Sunday, January 24, 2010

My Super Husband

I've been bad about attending to my new blog for just over a week now. Something came up rather suddenly that required my full attention and knocked me out of my usual computer time. A few days out from surgery now I'm finally able to get back online, but am not quite ready to share the details of what happened and what it all means. To my surprise, talking about it significantly increases my pain. Don't worry I'll go ahead and share in a couple weeks, or whenever I get to feeling better.

Right now I just want to talk about what a saint my husband has been. I've been rather high maintenance these past few days. He has had to help usher me in and out of surgery, the ER, the dr.'s office and all around the house. He has to help me get up, and lay down. He has cooked for me and done all the dishes. He has helped me get dressed and undressed. He has helped me put lotion on the many parts of my body that it hurts to reach for. And most impressively, he has helped me do things that are normally quite private. He has gotten a glimpse into the secret world of women and has not run the other direction.

As a young woman there are things that I just never really planned on sharing with my husband. Don't misunderstand, I'm not keeping things from him. He knows I do these things like go to the gynecologist but he doesn't participate and doesn't really know what goes on there. There has been no time and no room for these polite "secrets" and we have found ourselves sharing in ways I never could have anticipated. Despite being in a good deal of pain I appreciate the new level of intimacy my husband I have achieved through this ordeal. He has literally been my lifeline. And I love him so very much!

Friday, January 8, 2010

Good Day vs. Bad Day

The real difference between a "good day" and a "bad day" in my world is a feeling of hope. While I'm constantly frustrated by the fickle nature of this feeling, I can't deny this truth. Good is a relative term simply meaning I am not in enough pain to justify taking the outrageously expensive rescue medications. Days marked as good leave me trying to formulate plans for the future, such as how to recover professionally from several years of medically induced unemployment. I also start thinking maybe I don't need to move forward with the impending surgeries - a sort of last ditch effort to overcome this debilitating pain. Then of course I start feeling guilty about not working during this time, because in the moment I don't feel so bad.

Inevitably, the bad day is not far behind. In fact, these days they outnumber the good ones. And as quickly as the pain returns the hopeful feeling retreats. I'm left wondering if I will ever be able to hold down a real job again. I feel guilty and sad about not using my education and talents. The surgeries are now the best thing - anything to escape all this pain! The rescue medications almost never eliminate the pain and leave me feeling off. Somewhere between the pain and the medications my brain doesn't function like it used to, which is both frustrating and sad to me.

Ultimately I still hold hope in my mind even when the feeling of it is long gone. The truth is, my doctor hasn't given up on me. The surgeon is ready and willing to operate on me. And my husband is making enough money for both our needs to be met.

Through all of it (good or bad) I find myself extraordinary thankful for my wonderful husband who takes such good care of me. I feel equally lucky to live so close to this surgeon who is offering a rare opportunity at relief.

Friday, January 1, 2010

My First Migraine

Migraines have been a part of my life since I was quite young. My first one came one late afternoon in winter when I was in 3rd grade. The pain was absolutely overwhelmingly intense. Everything hurt. I remember curling into the fetal position on the floor of my mom's bedroom partly due to the pain but mostly due to the fear. I had never experienced a pain like this before and I was just certain it would kill me. I was silently crying, again from both pain and fear. But crying just made the pain even worse. Since my mom was still at work I dragged the phone onto the floor with me and called her office. She didn't have a direct line so the phone was answered by a receptionist. I tried to be calm and sound normal as I asked for my mom, but I know now I didn't do a good job of it. My mom talked some of the fear out of me, but there was nothing to do about the pain.

Over the years I've learned to live with my migraines quite well. That all changed about 4 years ago when they hijacked my life. They went from being an occasional event to a 5 or 6 a month. My doctor offered a prescription, which I declined. Then it became a weekly event and again my doctor offered a prescription. After 3 offers I decided to take my doctor up on her offer for Imitrex. It wasn't long before they were a daily event. The journey to find my way through this is on.