I always feel weird when I tell others I have migraines. It’s something I don’t really like doing. It’s something I’m going to have to tell all my professors this semester. I’ll be missing a day of class in September for a doctor’s appointment. While I would schedule around school, I’m not going to miss my chance to go to Jefferson to hopefully figure this whole thing out.
I don’t like admitting that my migraines have interfered with my education. I don’t like admitting defeat, that the migraine has beat me, turned me into a crying mess curled up on the floor with my eyes squeezed shut and my hands clapped around my hears. I still think I can beat this if I try hard enough, if I try harder.
That’s the stigma though, isn’t it? That it’s a weakness, a personal flaw. I feel like I don’t have control of my body, I can’t rein it in. My head rebels, punishing me for thinking I could contain something so wild. I feel weak for not getting over it, for having a low pain tolerance, for not being able to deal with it.
I don’t know how to react to people after I tell them I have chronic migraines and headaches. It’s like this dirty secret I have to keep because of the stigma surrounding chronic migraines and headaches. I don’t want to admit it. I don’t want to have to experience someone telling me it’s invalid, that it’s not a problem. I wouldn’t know how to react to that. I would probably get angry, maybe even try to explain to them what I experience on a daily basis but pain is so hard to explain. It’s something we all experience but we all have different levels of tolerance and different attitudes towards pain. It’s one of those human experiences that I can’t communicate. After going through what I do on a daily basis, I couldn’t handle being told that it’s ‘just a headache’.
And that’s what I’m afraid of. I’m afraid that I’m being over dramatic, that it is indeed just a headache and I’m over reacting, that I’m weak for not being able to handle this, to handle something that so many other people deal with. I know I am a migraine warrior, I go through so much. Every day is a battle with pain and the array of symptoms that migraine brings. The one thing I never wanted to happen all ready has, migraines getting in the way of education. It irks me out, knowing I’ll be missing school to go to a doctor’s appointment. I just hope that my professors are understanding and that I’ll be able to recover from my absence. That’s all I can do anymore, hope.