"So tell me, what is it that you plan to do/ with your one wild and precious life?"
--Mary Oliver

Monday, April 07, 2008

april update

Well, I'm still on Vicodin, still having migraines every day, still not pregnant. My doctor is starting me on a three week course of steroids (maybe I'll wind up looking like Barry Bonds!) in hopes of ending my current migraine "cycle." He's also sending me to a pain clinic; they have a fibromyalgia clinic and a headache management program, as well as a chronic pain management program, so maybe they'll have something in their bag of tricks that will help. It's not as though my docs and I haven't tried plenty of methods over the years: various medications, physical therapy, trigger point injections, Botox injections (in my neck and shoulders, not my crows feet!), relaxation techniques, etc., etc., but I'm keeping an open mind and hoping for the best. At this point, I realize that I'm not going to find a cure, and I'm okay with that; my goal, rather, is to gather more coping techniques to help me live with the pain and, hopefully, function a bit better.

This winter seemed ENDLESS! My headaches were especially problematic for two reasons. One, because with migraines it's difficult to distract myself the same way I can with other types of pain. I'm so sensitive to light and sound that a good share of the time I'm stuck lying in bed, in the dark, and it's hard not to ruminate about the pain, about missing my mom, and other sad things. Two, several years ago I was diagnosed with Seasonal Affective Disorder, the "winter depression" also known by its highly apt acronym of SAD. I'm supposed to use a light box for about 40 minutes every morning, and I'm sure it would be very effective, if the bright light didn't invariably trigger a blinding migraine!

So, maybe it's cloudy and a bit dreary today, but I don't care. It's finally spring, baseball season is here, and once again I'm reminded how much I have to grateful for--right now I'm thinking of the caring and support of my family and friends, without whom I could never have made it through the winter. I hope you all realize just HOW MUCH it means to me to hear from you, whether it's by email, phone call, or comments here on my blog. Chronic illness and pain can be terribly isolating. There have been so many instances when I've felt so alone and been convinced I just can't go on one more day...and then I hear from one of you, and realize I can.


Emilie said...

Isn't it nice how spring can lift our mood, even if nothing else has changed? Hang in there. The invitation to come over for lunch still stands, as soon as you feel up to it.

LutherLiz said...

I am glad that the weather is starting to improve. It was a rough winter for most of us, so I can't imagine how it must be with so much illness and pain too. I hope you and the doctor manage to break this cycle and things start getting better. Let me know when you are feeling up to lunch or a luther bookstore trip!