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The Downward Slope

I’ve been feeling pretty crappy lately. The summer has not been a great one for my aches and pains, and that’s mainly due to the car accident I got into in mid-June. Unfortunately, things have just gotten worse. The chest and back pain I started to get twinges of a few days after the accident have been progressing and worsening, much to my dismay and frustration—the physical therapist has called my muscles “stubborn,” as even with repeated, prescribed exercise, they end up tightening up and causing me pain again.

And August is going on the record as one of my All-Time Bad Migraine Months. If my calculations are correct, I have had more days affected by migraine than I have had days without migraine—it’s been a long, long while since this was the case. After many months on daily preventive meds (propranalol twice a day), I was seeing real improvement until this summer. Now my neck gets stiff and painful, which is a sure migraine trigger.

It’s hard to ride the hilly path of chronic illness. To feel as if you’re really getting somewhere only to experience a setback. In the past, many of my setbacks were at least somewhat self-imposed: once I’d finally started feeling better, I would drop off on my exercise or special diet and then spin into a migraine cycle again. But this time I don’t feel as if my actions are to blame, and it’s harder to cope with the increased migraines knowing that a careless driver who hit me from behind is, at least in major part, to blame.

So now I plow ahead, trying to take good care of myself and rest up when I need to. I hope that this is just a low point and that things will start getting better again, but of course by now I know I can’t take anything for granted.

How do you cope with the ups and downs? Where are you now on this hilly path?

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

  • 7 years ago

    This has definitely been a tough summer with the heat and like many others I’m beginning to wonder if I’ll ever feel “normal” again. The increase in migraine days has been bad enough, but I’m also constantly fatigued and having motion/vestibular issues whether I have a migraine or not. Living indoors and depending on A/C to keep me from going “over the edge” has been awful.

    The weather is finally cooling down now (now that it’s October!) with highs in the 80’s rather than the 90-100’s so maybe some relief is in sight. I’m seriously looking into staying with friends somewhere cooler next summer. I don’t know what else to do.

  • georgiaslesinger
    7 years ago

    I can ssympathize because, during this very hot and humid summer, I had one constant migraine. After the seasonal change, I went a whole week-and-half without one and thought I’d died and gone to heaven. All I could think was, “So this is what normal people feel like!” I was euphoric. Of course, some incoming storms eventually triggerd another bout with migraine. The only way I know to deal with it is to del the best I can when I have one and to be grateful for the days I don’t, even though migraine days far outnumber migraine-free days.

  • Nancy Harris Bonk moderator
    7 years ago

    Yes, this summer was miserable for many with Migraine, myself included. I wonder if you have you kept a Migraine journal recently to see if there are other things in addition to weather changes that may be triggering your Migraine attacks? Another reason to keep a Migraine diary if we haven’t in a while is because our triggers can change over time. You can check out our Migraine Meter here; http://migraine.com/?s=migraine+meter

  • Cyn
    7 years ago

    So sorry you are having such a difficult summer! Much like Diana said, I’ve found that I have to just focus on getting through one day at a time. I also find that the less I isolate myself, the better I feel emotionally even if I’m being pounded with a Migraine!

  • Nancy Harris Bonk moderator
    7 years ago

    Hi Cyn,

    That’s great advice – taking it one day at a time and trying not to isolate oneself. That’s exactly what I do!

  • TaylormadenWV
    7 years ago

    I’m at a point where it’s bad years vs. bad months. I’ve not had a migraine-free day in almost 3 years. My meds have been changed 10 times in the past 24 months and the migraines are getting progressively worse (more severe migraine days than ever). On the plus side, my high blood pressure is under much better control and now we’re dealing with the problems of low blood pressure as much as high blood pressure (caused by the numerous prophylactic meds that double as BP meds). Ah well, it could be worse…it could always be worse so I’m grateful at this point that it isn’t any worse than it is.

  • Diana-Lee
    7 years ago

    I’m so sorry, dear. 🙁

    Sometimes the best thing I can do is try to take one day at a time. If I start to focus a lot on how long it’s been this bad, I can hardly even get out of bed.

  • livinwithmigrainepain
    7 years ago

    I understand what you are talking about, 2 steps forward and 10 steps back.I too have been having a bad summer with my migraines; hurricane season killed me and now I have learned I may have a serious heart condition, possibly caused by all my migraine meds over the years. I also suffer from arthritis in my neck and it is a major trigger for my migraines. Unfortunately the Botox doesn’t seem to be helping my neck. My doctor has stripped me of all and any oral migraine medication (anti-nausea meds, muscle relaxers and pain meds) and now I am left to alieve (Glorified baby ). My stress level is through the roof, upon learning of what this heart condition could do to me, I can’t stop thinking about it. One of the risks is instant death, try blocking that one from your head. Sorry for the venting, but I can’t share these feelings with my teenage son.

  • Nancy Harris Bonk moderator
    7 years ago

    Please don’t feel bad about sharing here. This is what we are all about. I’m sorry to hear about your recent diagnosis, that is a tough one. Is there someone local for you to talk to? With a condition like that it might not be a bad idea to have a good support network. Is the doctor who treats your migraines working with your heart doctor by any chance? That’s what they “should” be doing. And please, vent away, you do have your hands full.

  • Terry-Lynne
    7 years ago

    I am sorry to hear that you are going through so much pain right now. May was my bad month with 17 out of 31 days in pain. I am fortunate to have found a doctor that is now helping me. I wish you all the best.

  • Nancy Harris Bonk moderator
    7 years ago

    Terry-Lynne –

    I’m so glad to hear you’ve found a doctor who is able to help you. Keep us posted on your success!

  • Benice
    7 years ago

    So true!! Chronic illness is a hard road to ride especially if you have more than one to cope with. I also found this summer to be one of the worst ones for my migraine. I thank the Migraine Meter for helping me be more consistent in keeping track of my migraines. It has been a key to knowing when I need to take better care of myself and tell my doctor when things are getting worse.

  • Nancy Harris Bonk moderator
    7 years ago

    Hi Carolyn,
    Please write your story when you can because some people find it very therapeutic to get things out in writing. It is extra had when family members don’t get it. We have a wonderful article by Ellen who talks about this issue. Let me share the link with you; http://migraine.com/blog/family-and-friends-that-don%E2%80%99t-understand-migraine-disease/

  • Nancy Harris Bonk moderator
    7 years ago

    Benice
    I’m sorry you’ve had such a rough summer, I know lots of us did. I am so glad to hear the Migraine Meter was helpful for you. It’s a great tool!

  • cancan
    7 years ago

    I feel for you something awful! I have yet to write “my story”, it has been all downhill for the past ten years, though I have had migraines for 65 years, since age 8. I think migrainers need “hugs” so badly…yet, when there is no one who understands that, you don’t get…a hug! My own family doesn’t see it, and I am so hurt and too stubborn I guess to ask for a hug, that I just suffer in my own pity.
    But, believe me…when I encounter anyone who suffers with migraines, whether I
    know them well or not….I give them a BIG hug! So here is one for you, Migraine Girl. (((

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