I've had migraines since I was 35, which makes about 8 years now. I figured it was menopausal in nature as they would be triggered by hormones. As I've gotten older, they seem to have become more frequent. 6 months ago I went gluten free. I feel better. I have more energy. And my migraines do not seem to be as frequent. Considering I was ready to get on preventative meds, going gluten free has been a blessing. Some migraines are not too bad. I slow down, take it easy, but I can still keep going with meds. Other times it knocks me completely down. My kids say I look pale, look half asleep, mutter and moan. I feel like I have terrible morning sickness, I'm so nauseous. I want to squeeze my head to put pressure on my skull to stop the pounding. Light hurts. Any little noise is magnified. And worst, I'm incapable of doing anything. Walking to the bathroom is the extent of my abilities, and even that is a struggle.
But the thing I cry about the most is the loss of time. Migraines...what do they contribute to my life? I feel like they steal my abilities, my time, my life. I can't work. I can't be a mother. I can't do anything. And I can't get that time back. But yet, I still have to do everything that is expected of me. Meals, errands and laundry still need to be done. My work is expected to still get done. So now I've lost 6 hours of my day, lost time with my kids and from work. I have to work and get my 8 hours in. What time is left for my kids? That is what I weep over: my time lost with my kids when I have a migraine. After a migraine and getting any possible work done, I don't have anytime with my kids left.
I try to think about what they have gained from my migraines. One son has learned to cook, and become a good cook. My other son has learned to be sensitive and watch for signs of a migraine and starts to protect me from effects (like closing the blinds when he can tell one is coming on before I even realize it is bothering me, or making sure a restaurant is not too loud before we sit down to eat). My youngest is very caring, and has become my nursemaid. She gets migraines herself so she understands how awful I feel. My oldest daughter steps in to make sure it is quiet while I recover and is someone the others can go to if they need anything. Would they have learned these things without my migraines?
I can't recapture the time I've lost unfortunately no matter how much I lament. I just hope what they have gained will make them better bosses, husbands, and co-workers to those who can't change their chronic illnesses either.
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