) drain out of my nose from my sinuses when my brain is pressed too hard against my skull. My doc said it could be excess cerebrospinal fluid. Not that that scares me or anything.

  • Quills
    4 years ago

    I can smell everything too. Have to completely avoid American cheese. Hate the smell of bleach. I am purchasing my own home and my first celebration was that I no longer have to worry about bleach triggering a migraine in my house! I also get the runny clear fluid, and it smells kind of metallic. Sometimes my eye will leak too. Glad I’m not the only one.

  • 5nb7lv
    4 years ago

    You can’t squish your brain against your skull, it requires a jolt hard enough to shift your brain, like a car accident or a fall. If this might be spinal fluid get a second opinion please! This is so not a normal finding
    -Concerned fellow migrainuer in RI

  • Michelle Rudder
    4 years ago

    I am so happy I found this site. Now I know I am not alone and what I go through is ‘normal’.

  • solove0611
    4 years ago

    Happy to have you, it’s been a God send for me

  • Michelle Rudder
    4 years ago

    The smell hallucinations are the most embarrassing. Before I knew this was a migraine symptom, I scolded my housekeeper for putting tile cleaner in the washing. It smelled like that. The poor housekeeper was confused, denied it and prbably thought i was going insane. I am so embarrassed just thinking about it again. Now I ask whoever is close to me (that I trust) whether I am smell hallucinating or not.

  • shariwismer
    4 years ago

    I have always been super sensitive to smells. Everyone thinks I’m crazy when I demand that all yogurt containers be removed immediately from the room so I don’t vomit. They think I’m completely deranged when no one in the room is even eating yogurt. It’s such a weird thing to experience. How nice to know I’m not alone.

  • JanetH
    4 years ago

    Michelle, I can so totally relate. I don’t get olfactory hallucinations as much anymore, but for a LONG time, I would get this stink in my nose of either a. raw gas or b. charcoal fluid; often not having been exposed to either for weeks! It could literally make me feel nauseated. Thank G-d at present, I’m not dealing with that one!

  • Holly H.
    4 years ago

    I so relate to what everyone is sharing. It has struck me that I can fully describe an everyday item, but still can’t come up with the word. I also do the cleaning product aisle mad dash, but am too old to be fast enough; maybe am getting better at holding my breath, though.
    Am unable to go to any place that echoes, plus has lots of fluorescent lights, plus has people milling around because of getting disoriented/vertigo, which is, well, about everywhere. Am unable to go out at night, because the lights plus the 24/7 aura is more than I can bear. Sleeping in little bundles of time because the pain, aura, and nausea thoroughly wake me every so often.
    What we with migraine have to do (or not do) may seem absurd to those without migraine; but to us, it’s just called “today.” And we are helped in community like this – thanks for sharing, folks.

  • kellyeliz07
    4 years ago

    Love the list! My addition would be the anxiety bordering on panic when some of the absurdities listed above involving smells (smoking, perfume, cleaning supply odors) come into my vicinity. I turn into a crazed maniac, demanding that my husband tell the smoker at the next table to move further away, or stressing myself out to tears when I can’t get up and move away from the person slathering on hand sanitizer on an airplane, or getting up and leaving a restaurant mid-meal when they start wiping down tables with bleach solution. It looks like I’m a maniac, but scents are such an immediate trigger!

  • Michelle Rudder
    4 years ago

    I was going my laundry once, with a new detergent that was supposed to be hypoallergenic (because I also have chronic hives), and the smell triggered an instant migraine. My allergist, however, said I already had a migraine and something in the vapours when I opened the washer, made the migraine worse, because that detergent was supposed to be fragrant-free. Yeah, right.

  • Cornishmlw
    4 years ago

    The list on here are all great. A few from me: my ex mother in law seeing the migraine get worse and worse at nieces b-day party, to the point of asking if I could drive us home. Wearing my migraine tint glasses with new Neuro,while holding my sunglasses open, telling him they weren’t prescription, and him looking at me like well duh, he responded well though. I like him. Standing as far away from the soap alise trying to explain to my 8 year old what plastic wrap is, and I didn’t care what brand just hurry. Thank God she was able to read it. Finally my father asking if I knew I had two glasses on. No light bulbs bother me at home, so Mr. Cluster headache doesn’t understand why I wear them when I go out. Almost a year after I got them he still calls them sunglasses. You would think he of all people in my house would understand it would be him.

  • ChristieS
    4 years ago

    I can relate to these for sure!

    -taking someone with me to the grocery and having them pick up what I need in the cleaning aisle.
    -having vertigo when I move my aching head.
    -hearing a phone ring or the doorbell and there isn’t one.
    -inability to think of words I want to use.
    -always having my black max UV protection wrap around sunglasses handy.
    -keeping my hair very short and washing it only 1-2 times per week because I can’t stand anything touching my scalp – even my hair hurts at time.
    -forgetting where I’m going or turning the wrong way when driving somewhere.

    Ugh – aren’t we all a mess sometimes?

  • solove0611
    4 years ago

    Vertigo is a nasty Nasty creature!! So is the phone I’ve started doing that more and more. Even changed all ringtones lol

  • Lee614
    2 weeks ago

    Can’t tell when my vertigo is from migraine or physical cause. The last bout stopped when I hit my head and got a slight concussion. For now on, if it doesn’t stop with a dose of Sumatriptan, then I’m going to do a trip to the Dr’s office.

  • kmripple
    4 years ago

    – Feeling totally mental because as soon as I step out of the house, I get super dizzy and fuzzy brained.
    – How sometimes after I eat, I get vertigo.
    – Not being able to complete a sentence. As my husband lovingly puts it: Is there a sentence in there?
    – Not using the right words. My kids love it when I start “Did you do your pillow, room, fork, table, HOMEWORK!, that’s it: homework!
    – I also get auditory hallucinations, but mostly I hear my kids calling me.
    -being totally illogical because of the anxiety that comes with my migraines (we need to leave two hours early to get somewhere that is 20 minutes away)
    – glasses and hat, almost always, inside stores sometimes in the house, always outside (even on cloudy days)
    – the car, almost always an adventure!

  • solove0611
    4 years ago

    Just last night told hubby was gonna brush my face wash my teeth and then wash his tea before I made it. His exact words-why don’t you wash your face brush your teeth and I will take care of tea-and supper because I think it’s a good idea. For Love. Why don’t you tell me when you don’t feel good.

  • JanetH
    4 years ago

    I am dealing with more auditory issues these days: tinnitus and sometimes thinking I hear a radio on, and nothing is.

  • sheepwriter
    4 years ago

    – standing in the hallway outside the dr’s office because someone’s scented deodorant is the kind that triggers a nasty migraine

    – walking around in circles in the pharmacy hoping to create a backdraft that will keep the aroma of the over-perfumed woman’s from hitting me

    – not being able to manipulate the ridiculously difficult wrappers on the abortive drug

    – falling asleep from the drugs then waking up having to take more

    – stressing about how long the hangover phase will be

    – constantly wiping my runny/blurry eyes hoping for clarity

  • seagypsy
    4 years ago

    Intractable migraine-girl here… with horrible “ice-pick in the brain” flare-ups. I can feel my brain slosh around in my skull during a bad one.

    Wearing sunglasses and a wide-brimmed straw hat into any store that has fluorescent or incandescent lighting because it’s too bright, muttering under my breath the whole time that if I can just make it out the door quickly, I will be okay. (Thank heavens my husband does most of the shopping for us.) It looks kind of funny in the winter-time.

    Keeping my hair cut as short as possible (and still looking okay for my face shape) without actually shaving it all off.

    I am not super religious, but I have actually prayed to not vomit while I have been in a grocery store aisle bent over the handle of the cart halfway through a shopping trip. (This happened last week at Costco.)

    My husband has to clean the showers and toilets while I am out of the house because the smell of bleach or the cleaner (which is actually almost non-scented) makes me gag.

    Crying because I cannot get the “wrap” off my medication (because it is foil-wrapped in plastic) fast enough and then swearing louder than I think I am because my hearing is affected. You should see some of the looks I’ve gotten.

    My husband telling me that it sounds like I have been drinking and I should probably lie down and I have no idea that I sound like that.

    Hearing voices come out of the fan (blowing all the time in our bedroom for white noise).

    I live in the Pacific NW and we are having some really hot days this summer. I could be a weather vane and barometer all rolled into one.

    I’ve tripped and fallen or bumped into things and have the bruises to prove it. It’s like I have no gross motor control and I have actually staggered around the office in which I used to work.

    Being able to smell the tiniest amount of seasoning/spice/aroma/scent of something good or bad when nobody else can. I work with flowers and when I was in class, I could smell things that no one else could. It was eerie, but kind of cool (and did not make my migraines any worse – which was awesome). My husband thinks I imagine most of it, but it can be a curse sometimes.

    And, so many of the other things that people have listed.

  • solove0611
    4 years ago

    God less th ice pick migraine. Have had three in my life and that was damn sorry for the language hard. Thinking about you!!

  • onehsancare
    4 years ago

    –Never (as in NEVER) going out in public without wearing my mask that filters out perfume. Yes, I can scare small children and sometimes get weird comments, but more often I’m asked where to get it (AchooAllergy.com) and I don’t have to change seats to avoid perfume bombs anymore. I don’t even know they’re there. Alas, restaurants are still a crapshoot–I can’t eat with it on!

    –Asking friends and family “Is it safe?” before taking off my mask to sip a drink or sit down in a bar or restaurant, because other people’s perfume is my biggest trigger.

    –Needing my friends to remember to ask, “Have you taken something?” when I start losing words or looking like I’m in pain, or complaining of pain, because I get too stupid to remember that that’s the next step.

    –Needing said friends to open the damn triptan pills, which apparently must be separately packaged in migraine-proof wrappers.

    –I know there’s more! Thanks for the great article–I recognize myself in most of your absurdities, too!

  • Michelle Rudder
    4 years ago

    ” migraine-proof wrappers.” !!! LOL !!!

  • seagypsy
    4 years ago

    “Opening the damn triptan pills…” I can totally relate. I know that the wrappers are supposed to keep them “fresh”, but they are a b!tch, aren’t they?

  • Heather Benton
    4 years ago

    Ahh I enjoyed your “absurdities” and sorry but I did chuckle at most! BC I can relate 100% and I too deal with mine by laughing (or I would go batty)
    I will Share more later, because now I have a killer migraine.

  • yirogers
    4 years ago

    I share the exact same response.

  • aellis
    4 years ago

    This is awesome.

    I started my migraines when I was 15. I remember trying to explain to my advanced math teacher that I couldn’t see the questions on the test paper and would she write them down on the board in large lettering so I could work out the problem. She didn’t…

    Constantly squinching up one eye or the other to see if the object randomly jumping (door frame, flower pot, whatever) is part of the AIWLS effect I get during prodrome, or the beginning of an aura, or both.

    Not wanting to close my eyes during prodrome because I feel like my head is suspended 30 feet above my body.

    Randomly panicking that I am driving on the wrong side of the road, when I’m not – I just forgot.

    My significant other using my migraines as an excuse to escape boring dinner parties – whether I’m having one or not.

    Becoming expert at the “I’m not in pain” fake smile.

    Appreciating the rain since we are in a drought – hating the pressure change because it is the worst trigger and I can’t escape.

    And a bunch of the ones already mentioned.

    It’s nice to know we aren’t alone in these.
    Thanks.

  • TGG1804
    4 years ago

    Never going anywhere without my red tinted lens sunglasses and my black lens sunglasses.

    Closing my eyes anytime I’m in the car and we drive through a patch of strobing sunlight from the trees.

    I HATE going anywhere in the car at night because of the what I think are really bright headlights, the halos I get around lights, the flashes from my own eyes go me for having the worlds crappiest retina.

    The never even going upstairs to bed without my pain pouch.

    The rant I had a lady on the train because she hadn’t turned off the key tones on her phone and I was in the middle of an attack.

    Any noise over a specific frequency giving me a migraine.

    Anywhere bright.

    The complete brain fade in an attack when trying to remember how to talk never mind actual words, I’ve been told I sound drunk.

    Never using a glass at work because I will spill it at some point.

    @Just so, yes me too!, I can hear our dishwasher humming at night even though its the other end of the house, then the earplugs go in. I had to ask hubby to remove his clock radio from the bedroom and I cannot stand ticking clocks.

  • laurahildebrand
    4 years ago

    – I wear my sunglasses at night.
    – Not being able to remember the simplest things like the name of my neurologist again and again and again
    – Forgetting the point of whatever I was trying to say or explain
    – Smelling nonexistent cigarette smoke
    – When the nurses in the ER recognize you as the migraine patient with veins that collapse
    – Forgetting that you’ve already said something twice beforehand
    – Rushing past candle/lotion stores while holding my breath because I know they will trigger a migraine
    – Praying that thunderstorm will pass because barometric pressure changes are my worst trigger

  • Michelle Rudder
    4 years ago

    “ER recognize you as the migraine patient with veins that collapse”.

    The ER nurses know me so well …. I arrive, and they say “Oh … you haven’t had a migraine for a while, have you. We haven’t seen you in a while.” And now only my left hand vein works. My right arm has received so many IVs over the decades, they are all collapsed.

  • Birth Doula
    4 years ago

    It doesn’t matter very much if I repeat things: dh has short term memory/cognitive issues because of all the very severs hypoglycemic he had 35-45 years ago, (He’s a type 1 diabetic.)

    I often wear sunglasses in stores.

    Never open the blinds. Ever.

    The most absurd thing I do think my cell phone screen is too bright and try to dim it, only to discover the brightness is already turned down.

  • Julia
    4 years ago

    I am forever losing my place in a conversation and saying “where was I going with this?”. Sad when my boyfriend can follow my conversation better than I can. And I am a master at forgetting the names of things. To the point of frustration and bursting into tears because I end up with an entire sentence of “uh uh”. My Momma was the one that noticed that symptom led to a migraine. I’d never put it together before. I flap my hand at things or say “you know those things that…” except that I’d never get past that point and no one knew what I was talking about. I get so frustrated. Momma used to recognize the symptoms before I did, and she’d tell me to get my butt up to bed and take my medication and go to sleep. I still don’t recognize a migraine as fast as she did. Or I talk myself out of it and end up delaying getting the right meds on board to help the migraine. She never once made me feel bad for having to move back home 2 years ago (mother hen clucking around her sick chick). And since she used to have them too, she never once made me feel like she thought I was faking or anything. I’m about the only one in the family that has them this bad. Most everyone else has grown out of them. Lucky me, I’m an original. Sure do miss my mom tho.

  • 5nb7lv
    4 years ago

    Sounds like your mother passed recently, my deepest sympathies. Who wouldn’t love someone so understanding and intuitive around. Speaking for myself if I hear one more time that I should ignore it, or just go to sleep, or more recently ” do something about it, there has to be something you should be doing!” And this from a very understanding boss. People must realize we and neurology are doing everything we possibly can! Who wouldn’t love to get off this neurological nightmare ride?
    Anyway, so sorry for your loss and best wishes

  • synetc
    4 years ago

    Some of my favorites:
    – Wearing sunglasses everywhere in every store, and until the sun is down.
    – That despite needing it almost everyday, having an easy to use abortive case in a super easy to reach place, and a water bottle I can’t spill everywhere; the clumsiness I get at the end of most auras is bound to cause a scene.
    – Be amused by coming off as a better therapist due to great use of silence, when really I am struggle to remember simple words.
    – That I have trained my hair to do fine with only being washed every 5 days.
    – That careful dance I do with the air conditioner balancing dealing with the heat and the noise and breeze from it making the MAV crazy.
    – Clouds being in my head, it’s actually kind of cool. Now I can also sense barometric changes because my forehead will tingle (thanks Botox!)

    The funniest things that have happened:
    – During a giddy aura in 8th grade being a total mess with another girl going to the nurses office for a migraine I ran smack into a pole, because I couldn’t see it.
    – In a completely crazed aura where I more remember what my boyfriend told me I somehow managed to get mostly dressed, insisted I was going to work, and was intermittently crawling and dashing uselessly around the room, and ran smack into the door frame (once again couldn’t see it). I was in such a state he managed to get my keys before I could even see, think of, or realize it 😉

  • Trixieup
    4 years ago

    I laughed out loud at the first one. So true! It’s a struggle sometimes to find unscented cleaning and laundry supplies, unscented soaps, etc.

  • amy boring
    4 years ago

    How about:
    Avoiding driving at night because of oncoming headlights and those annoying flashing red lights
    Building a cover over your cube at work to try to block the overhead florescent lights.
    Knowing that chocolate craving is foreshadowing a nasty migraine but you eat it anyway.
    Living in what is a migraine war zone because the people you live with insist that their body lotion can’t cause a migraine because it smells “so good”.
    Avoiding going out to eat at all because there is just too much noise and all the scents on all those people.
    Squinting my eyes while driving because of those ever changing, über bright billboards.
    Can’t have my hair up because the loose bun hurts but having my hair down pulls to hard on my head.
    The list seems to be never ending…

  • debwilton
    4 years ago

    Absolutely can’t stand night time driving! Headlights are a killer!

  • Hope and a Prayer
    4 years ago

    I always thought that I was a little eccentric and did some absurd thins, but having chronic daily migraine has taken this to a whole new level:
    – appearing as though I’m cleaning my ears with my finger when I’m really putting in or taking out or adjusting my earplugs
    – watching TV in a dark room wearing my sunglasses
    – loitering around the service counter in the cafe or restaurant waiting for the moment when no other customers are there and I can ask for the music to be turned down
    – being in charge of the remote at all times so I can constantly adjust the volume (volume fluctuates continually!)
    – walking on the balls of my feet so the heal strikes don’t send jolts and vibrations straight to my head
    These are the ones that come to mind now but I know a whole list of migraine crazies will come to me in time.
    It’s good to laugh at the absurdities. There should be some up-side to this

  • Lifecoachjane
    4 years ago

    Oh Kerry! These are so me! But I have a couple to add to the list:
    – asking the person talking to me to speak in a quieter voice.
    – being annoyed by the vibration of the bass in people’s car radio when they drive by the house.
    – describing something as “that thing that starts with the letter S”
    – leaving the doctors waiting room to go stand in the lobby because the lady across the room decided to put on hand lotion.

  • Teresa
    4 years ago

    I don’t know if this is a symptom of migraines, but does anyone else have auditory hallucinations? I hear music or sounds like someone is listening to the TV in another room. It is never loud enough for me to tell exactly what it is, like hearing music in a busy store, but it drives me crazy. It would make me feel much better to find out this was a prodrome symptom or something.

  • Lee614
    2 weeks ago

    I have auditory, olfactory, and visual hallucinations. I’ll think the phone is ringing or someone is talking, smell something, or see stuff that are not there.

  • Birth Doula
    4 years ago

    Almost every night, headache or not, I seem to hear a radio or TV that is on just enough to hear the sound, but not loud enough to understand the words. Drives me bonkers, as I hate that in reality. Either turn it up so that it is understandable or turn it off! Strangely, putting earplugs in seems to stop it. Go figure.

  • JanetH
    4 years ago

    Yes, yes! I commented to someone above on that. I used to get “smells;” now I get tinnitus and/or I think a radio is on low. I go around checking, and nothing is turned on.

  • Teresa
    4 years ago

    Ok, thank you, good to know. I forgot to put why that went with this post, lol. This is a typical conversation with my husband. “Did you leave the TV on in the bedroom?” “Huh? I never even had the TV on in the bedroom.” “Oh. Nevermind, just hearing things again.”

  • Teresa
    4 years ago

    Ok, thank you, good to know. I forgot to put why that went with this post, lol. His is a typical conversation with my husband. “Did you leave the TV on in the bedroom?” “Huh? I never even had the TV on in the bedroom.” “Oh. Nevermind, just hearing things again.”

  • Carolyn
    4 years ago

    I get that too, Teresa, very similar to how you’ve described. It’s like either the TV or people talking very quietly in another room. It’s sometimes listed as a possible part of the aura phase of migraines, although I’ve also noticed it occasionally while trying to fall asleep with a migraine.

  • debwilton
    4 years ago

    Wearing earplugs at the movie theatre or at the table because I can’t stand the sound of people eating! One of those irritating side effects!

  • fourposies
    3 years ago

    OMG, earplugs and sunglasses at the movie theater! I hear ya!
    And the sound of people eating, chewing, swallowing!!!!!!!! I thought it was just me being weird! I have to leave the room a lot of times. For me it’s not just while i’m having a migraine attack. Or is that OCD?

  • maxgordon
    4 years ago

    Choosing clothes based on whether they will discreetly hold sumatriptan injectors…wearing a wet shirt and hat if I must be outside on a hot day…never walking through malls (scents! sounds! smells!) unless I have to go directly to the Apple store…practicing what I call migraine yoga: trying to find the least-painful position and hold it forever…carrying Exedrine migraine pills wrapped in foil in my pockets “for when I need them later”…sunglasses in the house…keeping a list on the fridge of “safe” wines/beers vs. killers…sunglasses in stores…oh, I could go on and on and on…

  • Luna
    4 years ago

    I just wear a visor to block the light from the skylight doesn’t have to be sun.

  • Lifecoachjane
    4 years ago

    Oh maxgordon, you reminded me of a good one I have to do: sitting under an umbrella to block the sun from the skylight when I’m in the living room.

  • Victry
    4 years ago

    Avoiding driving (or riding, usually) north or south on particular roads at certain times of the day because at 40 mph, the sun shining between the trees creates a strobe effect.

    Yep. Migralives are such fun!

  • Vicki H
    4 years ago

    I’m so happy to hear that I’m not the only one! My husband thinks I’m crazy. I keep a dark towel in his car so I can just cover my head when he drives on “those streets.”

  • Lifecoachjane
    4 years ago

    Yes! This strobe through the trees has bothered me my entire life!

  • Victry
    4 years ago

    A week. Not a wheel. (Sheesh)

  • Victry
    4 years ago

    And oh yeah — avoiding my mother-in law for a wheel when she visits because everything she wears is scented. :/

  • RobertCan
    4 years ago

    Avoiding the older woman that walks into the waiting room swimming in stale perfume. I don’t bother moving to another chair because the scent is unavoidable.

    Smelling cigarette smoke in my own home of non-smokers.

    Keeping the house dark in the middle of the day.

    Changing lanes to avoid the rear window glare from the vehicle in front of me.

    …and the list goes on 🙂

  • Carolyn
    4 years ago

    Employing full-on yoga breathing to get through the pain and distress of getting to the kitchen and finding something to eat during a long attack.

    Regularly waiting until just before dusk to tidy up your yard and fill the bird feeder…sometimes still in sunglasses.

    Habitually doing your grocery shopping at about 2 am (thanks, anybody who works at a store that’s open all night!)

    Wearing ear buds with the end tucked into your clothes, but not plugged into anything, when you must be out among people during an attack but can’t handle talking to them.

    Working from home AND rotating your sleep schedule so that you don’t have to deal with so much daylight.

    Teaching your dogs things like “up” (get up higher where I can reach you) “touch” (come here and touch my hand so I can do something with you) and how to walk on a treadmill, instead of things like “play dead” and “roll over.”

    Occasionally waking up early in a mild panic, wondering if you should stockpile things like Headache Hats or icyhot in case you can no longer buy them some day.

    The constant planning. It’s a good thing I like being organized!

    Anything that happens on serious brain-fog days when I may as well be asleep, for all the good it does me to be awake and trying to function.

  • Maureen
    4 years ago

    I position myself in a certain location in my living room so that I don’t see the bright reflection off of my shed. I tried to explain this once to my family and they definitely thought it was absurd. (Kid:”What reflection?” Then later I have to switch spots to avoid the sun glare from a different window. All in an attempt to not have to close the shades, which are closed way too often when the real beast arrives.

  • steelheadzlisa
    4 years ago

    Bobbing and weaving around in the driver’s seat to avoid the dreaded reflected chrome or glass glare when driving on sunny days.

    Bargaining (out loud) with the pre-drome. “Hey, dude, if you can get your buddy full blown migraine to delay his arrival a bit that would be great” I feel like that stressed out Mom promising her kid candy if they behave in the grocery store

    Even after over 22 years suffering with this disease I still find myself indulging in “magical thinking” and deluded predictions that maybe this weekend be will be the last one.

  • Maureen
    4 years ago

    I definitely bob and weave my head in the car, although when I am not driving it looks more like “talk to the hand”.

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