The Irrational Thoughts That Accompany a Migraine

I woke up at 4am with a brain crushing migraine. Third migraine this week. I stumbled for a cold cloth to try that. I laid back down, profusely sweating. Two minutes later, I realized that it was taking hold. I should have known better when I went to bed with a headache; having a headache before bed always results in the same.

Reasoning with myself that I can’t take a third dose of Fioricet in one week, I stumble downstairs for my MGrain Essential Oil. I grumble at myself, holding my head, while reminding myself that this is precisely why I’m supposed to keep one bottle upstairs.

Cold cloth over my eyes, head now covered in essential oils, I lay. The brain crushing pain rips through my forehead, reaching around the back of my skull, strangling my brain and pulsating through my eye socket. I lay there trying to be calm and still. Maybe try Reiki….Oh God ouch. Okay. No Reiki.

Instead, I think (stupid brain STOP): okay, it’s been about six months since I stopped the migraine meds, yup, that’s about right. I typically last six months, without preventatives, before hitting the chronic wall. Three this week likely means four next week. Okay, stop thinking.

So what can I do? Topomax stops them…..but, well, then I turn into a skeletal variation of the Hulk meets Venom, with the added bonus of peeing blood. I can’t think of any super heroes that do that.

Bri (my Husband) has been incredibly patient through these trials of Topomax, not sure he will stay through another cycle of complete anger, insanity and irrational, sudden requests for a divorce. Bri don’t leave me.

Botox, well Botox is the last one we haven’t tried. Somehow drooping eyelids and loss of my arm isn’t overly appealing. Nevermind my overly sensitive body (from Fibro) will invent new and creative reactions to this drug, like all the others, that no Doctor can believe exist as a result of “just a drug”.

Hmmmmm. I wish I knew why my fingernails continue to fall off……

The migraine rips through my brain now and I whimper. Don’t cry. Don’t cry. Do NOT cry. It will only make it worse.

The noise from the fan slices through my migraine pain and my Husband’s gentle breathing makes me want to eviscerate him. I adore him, but if I murder him right now I won’t hear his breathing…..I ponder. You’ll miss him later, stupid. The dog grunts and takes over more of the bed. Why do I even have dogs again???? Do I even want dogs? Oh right. I worship my dogs.

Knowing I shouldn’t do it, I stumble down to the kitchen again, holding my head. A yelp let’s loose from my lungs as I turn on the light to find my Fioricet. One or two? Well, I’m not supposed to be taking a third dose at all this week-so I better make sure it works. I swallow them, terrified, knowing that the two dose weekly limit exists to prevent rebound headaches. As the pills slide down my throat I know that I may be my very worst enemy. I know that the simple act of a third dose can cause yet another migraine. Then what? What happens when even the Fioricet won’t work. Don’t panic yet.

I fumble through the darkness back to bed and try to stop thinking. Even thoughts are antagonizing the pain. Back to bed and the tears slide. Not again I think; not again with the consistent migraines. I cannot do this again. I lay still and try to slow my breathing. The ice cold cloth stings and the essential oils waft as I pray for relief.

I wake, migraine free and thank God. I live on borrowed time until the next.

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Fighting with Fibro and Living With Purpose. Mom, Wife, Blogger and animal lover. Fighting with Chronic Illness on a minute by minute basis; sometimes winning.

24 thoughts on “The Irrational Thoughts That Accompany a Migraine

    1. HA I’m glad you realized it had an undertone of humor to it. No dogs or Husbands were harmed in this process-but I tell you, in the thick of things, you have some really maniacal thoughts. Oh gosh, Kim, I have alot to deal with in my life, but God evened that out with Blessing me with an Angel for a Husband. I’m a lucky girl!!! Thanks for commenting and checking on Hubby ๐Ÿ˜‰ LOL

    1. LOL. Sorry about that, pain through suggestion, right??? Thanks for reading and commenting. It sounds like you speak from experience-I’m sorry you know how they feel. I wouldn’t wish them on anyone. I’m glad you saw the humor in it. It’s only funny now, oh gawd!!

      1. Oh its ok, your description was so spot on. Yes I have known a migraine or two over the years. For me I would be in my bed for days…However also for me..once I removed gluten peanuts and fish (not prawns) the migraines went…again however…3 years ago it all came back along with what i can only describe as someone using a dart or sharp knife into my head. MRI’s…I was put on epilepsy medication low increasing to the highest dose then decreasing….till none…I hope your going to be ok xx..sorry for raving

      2. No apologies necessary. That’s why we write, right?? I really wish I had found some relief from diet. Aside from eliminating wine and MSG, nothing else has made a difference. I came off Epilepsy drugs in July (this time), it seems I get six month breaks and then the migraines start coming quite frequently. I’m planning to try Accupuncture before heading back to the Neurologist again. I’m hoping your migraines get better. They’re the worst!

  1. There is nothing worse than a migraine headache in my opinion! Today I took my first dose of Zofran for the nausea that is a result of gastroparesis. I was prescribed 20 tablets and told to use them sparingly because in the long run, continued use can make my sluggish stomach work even less. Oh but the blessed relief from the feeling of the need to puke, when I havenโ€™t been able to eat at all, is so wonderful!

    The perpetual hamster wheel… take medication for relief, but take the risk of making the condition worse. For me, a non functioning stomach. For you, nasty rebound migraines! Some day I will master this delicate balancing act! We just have to keep trying.

    Glad you got a reprieve from the migraine. Gail

    On Tue, Feb 5, 2019 at 1:21 PM Fighting With Fibro wrote:

    > Stacey Chapman posted: ” I woke up at 4am with a brain crushing migraine. > Third migraine this week. I stumbled for a cold cloth to try that. I laid > back down, profusely sweating. Two minutes later, I realized that it was > taking hold. I should have known better when I went to bed” >

    1. HA!! I love that analogy, Gail. Yup we are just like Hamsters in a wheel. Oh I’m so happy you got some relief. Albeit temporary, but oh how sweet that is!!! I will continue thinking of you and praying for you.
      We’re kind of like circus bears on unicycles, juggling, right? Too bad I’m so uncoordinated, maybe that’s why I can never find that “balance”-here’s hoping you’ll find yours <3 Stacey

  2. I’m confused by why Botox would cause dropping eyelids and loss of arm. I have taken Botox for years and luckily never had a reaction. That doesn’t mean you won’t but Botox for Migrains is mainstream medicine now. It’s been approved by the FDA to be used for Migrains. In the old days I took meds and injections, luckily mine where caused by a broken bone in my nose. Two years of daily migraine and it was my nose! Take care. ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. Oh gosh, I’m really glad you got that figured out!! Congrats, that’s awesome!! Clearly you know migraines can be awful.

      Okay, I’m not a Doctor, *but* I do want to comment on your question and statements.
      You’re right, Botox is approved by the FDA, but that doesn’t mean it’s free from side effects. Botox is a botulinum toxin that is produced from the bacterium Clostridium Botulinum-the same bacteria that causes Botulism. Botulism poisoning causes paralysis and can be fatal. So in essence, Botox paralyzes the muscles by blocking nerve signals. Drooping eyelids occur because either the eyelid directly is
      temporarily paralyzed or the eyebrows/forehead (which support the eyelids) are paralyzed. The trick is, there is no antidote to Botox, so if the side effects do occur, often you need to just wait for the Botox to work it’s way out of your system; which can take 3 or 4 months.
      Do you mind if I ask if you have Fibro? If you do, you experience the heightened sensitivities we have to everything. If you don’t have it, the best way I can explain it, is that Fibro is a Central Nervous System disease. We process absolutely everything at a heightened level. So think of a tightly pulled string-anything that touches that string will cause vibrations along the entire piece. That’s sort of how it is with Fibro. Even a soft touch can send painful vibrations throughout the entire body, i.e. a heightened response. So the very disease itself can produce heightened reaction to everything, including medicines.
      So while the FDA approves Botox and for some (maybe even me) it can prove miraculous, when most everything negatively effects your body, it’s difficult to go ahead with a treatment like Botox, knowing there’s nothing you can do with adverse reactions, but wait 3-4 months.

      In terms of the arm paralysis, my Cousin has a close friend who received Botox injections for migraines. Her right arm became paralyzed shortly after the injections (it typically takes a few days for side effects to appear). For this person, the paralysis was permanent and never wore off.
      So you are once again correct that everyone experiences medications differently. Just because a medicine is considered mainstream and mostly safe, does not mean it does not come with potentially life altering risks. Think of the ridiculously long warning blurbs at the end of any drug commercial.

      Sorry my response is so long. How did I do explaining, make sense? Thanks so much for the comment!!!!

      1. Thank you for taking the time to comment. Yes, I have Fibromyalgia, I get Botox in my jar for TMJ now. It is the difference than horrible paid and headaches. I always know when to get a new injection when my jar pain and headaches start. Everything has side effects, I understand the concern. I take 20 meds a day and do deal with minor side effects but it’s much better than my mental illness being out of control. Breath, you shared two examples of bad side effects, maybe think more to see if you’re over concerned. Some Botox shot for migraine aren’t used on the face, it depends on the type of migraines you’re having. When I’m concerned I go to and find the Patient Instructions from the manufacture. It has all the clinical trail info, %’s of side effects and what type, if people dropped out of trail they have to explain why. It’s about two long pages but could answer some questions or create more questions. Have you used the injections? During the two yrs I suffered I had to use the pen at least 3-4, but it provided relief. The injection pens have been used a lot longer than Botox. You have a lot to think about, please keep your mind open, feeling better is the goal. ๐Ÿ™‚

      2. I completely agree! And you are absolutely right-we are all trying to still live, despite being ill. I’m glad you have found medication that is effective for you. It can be a huge lifesaver. I still take several and don’t know where I’d be without them, but as you said, we all, individually, need to weigh the positives and the negatives to determine what our best options are. I’m always trying to keep myself well educated and well informed and will continue to do so. Thanks so much for your opinions and the site you mentioned above. We all have alot to offer one another when we work together.
        Thanks for the really great comments and opinions!! ~Stacey

  3. I had a doctor (now retired) who once said to me: All medicines are poison, but some have good side effects. I’ve suffered from migraines since I was twelve, 57 years ago. I’ve tried every type of treatment approved for migraine in Aotearoa New Zealand, all have failed to make much or any improvement in the severity or frequency. Unfortunately most had terrible side effects. You know, the symptoms that include a warning to go immediately to an emergency center if you experience them. I’m also autistic, and apparently we get the worst of the side effects. Just my luck.

    I suffer from several forms of migraine including hemiplegic migraine, and on several occasions I’ve come to in the emergency department after the symptoms have been mistaken for a stroke. I don’t know about you, but noise, bright lights and hustle and bustle of the ED only add to the agony. Anyway, I wish you well, and hope you can find something that reduces or removes your migraine symptoms.

    1. Sorry to hear about your struggles, too. I completely understand. I feel the same way about medicine as your Doctor, in some regards. Yet, because of the position we’re in, sometimes we need them. Then it just becomes an incredibly complex dance of which is worse, the migraines or the side effects. I often feel like I’m making a deal with the Devil every time I give in and try again.
      Interesting about the Autism angle. I wasn’t aware of that. I can sympathize, the Fibro (I guess) makes me more susceptible to everything.
      In the beginning, I had Basal Migraines. I’m not sure what the difference in Basal and Hemiplegic is, I’d have to Google it, but those Basals also have symptoms like a Stroke. Slurring, numbness down the right arm and my face fell. I had to get pulled from my car by Firefighters once, because I was convinced it was a stroke-so were they, at the time. Super scary. I’m more fortunate than you, I guess. It seems that type of Migraine has passed for me.
      I agree about the noise and lights and SMELL of the ER. But it’s more frustrating to wind up there and have no one know what’s happening. Now I try not to go. I was a “frequent flyer” for a while though.
      It’s been a bad migraines week. I’m hoping not to have to explore yet another med. I’m praying they’ll let up a little.
      Best Wishes!!! Thanks for the comments and reading!! ~Stacey

      1. I wear a MedicAlert bracket that has a brief description of my condition and a phone number to the support centre. Unfortunately my symptoms can be so strike like that emergency personnel treat it as a stroke until they are satisfied it’s not. That usually requires an EEG and/or an MRI scan.

        Oh and yes the smells. I had forget ten about those, possibly because for me the extra bright fluorescent lightning so common in emergency department’s is excruciatingly painful to me.

      2. I’m with you. I’ve had so many CT Scans and MRIs that I light up in the dark now ๐Ÿ˜‰
        I’ll be thinking of you and sending hopeful/healing thoughts your way!

  4. Gosh what an intense experience, i’m sorry to hear that you’re suffering with such terrible migraines. Hopefully you find a treatment that works for you soon! If you’re interested in sharing your opinion on medicine further you might be interested in our International Medical Experience Survey (quick and anonymous) at:

    I would love to see better (as in, more thoughtful not just functional) medical solutions to chronic diseases like migraines! All the best.

  5. Try Botox! I’ve never had bad side effects from using for my TMJ. I’m overdue now and suffering thru daily pain. I listed a website for The Migrain and Headache Assoc.? Something like that, it’s under the recognize this month. None of that makes any sense. I’ll forward you the info from U.S. Pain foundation. I don’t like the idea of peeing blood but you only have so many choices before you have another chronic pain on top of another. Sounds terrible. Isn’t there another med, mabye a Psych med that helps? I take Prozac for mental illness but it’s used for other illnesses, wonder if it would help you. It’s been around forever and I’ve never had a problem with. I’ve taken about 20 years now. Wish I could be more help. Hugs.

    1. Thanks Melinda. You know, we’ve tried a dozen meds now for migraines. With most, the side effects far outweigh the benefits. I’m grateful to at least have Fioricet which stops them. We’ve run the gammet with Epilepsy med, anti-depressants, muscle relaxers, etc. So Botox is pretty much the end of the line. Ugh. So we’ll try that and hopefully a. it works and b. my eyes don’t droop. It’s always about choosing the lesser of the evils, right?

      1. You eyes only droop if your getting shots in eyes with a bad practitioner. Look for on who has all the latest equipment, it means they are invested in their practice and chances are respected in medical community. Maybe even tested some the equipment. I would also ask what is their approach to migrains. Mine told me it took all these shot to the head to pinpoint where the migrains are started. I don’t know. I get my TMJ shots and a couple in furl of brow to help prevent headaches from squinting. Don’t get in a hurry and you’ll find the right won.
        Hey, need your help….what would you change on my front page? I value you opion and want to make sure I’m not to lame. Thanks dear!

      2. I see the head of Neurology at the hospital, so I trust him. He said it’s pretty rare, but because of where my migraines are, he’d be injecting about 35 times, including in my forehead……
        Needless to say, it isn’t him that I don’t trust, it’s that my body reacts badly to pretty much ALL meds. That’s the real problem.
        Oh well. Time to try something new again. Worst case, I buy some toothpicks.

        I’ll email you about your site!! ๐Ÿ˜‰

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