Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Migraines

I started getting migraines in 2003 or 2004. I recall two nights specifically. One night I was in bed trying to sleep and I remember Joey was texting me. The light on my phone when I flipped it open (yes, flipped) was unbearable. The second night, I remember calling my family doctor and he told me to take one Alieve and then another one a half hour later. I thought my heart was going to beat out of my chest and I can't recall if it worked or not.

Like most migraine sufferers, I have tried everything. I have tried a host of medications including daily preventative meds. At one point, I thought perhaps if I got off birth control, my migraines would get better -- but they didn't. 

I kept a food journal to see if I could pinpoint anything that might be triggering my migraines, but because I eat mostly the same foods every day, nothing was popping out at me. After sending my food journal to my girlfriend, she pointed out that I was eating a lot of dairy. I never considered myself much of a dairy eater. I don't seek out cheese, ice cream, and I don't drink milk by the glass. I was eating yogurt and string cheese here and there. I was also eating pre-made smoothies that had milk. It would make sense because a lot of my migraines were happening on weekends which is when I would tend to eat pizza or the yummy quesadilla from Cebolla's. Cutting out/back on dairy has definitely helped.

When I say I have tried everything, here's what I've attempted: 

- Eliminating dairy (Helps drastically)
- Preventative medications (Meh.)
- Magnets (Did nothing.)
- Ice (I use an ice pack all the time. Doesn't get rid of the migraine, but helps me through it.)
- Essential Oils (Did not help. If anything, made them worse because of the scents.)
- Submerging my hands & feet in warm water to get my blood flowing (Did nothing.)
- Sleep (Can either help, or make it worse.)
- Mixture of peanut butter and ginger smothered on my temples (Helped one time only.)
- Alieve (Did nothing).
- Excedrin (Does nothing.)
- Caffeine (It either helps 100%, or not at all. Oddly, what helps the most, are the Starbucks drinks you buy at the gas station which have dairy in them.)
- Advil Cold & Sinus (Helps sometimes.)
- Capsaicin creme (I put this on my temples and the back of my neck and didn't do anything.)
- Got the inside of my ear pierced (Did not help.)

I also try to make sure I don't get too tired and that I don't wait to eat. Being upset, stressed, and crying can cause migraines. Which any of those things can be causes of headaches for anyone.

Over the years, the heat has really grown to be a trigger for me. 

My concern when I started boxing in January was that working out was going to cause me to get migraines. When I get hot, it's a sure fire sign, I'll be getting a migraine soon. Just last weekend, it was fairly warm and humid outside and I was tired of sitting around. I decided to go out and vacuum out my car and sweep out the garage. The sweat was dripping down my face into my eyes I was that hot. Sure enough, not long after being inside, I got a migraine. 

I have felt so defeated lately with my migraines; especially when it comes to working out. Last week, I was to box on the 4th of July. I woke up with a slight headache and had had a headache/migraine off and on for two days. The last thing I wanted to do was go to boxing and make it worse, so I canceled. Of course, my trainer understood, but still had to charge me. I don't enjoy missing out on things. Especially, these days when my enjoyment is few and far between. In fact, I had a horrible migraine on my birthday and finally felt better the day after. Needless to say, I didn't go to the gym ALL last week. Saturday night, I watched Creed (Best movie ever. Highly recommend it.) and there was a lot of good boxing in it. The trainer had Creed jump rope. I've also seen Khloe Kardashian's trainer have her do 1000+ jump ropes. I just kept thinking how much I would like to put that into my goals. But, the other part of me was like, hell no...that's a migraine waiting to happen. My other goal besides boxing has to been to start running. I've always wanted to be a runner, but never knew how to start. After looking up some workout plans on Pinterest and talking to my trainer, I was starting to run. BUT, I pay for it every time. I get so hot, that I end up with a migraine. Again, I just feel so defeated. I want to reach these goals, but my migraines are holding me back. I can't go to the gym and sweat my ass off and be pushed to my limit without ending up with migraine.

I've been trying to find remedies online and I haven't found anything promising. Most of the suggestions are to stay hydrated, ease into it, and don't over do it. I read a few stories yesterday from women that use the treadmill, but keep the speed in the low 2's. Despite it not being a high impact workout, it's still a workout. I did the treadmill last night for about 35 minutes and kept it at 2.7 and was fine the rest of the evening. I just never thought I'd be frustrated with having limitations on working out.

What is so frustrating is that I never had migraines until 2003-2004. I used to go out three nights a week and dance with friends. I would sweat my ass off dancing and would never get migraines. I used to clean my car every single weekend and never get a migraine. I can't help but always wonder if my dancing three nights a week for roughly four hours a night not only kept me in shape, but when I stopped going out (because I got old), that lack of exercise somehow caused my migraines AND depression.

It just amazes me when I read articles and websites devoted to migraines, there's still so much mystery behind it.

If you have any suggestions that I haven't tried yet, I would like to hear them.  

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Dear God: It's me, Rachel.

was off the weekend and then took Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday off for the 4th and my birthday. During my five days off, my plans were to go to the water park on Sunday with my family and boxing and fireworks on Monday. The weekend consisted of temperatures in the 60's and 70's and NO sun. Sunday we opted out of the water park due to the cold JULY temps. We decided on go carts and putt-putt at Paige's Crossing. My parents, my sister, her husband, and the kids all went. We had a good time. Especially, watching my step dad fish his ball out of the water. Afterwards, we went to dinner at Cebolla's. Monday, I woke up and the last thing I wanted to do was go to boxing and make my head worse. I had some type of headache/migraine all weekend. I texted my trainer at 10 and told her I was canceling. She told me she'd still have to charge me for my session. Fucking super. I laid in bed and slept off and on until 2 o'clock. I didn't do anything until I showered and met my sister and the kids downtown for the fireworks. Again, very gloomy weather. Normally, gloomy weather doesn't do much to me (like in the winter months), but in July when it's supposed to be all sunshine, it's been a real drag. For my birthday, I had breakfast with my dad which was really nice and then I was home the rest of the day. I decided to vacuum out my car and sweep out the garage. Of course, I got too hot and ended up with a migraine. I took a nap and that didn't help. Not sure why I've had so many migraines. I haven't had dairy and besides a little housework and vaccuming out my car, I hadn't worked out. Needless to say, my birthday was fucking awesome. [Insert sarcasm] Today is my last day off and my head feels better. I woke up, got coffee, did a few things around the house, laundry, and have just been relaxing on the couch. 

I think Jamison has enjoyed this staycation more than me. 

While I did enjoy Paige's Crossing, the fireworks, and breakfast, I just can't help but think of all the other things I would have liked to do if I had someone to do with them and that has left me feeling extremely ungrateful AND lonely. I would have went to surrounding counties and watched fireworks, went to a baseball game, and had bonfires. Yes, I can do those things by myself, but who wants to? I had a bonfire a few weekends ago by myself and let me say, the conversation was pretty one sided. HA!  

I know people say "it'll happen when it's supposed to," "be patient," "don't force it," "it'll happen when you least expect it," "enjoy your me time," and so many others. While I DO believe those statements and I DO enjoy my me time, it's still hard. I have had 10.5 years of me time. I can't help but wonder what God is waiting for. Maybe the right guy isn't ready for me yet or available? I can't help but think it's something to do with me though. That God is trying to send me a message that in 10.5 years I just haven't received yet. It leads me to think maybe God thinks I'm ungrateful. I am extremely grateful for my family. I am grateful to have a job; albeit one that causes me great stress and anxiety, but having been unemployed before, I will forever and always be grateful for any job I have. Every single day when I wake up, I look around and couldn't be more grateful for having this beautiful house. Every time I leave and come home, I walk in from the garage and am grateful. Not exaggerating either on that part. I really do walk into my house and think how much I love my house and am grateful for being able to have a home. I am grateful for my hooligans Jamison and Amelya. Today, I am grateful for the sun finally shining! 

So, I ask. Does it make me ungrateful that as I type all of the things I am grateful for, in the back of my mind, there's a constant nagging ungratefulness that wishes I had someone to share my life with? Every bonfire, birthday, firework show, ice cream craving, holiday, and long weekend turns into me wondering what life would be like with someone by my side to have bonfires with and go get ice cream. What scares the shit out of me is that next year and the year after, I'll be writing a similar blog as I am now and have in the past.

Dear God: It's me, Rachel. Perhaps you could leave me a note on the fridge?

be mindful

I have the hardest time dealing with my thought process. Like my dad always says, "not everyone thinks the way you do."

I was walking out of the parking garage the other day to go to work and there was a girl walking behind me. A little to close for my comfort. We get down the stairs and into the alley. I feel her get even closer and I turn to my right and she's walking beside me. If anyone would have seen us, they would have thought we were friends walking together. Confused of course, I just looked at her. She looks past me towards Wells Fargo like she's looking for something or someone, and proceeds to cross over. No eye contact, no "excuse me," nothing.

I put a lot of effort into making sure that surprises and emergencies don't pop-up at work. I plan a head. I prepare. I schedule. Whatever it takes. If our receptionist is going to be out that means I will be answering phones half the day. I make sure to let my boss know in hopes that he too, will plan a head. However, it appears as though others in my office do not plan a head. You would think (again, not everyone thinks the way you do) that if your administrative assistant/receptionist is going to be on vacation, you would plan your schedule accordingly. Meaning you're not setting up appointments when you're supposed to be answering phones. I realize some things in our business cannot be rescheduled or there is a deadline. Then, perhaps, your administrative assistant/receptionist shouldn't be taking the day off.

I have been meaning to keep track of every time I go to use the copier at work and how many times someone either hovers or just cuts in front of me. But, I always forget. If I had to guess it's 95% of the time. The other day I was copying a file and had stepped to the side of the copier to put papers back in the file. While I was doing this, one of the attorneys came up, logged me out, and started punching in his code. I know this because I stood there with my mouth hanging open while I stared at him in disbelief. Mind you, my code wasn't even logged out. I think it keeps you logged in for 60 seconds. He didn't even bother to ask if I was done. As I'm standing there in disbelief he looks up and he says "Oh, were you not done?" Nope. Sure wasn't. I just told him to go ahead. Happens all the time. I went to my desk and sat down until he was done. Do I think he purposely just started using the copier thinking I wasn't done? No. But, people you've got to be mindful of others around you and your surroundings. The receptionist hovers over me the majority of the time. I've tried telling her I'm going to be a while. I've tried telling her that I'll let her know when I'm done. I've tried joking with her about her hovering. I gave her a choice one day to either hover or I'd let her know when I was done and she chose to hover. If I hear someone using the copier, I don't even walk over there. I wait until he/she is done. Again, not everyone thinks the way you do. This morning while I was trying to haul ass to get some deeds done for a closing, I could barely concentrate because the girl answering the phones was up front talking and laughing with our copier guy. I literally could not hear myself think. In the midst of this, one of the attorneys is walking around the damn office on his cell phone talking. I don't have the luxury of having an office with a door. Literally, the only thing that would make me want to become an attorney is so that I could have an office with a door.

I don't like my space invaded. I like to think most people don't. Maybe the work stuff makes me uptight. In fact, I've been hearing that most of my life. I'm uptight, need to relax, take a chill pill, don't let things get to you, have a drink.

You can't control how others behave, but you can control how you react. Or, at least that's what I hear. HA! I'm 37 years old and I don't know that I'm ever going to relax, unwind, or brush shit off.  With that being said, how do you relax? I don't mean on the weekends, or when you get home from work. I mean in the moment when you find your blood pressure rising and the sudden urge to punch someone in the throat. In that moment, how do you relax? I'd love to hear all your ideas.

Monday, July 4, 2016

1989

My mom found this article of a story that I wrote. If only I could spell better and had better grammar. I could have been a professional writer. HA!