Tuesday, March 31, 2009


Sadly, I am no stranger to headaches. In fact, before I started to deal with RA, I spent years dealing with headaches. The headaches started in high school and got worse in college. While I was in college I sometimes had headaches that literally lasted for months at a time. And what made it worse was that it wasn’t a typical migraine. I never got nauseous, I was never sensitive to light, and I never had an “aura.” I had something in between a textbook migraine and a tension headache, and no one had any idea what to do about it.

I went to every doctor and specialist under the sun. The neurologists gave me cat scans and sent me through a lengthy trial and error drug process (sort of like the one I’m undergoing right now for RA). We tried migraine prevention drugs, migraine elimination drugs, anti-depressants, anti-seizures, steroids, even blood pressure medication. Some of those drugs made my heart beat too fast, made it hard to breathe, and made my hair fall out. None seemed to solve the headache problem. So I tried acupuncture, massage therapy, pain management therapy, and even went with my mom once to see a “holistic healer” that I called a witch doctor because she made me drink this potion of juniper for several weeks. It was foul.

None of those solutions really solved my headache problem. So I stopped taking headache drugs all together (except for the occasional Excedrin) and learned to ignore my headaches as much as possible and take it easy when they were too hard to ignore. I worked on reducing my stress level and focusing on being happy, which seemed to help. Over the past couple of years my headaches, while not gone, have actually been much improved.

But today I am a bit frustrated to find myself with a headache for the fourth day in a row. Ordinarily a headache wouldn’t bother me too much since I am so used to dealing with them. But on top of the joint pain, soreness, fatigue, and the bummed feeling I’ve been having lately the headache is enough to make me pretty grumpy. Unfortunately, I think it’s another one of those chicken and egg things - I’m probably getting a headache because I’m tired and bummed out, and then the headache makes me more tired and bummed out, and then the headache gets worse because I’m even more tired and bummed out!

How do I break the cycle and make the damned headache go away???


Sarah Z said...

haha way to call mom out on the witch doctor! :)

~Mariah~ said...

Yeah ~;o) That lady was nuts. She also had me put my hands on her assistants shoulders and then she poked and prodded her assistant to figure out what was wrong with ME! She said she didn't want to "drain my energy." ~;o)

~kelly marie~ said...

Feel better!!