Monthly Archives: January 2014

Migraines and memories

My wife probably already thinks I’m crazy. So, when I stopped taking my medication, I started hiding things from her. This is not without good reason as I complained about stomach pains at the end of December and her first thought was the medication, not the effect of Christmas, or Excessmas as I think it should perhaps be called.

Driving to work
This only happened once, in early January, on a morning when I was somewhat consumed by anger over a not-insignificant problem. (Basically, someone broke a door. It was probably due to break, and if I’d broken it myself I would still have been a bit mad. But someone else broke it.)

Anyhow. I think I was driving with due care and attention. The point is, I realised that I had passed my turn at a junction. I just didn’t change lanes to make the turn, didn’t notice a thing. I was in automatic. Less than 30 seconds after the junction I recognised where I was.

Following any required u-turns(!) I finally arrive at work and an immense and sprawling public car park. The earlier you arrive, the closer to the office you get to park. My arrival times are somewhat erratic (even without accidental detours) so each day when I finish work I have to remember where my car is. This has not been a problem until lately – several times I’ve walked past my car towards the far end of the parking area. This is either because I think I parked that far away (I probably did the day before) or because I’m not thinking at all. The latter is a bit like the driving incident, I guess – I’m distracted by something.

I am a most fortunate migraine sufferer, as I don’t get the headache part. This is a relief as all accounts I’ve heard of migraine headaches convince me that it would be unbearable to someone of such a weak disposition as I. (And I would be unbearable too.)

My migraine is visual only – an ‘aura’ that I don’t think has ever lasted more than an hour, even when untreated. I had my first one under medication, and my latest one a few weeks after stopping the medication. My optometrist confirmed that my eyes are fine and suggested the migraine diagnosis, and my nodding-doctor agreed.

The treatment, by the way, is rest. Specifically I need to drag my eyes away from screens and other sources of brightness. Even adjusting screen brightness and contrast isn’t enough.

Rest isn’t always feasible. On the latest occurrence I really needed to get an email out. Typing with everything feeling swimmy and out of focus is not something I would recommend. Next time this happens I hope I remember that I then drove home still feeling some of the effects, which probably would not have been the case if I’d rested.

Distractions are getting to me in all situations (eg My inbox will not be the boss of me!). I admit I often distract myself, or make excuses not to just get on with it! Maybe that’s why I often feel that nothing ever gets done.