IT’s GOOD to be BACK~!

We can all have a little fun!

I have not written and posted a blog in a while and that I regret very much.  It is my goal to write in real time, or write -when circumstances of a migraine present themselves and the experience that comes with that.  I want to be completely transparent with my writing and sharing with you material, uplifting messages and my personal experience with migraines and chronic pain/chronic disease. However, when I am experiencing a migraine attack, it is hard for me to form thoughts and sentences and type on my computer or use pen and paper.  I have my computer set on dark, so the light is OK,  but it’s more the lack of focus and clarity that I have which prevents me from writing. I simply can’t think past the pain. Besides, if you’ve had a migraine attack (or any hard pain) you can understand that when you are in the midst of that much suffering,  that becomes the only thing you think about. It becomes your only focus with laser intensity. It is your constant, and you have to try to relax your mind and body to try somewhat to calm down in the chaos of the pain and other attached symptoms. The anxiety that presents itself is horrific and I simply can’t do anything else. The anxiety hits me badly when I am in the midst of a migraine attack…I am so scared of the pain getting worse (and nothing can help to ease it) and how long will it last? How long can I physically take it? These are my fears and bc of the I develop major anxiety….Does this happen to other people? I can not be the only one.

I have written about anxiety and migraines quite a bit and I believe it is s subject that we don’t know much about. Or you can find this on the web..”Migraines and chronic daily headaches are common in people who suffer from anxiety disorders” or Many people with panic disorder will experience a headache right after having a panic attack. Those with panic disorder have been found to suffer from more severe headaches and migraines. … Those who have a co-occurring diagnosis of agoraphobia and/or depression also experience more frequent headaches and migraines” or even “Anxiety can after some time, or in case of major anxiety, lead to tension headache. If you are anxious, your entire body tenses up and your body also becomes exhausted. Like with the past two causes of headaches, this can also cause tension to remain in the body. Especially tension in the neck is dangerous.  BUT what about how having migraines can increase chances of Anxiety along with ANY chronic pain disease. Common research found states that people with Anxiety Disorder  can develop migraines. WHAT ABOUT how those of us who have pain that can develop anxiety BECAUSE of the pain. And the pain being the instigator for the anxiety felt.

I don’t feel, with enough research, the above my change. 

I have had chronic Status migraines for 12 years and thus anxiety and for those 12 years my migraines specialist has never agreed to my request for anxiety medications simply responding with “I am not a Psychiatrist” “See your Psychiatrist”. 

I don’t think she saw a real connection between migraines and anxiety vs the common that those with anxiety can get migraines. When seeing my Psychiatrist, and sharing my feelings about how when I am in pain, my anxiety soars and brings on panic attacks…again, BECAUSE I am so afraid of how bad the headache pain CAN GET. I am scared shitless and all that uncertainty inflames anxiety in me.

I have talked about fighting through your migraines or any chronic pain. I feel it’s vital for migraine sufferers to still try and live their lives as best they can. Our pain levels vary. When the pain is on the lighter side I try and go for a hike or do stretches or go to yoga,  all of which help me deal with my symptoms. BUT,  I understand not all people who have chronic pain can do anything during an attack. My migraines are severe, chronic and debilitating and they last weeks to months. So for me I can’t lay in bed, in a dark room, with earplugs and an eye mask, …for that long of time. I have things that need my attention during the weeks I am in pain. To try and break free from this curse. I live my life within this massive distraction.  Getting out in nature is my best cure. Honestly. It brings me such joy to be hiking the mountains and plateaus of the Arizona desert. I absorb the heavenly gigantic Red Rocks and Forest land. I like hiking in quite ares, on trails that are not crowded. It helps me to breath, feel the warmth on my face and to move my body with no inhibitions. Again, if I am not in excruciating pain, this is my best relaxer. But if my pain is so bad that I need to go to the emergency room, then I am in bed, earplugs in, eye mask on and door closed, trying to sleep through the pain. Can you relate to that?  I bet you can. If I can sleep through the worst part of the pain that is a good way for me to deal with it. But unfortunately that is something I have a real struggle in obtaining. 

I the past two months we have settled into our new ..our new mini-home (!!!),  I traveled to Florida to surprise my Dad for his 70th birthday and just recovered from an attack that lasted 27 days… and an earlier one that  lasted 16 days. Oh, just so much fun. WHAT?!?!  Even though I know my diagnoses, I still am shocked when I look at myself, outside of myself. I see the damage and how severe the migraines are for me. I often feel very alone. Who can possibly understand disease I have without being in my shoes? If you have chronic migraines, perhaps. But I have headache or migraine pain 247. All the time. Every moment. It’s my constant. I often feel alone, isolated and misunderstood. I wish I knew someone like me. 

My husband and I are having blast coming up with ideas and solutions for our home/property.  Digging dirt and leveling land, building out-buildings and organizing our house. We had a mini-home built and due to it’s limited space, we have to be creative with the space and having things put away but easily assessable. We are finding creative solutions to make a mini home work for us. We came from a larger townhome and really wanted to go “tiny”.  Although “tiny” is not for my 6’3 ft tall husband, so we compromised. He needed at least 9 ft ceilings and I wanted small square footage, so we went “Mini” instead of tiny. I am hoping being in this home and on our land will allow my soul to embrace the beauty that surrounds me, let my creative juices do their magic and strive for tranquility with the chaos of life. My escape, my sanctuary, my hiding place, my healing space. 

I flew to Florida in early January to surprise my Father for his 70th birthday. Despite all the risks of getting an attack. Which include being away from my local emergency room, not having the right medications to help relax me,…to make my mind calm. Which help decrease the stress that affects me which ends up causing an attack.  Being away from my husband, who is my primary care taker, was unsettling. And of coarse, the chances of getting an attack were extremely high. I knew I would be off my routine, or not practicing my daily rituals,… that when done daily (247) help to decrease my chances of a migraine.  AND if I do not stick to my routine, I get a bad attack. 

Note* every single time I travel, and like seriously EVERY TIME, I end up in the nearest emergency room.  I have not traveled in years but the thought of not only seeing my parents was exciting and of coarse surprising my Dad was thrilling and something I really wanted to do. I thought to myself…if I get an attack F%^k it!!!  I AM GOING TO SEE MY DAD!! 

Dad does a lot for me and I wanted to show him how much I love him. He and I have not always had a good relationship. I always felt like I needed more from him or wanted more from him. I felt ‘without’ when it came to our relationship…I always wanted more.  I felt abandoned by him. And let me tell you I went to years of therapy to learn to accept my Father the way he is and to know that he loves me and he just may show his love for me in a different way than the way I show love or how I perceive love.  And that’s OK!  Realizing that parents make mistakes and they are only human (not super heroes), early on in your life, will save you years of therapy as you get older. Trust me- if you don’t hash out your feelings for your parents then it could bleed into other areas of your life. It can affect your relationships or you can develop emotions such as not being able to love, not having healthy relationship or you live your life fear and anger.  Take care of your emotions and take control of your own healing. Don’t just complain about your childhood experiences …Do something about it.  Besides, if you have this emotional damage it could be contributing to your disease. Release it and fill yourself with love.


Dad and I have become much closer in this past decade and I wanted to show him, that no matter what, I love him dearly. No matter how sick I may be that I can still participate in loving my family and being with them (even though being with them can give me a migraine).  Healing relationships and having healthy relationships helps to make me feel complete. Content. Fulfilled. Satisfied. A positive relationship will fill your heart with joy and good feelings. It can even improve your immune system (no joke).  The relationships that I have are healthy and good for me.  IF not,..then I “delete” that person from my life. Really, this goes with any toxicity in my life. I don’t deal with it well and I am not going to allow that bullshit into my life. I have to defend myself, from people, doctors, treatments, medications and family and friends. I have to be thinking ahead and stopping negativity as soon as it becomes apparent. 

My Father was surely surprised the day I arrived. He couldn’t believe it was me when I got out of the car. It was evening time so it was dark and he had been drinking cocktails. So when I got out of the car to approach him he didn’t recognize me. He had to re-set his gaze to see more clearly and it took him a few minutes to understand it was me. All the way from Arizona and I was right there in front him. Something that would never popped into his mind, never.  It was such a great moment when Dad realized it was me, we connected in that moment, something I’ve always craved and something I will always remember. It was tender, cute, reassuring and emotionally uplifting. He was happy and excited.  Once he realized I was staying for a while he was truly taken a-back! When I hugged my Dad, it felt like I was hugging my Mother,…who passed away 20 years ago this September and who I miss so much.  That hug with my Dad was warm.  His face was warm and that reminded of Mom. The connection I felt with my Dad is one I’ve never felt with him and it was reassuring that “yes,…he does love me” and that he was truly excited to have me there for his numerous, weekend birthday parties, where I could see all his friends and to meet those I don’t know.  After all,  his friends in Florida, where Dad and my step- Mom spend their winters, are his second family.  It was a special weekend filled with love and connection. My step- Mom has a chronic breathing/lung disease and being there with her, it became very apparent to me as to how severe her health issues really are. She has a hard time breathing, at the age of 68, due to COPD. We also connected and I felt we bonded in a way we’ve not before. This trip I made was also to spend quality time with her and I was really looking forward to seeing her. She is an Angel. I am very lucky to have her in my life. 

So the burning question is…Did I get a migraine while traveling…

well of coarse the answer is…Fuck yes. Would there be any other way??  Could there be any other way!? Could it be different this time?…not a chance

While in FL, I was completely off my routine. Lack of sleep from traveling and early flights, time change and not having my meds were an RX for disaster. I knew, I tell you- I KNEW I’d get a migraine while out there…but to me, the risk was worth it. I figured if I have to go to ER and suffer it is worth it to have this life experience and increasing special memories with my family. 

I simply can not, repeat..I CAN NOT let my chronic disease of migraines rule my life. I WILL NOT ALLOW it. It has for too long. This attitude I have now has not always been so. I go through periods of depression and questioning my purpose.  I can get way down into the dark side. Plus my anxiety disorder and being Bi- Polar can play into my depression. In other words, I am easily affected. I believe having a chronic pain issue can increase risk of depression and self-questioning. 

Since you have heard from me last, I’ve been been down for 30 days with migraines attack. Oh joy.  Feeling so much pain and not knowing what’s next or if it will get worse and/or if I can  even tolerate it., fuels much anxiety and uncertainty. My anxiety is amplified 10- fold because I am constantly worrying about how bad the pain is and how bad it can get.

Ahh, I can finally focus on decorating our new home and doing projects to improve our comfortability. I am so excited, and must share my excitement (!!), that my neighbor and I are putting in a path from our home to their home (because we love them), a trail around the perimeter of our property and leveling to create plateaus in our back yard. My goal this Spring is to construct a Labyrith path. I mediate while walking Labyrith paths or Medicine Wheels. I love walking and becoming aware of my surroundings, living in that moment. I pray, I set goals and I picture the future me on MY TERMS, without judgement and only curiosity.  It is an experience that leaves me refreshed and revived.

I am guessing, that if you are reading my blog, you also suffer from severe headaches and/or migraines or chronic pain of any kind. So you get what I am saying. I feel very safe sharing my experience with you and I hope to lift you up and give you hope.

On another note* It is so important to monitor and track usage of your medications and I encourage you to do so.  You can share this information with your doctor and also review what you’ve written/taken so you can see what you are taking, when and for what symptom. This can be very helpful in discovering possible triggers to your pain.  You can identify moments where you should have been more careful or could have done something different. When you are on a lot of medications ( and I am up to 12 medications and 5 more if I am having a full blow attack) without keeping track of my meds I would need a professional caregiver to help me keep track and help that is unavailable. One of my favorite new apps is Migraine Buddy.  Give it a shot- I use it religiously. 

I’d like to leave you with this song.  When I hear this song I sing it out-loud and dance…it makes me feel like I am free of all that inhibits me. 

 ”RISE” by Selena Gomez—

You can stand beside the madness like a fallen tear (*can you relate?)

You can hold on to the sadness like a souvenir (*don’t look back in the rear-view mirror)

Or you can close your eyes

And see your life

Like the air. (*BREATH!) 

You can tap into the strength you never knew you had

(*you are a lot stronger than you think you are!)

You can breathe into your faith no matter where you are

Just close your eyes and change your life (*visualize your ideal life

Like the air

Like the air you can

Rise from the rubble with your mind, you can hover(*you are super human)

You can rise like the tide, like the heat it in the summer

Yes, I know there are those who will wanna bring you down (*don’t judge but  do forgive)

But you can rise with your mind and make your higher power proud

You can rise, like the air you can rise

The earth can pull you down with all its gravity

And the measure of your worth is sometimes hard to see

So just hold on, when the night is done

Like the sun

Like the air you can

Rise from the rubble with your mind, you can hover

You can rise like the tide, like the heat it in the summer (*you are empowered!)

Yes, I know there are those who will wanna bring you down

But you can rise with your mind and make your higher power proud

You can rise, like the air you can rise (*breath deeply)

So even when your bones feel like weights

And it’s hard to lift the smile on your perfect face

You can still find a peaceful place 

(*ABSOLUTELY!!)

Close your eyes until you’re floating up in outer space (*LOVE THIS!)

It’ll be alright, they’re just jealous of your highs (*don’t live to another’s standards…be YOU and be TRUE to yourself)

So they can knock you down, but you can breath it in

Like the air you can

Rise from the rubble with your mind, you can hover (* yes,..you can soar!)

You can rise like the tide, like the heat it in the summer (*this line warms me)

Yes, I know there are those who will wanna bring you down

But you can rise with your mind and make your higher power proud

You can rise, like the air you can rise (*rise above all else)

Like the air you can rise (!!!!!!) 

Source: LyricFind

Songwriters: Leah Jacqueline Cooney / Ryan Frank Cabrera / Daniel James Pringle

Rise lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Universal Music Publishing Group, Downtown Music Publishing

I am sharing this song with you (and my inner thoughts in BOLD) because it has a great melody, uplifting but also help you to become aware of your own power- your inner stretch. Yes, you CAN RISE above the pain and sorrow. Make it happen for you. Get moving or start meditating. DO something to help your symptoms and the way you feel each day. Maybe creative coloring would help you reach a calm state. Creating a Vision or Dream Board can be realizing and give hope for the future. Promoting the fact that you can do anything you set your mind to…you may have a harder time than everyone else. But YOU”VE GOT THIS! Tell yourself that..”I”VE GOT THIS!”. Lift yourself up and RISE to be your whole truth and individuality. Be proud, fight like you’ve never before. 

I encourage you to get out of your own head and do something that will help you manage your disease. It’s not all up to the doctors, you have choices and can mange your health to your best ability. 

I am sending hugs and love to whomever reads this.

Thank you for sharing this space with me.

With love and care,

Sunshine

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