Thursday, November 17, 2005

Migraines are the devil's spawn

About a month ago, I cursed myself by mentioning to Mr. Jane that it had been a while since I had a migraine. I typically get 2-3 migraines per year (so I'm luckier than most). Since then, I have felt a migraine coming on about once a week. (Hmmm, any connection to stress, you think?) Luckily, I have finally figured out my warning symptoms, and I am lucky enough that I have symptoms that appear several hours before the migraine hits, so I can sometimes head it off before it reaches full-blown, agonizing, please-kill-me-now status.

Today I have been fighting off a migraine since I woke up. I've been successful so far, but I haven't completely gotten rid of the warning symptoms. I have something on campus tonight, and I am desperately hoping that the migraine goes away before that, because I'd hate to miss the event. But as I'm sitting here typing this post, I can feel the advanced warning symptoms coming on: dizziness, nausea, light sensitivity. Aaaarrgh!

I hate that I am such a slave to my body this way. When a migraine hits, my world stops. I cannot function. Often, the pain is so great that it brings me to tears. It totally consumes me. I can only get rid of it by completely retreating from the world, into a dark room---but at the same time, I need some sound to distract me from the intense pain, because otherwise it is too much to bear.

The time before the migraine hits is the worst---because I know what's coming, I know exactly what to expect, and I fear the pain. And, I know that I am powerless to stop it at this stage. (Unless that damn Excedrin kicks in within the next 10 minutes!)

Update: I'm still feeling a bit shaky, but after closing my door and putting my head down on my desk for a half hour, I felt a bit more human. Most importantly, I made it to and through the campus event. Yay!


Mel said...

glad you avoided the worst...mine have gotten less awful and less frequent as I get older -- though i know that's not tru for everyone...

Turtle said...

So glad you staved it off!

While I know it can feel like you're a slave to your body, I also think another perspective is that we're too often slaves to unrealistic expectations to be machines and capable of working endless hours. I think our bodies are also gifts and that illness is sometimes a sign that too much is being asked of us. Unfortunately it's hard to get the world to change... Anyway, I think we (as a society, as a world) are reaching a point of demand that is simply inhuman. And I wonder if our bodies will simply collectively rebel and we'll get the message, or, perhaps more likely, we'll develop stronger and stronger drugs that allow us to continue to deny our embodiedness. Okay, so I feel like I am way out there wacko land. But part of feminist theory imo has been about reclaiming our bodies. I think bodies teach a lot about boundaries and about appropriate limits. Even when it's inconvenient.

Migraines still suck. As does the stress that leads to them.