Nearly 50 years
I had my first migraine at age 12. I will never forget it. I was picking raspberries at my great-aunt's and stopped to read my book, "Eight is Enough." It struck with such force that I couldn't see and vomited. My mother thought I was being dramatic. My first aura occurred when I was in English class at age 15. I couldn't see and thought I had a brain tumor (my aunt had brain tumors). The school nurse called my mother to take me home and I must have been seriously pale and in pain, because my mother did call the doctor who said I had a migraine and there was nothing to be done.
I have had migraines on and off throughout the years, but they became seriously bad (frequent and severe) about 20 years ago when I got married and moved to Texas. The worst one was when I was traveling for work and trying to get on a plane to go home in Minneapolis. I couldn't get on the plane becasue I was vomiting so much. The ambulance took me to the Egan hospital, and they gave me a shot of Imitrex. It was like a miracle. I stayed the night at the hotel where I had been staying and came home the next day, still with the migraine but not as bad. I asked my doctor about Imitrex and he got me into a study where I could get the medication. I was so thankful.
Through the subsequent years, the migraines have been bad, at least 1 to 2 a week. I know stress brings them on, food diaries were no help, they are bad when I have allergies. I am so thankful for the triptans because they make the migraines tolerable, but they aren't magic. I have a migraine as I write this, from stress I'm sure. Maybe someday there will be an understanding of these demons, but for now they continue to rule my life.
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