Monday, May 20, 2013

Writing With Migraine: An Adventure in Run-on Sentences

I don't normally have obvious hormonal migraines, but this month, my head decided to try something new.

The day before my period started, my head started to ramp up for no real reason. My normal range for the past few months has been 0-5, but now it's suddenly no lower than a 3, with peaks at around 9.25. I always get into decimals when I'm recalling high pain. The number 10 is never assigned lightly, that number is sacred, reserved for pain so overwhelming, that I wouldn't want to sully the number by using it in any other circumstances but the utmost unbearable.

I wonder how many of us get creative with pain scale numbers. We spend enough time thinking about them, calculating by whatever internal system we've worked out. I always liked the pain charts with the faces. Assigning a number can be difficult in the moment, migraine messes with my thinking, my speech, and my comprehension, but the faces all lined up are always easy for me. That one. I point, or I can suddenly say the number like it was there all the time. I don't know why those faces help me communicate, but they do.

On the last episode of Elementary, Sherlock tells Watson that his pain level is pi, which caused me to pause the show for several minutes so I could giggle it out and not miss important dialogue. If you're not watching Elementary, you should be.

I haven't written with a migraine this bad in a while and it's an interesting venture. I can't focus on any one thing for long, so I can see this post heading for some wild stream-of-consciousness territory. You've been warned.

Pain and stiffness in my neck is always my first migraine symptom lately. Then, the yawning. My jaw feels like it's going to unhinge, I'll start yawning so hard. Then, I start feeling disconnected, like things aren't quite real, and the vision problems start. Either flashing lights or dramatic after-images or such sensitivity to light that nothing but complete darkness will do. My eyes burn and tear and I can't even describe the pain that comes with that. When a migraine comes on that strong and fast, I can feels waves moving over my brain, pain and raw nerves, coming over and over like nausea or some kind of horror-orgasm. I can only curl into myself, put my hands over my eyes, and cry quietly until it passes. Minutes, hours, years, who knows, I feel like I'm being born when I can finally open my eyes again.

I'm still on that Star Trek tear. I rejoiced when I finished the original series, kirk's grabbiness and the unapologetic sexism were overwhelming all the fun of the show by the end, and spock was my only shining light. I made it through the movies, some which I enjoyed more than others, and now I'm happily entrenched in TNG, the Star Trek of my childhood. It's a very different experience, seeing these characters through adult eyes, but I think the show is aging well. Wesley was one of my first crushes, and he makes me cringe and groan, like first crushes are supposed to. Data shows far too much emotion for someone who gets an emotion chip later in the series, but his attempts at laughing are brilliant, so I forgive them the inconsistencies. Riker is so hot post-beard, you guys, I don't even know what is happening to me. And i love Pulaski.

Which is interesting, because as a child I hated her, mostly because my step-dad did. He's not a fan of pushy broads, as I seem to remember him once calling her. And Pulaski is pushy; she's abrasive and speaks her mind freely, even if it means that she disagrees openly and adamantly with her superior officers. She's fantastic. I know her run is fated to end sooner than later, and Dr. Crusher comes back, but I wish Pulaski could hang around and buck the status quo forever. Pushy broads unite!

I keep seeing movement in the corner of my eye and think it's a spider, which is NOT COOL, brain. I've killed two in the past week, that's me trying to deal with my phobia like a big kid, but it's spring, so they are out in fucking droves, and my fb friends are jerks and keep posting australian monster-spider pics, so I'm a little twitchy and it would be nice if we could go back to the sparkly lights aura instead of the peripheral movement aura because i don't need one hundred thousand heart attacks a day and before anyone says I should ignore it and assume the movement is just my head, the last TWO times I tried that tactic, a BIG ASS spider was CRAWLING ON ME or maybe it was NEAR ME, either way UNCOOL. Another reason to move to the arctic.

I hope my head ebbs back down soon, I miss hiking up the hill, and being able to cook and clean at the same time. I'm back to barely cooking, sitting, barely cleaning, sitting, and hoping I'll be able to play catch up later. I've been keeping up with school, which is always such a fear of mine when my health goes south, and it's entirely due to being proactive and working ahead. I really wish I could take more than one class at a time, but no. I'm firmly in slow-but-steady country. It's better than nothing, but it would be nice to be able to get my BA in under ten years.