what is life for

These are among the very worst days of my life. Days when there is something important going on and it’s imperative I not be sick. Days that only come once a year, like your daughter’s birthday party with her first grade friends. Significant for so many reasons.

That significance on its own, the heavy weight of it, might be enough to cause a headache. The fact that dealing with other parents strikes right at the tenderest core of my social anxiety doesn’t help. We had so much left to do in preparation this morning, which didn’t help, Zo is sick and grouchy, a cold front just passed, and I ate a cookie or two last night. None of that helps. My only option for medicine is Imitrex, which I’m probably starting to rebound on. That doesn’t help.

X’s friend P had a swimming party for his birthday today also. I was planning to go to Meijer with her to get his gift, get goodie bag stuff for her guests, and look at bathing suits since hers is too small. We needed to get balloons and pick up the cake. Instead I had to return to bed with the heating pad, leaving sir with both girls, 3 places to go and a party in 3 hours. More Imitrex, and, fortunately, scavenged Fioricet 3. I cupped my precious older daughter’s face in my hands and promised her it would be okay, that Daddy would take her to get everything instead, that I would rest and get better so I could be at her party at the pizza place, which I wanted and needed to do more than anything in the world. My smart, sensitive, newly-seven year old X, who only this past year began to grasp what it meant every time I had to go to the hospital, that every time I have to go lie down it is to prevent another ER visit. Who over the past year has seen me be admitted 6 times and have major surgery (surgery which we told her would greatly improve things). This daughter looked at me bravely this morning and said “Okay, Mama.” And I went back to bed and cried.

The combination of the Imitrex and Fioricet worked, and I made it to the party. I was able to be charming and appropriate with the moms, enthusiastic and sweet to X’s friends. The party was a success.

After kid bedtime, John and I watched some episodes of Lost. He went to the Sundae Station to get us some ice cream. I got hot fudge on mine, because lately chocolate has been the most benign of my triggers, with fruit being far worse. And you know what, I wanted it. And my headache came back. And I got mad.

What is life for? What kind of life is it if I have to sit very still, go nowhere, eat nothing but rice? Get up at exactly 7 am and go to bed at 12? So, then I would get fewer headaches, maybe, but I wouldn’t be happy. I am going through a bit of an angry phase. This is not the way I want to live.

Monday I see Dr. “Manhands” at BG Family Physicians, hoping he will maintain what Dr. H was doing until I can get in with my neurologist in August. If he agrees, I should get more medicine and at least be back to having a variety of options. And Botox, I guess, on Friday. And me, very quiet, small, and still, hoping the searing, insidious flash of the illness in my brain will do the same.

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