You may have seen the 30 Things About My Life With Migraine meme that has been going around this month in honor of migraine awareness month. I set aside this day to participate. Here it goes:
My diagnosis is: Chronic Migraine
My migraine attack frequency is: 18 per month on average.
I was diagnosed with migraines in 1986 and chronic migraines in 2006
My comorbid conditions include: fibromyalgia
I take 2 medications/supplements each day for prevention and 2 medications/supplements to treat an acute attack. Currently.
My first migraine attack was: as an 8 year old girl.
My most disabling migraine symptoms are: the pain, the nausea, the fatigue and aphasia.
My strangest migraine symptoms are: my teeth will hurt and I can't seem to focus my eyes on anything.
My biggest migraine triggers are: strong odors or tobacco smoke, bright lights, lack of sleep and loud noise.
I know a migraine attack is coming on when: I get super cranky.
The most frustrating part about having a migraine attack is: how it takes over my entire body, forcing me to put everything else on hold and there is very little I can do about it.
During a migraine attack, I worry most about: the pain. I know it will eventually let up but I don't know if that will be a few hours, a few days, or a couple weeks. Still, part of me still worries that one day it will start and never end.
When I think about migraines between attacks, I think: I sure hope it doesn't happen today.
When I tell someone I have migraines, the response is usually: sympathetic.
When someone tells me they have migraines, I think: Yes, so then you know. Then I start wondering about the details: how frequent, triggers, do they have a good doc, how do they treat, etc.
When I see commercials about migraine treatments, I think: they make it sound much easier and more dependable than it actually is.
My best coping tools are: distractions and laughter.
I find comfort in: my hubby, my pets, my home, my loved ones, my fellow migraineurs.
I get angry when people say: you just need to (fill in the blank with crazy random suggestions).
I like it when people say: just let me know if you need anything.
Something kind someone can do for me during a migraine attack is: be patient as I struggle to speak and bring me food.
The best thing(s) a doctor has said to me about migraine is: well it was what was done, or not done - I've never had a doctor tell me there is nothing more they could do for me.
The hardest thing to accept about having migraines is: how much it has limited what I can do.
Migraines have taught me: to be more aware of what my body is telling me.
The quotation, motto, mantra or scripture that gets me through an attack is: breathe, breathe, breathe.
If I could get back to the early days of my diagnosis, I would tell myself: to find a migraine specialist NOW.
The people who support me most are: my hubby and my mom.
The thing I wish most people understood about migraine is: that they are extremely complex AND chronic migraine is different than episodic migraine.
Migraine and Headache Awareness Month is important to me because: many people assume they know about migraines because it is so common. But there is a lot of misinformation out there along with a general lack of understanding of the complexity and severity of the disease. Knowledge is power.
One thing I'd like to say about life with migraine is: that it's doable. It's horrible but it's doable.