Giving Thanks When It Seems Impossible
Living with severe depression and chronic migraine can manifest as a sort of feedback loop of darkness it seems at times. From near daily, debilitating physical pain, to feeling unable to perform tasks because of both physical and psychological limitations, these comorbidities have a way of seriously taking away my happiness some weeks. I try to fight feeling down, but it can be so exhausting just to get through each day, and some days I don't feel as though there is much room for fighting, beyond treating the pain from migraines and trying to push through the depression and anxiety.
Things have been particularly rough lately. I lost a large part of my income after being sick very often for months, with migraines affecting my work ability around three days a week. It seemed as though I had things under control for awhile, but I took on a lot of responsibility and simultaneously increasingly fell ill often. I have also had to go to urgent care nearly every other week for months with some or other illness: one week it was respiratory infection, another it was shooting muscle pain, and yet another it was for a bacterial infection. Things have been hard, to say the least, and on top of it all I am in the process of meeting with a new neurologist to try to find some better relief for my migraines, which has been scary and has come with its own stressors. With so much darkness seeming to weigh over me currently, I decided it would be beneficial to try to list some things I am thankful for, as a way to try to focus on something other than the pain of migraine, depression, and other physical sicknesses. So here goes:
Brief list of thanks
I am thankful for my caretaker, who is always there for me and is unconditionally helpful in my journey with migraine.
I am thankful for my family, who are loving and caring and who advocate for me always.
I am thankful for Kasha, a delicious fruit seed (toasted buckwheat), that is a wonderful rice substitute, and that can be made quite quickly when I am having a migraine attack.
I am thankful that there are so many seasons of the Next Generation of Star Trek, because it is comforting to watch when I am feeling well enough and helps to take my mind off of pain.
I am thankful that the weather is warming up in my area, allowing me to go outside more, as the sunshine helps with the affects of depression.
I am thankful that I am not alone, and that I am a part of communities where people who experience similar pain and experiences can network and learn from one another, as well as encourage one another.
Trying every day
Even though my list isn't very long, I find it nice to be able to write down a few things in which I can find joy when things are particularly dark. I know for many who live with migraine, each day is a steep battle. I find that reminding myself that I am not alone, and remembering things that make me happy help me to keep trying every day.
What are some things you are thankful for, that help you get through the pain of migraine or other illnesses? Let's discuss in the comments?
Can you tell when a migraine attack is coming?