Friday, January 22, 2010

"Frank ... I'm Getting A Sick Headache."

I had a headache last night the likes of which felled even me.

Let it be clear: when it comes to headaches, my brother and I inherited some sort of alchemized curse; the two of us are prone to cranial pain of a pretty rare and special intensity. His headaches and mine are actually quite different, but our propensities appear to be nearly equal - which is all to say this:

It takes a headache of pretty intense cruelty to impress me.

Over the years, I've been diagnosed as suffering migraines; then by another doctor as, no, no, oh, no, those aren't *migraines*, migraines have classic symptoms and yours do not match, no what you have is cluster headaches; then by still a third as, of course you have migraines - cluster headaches ARE migraines.

And so on.

This past August I had a barnstormer of such astounding power and pain that I didn't protest my mother's and stepfather's proceeding to call 911 and have me carried away in an ambulance. I had myself hyperventilating quite on purpose, because hyperventilation prevented my CRYING from the pain, and please allow me to tell you that sobs are one of the most horrible things one can allow, for headaches. The pain spiral is beyond toleration. Anyway, so I was panting for reason, and it was almost upsetting when my sweet little EMT (a slip of a lad of nineteen, I think he was) made me stop. He did give me oxygen, though, so at least he didn't leave me hanging completely.

Well, last night's pain was probably a seven or so on the scale my brother and I might occupy, which as I say is fairly beyond the scale of most people's head-pain-toleration index, from what I can understand of people's responses to my headaches. Seven isn't, I have to say, "all that bad" when put in the context of a nine-plusser like August's festivities. But it shuts me down. I am useless to my dog, and to myself.

The kink in the works is, the older I get, I think the more *nausea* comes into play in my worse headaches. This is a shocking insult, for me; I can handle a pretty nasty dose of pain, but give me the queasies on top of it and I am lost. It makes a horrible but bearable experience the stuff of nightmares.

And I don't even have nightmares. But that's *another* post, obviously.

Anyway. Last night was Teh Yuck, as the kids these days might say. (Heh.) I forced myself to stay awake until nine, which was a bit of a sacrifice (sleep helps), but which was necessary in the interest of *staying* asleep beyond like three or four in the morning. I missed the new lawyer show starring both Billy Zane (he reminds me of two guys I have had affections for, heh) AND Clancy (I have an inordinate sort of teddy-bear affection for) "The Kurgan" Brown. I was unable to ease the discomforts in any way. But I stayed up.

And I slept until ten after ten this morning.

I don't even remember falling asleep, actually. This is nothing but a good thing - and definitely testifies to the curative power of same for me. Ah, and thank the deities for my flex schedule; today is my day off of work. THAT'S a huge plus.

So today is devoted to looking at purses on eBay, and dumping out some of the flotsam my brain came up with during my very good sleep last night (stay tuned for the invention of the word "geriatricality" ...), lovin' on the Old Doggy, and watching it be dank and not-horribly-cold outside.

Couldn't be much better. I'm a fortunate woman.

(Why yes - post-headache euphoria *is* an actual symptom of certain migraine-sufferers. Why do you ask?)

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