Do You "Put on Your Oxygen Mask Before Helping Others"?

You know that phrase that flight attendants say when reviewing safety information: “Put on your oxygen mask before helping others”? They know that human nature is to help others, but they know that you can’t help others if you can’t function.

An exciting and packed weekend

This weekend, my daughter played in 5 sports games - a basketball championship game and a softball tournament. In the tournament, they played 2 games on Saturday and 2 games on Sunday. I was so excited that they made it to the final game for the first time! The girls have worked so hard for so many years and it showed.

A twinge of an oncoming attack

As we settled in for the second and final game that decided who would win it all, I started to feel that familiar twinge of a migraine. When we arrived, I had so many things to carry that I had left my purse in the car (I know, not the smartest thing) and I always keep Excedrin in my purse. The car was only a 3-minute walk away from the seats, but I didn’t want to miss a second of the fast-paced game, let alone 6 minutes!

An extensive list of things to do

So I kept telling myself, I’ll go after this, I’ll go after that, etc… After about 20 minutes I realized I was being stupid and I need to put on my oxygen mask (take my Excedrin) so that I could be better the rest of the day. It’s not like I could get through the game and then sleep all day. I knew I’d have to drive home, fold and put away about 6 loads of clean laundry, pack lunches, make dinner, help the kids wash their hair, do some work, etc, etc…

Taking care of migraine

I was no good to anyone unless I helped myself first. I realized this as I sat there in pain. I also knew from experience that the longer I delay taking any medication, the worse the pain will get, and the longer it will take to go away, so if I took those 6 minutes now, the rest of the day wouldn’t be a disaster. So regretfully I speed walked to the car, took my two Excedrin, and went back to my seat.

What triggered it?

I wondered what had brought on the migraine suddenly - was it the rapid change in weather? It was sunny, then just started raining, then stopped again. Was it allergies? Suddenly my eyes felt puffy and itchy, my ears itched, and my throat felt a tickle. I don’t know, and I know that I need to be better about figuring out my triggers, but that’s another story. But I do know that “putting on my oxygen mask” (taking my Excedrin before taking care of others) definitely saved the day.

When you have a migraine attack, do you take care of yourself before helping others? If not, it's time we all try!

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