Have you ever heard that word? The first time I heard it was the day I had the worst headache of my life. I got up one morning 13 years ago and showered, getting ready for work, and felt like lightning had struck me at the base of my spine. I felt it travel up to my head, like an electrical shock from a wall plug, and then hit the floor with such head pain that I thought I was dying. I crawled out of the bathroom and woke my husband, who, thankfully, did not tell me to take two tylenol and go back to bed.

We rushed to the ER, well we stopped 3 or 4 times for me to vomit, and like a scene from the TV show "ER" I found myself in a dream like state watching nurses and drs,. running around me in a panic. It turns out that I had a subarachnoid hemorrhage, or a bleed in my brain. No cause was found so the event was called Ideopathic, or in reality, the dr. had no idea why my head started bleeding. I spent the next two weeks teetering between life and death. I recovered completely except for these headaches that come every 7 to 10 days.

I went to dr. after dr. and was diagnosed with chronic status migraine disease. The cause? Ideopathic. That word again! I tried a pain management dr. but after 6 years became zombie-like because of the huge doses of opiates I was taking. I was afraid of these drugs, followed the dr.'s orders strictly, but wound up losing my friends, family, and anyone that knew me because no one wanted to be around a zombie.

I didn't understand why everyone left me, I was only trying to not hurt. It was devastating. I finally decided to take my life back and my dr. sent me to a rehab center for a medical detox. I was weaned off of all the drugs and they were replaced by a new drug called subutex, which I hated. It took care of the pain ok but no drs. had heard of it and I developed other severe health problems so no one knew how to medicate me for other pain because they didn't know what subtext was.

I was still on a mission to reclaim my life so I began seeing a pain management therapist on a weekly basis. That was the best thing I ever did. He truly understands pain and has taught me that it is ok to live with a little pain. I had spent so many years trying to find a pain free life that this new mindset was very scary. But I learned to keep putting one foot in front of the other every day and try to live. In the meantime, I detoxed off of the subutex (OMG!!!!!!) and I take a small dose of extended release morphine so I can get out of bed every day. I also have migraine meds and other stuff for severe pain but I only take it for severe pain. It by no means takes away all of my pain but it is just enough that I can function.

This story seems so jumbled but I hope you all understand my struggle, just as I understand yours. I am a person who lives each day with mind numbing pain from migraines, but I am determined to keep going. I hope to learn much more from you all and am excited about the support I may receive from people who suffer with head pain as well. There is a lot more to my story, but I won't bore you with it for now. Thanks for listening!!

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