Giving myself brain freeze

My chronic migraines began the year I turned 20. They came on suddenly with severe pain, nausea/vomiting, aura, and dizziness like I didn't know it was possible.

During that year my neurologist got to know me better than some of my closest friends. We tried diet and lifestyle changes, and somewhere between 20-30 meds for either prevention or rescue. I'm surprised my mother didn't go broke on the prescription copays.

By the time I graduated from college (thank goodness for understanding professors!) and moved home until I found a job, I thought I was getting my migraines under control. That summer my mother and I celebrated my having had 3 migraine free days in a row--which doesn't sound like much of an accomplishment, but at the time it was huge!

In the fall of 2002 I got my first post-grad job. I worked in a stressful environment with some pretty angry people. The stress of the job made my migraines worse and after 6 months of working there I was "let go" due to excessive absences. At the time it was a terrible feeling, but it ended up being one of my biggest blessings.

Shortly after that I found a man that I loved (who loved me in spite of my illness) and job that I loved going to. I'm not sure if it was my stress-free state of mind or some other less noticeable change, but my migraines just stopped. For the next 7 years I would maybe get 1 or 2 migraines a year, and I was elated.

This past summer has brought on some major changed in my life. My husband's job location closed and he was transfered to another location 60 miles away from where we live. We decided to put our house on the market (a house we love--the one I was raised in) and that I would start looking for a new job. I believe the stress brought back my migraines--the first one I had this summer lasted an entire week. I've been getting at least 1 migraine a week since that time.

I've been eating better, exercising more (including yoga, which makes me feel great--even in my soul) and trying new things, like meditation. I have a wonderful and understanding doctor and we are going to get these migraines under control, once again.

Until then, one fun discovery I found for migraine pain relief is giving myself "brain freeze". When I've got a migraine I'll have a smoothy, a popcicle, or ice cream--it's my most enjoyable treat and treatment!

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