My Chronic Migraine Advocate
I spent a couple of years attempting to have my chronic migraines treated before I ever ‘met’ somebody else with chronic migraines. I write ‘met’ because it was virtually through the internet. I quickly connected with several women who were also dealing with chronic migraine. This made me feel like I was not crazy after all. One of these ladies became a long-distance best friend and a personal health advocate.
How has Lisa supported me?
Lisa provided so much more than she will ever know by becoming my friend. When we met, I felt like my mom was the only one who slightly understood. My mother had episodic migraines. This allowed her to at least know the pain of a migraine.
Lisa showed me that I truly was not alone in battling this chronic migraine. We have been able to provide support to one another. We are here to listen to one another when the pain is horrible, and it is interrupting our lives. When we feel horrible about missing a social event, we can always vent to the other person.
Our connection includes having a genuine concern for one another as well. One way we do this is by taking the time to listen and learn about each other’s lives. We can be empathic with one another. In some ways, this is natural because we are living with some of the same challenges. But additionally, we care enough about one another to put ourselves in the other's shoes when they are facing something. We do not judge each other, and we try our best to help one another solve the life problems that arise.
How has she increased my knowledge of migraine?
Not only does Lisa provide support and understanding, but she also contributes to my knowledge of chronic migraine. Some of the most prominent advocate work she does is spending some of her time doing research. Together we were able to research new treatment plans, medications, and even doctors that I considered.
There are so many benefits to having Lisa help with researching different things about my chronic migraine, well, our chronic migraine. Sometimes she simply finds information more efficiently than I do. Regardless of who finds the information, we both read the information, and then we have discussions about the information.
How has she helped with my appointments?
Lisa assists me with developing a list of questions to ask my doctor prior to my appointment. Sometimes this requires her to remember issues I have forgotten about in between appointment periods. Other times, Lisa has questions for me to ask that I have not even thought about.
I feel like I stay so scatterbrained, whereas Lisa stays more on top of things. She helps remind me of upcoming appointments that I have mentioned to her. At the end of the day, Lisa is there for me to discuss what was said at the doctor’s appointment. During these times, she provides me with a person I can bounce ideas off as well.
Do you have a health care advocate for your chronic migraine? What makes them special?
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