At least my underwear is pretty

Image via we heart it… since I haven’t thought to take a picture myself and this seems to capture the feeling

It’s fitting that the week I wrote about my treatment working is the same week that The Headache quietly sneaked back into the deep crevices of my skull and settled in. It’s probably a migraine but rudely has never bothered to introduce itself, even though it likes to stay for months at a time.

For the first few days, it’s mild enough that I can shove it out of my mind while I’m busy.  But it creeps into the quiet moments and then I realize it’s been there all along, trying to get my attention, and now it’s pissed that I’ve been ignoring it.

Last Thursday was a gorgeous day in Vancouver, one of those epic days that make living through eight months of rain instantly worth it. Every colour is brighter than you remembered and the air feels crisp and clean blowing against your face. I live for this. So when I was out with Cassie and realized that I wasn’t enjoying it in the least, I had to acknowledge that the pain I was feeling wasn’t just a hunger headache, or a bit of dehydration. While I was busy in denial, the Headache had unpacked and really settled in, hanging up photos and even putting up some wallpaper (it’s in again apparently! hey, just because you’re a personified pain condition doesn’t mean you can’t have good taste).

The Headache puts a plate of foggy glass between me and the world. Its chosen weapon is not brute strength, but endurance. It follows me everywhere and slowly squeezes out joy; I’m more short-tempered than usual, and likelier to choose takeout over cooking and the TV over basically anything else. My work suffers and sometimes when the painkillers aren’t cutting it, I just have to give up and take a half-day but I feel like a slacker when I have to write to my half-dozen bosses that I’m taking time off for ‘a headache’. I struggle to give it any respect myself, why should they?

And I hate that I’m whining about this, because I know so many of you face your own quiet health struggles each and every day without whining. It’s so easy to take feeling well for granted and assume everyone else is too.

I’d love to end this post with some positive thought like, this time I won’t let it interfere with my life! But I’m sitting here with this ache that’s making me squint my eyes at the light coming through the window and I already know it won’t be any different. I just have to make the best of it and hope it packs up sooner than later.

But hey, here’s something positive – at lunch yesterday I went and bought a bunch of cute underwear to finally replace all the old raggedy ones I have with a tight elastic that cuts into my hip and always makes me feel like I’ve put on 15 lbs. You are so done making me feel like crap, underwear!


Posted on April 12, 2011, in Health, Life and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. aww man sorry the yoga and massages didn’t seem to be the cure! I have never struggled with this, can’t imagine what it’s like. the only comparable experience was when I had mono, worst headaches of my life. but that lasted.. a couple weeks. and here you are suffering your whole life basically. :-/

    but don’t worry about “whining,” I don’t think you’re whining. you’re sharing. and that’s what we’re all here for right?

  2. After months of wellness, I got sick with a cold in January, and then again in February, with a side of pinkeye. It felt like it dragged on. And on. And ON. I remember going through boxes of tissue, miserable. The misery was becoming my permanent state of being, I thought. I felt that I would never take my health for granted again.

    And all I had was a puny cold.

    And of course, I already am taking my health for granted, because I have had the luxury of not having a cold for a month and a half now. But being sick casts “wellness” into sharp focus. All I could think about at that time was how great it would be to feel normal again. To be myself. To enjoy things once more!

    I can’t imagine having to go through endless days — weeks! — with a headache. Yeah, I’m with d-day. This isn’t whining at all. I hope the unwelcome visitor in your head leaves very, very soon.

    • As soon as my headaches are gone for a bit, I take wellness for granted too. I minimize how miserable it was and try to write it off as a fluke. Giving it a capital letter is a new level of respect.

  3. UGH. Headaches are awful! I get migraines, and C deals with what we have FINALLY identified as probably cluster headaches. Thank the lord for the internet when doctors just say “hmm, that stabbing pain sounds odd! No clue what it is. See you next year.”

    • yeah doctors aren’t often that helpful for this kind of chronic, nagging thing. Though I don’t think I help matters by being vague and unsure…

      now that you have a label for C, do you also have some effective treatments?

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