Saturday, February 25, 2012

Migraine Madness

I'm at Laura's.  Been here since Thursday and haven't had to take even one Ibuprophen.  Am I allergic to my house?  Am I involved in some psychosomatic illness?  Or when I go home will I find that I am just fine?  This is my story:

I don’t remember the day I got the first bad headache.  I know it was at least 4-5 days before I called and went to the doctor.  I had been having dull headaches pretty much every day since we came back home after our November travels.  A couple of Advil in the morning and I’d be fine for the day and not give them a second thought, until the next morning.

I recently finished the book Micro by Michael Crichton and Richard Preston.  I think Preston finished the book after Crichton died.  Maybe that had some impact on my thinking of what was going on in my head.  I woke up the first morning and I could feel litttle microbursts going off in my head.  Because the story was so close to me, I imagined there were little miniature planes flying around in my head.  After a while I got a splitting headache.  The only thing I could do was take some advil and put some heat on my head and recline on the love seat downstairs.  After about an hour of intense pain behind my left eye and on my left cheek I drifted off and after a total of two hours I felt OK again.  I thought I had a severe sinus headache but at least it was over.  I wasn’t prepared for it to happen again the next morning.  Within a half hour of when I woke up, those micro planes were bombing the left side of my head again.  Again I took the Advil and rested and endured the pain until I fell asleep.  It all blurs together now but I managed to survive the next few mornings, just waiting for those micro planes to appear and start the attack.  On Sunday we were Eucharistic Ministers at church at 7:30 and I wondered how I was going to make it, but my little planes were so considerate that they showed up extra early, when I got up to go to the bathroom so I was ready to leave the house on time.  On Monday I called the doctor and got a 4:15 appointment.  This was the first morning I didn’t get attacked, or maybe I took the Advil right away, I can’t remember. 

After listening to my symptoms, Dr. Stahl thought that I was having migraines and gave me a presciption for Imitrex.   I also did some research on the web and now don’t envy anyone who has to suffer through any type of migraines.  I don’t know if there is a worse pain than one in your head.  I could undertand better how my mother didn’t want to live when she was in pain, although hers wasn’t her head.  Any pain is hard to live with.  The only good thing about my head pain was that it made me forget all about my shoulder pain.

The following is a diary of my ramblings as I lived through the following week and recorded my symptoms.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012
8:07 AM
OK - it just started hurting.  So far it’s sort of like from my ear to my eye.  Not that horrible, horrible eye pain yet.  I took a  half of a pill this morning when I felt the little twinges coming.  My neck deosn’t seem to be involved right now. Last night around 12:30 I could feel like I was going to get a headache it was mostly in the sinus area of my cheek and I put heat on it and took 2 Tylenol and it went away after awhile, like a 1/2 hour or so.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012
8:22 AM
Now my neck has become more actively involved and when I rotate my head around and go over to the left side I can feel the connection between my neck and my eye.  Over to the right it’s not as strong.  Massaging the back of my neck seems to help, I wonder if I should take the other half a pill now.  It’s not as bad as that really bad pain behind my eye but it certainly is really annoying.  I feel like I need to be pressing on something on my neck, on my face, under my eyebrow. 

Tuesday, January 31, 2012
8:47 AM
Ok it seems to have passed now, at least the headache part.  My neck hurts now a little but bearable.  Be interested to see how the headache goes for the rest of the day.  Also seem to need have a bowel movement at the same time I have my headache.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012
11:34 AM
After my headache felt better I lied down because I just felt tired and I took that warm microwave thing and stuck it under my neck and lay down and then woke up about 2 hours later.  I was just so tired and then I remembered that drowsiness was a side effect of that medication.  And when I woke up I also had a dull throbbing headache on the back left side of my head so I looked up about Advil and Imitrex and it’s OK to take them together.  Then I was reading a lot about people with migraines and I don’t know how they stood it for so long.  So then I took 3 Advil around 11:15 and took a hot shower.  The shower felt great pounding on my head, it felt really good.  So now I feel like a little twinge behind the eye but that’s not bad and I’m still wondering if it’s still somehow related to m sinus cause I can feel something there with sinus - not sure.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012
11:40 AM
Forgo to mention to Dr Stahl that I’ve had the ey migraines over time.

Wednesday, Febuary 1, 2012
8:09 AM
Got up at 2:30 to go to the bathroom and thought I felt the little twinge, so I figured, OK I‘ll just try it. I took the whole pill.  Went back to bed took the heating thing, heated up the thing, put it halfway under my neck and around on my face and I had woken up and had that dull headache I had all over my head.  Pretty much the one I went to sleep with.  The next time I looked at the time it was 3:30 and I hadn’t gotten any of the pain behind my eye and cheek and the dull headache had gone away.  I wondered if this was just going to be a nightime thing or if I was going to have the same thing in the morning. So then I got up a couple of more times.  4:30 - my neck was bothering me then with the headache and it hurt more in the back of my neck but then that went away.  I was up from 5:30-6:30 but then I slept for an hour.  At 7:30 so far I haven’t gotten those little bursts again so I’m going to see what happens.  And so far I don’t have the major pain in my head either.  Just a normal headache.  I really need to do this as it happens becaue I forget what happens every step of the way.

11:51 AM
Fine one minute, lousy the next.  11:45 all of a sudden got the headache pain on my left side and sinus area on my cheek. 

5:34 PM
5:30 - I don’t have a headache after being in the sauna.  The heat always makes it feel so good.

6:15 PM
6:15 and I don’t have a bad headache but I just have a little headache.  Just enough to want to get rid of it and not have a headache at all.  It’s more in my forehead now.  I’ve been really tired today and sort of nauseous feeling most of the day too.  I don’t know if it’s a side effect of the drug but that drug is definitely worth it if it keeps that horrible headache from coming

8:03 PM
8 o’clock I started feeling those twinges again and I dreaded taking another pill because it makes me so groggy, I was so tired all day today so I just took the 1/2 of the one from yesterday so hopefully I don’t get that full blown attack and it’s nightime, I’m going to sleep soon.

Thursday, Febuary 2, 2012
4:17 AM
Thursday morning, woke up at 3:30 to go to the bathroom, felt fine for a minute or two and then went back into bed and could feel the headache starting.  First on one side, then on the other, then going back and forth.  Wasn’t sure about the little microbursts and didn’t want to have to take that medicine if I didn’t have to.  Roamed around for awhile.  Went downstairs.  Went back up.  Cut the pills in half, don’t want to take a whole pill, just in case.  Took the heating pad because the heat feels good.  But then I was lying here and felt another one of those little microbursts and gave in at 4:17 and took another pill, just one of the halves so we’ll see if I got it quick enough or not and see how groggy it makes me because I have to be at work at 9:15 today.

7:54 AM
Got up a little after 7:00 and around 7:30 I took a shower.  Up until that point I was feeling really wide awake and thinking ‘Oh good, maybe I’m not going to get all that tiredness again.’  Came out of the shower and by 10 to 8 I was exhausted again but I’m gonna keep pushing on.  Also had a headache of what I would have thought of before as a sinus headache in my cheek and a little bit of jabbing behind the eye but not horrible, just annoying.
2:28 PM
It’s 2:28 right now.  I’ve been out of the house since 5 to 9 this morning and have felt fine.  No headaches, no kind of headaches at all.  No migrainy kind of things, no throbbing, no nothing.  OK so the experiment now is to see if anything happens now that I’m home.

Friday, Febuary 3, 2012
3:29 AM
Thursday was an absolutely amazing day.  I went to work at 9 and the whole time I was there I realized I didn’t have a headache at all.  So after work around noon I went to Wegmans and then “I don’t want to go back into that house, there’s something in that house that’s doing this to me.” And after Wegmans I took a walk for 40 minutes and then Audrey came home and said do you want to come over so I went over, so I never came home till 4:30 from 9 o’clock and I felt great.  Then the rest of the night whenever I felt like I was going to get a headache I went outside for a half hour.  But then for sleeping I woke up at 2:30 and thought I was having little twinges so I thought well maybe I could go outside and not take any medication.  So I went outside for awhile but then I thought oh maybe I should take that medication anyway if it makes me drowsy I’m just taking a half a pill still it’s 2:30 in the morning or 3 o’clock, probably 2:30 when I took the pill but it was too late already so I got semi bad, not real bad in the eye for awhile but not so painful you couldn’t stand it and I stayed in the car with the garage door open ed for like a half an hour or so and then went back in the house.  I’m in the downstairs bedroom where I’ve been every time recuperating and maybe this is a bad area, who knows and have the window open this time.  So my next experiment will be to not stay in the house at all at night.  So hopefully it’s something in the house that’s causing this, like mold and it’s not me just going whacko!

3:56 PM
I got up at 2:00 this morning and thought I could handle just going out and getting fresh air for awhile and not having to take a pill but then I didn’t think I could so I came back and took a half a pill.  Had somewhat of a minor migraine, went back to sleep I did go out.  I went in the hottub first thing, felt fine, took a shower and while I was drying my hair I felt like I wasn’t feeling so good so I packed up a whole bunch of stuff and then around 9:25 left the house to go to the Y but since I felt a little groggy still I drove around for like a half an hour and then went to the Y and then I felt pretty good and dried my hair and got dressed and all that stuff and then went to work and as I was at work I got to feeling better and then came home and had lunch and then went for a walk and felt good then.  And it’s 4 o’clock, I’m at home, were going to go in the sauna, out to dinner, then to RPO and then I’m going to sleep over Mary’s and do the big test of whether I get this headache from sleeping at someone else’s house.

Saturday, Febuary 4, 2012
7:39 AM
So I stayed over Mary’s last night.  When I got here I had sort of just a little headache, I stayed in the house too long, I think I said that already
(note:  I didn’t say that but because it was a Friday night and we were getting a late start we couldn’t go out to dinner because of the wait times and make it to the conert in time.  We ate at home and while there my head started feeling heavy, the way it would get before I felt like I would get a headache or just not feel clear headed)
Anyway during some of the RPO I got a little headache back again.  So when I came here I wasn’t totally pure but I did OK.  Went to sleep.  Just heated up that thing and put it on my head and went to sleep.  Got up to go to the bathroom during the night, no I didn’t go to the bathroom, I just got up and I was fine.  Fell back to sleep.  Woke up at 7, felt good, went to the bathroom.  It’s 7:30 now, I have a little bit of a headache, waiting to see if it develops into anything.  Along with the headache I have the crunchy neck again.  The headache is still more on the left, on the side of the eyebrow.  I might just go outside and get some fresh air and see what that does.

8:11 AM
At 8:10 I finally broke down and took, it was less than a half a pill, I didn’t cut them very well.  Just because I knew I had to take something for my headache so I thought I would take that but it didn’t seem like it was going to go into a full blown migraine just an annoying headache.

Sunday, February 5, 2012
8:49 AM
Last night after spending the day at Mary’s and we went out for a walk, my head still felt a little groggy there went to the library figuring I’d spend the time there but couldn’t get an internet connection then went to Wegmans to do shopping.  They have free WiFi and was able to get a great internet connection plus I really felt good at Wegmans so decided that could be my new hangout for awhile.  I went home and thought well I’m going to go in the hottub, put my bathing suit on and thought I’ll wait until I don’t feel good and then go out in the hottub.  But started watching TV downstairs, sort of felt OK, went upstairs, ate dinner went back downstairs and was just sitting reclined of lying down on the loveseat and it didn’t seem to bother me at all, it felt pretty good.  It turned out that I stayed there the whole night.  We watched two movies and then I decided well maybe I’ll sleep downstairs because I seem to be feeling OK on that loveseat.  As soon as I went into the downstairs bedroom my head started hurting so I went back onto the couch and slept there all night.  Was fine, woke up when the alarm went off so we could go to church and just during that 1/2 hour period walking around the house my head started bothering me again.  In church it started clearing up, but not entirely.  Then came home, packed up all my stuff for going to the Y and for Wegmans and I’m on my way to Wegmans now.  It is 8:50.

Monday, February 6, 2012
8:05 AM
Yesterday I spent the entire day away from the house.  Went to Wegmans, stayed there for awhile then went to Yoga then did my hair and stuff at the Y and then went back to Wegmans and was there until 2:30, quarter to 3.  Then came home, made the dessert to bring to the Super Bowl party and then just sort of lay down on the couch downstairs that felt OK yesterday.  And then we left at 6 to go to Patti’s and we were there until 10 and I felt perfectly fine.  Came home, I slept on the loveseat again and this morning when I woke up I felt fine as soon as I woke up and then felt like I was going to get a headache so I came outside and went in the hottub and I’ve been in the hottub for like an hour and a half practically already.  We’re having the mold guy come at 10 so it’s after 8 now and I’m going to call up the carpeting place (note:  we had the carpets cleaned the same week my bad headaches started, but I thought the headaches started before the carpets were cleaned) and I didn’t get a headache.  Maybe little pangs but nothing like those migraine things.  So that’s the goal, no migraines and try to figure out what’s causing this. 

Tuesday, February 7, 2012
9:43 AM
OK so yesterday I went in the hottub for 2 hours in the morning.  I think I already wrote about that.  Then I took a walk, then Larry was going to play golf so I went with him over to Penfield and hung out there rather than go to Wegmans.  And I felt sort of OK, maybe a little funny in the head but no major headache.  We also aired out the house for like a half hour after Paul came and did his mold sampling.  We opened up all the doors and windows, well not all, we opened up the downstairs and upstairs sliding doors and the front door to let the air circulate to see if that would help.  Then we went to Penfield and then we came home and I actually felt better in the house even.  And we went out to eat and that was fine too.  Came home and last night I slept in my own bed for the first time.    And I thought OK, I’m going to get up and just get out of the house so I did.  I woke up, and all I do is think about watching for my headache that I seem to bring on headaches.  I went out for a walk before 7:30 even and came back home and I was in the house, just getting the same old dull kind of headache and I could have just not done anything.  but I thought I’ve been really good at not taking Advil and stuff so I just took 2 Advil and like  in no time at all the headache was gone and that’s about where I am right now.  So I don’t know if I’m a psycho case, if I had a temporary something, if I have something that’s there or what but I’m just glad not to have those migraines in the morning and not to have to take that medicine and I can’t imagine people who have to live with migraines for their whole life or until they outgrow it or whatever happens.  People have chronic migraines, people have them every month or whatever.  It is the most painful, excruciating horrible experience to have to go through and there are so many people, I don’t envy them at all.  I don’t know how they survive.  You just learn to deal with it and I hope I never have to learn to deal with it.  I don’t want it.  Now I’m at the time of life I’m supposed to be enjoying myself and I’m just so selfish.  I don’t want to have any pain.  And then of course Larry gets his notice about his Potassium.  He went today to have another blood test so hopefully it was just in the way they drew the blood and everything
will be fine and we can have our lives the way we want it.

Friday, February 17, 2012
7:27 AM

So far I’m doing good.  The 15th was the first day I didn’t even have to take any Advil at all.  So whatever it was, I hope I don’t have it again.

Larry and I went to my follow-up doctor appointment on Wednesday, Feb 8.  His blood test results came back normal so it was a problem with the blood process.  Dr. Stahl thought that I might have had cluster migraines brought on by a virus.  As of today, February 18th I haven’t had a repeat.  I figure that God only gives you what you can handle and I couldn’t handle that pain so he was caring enough to remove it.  Thank you!!!
We got the mold analysis back and we don’t have any mold issues.  Paul got us in touch with someone to have our exhausts cleaned which is something we plan on doing since it’s never been done.

Life and good health are precious commodities and having a few instances that make you think they are in jeopardy certainly puts things in perspective.

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