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How to spend the pain-free days?

In September I blogged about how I’ve been having a hard time with migraines late this summer, due in part to a car accident I had in June and due in part to other factors, including the changing of the seasons.

Other than a very rough patch in the summer of 2011, late summer 2012’s bout of chronic attacks was the worst I’d had in a long while, and it really got me thinking about my pain-free days.

It’s so important to take time to relax with family and friends, to read a book by myself, to take a walk. It’s also important to focus on my business, to make sure I am getting all my things around the house done, and to keep some, if not all, of my to-do list items checked off fairly regularly.

It’s hard to know what to do on the healthy days.

In August and September I seemed to have as many healthy days as I had unhealthy ones, and I really struggled mentally on my good days. It’s so difficult to decide what’s best. My inclinations change quickly, too, and it’s sometimes hard to keep up with myself. On the one hand, I love my bookstore job and as soon as I feel happy and energetic, I’m eager to throw myself 100% into bookstore projects. But then, just as eagerly, I will delve into a book or dip in a friend’s pool because I feel I deserve to relax and appreciate the beauty of a migraine-free day.

You’d be hard pressed to find a 30-something woman who doesn’t feel as if her time is a precious commodity, but I feel I’m at somewhat of a disadvantage due to all the time that is stolen from me due to my migraine illness. If I were 100% healthy, I’d still probably struggle with what to do when. But knowing that pain-free days can never be guaranteed, I guard them closely and have a lot of difficulty in deciding what to do during those precious moments.

How do you keep a balance when you’re feeling good and energetic? How do others in your life react to the choices you make regarding what to do on your migraine-free days?

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


  • Cindi
    7 years ago

    I’m also in the 50’s club having had migraines most of my life, but the past 6 years or so have been doozies. The beginning of those years I used my good days to make up for the bad ones, esp at work. In the middle of those years I really took at look at what was happening to me physically – one example is that my hair was turning grey at a much faster rate than before. So syas my hairdresser! So now toward the last year I’m trying to take care of myself. My life admitedly has changed a bit and there are not so many people clamoring for my attention… the ones that are don’t matter as much as my health. So NOW I’m seeking to balance taking care of myself and doing what I should toward whatever responsibility awaits. Seeking balance.

  • Julie
    7 years ago

    I too just turned 50 this past summer. Been dealing w/migraines over 25-26 some years. Since 2010 they became daily Intractible Migraines and not due to medication overuse. In fact I HATE taking medication and if anything I might be taking my medications, at least in the past, too late to have a chance to kick in. That’s how much I hate taking meds. But after seeing and now on my 4th neuro, this one is also a migraine sufferer, since 2011, he has properly educated me as has this site and fellow bloggers (God Bless you all by the way) I’m much better at taking my meds and documenting them but still suffer daily from them. But I do the best I can w/what I can and on days when the pain level is at a level 6, which I consider somewhat manageable, if I can see somewhat straight I do little things but cannot do major things. I can only take things one day at a time and cannot plan in advance because I cannot count on my head cooperating and I usually have to cancel on friends and family gatherings. My husband hounds me to daily to do more and I tell him and remind him constantly with the daily debilitating pain when it’s over a 7 or more and everything else that goes with it he’s dam lucky if I can cook dinner and not heave in it and try to do laundry-if he wants more he can do it himself. He tries to do the guilt trip that “he” has to work full-time to support “us” cause someone has to do it but I don’t fall for it anymore now and I just retort “hello, but disabled means disabled and if you don’t understand what that means ask my attorney that fought for me, my therapist that fought for me, my neurologist that fought for me, look it up online and if your still too dumb to understand it then maybe YOU need some therapy-so buzz off dude” and I don’t let him get under my skin anymore. I figure if he’s that dense and doesn’t get it by now then to heck with him. The house will always be here, there will always be an opportunity to pick up a few things here and there and if I feel up to doing a little more some time I will but when I’m not up to it I’m not pushing it. Sick is sick. Period. I don’t need a Nazi drill sargent barking orders at me because he thinks I’m at home supposbley “leading a life of leisure” while he’s working all day! If only that were the case. Having your head feeling like it’s ready to implode, visual aura’s, stroke symptoms, smells, sounds and light setting you off, and worshiping the toilet are not a life of leisure, thank you very much, along with that constant stabbing, searing pain behind your eye, and your scalp sore all the time that it hurts to brush or wash your hair-your face 1/2 numb. YOu tell them these things and they must think it’s science fiction. Yet you try to let it roll off your back like water off the back of a duck. They will never get it if they haven’t gotten it by now. How can some people be so ignorant is beyond me. Amazing. Oh well, If I was able to work I would be. I hate feeling this way. Wish it could go away. But this was given to me for some reason so I deal with it. Stress must not get the better of me. Can’t let it. Nope. So, I do what I can when I can and if it’s not good enough then tough. They can do it themselves and if they don’t want to do it then there it stays until I feel better and can handle it when I feel better. I don’t let it bother me. Beyond that. Not worth it. They can act stupid. I’m not letting them get to me. Like Flo use to say-they can kiss my grits. LMBO!!!

  • elizabethfoster
    7 years ago

    I know the typo thing and I am more than familiar with having to decided what to do with good time. I spent time pushing to keep my full time job and taking away time for me and my family and my health. Now with the support of my husband and my girls (9&7) I have found a part time job that only expects what I can do when I can do it, I put my health in the for front and I have given up on the display like clean house and have come to the conclusion that my girls are growing up faster than I ever thought possible so dam the critics. I started hobbies with my girls and we all pitch in with chores (even though my bath room has not been deep cleaned in almost a month ,cringe) I don’t know what tomorrow or next year will bring. So I will spend my time doing hobbies with my girls and being productive when I can.

  • terib
    7 years ago

    I do relate.. I am now 50.. have dealt with migraines for about 10 yrs and other health issues resulting from lyme and fibromyalgia for about 30 yrs now.. I can never tell when the bad daycare going to come and how bad they will be .. if the meds will getcme through the day or if I will be down for days .. so I take it as it comes .. and getcas much done as I can each day .. good or bad .. most people just don’t get it even the people I livecwith forget from time to time .. but I just keep to my pace .. it is the only way that will ever work for me been down this road too long to let anyone else run my life for me .. so I do what I can each day the good days get more the bad days get less the worse days my body shuts me down when it hits overload .. that simple .. no matter what kicks t there good or bad .. I enjoy what I can in life .. every singl eday no matter how moment not going to let this illness take me down .. my motto when I turned 50.. to turn this thing around for the better and take new control of my life the illness can’t have me anymore .. since then I am more in control even on the bad days I get more done even if itvis something

  • terib
    7 years ago

    Pardon typos the droid is not user friendly for this post format .. auto correct isn’t either ..

  • terib
    7 years ago

    If itvis something small ..

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