Conversation After School on Migraine and Vicodin

“I didn’t drive this morning,” I say carelessly, sounding more like I’m stating an observation as I wait and look out at the parking lot. I watch the cars drive down the road, looking at their general shapes and the blurs of color as I can’t make out a lot of detail without my glasses, “I didn’t feel well this morning,” I tack on. He looks at me, looking for more details, “migraine,” I add, “I don’t feel comfortable driving.”

“Ah, yeah,” he says, “I wouldn’t either if I had a car.”

I chuckle. I have a car and I can’t even drive it. We talk for a little bit about migraines. He knows someone with migraines, his girlfriend’s brother. I ask a couple questions he doesn’t know the answer to.

“Are they migraines or cluster headaches?” I ask.

“I don’t know, I think they’re migraines. What are cluster headaches?” he asks.

I laugh. God. “Headache is really a misnomer. They’re so much more,” I laugh dryly, “They’re also known as suicide headaches,” his eyes widen. “It’s the most painful condition known. If her brother moves around and it’s short, it’s a cluster headache. If he has a variety of symptoms, over sensitivity being the big one then it’s a migraine. ” I feel pretty good about educating someone about this.

“What do you take for that?” he asks me after a moment.

There is a little hesitation. I don’t take anything because nothing works and no one knows what to give me. If I give him a name, I’ll have to explain what it does. We’re English majors, not pre-med or health majors.  The only thing I take is Excedrin and the occasional vicodin.

“Vicodin,” I say.

His eyes widen and then he laughs. The image of me, the stereotype assigned me to as an education major finally shatters. There’s always something about someone, everyone has a secret.

“Yeah,” I kick a rock, scoffing the bottom of my shoe on the pavement. “I can’t wait until I have a drug test and there are narcotics in my body fluid,” I laugh, it’s that sad, dry, desperate one that makes me sick, makes my situation seem so much more pathetic.

He laughs again, heartier.

“Well,” I think, “I have a prescription for it so,” I trail off.

“Oh,” he says, “I just figured…,” he trails off too.

My eyes widen now. For a brief second he just assumed it was illegal. The image shattered the wrong way.

“No, no,” I begin. After all the shit I go through, went through to get Vicodin, to get some relief.

“That’s what I would do,” he shrugs, “with that much pain.”

I shrug and pull my bag higher on my shoulders.  I hear the Excedrin rattle in my bag.

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2 thoughts on “Conversation After School on Migraine and Vicodin

  1. Hahaha! I love this one. I love that he, understanding the extent of your pain, makes a judgment, based on just how far he’d go for himself. In a way, I find it loving. Twisted, but there is care for another human’s comfort and relief in there, too.

    Liked by 1 person

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