Thursday, June 7, 2018

Migraine and Me: If you could see me now #MHAM2018 challenge

Migraine is the 3rd most prevalent
and 7th most disabling disease in the world.

As I reported in my blog 12 Months and 14 Fibro Musings from The Pained Ink Slayer, the spring and fall seasons are two difficult times of the year for me. I live with chronic migraine all year long, but barometric pressure changes and tree and grass allergens can lead to a status migrainus attack, a migraine lasting for more than 72 hours straight. In May, a very busy month for fibromyalgia advocates, I experienced an episode lasting 14 days that required a steroid blast to stop it. And, I can't remember doing a fibromyalgia awareness interview without a migraine.


”Hiding my migraines on the set may have been my toughest challenge as an actor. There were times when the pain from migraine headaches was so severe that I literally had to crawl across my dressing room floor. But I couldn't let anyone know. If they thought I might slow production, I figured that would end my career.”
~Morgan Fairchild

If you live with migraine, you know exactly what this is like. As a high school student, I spend many a day lying on a cot in the nursing office. As a young adult, I remember retreating to the bathroom to vomit and escape the overhead lights of the office where I was a switchboard operator, fearing every second that I would lose my job over something I could not control. I remember the look my mother's face when she came to pick me up to take me to the emergency room, where my condition called for stat IV's and lab work to check my clotting factors. Unbeknownst to me all the tiny blood vessels in my face had ruptured (my head had been over the toilet for the better part of a day). I barely had a blood pressure.  

Unless you have migraine disease, you simply cannot understand what that means. It is so much more than a bad headache. It will cause sane people to do crazy things. I can tear sheets with my teeth, rock back and forth on my hands and knees, and cry out in pain with the guttural sounds of an injured animal, sounds that even I do not recognize. I have pressed so hard on my eye sockets that it leaves bruises. I slur works like a drunk, speak in sentences that make no sense, and experience complete personality breakdown.


Despite all the evidence that migraine is real, and that it is a neurobiological disease of the brain, we still feel the stigma of migraine. I wish I could say we didn’t need migraine awareness campaigns, but we do. Few understand what we have learned in the last ten years and we need to change that.

Read more about the research and the common denominators of those of us who live with both migraine and fibromyalgia in an article I wrote for ProHealth, Fibro Playmate of the Month–The Migraine Connection.  

Life isn’t easy living with migraine, but when I share my story, I am able to emerge from the shadow of migraine. I hope you will too. #MHAM2018

Find out how YOU can get involved. JOIN THECHALLENGE at where you will find all you need to raise awareness and stop the stigma of migraine.

In healing,

Celeste Cooper, RN / Author, Freelancer, Advocate

Think adversity?-See opportunity!

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