Has My Ailment Become My Identity?

The first question I’m asked when seeing family or friends is, “How is your head today?”

Their hearts are in the right place, but the pity in their eyes as they ask is apparent. I must not be covering it up very well that day. Most of the time I lie and tell them, with an appreciative, “I’m fine.” In reality, my head is throbbing from my temple to my forehead, my eyes are watering from the agony, my neck in knots, my vision blurred, and my speech is slurred. But a simple “I’m fine” will help deter the same conversations about my migraine headaches, and their causes, and the surefire remedies, and someone’s aunt who has them.

I’m grateful for the people in my life who truly care about me and my health, but the questions are like salt in the wound. My migraine headaches have become my identity. I’m the guy who has those terrible migraine headaches all of the time.

Somewhere inside, behind the excruciating pain, I’m the loving husband, the fun, active dad of two sweet children, the successful teacher, coach, and small business owner, and the person, who, at times, is feels like he’s literally dying to be himself again.

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.

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