I was driving home yesterday wearing my cool Blues Brother shades and I was suddenly furious. I was thinking about a meeting I'd recently had at work. "Coaching and counseling" they called it - where they write me up for being behind in my work, while my supervisor and the program director sit across the table in judgement telling me how I should be more organized and plan my schedule more efficiently, and so on. And then the moment of scathing derision as the program director comments, "Well, yes, you WERE out sick a few days. As a matter of fact, you DO take quite a few days off, here and there, don't you?"

If only she knew. If only she knew that the one day I miss because the railroad spike that is jammed into the side of my head makes it hurt so bad that I can't function, can barely see straight, want to throw up, can't drive, the light is like needles in my eyes. Yeah, "I don't feel well." And the rest of the week I go in, wanting to scream, but I go in, because those days I can drive, those days I'm not throwing up, those days if I wear shades, the needles back off, if I pull the shades in my office. I have to hear the comments, "Oh, you like sitting in the dark, are you a mole person?" "Oh, your shades look so cool!" (Or better yet, when they think I can't hear, "She thinks she's so cool!").

"It must have been nice to have a long weekend"

"Did you take a personal day?"

No, I had a rairoad spike in the side of my head. I finally figured it out. The poor saps really have no idea. They simply can't concieve. Next time they ask, I'm going to ask them if they've ever broken a bone. I have, and that's the closest thing that I can come up with, besides childbirth, that comes close to the pain levels of my migraines. When I was 10 I broke my right forearm, snapped it falling off my bike, and yep, that was about the same. When I was 15 I tore a ligament in my knee, and when I stood up the white-hot pain that tore through my knee and dropped me to the ground was, yep, about the same. Or maybe that same pain when you hit your head full force on a cabinet. But what they don't get is that one WHACK! or CRACK! of the break or the injury, as bad as it is, as awful and painful as it is, isn't even close - because then it backs off to throbbing and a dull ache. I know, been there, done that. Migraine doesn't. Oh, for sure it throbs - at the same damn intensity as the original spike! Just hammering over and over and over again! And that's what they don't seem to understand!

"Oh, your head always hurts!"

Yeah... it does that... behind the cool shades. I have a spike jammed in my head...

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