Friday, January 22, 2010

My Cool Friend Has Headaches Too

So, Tuesday was the fourth anniversary of my dad's passing, and I (quite appropriately) spent the bulk of it lying on the couch, drugged with codeine and generic Extra Strength Tylenol, another migraine creating havoc in my tiny little head. Ditto for Wednesday and Thursday, hence no posts. I'd apologize, but it hurts too much.

I'm no doctor, but I am almost positive that these headaches are hormonally-induced, for the most part, seeing as I'm perimenopausal, and having pretty much every goddammed perimenopausal symptom in the Big Book of Perimenopause. Look up "perimenopause" in the dictionary, and you'll see my ugly mug, no doubt.

The wonderful thing with these headaches is that (1) they are fierce, and (2) no amount of intense drug therapy seems to minimize the pain in the least. So, I have to be patient and wait it out, which can sometimes mean days. It also, of course, means days of feeling entirely non-productive, as opposed to only mostly non-productive. And, it also means Mr. Handsome and the kids hear "shhhhhhh" a lot.

I used to take preventative medication for my migraines, when I was much younger. But then, once I had the kids, my headaches dissipated to a great extent, so I stopped taking meds unless I needed them. Over the past year and a bit, however, the headaches have returned with the vengeance of a lioness protecting her young, and even I can only take so much pain.

An old high school friend of mine, Rondi, with whom I reconnected via Facebook (you've gotta love Facebook for that), also suffers from monster migraines that strike her down for days at a time. She has now more than once messaged me with drugs I should be looking into that directly deal with the headache, and although I've appreciated it very much, I've not taken the time to look into them. Until now, that is. Now, I am ready to veer into the world of new migraine medications, because I've decided I'm not taking enough meds yet, and would like my monthly cost for prescriptions to top $1,000.

So, thanks to Rondi, I am now going to dive into this new and exciting world in the hopes that something will help to at least partially deaden the waves of intense screaming pain and nausea that seem to infiltrate my current state of being more often than not.

Rondi and I went through high school together.She is beautiful, blonde, and super intelligent, and tall like me, which always made me feel a little less alone in the big scary world of high school. She is now an amazing writer living in Toronto, and has a great blog that all of you should check out: Begin Each Day As If It Were On Purpose. Rondi's been published in national publications, and she is way cooler than I will ever be.

I'll be back when my head is no longer blown up like the Hindenburg. And please take this as a genuine apology for writing about my lack of health all the time. Because I know it must be extremely borrrrrring and YAWN-inducing at the best of times. I promise to soon write more posts about pink unicorns pooping happy rainbows out their butts. Honest.

11 comments:

Anonymous said...

A woman who worked for me had the same thing happen. Her head aches dissipated for years and then when she started working for me - go figure! they started to develop; again and get wolrse and worse. She ended up seeing the migraine doctor here in town and worked with this doc to get to the root cause. SHe's too young to be perimenopausal but there were triggers.
Besides drugs, get your doc to refer you top see specialists who "get" the headaches. If you want to know who she saw... send me a message on Facebook and I'll follow up for you.
take care. see you when you're feeling better.
Terri T

Wander to the Wayside said...

Hang in there.

ReformingGeek said...

Please feel better soon. I must have a pink unicorn story!

WELCOME TO MY WORLD OF POETRY: said...

Hi just returned back from my break.
sorry about your headaches, my mum used to get them bad which lasted for days, I can remember her when I was a child lying in a darkened room. hope you feel better soon.

Yvonne.

rondi adamson said...

Hey Mary, thanks! Very sweet of you. My headaches are also hormonal (though certain food choices can aggravate them), and I think the drugs I take just may work for you. They *are* pricey, but my doctor gives me any free samples he can scrounge up from his supply room. Perhaps yours will do the same?

Rick said...

In their book, Heal Your Headache: the 1-2-3 Program for Taking Charge of Your Pain, by David Buchholz and Stephen G. Reich M.D. state that all headaches are variations of the same thing. We’ve just decided categorize them into different headings based on how they manifest themselves.
I tend to agree. Although they’ve had great success altering diet to fix headaches, I’ve had great success at correcting musculoskeletal causes of neck pain and headaches. It turns out it’s quite simple for most people. This is outlined in my book, Fixing You: Neck Pain & Headaches.
Because of this and other items I’ve read, I believe that headaches are a threshold phenomenon. What I mean by this is above a certain threshold of stress, we experience headaches. The stresses that can cause us to break this threshold are dietary, musculoskeletal, and psychological.
Some people are more sensitive to certain stresses than others. Keeping any one or all three of these stressors under control seems to relieve all types of headaches.
I wish you the best in your search for answers.

dana said...

In my estrogen rich years, and my estrogen wonky years, I would see the "auras" of light and know the feeling of fear. Then my left side would go numb and I would have to go to the hospital for a morphine shot.

But it would still take THREE FULL DAYS AFTER the migraine to feel "right" in my head again.

Then I went on preventive drugs, which were as bad as the migraines.

After going THROUGH menopause, they stopped dead in their tracks. I now get the "auras" and feel fear, but the pain doesn't crush my brain and eyeballs now.

Here's hoping you can get to that point.

Michelle said...

I was just reading about foods helping with menopause symptoms. I will have to see if I can find that info and pass it on
It has to do with nutrition helping to keep hormones balanced naturally and it woiuldn't cost $1,000 a month either
Hope you feel better soon :0)

♥Trina♥ said...

Hope you're starting to feel better.

Frogs in my formula said...

I hope you start feeling better. Headaches are so debilitating. Get some rest.

Jacqueline said...

Hope you feel better -- migraines are the worst. Here's an article I really liked on menopause and headaches -- well-researched and stresses natural methods instead of drugs... Maybe it will give some new ideas for treatment? Headaches in Perimenopause and Menopause


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