I'm sitting here wondering if writing this blog post is even a good idea or not. Like, it's the internet I'm writing to, and I'm not entirely sure how many people read this thing. But I decided I'd write on this topic so I will.
Somewhere in March last year, things changed for me. It was a really dramatic change, and to this day I have no idea why. I remember it clearly because it was a public holiday but I was going to someone's house for music rehearsal. Somewhere in the middle of that day I got a headache. There was nothing particularly unusual about this headache, and I'd always been headache prone so I thought nothing of it. But the next day it was still there. And the next day, and the next. After about a month I told my mum I wanted to go to the doctor. She didn't seem to see why I'd want to, but took me anyway. The doctor said that I was just overstressed and that she saw it all the time and I should learn to relax and maybe try getting massages.
When I think back to the rest of last year I remember it as a blur of negative events with the occasional positive. And I held onto that positive. I treasured the time I could spend having fun with friends because for a while I could pretend that everything was fine with me. But things were not fine and I had no idea what to do. I went to a few different doctors and eventually learn what to say so they would take me seriously. Finally I got a referral to a neurologist. I'm particularly proud of that. At the beginning of the appointment that doctor seemed like she was going to dismiss me as a stressed out teenager but I got through to her by keeping calm and defending myself logically. At last, progress.
I wasn't sure exactly what else was happening at that time last year. I think I was being quite self-centred for most of that year and I really hope I didn't offend anyone by not taking enough notice in what was going on with them.
I went to the neurologist appointment in the September school holidays last year. Those holidays haven't really been liking me these past few years. Year 10, I got 8 teeth out, and then medical stuff in Year 11. The appointment was pretty uneventful, except I got told that I didn't seem to have a brain tumour or anything to cause anything to be wrong but I could get an MRI to be sure which I said yes too, and the neurologist said that I probably had migraines and then prescribed some stuff as a preventative. I have to admit I was kinda foggy throughout that appointment so I was only kinda paying attention.
So next problem: my mother. Mothers are supposed to be supportive and all that, but mine just happened to have a grudge about taking medicine daily. She was worried that it would destroy my liver or something. So to be fair, she had my best interests at heart. I had to argue for ages but she agreed that I could take the stuff until after exams. (Yes, I did play the doing-well-at-school card.)
Turns out that preventative worked for me. I was really happy :) With it I was managing to have days in a row without a headache which was great. It helped my desire to study as well.
I managed to get through exams okay, but not as well as I would have liked. Considering everything, I thought I did pretty well.
After exams was Orientation for Year 12, which I missed because I was going on French Exchange :) All was good, except for the fact that my mum wanted me to stop taking the stuff that was making me feel better than I had since March. I didn't want to, but she nagged and nagged and nagged (she is so good at nagging) and eventually wore me down. Yay.
France was fun except my migraines were getting worse. I was annoyed that I let my mum talk me into stopping the preventative and worried about what it meant. Since I found out I had migraines I had been doing a lot of research on it. I found a lot of info, including a few things that completely freaked me out, and I can't remember exactly what they were so I guess my brain blocked them out. Sometimes I wonder if there is such a thing as knowing too much about some things.
After I got back to Australia I had a neurologist's appointment. I found out that I definitely had nothing visible wrong with my brain (MRI results were back) and he (the neurologist) asked if the preventative had worked. Awkward. I had to tell him it had but my mum talked me out of taking it. He seemed to look at me as if I was very stupid and said something along the lines of 'why would you do that?' My mum was still in Poland so there was no argument when I asked my dad to buy me the stuff. He has a bit more faith in specialists.
It took until a few weeks before midyears for the preventative to start working a little again. It still wasn't enough to stop the week of midyears from being a nightmare. It was partly my fault, as I stayed up late on Sunday night writing something which was a really, really bad idea. On the plus side, this year I knew about special exam arrangements and applied for rest breaks. I really needed those rest breaks during the chem exam and I think it was all that turned it from being a complete fail to kind of okay. It was awkward at the end of the exam when everyone was walking out of the hall and people asked me why I was still sitting there and I was wondering if the examiners would have thought I was cheating if I explained so I just ignored everyone. Hopefully no one took offence.
The next day's three hour exam was surprisingly good, probably because there was a surplus of time. That said, I was exhausted afterwards and had to take the day off the day after. That day was a weird day, where I got into this weird depressed mood because I felt that I failed all my exams. It was temporary and I was fine the next day.
From then on the preventative didn't improve things further. I started looking into triptans and tried one out. I think I may be sensitive to the artificial sweetener in it because I feel worse, then a little better. Now things are really the same, but I'm starting to wonder if I should start telling more people what's been happening, even though it's a potentially awkward situation. I guess this blog post is a cowardly way to start doing that.
So that's the story of my migraines in short. Makes a very long blog post.