I am having a hard time accepting that I needed to give in today. I am doing better this week, which means “failures” are harder to accept emotionally. Besides having one nearly pain-free day and then easy-to-treat headaches the following two days, I’ve been TRYING. Keeping track of symptoms, medications, special circumstances. Taking less medicine or being sure to take it early enough or conversely waiting long enough.
But now I’m in bed on a day I didn’t WANT to give up, didn’t think I would have to, a perfect beautiful chilly fall day (the worst kind for my migraine) when I planned to be very engaged with my children and to go to Meijer while they were both at school. Yes, for me, that would have been a pretty successful day. A trip to the store is quite a spoon-eater.
I have taken Imitrex for the last three days. Even though the pain was easier, I still treated it. Today if I do I will absolutely get into a rebound cycle starting tomorrow. Even three days in a row makes it likely, but at four, you’re done. Consulting with my migraine coach / partner / husband (aka SirMigraine) led me to lie down and battle it out this afternoon. Personally I’d like to pop my Imitrex like I have for ten years, not thinking about tomorrow, but saving today. But then I would pay for it for weeks with increased headaches and disability and medication use and we are really, really trying to avoid that. I do have a sample Sumovel Imitrex air injection up here if I can’t take it anymore. And you know what, I’m pissed.
But lying next to me, here on the rumpled feather blanket, not too close to impact my range of movement but close enough that I can hold her paw and hear her breathing, is my 15 month old smooth collie rescue dog Asia Dot. I was never a dog person, but Sir and I eventually acquiesced to the idea for our older daughter who desperately wants to volunteer at animal shelters but is too young. X even researched the information herself and filled out her own applications with my approval, only to be denied, which we were prepared for. An eight year old can help take care of a dog, I thought. She would get so much out of it. And four year old Zo certainly wouldn’t mind. Sir thought a dog would be good for my health too, kind of a therapy dog. And here she is. Ironically she and X get along the least well though Asia loves everybody. But she and I have a special relationship. She stays with me all the time, follows me everywhere, to the bathroom and the kitchen and back up to my bed, nervous and awkward on the stairs. She curls up next to me on the couch. She rests her muzzle on my knee, gazing at me with concerned, thoughtful, adoring eyes. When I inevitably go lie down due to pain or fatigue she usually accompanies me, abandoning her busy herder breeding and napping. I am not alone. Isolation is really the most depressing aspect of chronic illness. And yes, she’s just a dog. She can’t rub my neck or tap-tap-tap over the pulsing pain of my head or sing me to sleep or tell me a story. But she is here, quietly, and staying with me for nothing, because she’s made it apparent that doing so is her reason for living, and it is all she wants to do in the world. How can that not warm your heart, slow your breathing, lower your heart rate, soothe your soul? Asia Dot, Chronic Illness Isolation Therapy Dog.
I think my pain just decreased a little. Maybe I can really get away without Imitrex today. That would be amazing.