So spring is a bitch for people with migraines. And I and many others are having a rough go of it. But you wouldn’t know. Because most of that is behind closed doors. So I had a high-level migraine and took some shots to show my progress throughout the day on a day I couldn’t take a triptan (you can only take them two times a week)
In the beginning of the major pain part of the migraine, I am laid out, on the couch or in the bedroom with a blanket over my head. This can last all day in some cases.
On a bad day, I cannot tolerate light at all so I put sunglasses on because even my migraine specs (Fl-41 tinted glasses for migraine and photophobia) are just not enough with the natural light coming into the house. And also this is where I use ice packs. Either my ice kap or one of my two ice packs… sometimes I will run through all three, one per hour or so to knock down the pain. And also some sort of pain cream on my temples, jaw and neck.
Then if I can dampen the pain back go on the migraine specs and I just try to fake it for the rest of the day. If I can get the pain lowered a bit. Otherwise, stage one is where I stay. But if I can dampen it a bit then out from under the blanket I emerge and just make sure I really pace myself.
No one except my spouse sees stages one and two. Only three, when I have a lower level of pain and can function a bit. So migraines are a very invisible disease. Behind closed doors when the pain is severe and we are just trying to get through. Now the pain is but one stage of a migraine. So even when the pain is lower and I am not huddled under a blanket in the dark I am still quite unwell with nausea, sensitivities to light, smell, and sounds, with a lot of problems with concentration and focus. The reality is that high pain or low pain migraines really affect our ability to function in the world. And with a low-level migraine… anything at all can just skyrocket the pain levels.
And the fact is, we don’t take pictures of bad pain levels or take selfies of the bad pain times and post that on social media. No, we only do that for when we are faking it and can smile for the camera. And if everyone with migraines posted the actual pictures of their bad times people would get it. But no one does that because we feel like a steaming pile of crap. Not exactly in the mood to do anything let alone pose for a picture. So when we get judged based on our Best days and not our Worst days it can hurt.