Having Small Children and Migraine

Today is my baby’s 5th birthday!  He tells me, “It’s easy Mom, a whole hand!” and throws his little fingers out.  This Superman is my heart.

FullSizeRender (25)

Now that my baby is a whole hand and thinking about Kindergarten, how can I not reflect on how far we’ve come?  I have a lot of people ask me questions about being a mom of young ones, pregnancy, being a stay at home mom, and how I have managed all of those things while battling migraines, and all the craziness that comes with it.  I’ve had people tell me they have considered not having children because of it.  These events are hard enough but adding health issues into them makes these life events a whole lot more twisted.

It brings up so many emotions on how hard it was being pregnant, having a baby, and living a migraine life.  As with everything, both pregnancies were different, both births and babies were different and migraine life was extremely different.

I can say I never considered not being a mom.  I was meant to be a mom.  In my mind, body and soul, I was meant to be someone’s mom (cue the tears).  My heart beats for my children.  Being a mom is the best thing that has ever happened to me and the best thing that ever will.  I feel these seconds, days, months fly by.  At the same time each second seems hard, crazy, and isn’t it nap time yet?  I look back at how wonderful it was and then really think back at how hard it was.  Like, REALLY hard, in SO many ways.  Yet so very magical, precious and fleeting.

People told me that having little one’s was the hardest time with Migraine.  Isn’t having little one’s the hardest part of most people’s lives?  At the same time, there’s no way of knowing, but I have a feeling that when I look back on my life, I will see these as the days of my life.  (If you are a Days of Our Lives watcher read the last line in the dramatic voice.)  Like sand through the hourglass……

FullSizeRender (26)

HAPPY BIRTHDAY to my birthday boy.  To know him is to love him.  Truly!  His smile is contagious, his stories make me laugh, he tells me “I love you” all day long and gives the best hugs.

A whole hand now!  How does time go so fast?

Advertisements

Migraine Medication Break while Pregnant

I have been pregnant and nursing for the last 2 years. I was off meds while trying to conceive and was both unable and unwilling to take anything while my body provided for my baby. It was actually a relief to not have to focus on myself. Did I get migraines during this time? Of course!!!!! A LOT!!! I was given permission by both my pediatrician and neurologist to take Percocet, Immitrex injections (with a pump and dump to follow) and sinus medication to help with my pain. I did these VERY sparingly even with permission while nursing and basically just suffered while I was pregnant. It prolonged my pain but to know that I was putting my baby above myself gave me confidence in my decision. I would have greatly benefited from abortive drugs, I just didn’t. No judgment for anyone that did. It was just my personal choice to suffer a lot during this time.
Once I was done nursing, I was overwhelmed with the thoughts of drugging my body again and to what extent. I have always been on preventatives, rescue meds, and everything in between. Over the course of my “medication vacation” I started to journal my life as a migraine sufferer and joined support groups. I learned a lot during this time. It really made me look at the amount of drugs I was taking, the side effects that I didn’t realize I was having, and the long term effects it would have on me.
It scared me to think that I would be poisoning my body again and to what extent. The thing that I know is this….I can not live without meds. I’ve been reading about how the body can heal itself and ways to cure yourself with food. Over the years I have accumulated quite a list of foods that trigger my migraines. Red wine, soy sauce, pork, draft beer, and on and on and on. I have never committed fully to a migraine elimination diet, gluten free or any of the other diet that migraine suffers experiment with. I have always thought that because I have so many other triggers not related to food that restricting myself wouldn’t help. I did, however, start seeing food in a different way than I had in the past. Instead of thinking of what I can’t have, I have started to see some foods as something I can and should have to help my body heal or stay in a more consistent state. With that said, I can not “heal” myself of Migraine. It is a neurological disease that I was cursed to inherit from my mom and grandmothers. The wiring in my brain is altered and I have many triggers that make them fire and attack. I am starting to believe, though, that I can certainly try to stop my wires from firing through living more proactively and not relying solely on drugs. I have started to make changes in my diet and ways I live my life and react to my triggers and pre migraine symptoms. It’s definitely a slow process but I’m starting to look at western medicine in combination with my medication therapy. In the past, I have relied on drugs and even a migraine surgery to magically cure my brain of these life altering migraines and chronic pain that I live in but nothing has cured me. My greatest hope is to find a combination of therapies to put my disease in remission or slow the attacks.
Like any good vacation, I have walked away with a more positive outlook on my health both mentally and physically. I’m ending my drug vacation with a clearer vision of my disease. I want to see medication as only a piece instead of feeling like it is my only option. I have felt like a lab rat my whole life. No migraine sufferer is the same and a lot of trial and error are required. I am trying to find a path to wellness specifically for me both medicinally and holistically.