April 12, 2005

There I was . . .

. . . standing in the bathroom, slumped against the wall, my head pressed to the cold metal of the door frame on the stall, wondering whether I was going to vomit, and not sure whether I hoped I would already or whether I thought I could chance taking the train home without throwing up all over myself. Not exactly the high point of my day yesterday, but I suppose it will have to do by way of introduction to the migraine that burst into being sometime after 3:00, as near as I can recall.

I've had these headaches since I was a child but I've not had one for a very long time and this one just seemed to come out of nowhere. I called the nanny and asked her to pick me up from the train and then waited as long as I could, in a dark conference room or shuttling between the dark conference room and the bathroom when the nausea got too intense and felt too sudden, until I was reasonably certain I would not vomit from the pain on the train.

I made my way slowly to the train and sat down, pulling a cap low over my eyes, and sat there for the entire ride, trying to think of anything other than what I had for lunch. I sat there in more or less of a daze, not sleeping, not awake, just zoned out so that the announcement for my station came as a surprise, a welcome surprise but a surprise just the same, thus indicating that I had lost all spatial relationship with my sense of time and distance -- usually I know exactly where the train is in relation to my stop without effort.

I walked, again very slowly and with great attention to my balance, up to the parking lot where the nanny collected me, thank goodness, and I was able to locate the sun glasses I had left in the car and she took me home. She took one look at me and said that she would stay with the kids until my wife got home. That was very kind as I was close to totally incapacitated at that point.

I went upstairs, undressed, and climbed into bed, still wearing my sun glasses, where I remained and I think I may have slept, for about 2 hours and the worst of it passed and I was finally able to remove my sun glasses and tolerate the light.

When I was a child and would get these, I always had to vomit from the pain, I could not tolerate light, and I had to get cold, as cold as I could. Sometimes, I would take off all my clothes and lie on the tile floor of the bathroom, just to get as cold as I could, with a towel wrapped around my head to keep the light out. I think that used to worry my parents quite a lot when I was small. I can certainly understand why that would be.

Today, I am post-migraine. Not 100% by any means. I did not work out and I took 2 advil as a precaution because I can still feel something lurking. If I make it through the whole day, I will declare a victory.

I suppose time will tell.

Posted by Random Penseur at April 12, 2005 08:12 AM

Could be all the stress of house selling/hunting.

Feel better RP!!!!

Posted by: Wicked H at April 12, 2005 10:17 AM

Oy, that's horrible. Glad you got home ok and are feeling better, if not 100%.

I used to use ice packs on my head, and had the same "must not see light" feeling. I've not had that bad an attack in years, thankfully.

Posted by: nic at April 12, 2005 12:04 PM

Oh heavens I understand how you felt as I have suffered from migraines all my life as well and I agree the absolute worst is the nausea that just won't stop!

Glad you feel a bit better and fingers crossed that it doesn't return.

Sweet nanny!


PS: I am one of your regular readers, who does not always leave a comment, but do have a blog of my own.

Posted by: dee at April 12, 2005 03:15 PM

I sure could have used the Nanny when I was in New Orleans...to take care of the headache, I mean.

I rarely get headaches like that, but when I do, they hurt like a mother. Tylenol seems to work best for me and, like you, I need it to be cold.

Posted by: Howard at April 15, 2005 05:17 PM

Have you charted your eating habits? I have several foods that trigger a severe headache. I was told these could be a reaction to the amino acid tyramine. Red wine, aged cheese, MSG, even certain sugars will trigger a killer headache. When I watch my diet, 80-90% of my headaches are gone.

When I do get them, I use a heat pack on either the back of my neck or over my eyes. Migraine strength pain killer, caffeine, and rest also are part and parcel of my regimine.

Posted by: ez at April 17, 2005 03:01 PM
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