My name is Virginia and I am a mother of 3. About 4 weeks after the birth of my second child in 2008, (my first daughter, who will be 4 on Sunday), I started experiencing in sudden severe pain in my temple. After a few minutes the pain would be gone. That pain was unbelievable. At first, the "spasms" (as I called them) only lasted for about 45 seconds to a few minutes. Then they started lasting longer. I ended up getting these sudden severe head pains that lasted for 2-3 hours, sometimes longer. During this time I was also still getting the "spasms", several episodes a day. We went to the doctor and they did some tests and nothing showed up. We were concerned because we were thinking that I had an aneurysm or something similar. The doctors could find nothing. 3 months after our daughter was born, we found out I was expecting again. So we had to wait to do more tests until after the baby was born. By this time I was having severe multiple headache attacks on a daily basis with the "spasms" thrown in for good measure. Light didn't bother me. Sound did and so did smell. By the time our second daughter was born (2009), no one knew what was wrong, I was no longer driving out of fear that I would get a sudden attack and crash, and I was still having the episodes with just as much frequency as before. The neurologist I was seeing kept quoting statistics to me, about how 20% of women had unexplained migraines, etc. He would try me on different medications, none of which worked, and had me do a couple of MRIs. We found that Imitrex worked some of the time. While I was pregnant with my second daughter, I could not take Imitrex and my OB/GYN suggested Fioricet. I tried that and it actually seemed to work better than the Imitrex. However, these two medications were only something to be taken at the beginning of the migraine, they couldn't actually prevent the migraine and none of the preventatives worked.
Along with the migraines came various other “side effects” such as a feeling of paralysis or being “locked down” from my lower jaw to my diaphragm, confusion, severe memory loss, difficulty talking and remembering words, sensitivity to smell and sound, mood swings, increased irritability, being tired all the time (possibly from the stress of hurting all the time), dizzy, and being light-headed. All of these started without being on medication and the medication has not helped any of these.
As time went on, this was all I had. The dose of the Imitrex was increased from 25mg to 100mg because the low dose was no longer having any effect on me and the fioricet went from regular fioricet to fioricet with codeine because the pain was increasing.
Everything stayed pretty much the same after that for a couple years, until last summer. August of 2011, the night before my daughter's 3rd birthday party, I was standing in the kitchen decorating her cake and I started feeling funny. I wasn't having a migraine attack, that I know of, but I start feeling light headed and nauseaus. So I went outside and sat down for a few minutes. My husband came outside and sat with me for a few minutes and then he helped me up so I could go back and finish her cake. When he helped me stand up (slowly) I almost passed out. Again, no head pain, ( I don't have a brain tumor, aneuryism, or any other life-threatening condition) etc. So he put everything away while I went to bed. The next day I was feeling better, although I was a bit tired. We went ahead with her birthday as planned and had my family come over. Again, I started feeling unwell and went outside and away from everyone to sit down for a few minutes so no one would notice I wasn't feeling well as I didn't want the kids to see me like this. After about 15 minutes or so, my husband came outside to see if I wanted to cut the cake. He helped me stand up (again, slowly) and again, I almost passed out. I played it off as having just gotten a little dizzy and told him about it later. I put myself on “bed rest” for a couple of weeks because I could not stand for more than 10 minutes at a time without getting “tunnel vision”, light-headed, dizzy, turning white, and looking/feeling like I was going to pass out. After a couple weeks of that I decided enough was enough and decided to cook dinner. I started out simple with grilled cheese sandwiches. I started to feel funny again after standing at the stove for a few minutes, so I turned around to go sit down and I almost hit the floor. This was the “norm” for a few months and the doctors could not find out what was wrong. I never actually passed out, thankfully. After a few months, most of those symptoms went away, leaving me with almost constant dizziness and lightheadedness. But then the headaches started to let up and I would actually go several consecutive days (like 3 or 4) without s headache. Then I would get headaches for 2 or 3 days in a row.