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calh9519

3 Year anniversary

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by , 02-03-2011 at 01:51 PM (1148 Views)
3 years ago today (at 9:09 PM), my life changed forever. I was sitting on my bed talking to a friend from school online about the superbowl that had just ended, and I was hit with the worst headache of my life. Literally, I felt like my head had been hit by a train and then exploded. I called my mom, told her I needed to go to the doctor, and that she needed to come home ASAP. As soon as I hung up, I lost consciousness for about 20 minutes until she got home. That night I was admitted to the hospital and every test they had was run. I had a CT, MRI, EKG, and countless bloodwork done. I was slipping in and out of consciousness the whole time. My mom was convinced that I had a brain aneurysm, and was starting to plan accordingly. The doctors didn't find anything wrong, but kept me admitted to watch my status.

Ever since 9:09 PM, February 3, 2008, I have had a constant headache. Not headaches that come and go, one solid headache. The first year was the hardest, just dealing with the pain and managing it.

I've seen a hundred specialists and been hospitalized a dozen times, even had brain surgery, but have found no relief. Unfortunately, pain medications don't effect the pain anymore, but I do feel the side affects. It's a complicated and frustrating battle, but I've learned strategies that have helped with the pain.

August 2008 I was admitted to the Michigan Headache & Neurological Institute in Ann Arbor, MI, and was officially diagnosed with New Daily Persistant Headaches (basically means the never-ending headache) and Cluster headaches. Cluster headaches are headaches that usually only attack one side, and are infamously known as the "suicide headache," and for good reason. The pain is so intense, and last for so long that those who suffer from them often resort to suicide. Unfortunately, I have been pushed to this brink before. Fortunately, I failed. It's rough, especially because my "baseline" headache is about a 7 on a 1-10 pain scale (lowest it's ever been is a 5, right after I had brain surgery and everything was still pretty numb), and when my cluster headache comes around it shoots up to 17 or so. It sucks, but I'm working through it!

Today is bittersweet for me. My life changed forever, but in the process I found who my true friends are, and made great friends in the hospital that will be in my life forever. At least now my pain tolerance is higher, and I value life and my "good days" more than I ever have before.

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