Welcome to Day 1 of my 3 post series on Migraines.
Next week we’ll talk about the upside to migraines when you’re a mom (yes, there actually is one…) and I will wrap the series up with some practical tips on how I treat my migraines but today we’ll start with a big, ugly emotion…
If you’ve ever had a migraine in your life, know that I am about to speak your language. I get it. I know the anger that bubbles inside you when someone says,
“oh, you have a headache?”
For those of you who get migraines, you know that while a headache is a painful inconvenience, a migraine is a whole different animal.
For those of you who have never had the pleasure of this experience, let me assure you…
you’re not missing anything.
A migraine is a full body experience that believe it or not, like any chronic illness, can take on a real emotional aspect.
For example, when I was younger I didn’t have very much tolerance for sick people.
This was incredibly ironic because I’ve suffered with cluster migraines from the time I was seven. The reason for my intolerance, although unacceptable, was simple…
I was resentful.
My migraines were inherited from my mother who was often sick and although she tried her best to cope, still spent many days with a towel over her face in a dark room. She would take over-the-counter medicine that would sometimes help but most often produce negative side effects and rebound migraines.
Now, let me be clear; I did not resent my mother because she was sick. I saw her push through many a day like a hero with bloodshot eyes, sweating and just praying for bedtime.
What I resented were the migraines.
The disruptors of life.
The invader of peace.
My biggest fear in elementary school was that I’d die of a brain aneurism. My biggest fear in high school was that I’d get a migraine on the day of graduation. Or prom. Or on my wedding. And my biggest fear as an adult was that – with no ill reflection intended of my own mom – I would become the mom with the towel over her head in a dark room.
My fear was pretty specific, but all moms can resonate with the root of my fear…
Because when I was sick, I felt like I was not enough for my children.
Not energetic enough…
Not patient enough…
Not playful enough…
Not mentally “present in the moment” enough.
But what I learned one day as I was suffering with one of these migraines was that even those days can lead to teachable moments.
Come back next week and find out what that lesson is or subscribe so you never miss a post.
Have you ever had a migraine? Do they take an emotional toll on you?
photo credits Mislav Marohnić courtesy Flikr Creative Commons