How migraines affect daily life is a complex question. The answer is it can range from a quiet knock to a raging storm overtaking your whole world. With support, good medical care, and determination I have continued my migraine journey through the full range of migraine days. I have shared before…”Remember the good and survive the bad.”
Perhaps, we want to truly embrace what is good. I found a quote recently and then lost the author. It went like this…”Gratitude shows us what is there instead of what isn’t.” Please forgive me for the time needed to find the author. Although the words are not mine, they will stay with me. Gratitude is a powerful thing and can make an impact on your daily life. You can read more about gratitude in my journey in my article Migraine Patient Journey: Gratitude.
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Migraine Daily Maintenance
Every person with migraine has to find what works for them and we must support each other on this road of finding healing and hope. I will share my daily routine here to provide a possible glimpse into what it could look like. Maybe you can relate or you see someone you love doing this as well.
Allow extra time to take migraine preventatives with breakfast and be sure to get in a good breakfast so that hunger does not trigger a migraine. I have found it helpful to include protein. Balance water and coffee to provide necessary hydration with the needed/desired caffeine. I have always been a big coffee drinker, but I am working on balance! Gloria Jeans and Koa Coffee which Forbes says is the Best in America usually draws other people to whatever room I am in. I will be writing more on caffeine and migraine soon as life is creating some new experiences with this one.
Prep Prep Prep
It is all about having what I need when I need it. Fighting off triggers or preventing them are some of the best ways for me to stay migraine free during the day. I can’t guarantee I won’t develop one, but I can be sure I do all I am able to do to prepare if an attack does occur.
My Migraine Kit
At work, I have a migraine kit. This includes my rescue medications. My main rescue medicine is my injection. As a teacher, I keep that in my classroom in a safe place and an extra supply in my school nurse’s office. This way if I accidentally forget to restock or am away from my room and it is easier for her to use her supply I am covered.
In addition to meds, I keep my Migrastil Migraine Creme and Migrastil Migraine Stick. The Migraine Stick has saved me multiple times from odor-triggered migraines. The peppermint smell is a well-tolerated odor blocker for me. I also use it in combination with meds for pain as well. The cream is a great pain and tension reliever for my neck because I can’t take my muscle relaxers at school and it won’t make me drowsy. My neck spasms can sometimes be a trigger.
My kit also includes an air sick back in case I have to be taken to the hospital and am nauseous. Snacks and water are always on hand as well. Being prepared is a very important part of my migraine daily life. This takes intention and commitment. At my house, I ensure we have packed backpacks, lunches, and my migraine kit supplies. I can’t afford to let things run out.
Some additional medications I keep on hand include Tylenol and Advil. I keep them on hand for pain and inflammation/tension. Uttering those words to a migraine sufferer many times may cause an eye roll or cringe unless they are the lucky few that caffeine and Tylenol work for. If that is you, I am truly happy for you! They don’t make me drowsy or have side effects that I experience. I don’t take them very often and for me, they are treating things other than migraines.
Communication and Migraines Affect on Daily Life
I am honest and transparent with my staff and students. This creates trust and understanding. Everyone knows I have a plan for when I get a migraine. At this point to say “if a migraine occurs” is not an accurate way to record my journey. However, I am hopeful that the frequency will continue to decrease.
My teammate, admin, and other staff are all amazing. My school nurse cares for me as compassionately as she does our students. When you have good people you know you are in the right place. If I have had to take my migraine injection or a “migraine cocktail” home version I give my teammate a heads up. Sometimes just knowing someone cares makes a big difference. My administration is so kind and encouraging as well. I just know I am blessed beyond measure in my home and school life.
In addition to a wonderful staff, my students are an inspiring part of my journey as well. I am honest with them and they receive me with such grace and compassion. They are used to my migraine lighting. I think it soothes them. Their hearts are big and I am so thankful. Read more about lighting options in Best Lighting for the Office and Beyond.
Family time is so special to us. As the boys get older we are quickly becoming all too familiar with the busyness that homework and sports add. However, when we can come together for a meal or a story it just adds so much peace into our days. Mind you that peace could have been preceded by a pajama war. Nevertheless, this is a life I still count myself lucky to live. My boys are the best things in my life. Creating this space for each other is a layer of support that is so priceless.
Take meds routinely and be sure all needed meds are taken. Get good quality sleep and set a sleep schedule. In other words, have good sleep hygiene. Have an Waking Up with a Migraine: Not a Dream.
The evening routine for each person may look different. Sometimes we just need some time to reflect or relax from a busy day. Find what soothes and also what encourages you. I have some favorite products I will share below. When you find what you enjoy that is what you stick with. I wish you well friends.
Some Favorite Products
These are some of my favorite products and I use all almost daily. Although the diffuser comes with essential oils, I am currently using Young Living so I wanted to share that with you. There are of course others out there. I have had a very positive experience and they last a very long time. If you are new to essential oils they can be a blessing. However, test carefully due to any sensitivities. Lavender is a gentle one with many benefits. The eye mask I use daily. Find what you love and stick with that.
This is a place to find support and encouragement. Migraines may feel overwhelming at times, but there is always hope. Come back here anytime. Reach out on the contact page and join our Facebook group. I wish you well friends.