Migraine and my other comorbid conditions such as Sjogren’s syndrome, lupus, dystonia and spinal disease, make it difficult for me to do the normal day to day things most people take for granted.
Today’s National Migraine and Headache Awareness Blog Challenge is personal to me because I do require so much help.
Today’s challenge topic is a short and very surprising video clip from the show Ally McBeal. Robert Downey Jr beautifully sings the song "Every Breath You Take" with Sting. The challenge itself was to write about someone who keeps watch over you.
Sometimes. those who don’t really understand my life think it’s a bit creepy that my husband keeps such close tabs on me. I remind them that there have been times where I’ve gotten stuck somewhere alone due to my health problems. Life hasn’t always been like this, but I’m okay with him taking care and watching over me this way. We consider it teamwork, and it’s gotten me out of some incredibly bad fixes.
My favorite Migraine "stuck" story was when my husband and son dropped everything to rescue me from a horrible migraine attack, driving from Missouri to Kentucky to help.
I took my daughter to Louisville, Kentucky, to participate in National 4H Horse Congress. She had earned a spot at the youngest age possible, and was the first place on the team. The rest of this team was from another county in our district, and was being led by a woman who wanted her to drop out so the alternate from her county could participate. The "scary woman" had made it nearly impossible for a little girl to have the guts to face the things she’d said and done to her. My daughter knew I’d be there to help her, so she attended. It was a once-in-a-lifetime chance she had earned with years of hard work.
During the excitement of a national contest in Kentucky, I forgot to replace my hormone patch. This was a huge mistake that triggered a terrible migraine, and simply changing the missing patch was not enough. Not by half. My daughter had already missed that evening of activities because she was afraid of the woman in charge of the other kids, choosing instead to stay with me while I migrained. I had let my daughter down by not being able to go with her, and she was having to be "the mom."
As the migraine progressed, I knew the other woman was a nurse and could help me get to the emergency room, or she could take care of my daughter while I went alone. I was desperate and tempted to ask her. I knew my daughter would do her best to stand tall, but we were both afraid of what the scary woman might do. My daughter begged me not to make her go to the woman. She remembered aloud the many calls and letters of dis-clusion and warnings. The woman threatened to find a way to keep her from competing, even sending a personal letter to my daughter as well. The intimidation continued once we arrived. It’s no wonder she was afraid to be in the presence of the woman. I had to protect my daughter, but I didn’t know what to do.
Someone was going to have to take her to the rest of the competition activities. I called my husband instead, knowing I needed a trip to the emergency department and to keep our daughter as far away from the woman as possible. He dropped everything, woke my son, and our knights in shining armor both headed from Missouri to Kentucky to save the day. It was after midnight when they left, with a full night’s drive to get there.
I took more meds, and my daughter sat and worried about me. She cried alone in her bed because so much had gone wrong. I know she was scared. Even the contest had gone awry when one of the team members argued with her in front of the judges during a verbal team answer. It turned out her answer was correct, but the argument cost them points and respect from the judges. He was a bigger, much older kid, and the son of the scary woman. His intimidation shook her when she already felt vulnerable. Now she was in a hotel room, far from home - a little girl with a mom who was in desperate pain she understood as a migraineur herself, and she felt helpless. She felt better when her dad and big brother headed to Kentucky. She did everything she knew to help me, and I’m sure she wondered how the following day was even going to be possible with such a bad night ahead. I know I surely did.
Eventually my medications began to work, but many hours had gone by. I called my husband and told him to turn back around. With some arguments and plenty of reservations, our knights in shining armor headed back to Missouri. Thankfully my daughter fell asleep and was able to get up in time the next day.
The team placed a respectable tenth. It turned out she beat the older boy who argued with her. We watched in horror as the mean mom wheeled around and turned on her son, yelling at him in public. In private, we felt sorry for him, but spent the rest of the day laughing and playing together in joy, touring the most famous places in the world of horses (aka heaven). It was the culmination of overcoming sooo much, and standing tall in a scary situation.
Like many of us, my family looks over me and keeps me safe, but in some pretty extraordinary ways. They are my heroes and knights in shining armor, and I wouldn’t be here without them.
Who has been watching over you?
My challenge to you is to tell others who watches over you. Share this video, or any of the other posts you’ve seen during awareness month, with someone who needs to know what life with migraine is like. Let’s stop preaching to the choir and tell someone who needs the information!
Live your best life,
Make a difference… Donate to the 36 Million Migraine Campaign!
© Ellen Schnakenberg, 2014._ "¢ Last updated June 22, 2014._