Dear Future Me,
I went to my doctor the other day to change my birth control prescription. It was uneventful, as most trips to the doctor are (what do you expect, some kind of magical quest?) but what was much more interesting is the thing that sent me there is the first place: The Great Migraine of 2010.
Migraines, for those of us who experience their hellish ways regularly, are somewhat like snowstorms. They happen fairly often, although they’re hard to predict. You try your best to dig yourself out, but sometimes you just have to give in, bundle up and wait for the whiteout to pass. And once in a long while, you get a storm that remains in popular memory for year and years to come.
This migraine was the cranial equivalent of the Ice Storm of ’98. We lost power all over the body, extremities were without food or communication for days, and the areas hardest hit – namely, my brain – suffered surprisingly high casualties. This isn’t just seniors freezing to death in the cold; these are my neurons, fucking exploding.
Here is what happens when I get a Serious Migraine: first, I notice that my hands ‘feel funny’, almost heavy. Then I notice that my vision in fucked up, that I can’t focus enough to read a line of text. Next comes the worst headache you can imagine, as though my grey matter is trying to expand outwards in all direction and is beating itself into a jelly against the inside of my skull. After that, shit gets freaky.
I lose vision, though not entirely. Imagine you are looking at a person standing three feet away. Now imagine that the only focused, non-weird part of them that you can see is their left eye. That is what my eyeballs do.
The numbness is the weirdest. One hand will get pins and needles, which will move up my arm, into my neck, across my face/palate, down the second arm and into my other hand. As the pins and needles advance, total numbness is left in their place. As if having a migraine weren’t bad enough, now I’m drooling all over myself. Classy times.
However, the Great Migraine of 2010 is memorable (and was finally enough to prompt a visit to the neurologist) because I completely lost my ability to speak. You know that voice people do when they are making fun of deaf people? It was like that, only worse. Okay, so maybe I was having a stroke, who knows. These are the mysteries of life.
The best part was, I was talking to the neurologist about the medications I was taking, and she was like: How the hell did you even get a prescription for combination birth control? Considering your history of complex migraines, it increases your risk of stroke. Oh, and that thing that you got prescribed to take for your migraines? Well, if you take it with your migraines it will definitely give you a stroke.
And I was like, huh, you don’t say.
Anyway, that’s my life. Brain explosions all around. Sorry this wasn’t particularly funny, I just wanted to record for all posterity the fucked-up shit my brain does, so that the next time I’m all like “I have a migraine” people don’t respond with “Oh, I understand, I get headaches sometimes.”
Not a fucking headache, motherfucker,