We'll always be migrainuers.
Last updated: June 2023
So, I finally got myself on a good abortive medications. No side effects that affect my productivity. No rebound headaches. It actually works the way I want it too, and it's not addictive. Best news is because of all of this, I can take it when the migraine is coming on rather than wait until it's an 8 or 10, which allows me to only take 1 instead of 3-5 in a few hours.
However, having this amazing medication plus only getting migraines every few weeks has led me to realize something. I may have a routine, but I'll always be a migrainuer. They'll always affect me, even without the symptoms. It'll always control my life.
I get a migraine ever couple of weeks, but even so they still affect me. The medicine I take affects my skin and scalp, causing me to hold 2 different skin/hair care products. One for when I'm not on my medication, and when for when I'm on it.
I still can't go out of the house without wondering, if I'll deal with a smell that triggers it. It's still impossible to avoid scent triggers. I still deal with that bout of anxiety when I smell something that could be a scent trigger. I'm still cautious every time I drink alcohol or caffeine as that can trigger it if I'm not careful. I still can't eat heavily processed foods. I still can't go out to eat much because fatty or greasy foods can trigger it. I'm still aware that if I don't make the food, I don't know if they'll use something that'll trigger my migraines.
Most importantly, I can't go out without a five minute process of checking my bag every five seconds for my medicine. Do I have my migraine meds? What about my nausea meds? Is there enough? Is it expired? How long will I plan on being out? What will I be doing? Which bag to I need to bring to fit what I need? Double check. Am I sure I brought it? Triple check once more before I leave. No, it's not enough. Pack more. Wait... I might need a prescription bottle. I'm going to this place where they'll look through my things. Unpack it. I need a bigger bag for the prescription bottle. Wait, I forgot to grab the prescription bottle for my nausea meds. Unpack everything, even bigger bag. Will the box get destroyed? I hope not. Wait, I forgot my sunglasses. The bright lights will trigger it. Need another bag. Maybe I won't need it. It's been weeks. No, the day I forget will be the day I need it. Ugh.
It's a process. Even when I don't get them often. Every time I do anything I have to consider my migraines. Can I go down this aisle? I need it to grab a card. But there's a person in that aisle. It's a lady, and females are more likely to wear scents than males. What about her? She looks older, they're more likely to where the perfumes that trigger my migraines than the younger kids. She looks the type. Plus so has a purse. What's that made of? Leather? Leather treatments are a trigger. How far in the aisle do I have to go? Maybe I'll be fine if I don't have to go into her scent cloud? No, I'd have to pass her. I guess I'll return when she's gone. No, her scent will still be there. I have a sensitive nose, I'll smell it. Maybe I can get it tomorrow...
Even when I don't experience them for weeks, they control my life. I'm in pain. Should I take pain meds? No, then I can't take my migraine meds if I have a migraine. What's worse? This is a lot of pain, I can barely walk. But if I get a migraine I won't be able to hold down food. I can't risk taking these pain meds.
It will always be a part of who I am. Even the years where I don't have them anymore, I'll be wondering when they'll return. Worrying, stressing. Even when I don't have any of the migraine symptoms, they are controlling my life, because if I don't think of every little detail I will have the symptoms.
Are the family and friends you will be seeing this holiday season understanding about migraine?