Headache, but it’s fine

This again…

I’m cutting back on my coffee. And on my fats. I’m building up my exercise — and doing a wider variety of things more times a day. Changing things up, so it doesn’t feel so stale.

I’m still getting there — these things take time. I’ve only been turning things around for about the past week, so it’s going to take a while for the changes to show up.

But they will. I’m sure of it.

Headache has been pretty steady for the past few days. I think it’s directly related to cutting back on coffee and also not sleeping very well. I’ve been stressed over work. So, that hasn’t helped, either. But it’s temporary. It will pass.

My insurance situation has been strange. I got my medical sorted out, then I went to pick up my prescription for Imitrex for migraines, and my pharmacy insurance wasn’t working. $235 for 15 pills. Yeah, no thanks. So I made some more calls yesterday, got bounced around a bit, and finally got a call in the afternoon that everything had been sorted out. I stopped by the pharmacy on the way home, and they told me that because the details of my prescription had changed, I was going to have to wait another 10 minutes for the pharmacist to sign off. I told them I’d just come back the next day, which I’m going to do later today.

All this is just one more reason why I’m not a big fan of meds. It can turn into a management issue, which just complicates my life and messes with my head. For folks who get a lot of benefit out of them, with life-threatening conditions and chronic conditions that make their lives miserable, I’m glad meds exist. For folks who aren’t in dire danger, though, it can seem like more trouble than it’s worth.

I’ve been through the try-this-medication-and-see-if-it-works adventure before — about 25 years ago, I had crippling joint pain and had a ton of diagnostics done, as well as some powerful medications. None of it actually rendered any real results, and I just turned my life upside-down for nothing. The doctors couldn’t get a clear picture of what was happening with me, and they couldn’t find something that worked. At all. Waste of time and money and a whole lot of hope.

Only when I took matters into my own hands and started moving and stretching — against doctors’ orders — did things start to clear up for me.

Ultimately, I believe what was really wrong, was that I was too sedentary, I was doing a lot of walking in leather-soled shoes on hard asphalt and cement sidewalks, and I wasn’t eating right. I changed those things, and my condition improved. Plus, I quit smoking.

Now I’m in a similar situation, where I’m in a fair amount of pain on a regular basis, and I need to make some changes. I’ve got some progress happening for one of my most important projects, which is exciting — almost beyond words — and I’m really very clear about what I’m NOT going to do with my time, as well as what I AM going to do with myself. I’m simplifying my life, and it’s good. The money situation is getting sorted out, and I’m making some dietary changes that I’ve been needing to make for a while.

Basically, I’m cutting down on the “healthy fats” that I’ve been eating on a regular basis for the past year. I discovered “bulletproof coffee” last April, and I’ve been drinking my own version of it ever since then. The only problem is, I’ve actually gained about 10 pounds, and my energy is not always what it could be. I have been steering clear of eating a lot of fruits, because of the sugar and the carbs.

But I think it’s time to change that up again and get back into eating fruit again — using it for energy, instead of that afternoon cup of coffee. Getting coffee out of my system isn’t easy, and I’ve got to taper off gradually. And cutting back on the fatty foods is also an interesting process. Fortunately, the sugars from the fruits offset the dullness.

Hopefully they’ll help me get past the headache. I did some research on Imitrex, and it’s pretty powerful stuff. Supposedly it’s a well-established medication from the Triptan family. Some folks swear by it, while others report some nasty side-effects, including dizziness, vertigo, and a heaviness/tightness in their jaw.

I don’t know how I feel about the side-effects. I have to try it myself to see how it goes, but having more stimuli to process is not the sort of thing I want for my system. I already have enough coming in on me all the time. And I’m going to add even more to it?

Hm. Well, we’ll see. I can try it out this weekend and see how it goes. But if it makes me feel strange, forget it. It’s all about cost-benefit, and if I have more stuff in my system, I don’t see how that’s such a great thing. I won’t know till I give it a shot.

In a way, I’m not sure if I really want it to work that great for me. If I end up depending on it to feel good, then I’m not independent and I’ll always have to keep some around, just in case. I can probably strike a balance with it, but even so, it’s one more thing I need to manage, and if my insurance ever doesn’t cover it — like my spouse’s insurance, which won’t cover their name-brand anti-seizure medicine to the tune of $300+ each month (they’re getting their doctor to put in a special request for coverage) — then I’m up the creek with fewer options. I’d rather have options that I can handle myself.

Or just put up with the headaches.

As long as they’re not hurting me. I’ve heard that long-term migraines can cause brain lesions. Great. Just great. But my MRI from 2009 looked great — and this after something like 40 years of migraines. So maybe I’m in the clear. Or these aren’t migraines.

Who the hell knows? All I know is, life is waiting, and it wants to be lived. I’ll figure something out.

Onward.

 

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Author: brokenbrilliant

I am a long-term multiple (mild) Traumatic Brain Injury (mTBI or TBI) survivor who experienced assaults, falls, car accidents, sports-related injuries in the 1960s, '70s, '80s, and '90s. My last mild TBI was in 2004, but it was definitely the worst of the lot. I never received medical treatment for my injuries, some of which were sports injuries (and you have to get back in the game!), but I have been living very successfully with cognitive/behavioral (social, emotional, functional) symptoms and complications since I was a young kid. I’ve done it so well, in fact, that virtually nobody knows that I sustained those injuries… and the folks who do know, haven’t fully realized just how it’s impacted my life. It has impacted my life, however. In serious and debilitating ways. I’m coming out from behind the shields I’ve put up, in hopes of successfully addressing my own (invisible) challenges and helping others to see that sustaining a TBI is not the end of the world, and they can, in fact, live happy, fulfilled, productive lives in spite of it all.

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