Archive for the ‘Blog Carnivals’ Category

headacheblogcarnivallogoI am late (as usual) with this month’s Blog Carnival post. I have been pondering the original title, What Keeps You Going and came up with many answers: ice, dark room, good drugs, knowing someone else understands, but all of these seemed to fall short. And then it hit me; there is no “what” that keeps me going, but a “who” (not the Horton kind).

God keeps me going, even when I want to throw in the towel. He was there when I lost my job, when I wished I had cancer instead because that would kill me, and when I had given up hope of ever feeling good again. For years I prayed that the Migraines would go away forever, but because that has not happened, I thought He wasn’t listening. So I prayed LOUDER: ARE YOU THERE? DO YOU CARE? 

Years passed without a miracle and without even an effective preventative. I was resigned to a life of pain. Where was God? I don’t know. Absent? Distant? Then I heard these words from How Firm a Foundation

Fear not, I am with thee, O be not dismayed,
For I am thy God and will still give thee aid;
I’ll strengthen and help thee, and cause thee to stand
Upheld by My righteous, omnipotent hand.

Then I realized that He was there and cared very much about my pain. So in the middle of the night with my ice pack on my head, I sing or think those words. I know He is there and will get me through the night.

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The November Headache Blog Carnival has been posted at Pain In the Head. The topic this month is Art Inspired by Living with Migraine Disease.
Diana Lee, Kelly, James, Jenny and I all have posts on this topic. Some are actual art created to depict a migraine and others are about the role art can play in easing one.
Come on in! You are most welcome!

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Bright Light invades brain piercing right eye

hammering pain; I’d rather die

Dark Room don’t move

Hours pass

I see pretty flowers under glass

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This post is in response to the topic posed by this month’s Migraine Blog Carnival: Your best tips on improving communication with doctors. My first reaction, mostly because I have had more than my share of neurologists and headache specialists, is that I have no ideas. If I really had an answer, I would not be on neurologist number 4. Wait a minute, given I have seen several different specialists, I must have learned something along the way. For me, the hardest time for me to communicate with a doctor is when I am dissatisfied. This is what I have learned.

  1. Know what you want: this can be harder than it looks. I usually knew what I didn’t want, but not what I wanted. I learned by trial and error, but I suggest that you take the time to become well-informed about Migraine Disease and to ask yourself, “What exactly do I want from this doctor?” What is most important? Expertise? Time? Compassion? Knowing what you want will make it easier to notice when you are not getting it.
  2. Talk first, bail later: Bailing (switching doctors without a word) has been my MO from the beginning. I don’t say anything; I just leave. I may have avoided the pain of expressing dissatisfaction, but I didn’t give the physician the chance to change. I suppose that if I had expressed my concerns first, I may have seen fewer doctors. But, I have to admit I was afraid. Afraid of standing up for myself? Afraid of expressing dissatisfaction? How could I be dissatisfied; he’s a doctor! Yep, strange, but true.
  3. Ask for a second opinion. Bite the bullet, just ask. I agonized for months before I asked. I had every excuse in the book. He is so nice, so caring. He gives me all the time I need. He is so persistent. In the long run, being nice, caring, and persistent were poor substitutes for progress. I had been seeing him for 2 years and not much had changed. Well, I finally asked. Boy, was I relieved when he said sure. He even made the referral.
  4. Leave, if you must, but on good terms. After meeting with the new doctor and asking several pertinent questions about her approach and what her goals were, I decided to make the switch. Before I left his practice, I thanked the doctor for all he had done and that I admired his persistence. He shook my hand and told me he wanted to know what happens. How’s that for a happy ending?

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