Sunday, May 6, 2007

life UPdate

I owe you all an update, I think....

Your prayers have been answered! My migraine broke last Wednesday, after seven days. I stayed home from church last Sunday because I felt led to simply take the time to rest instead of attempting to get up and go - which was definitely for the best, though I always hate missing service. I've had headaches Wednesday, but low-key ones of the sort I'm used to. I'd still appreciate your prayers on that count: I'm now on day 113 consecutive of headaches in general, and continued grace and strength are needed to press on. Also, we don't know what the actual underlying cause of the headaches, or of the migraines in particular, is. (I know what conditions are favorable for onset, but we can't identify any particular trigger. Suffice it to say that high stress and low sleep set me up for migraines, and I was already under both conditions when certain events Wednesday punched the emotional stress component significantly higher and the sleep quotient significantly lower, all of which probably helped trigger this set of migraines. Yet God was faithful through all of it!)

I saw my doctor on Thursday, and all my blood-work is normal and the CT scan showed no abnormalities (praise God!). Thus, it's mostly a guessing game at this point: try one medication for a few months (as many as three of four), varying the dosages, and if it doesn't work, move on to try a new one. It could be the first medication I try helps; it could be it takes years to resolve this problem (I'm hopeful for the former but quite content to wait however long God has decreed). The first medication I've started taking isn't showing any immediate results, but that's expected. It is making me drowsy, though, so that's something I'm having to work through (since it's the week before finals). I've no doubt that God will supply grace above and beyond, as He has all semester. His grace has been a constant testimony to me, and I am in awe of how marvelously He has worked. I know He will continue to display His glory through me.

In the meantime, there are many, many things burdening my heart and springing about in my mind, but those will have to wait for another time (and perhaps even another venue... I'm not sure). God bless you all, and good night!

- Chris


  1. Gosh, Chris, that meds thing is really, really hard. It's a huge blessing all your tests were negative, but it's also frustrating, too. I understand. My Youngest takes meds that need to be adjusted several times a year with the daily flexibility of adjusting to that particular day. Not an easy thing to do.

    Just a couple things to think about ... do not stop doing research on migraines ... you never know what you'll uncover somewhere.

    Keep an open mind about your medical care, and do not be shy about getting another opinion ... at anytime along this path.

    You may want to begin keeping a notebook of your medical records ... getting copies of everything you already have and adding as you go. This will prove invaluable to you in the long run ... you will have all the info at your own finger tips ... huge.

    Also, have you considered tracking your diet and your migraines? It's not always diet, but sometimes is. I know a woman who had these horrible "episodes" where she became unusually ill ... after months of testing, she went to a nutritionist and tracked what she ate - found out she's allergic to red wine! (I'm actually allergic to white wine but am okay with red wine. I don't break out in hives or have breathing problems, but I get really sick everytime I drink it, so I don't anymore.)

    Also, there are some physicians - usually a really good allergist -who will test for food allergies ... another blood test. We had Youngest tested for food allergies ... they are not life-threatening, they do not have visible reactions like hives or breathing problems, but they affect her behavior. She is allergic to peanuts, soy, and egg whites. She can have all these products, but not all at the same time, and not continuously, and not in large proportions in relation to all the food she is eating that day. We "rotate" these foods, and she does great with that. We just don't give them to her everyday.

    When you are tired and under a lot of stress, your seretonin levels, among other things, get really messed up. In odd ways, that can cause you to eat differently. Just something to think about if you haven't already.

    Also, the med you're taking ... can it be divided? A capsule that can be mixed in applesause and divided into doses? We do that with Youngest's meds. There is one that makes her sleepy, so she takes a whole capsule at night. For daytime, I open the capsule and mix it into applesause, then divide it into doses to give her smaller portions during the day so they won't make her sleepy. Tablets can be sliced. Confer with your physician and/or pharmacist. There are a LOT of us who cannot handle a FULL dose of meds, and there are many ways around that. It could be a med that you need to begin slowly with and allow your body to adjust to before increasing. Being drowsy is simply not a good option for you, and I believe it would be worth your time to check into adjusting the dosage.

    btw - not all doctors get that. I love my OB/GYN, but after I delivered both my babies, he insisted on giving me scripts for pain meds, begging me to fill them. I never did - Tylenol and Motrin were more than sufficient. (Now, when I had several root canals, I love the prescription pain meds ;) Anyway, really push the doctor on this ... some are a little "lazy" or ill-informed about all the possibilities for each med and the dosages ... or it's simply nothing they've done before ... and they think every person's body can take the same dose ... you will need to do your research. I spend a lot of time talking with our pharmacist, too.

    It is VERY frustrating having to try a med for a long period of time before finding out if it works. Then, when you do find one that works, it may not work forever ... or the dose may not work forever. It will be a continuous thing ... not a set-in-stone kinda thing.

    Hope this helps! Wow, this year has flown by! Have you made summer plans?

  2. Ame has some great suggestions and input to consider. I am praying. Love you! Mom

  3. Ame mentioned messed up seretonin levels... isn't chocolate the cure for that (unless of course that is another possible trigger).

    Kick butt on finals! Yay! Just a few days to go. :P

  4. Meant to add this to the previous post...

    If chocolate is not a trigger, I prescribe a big bag of M&Ms.



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