Always Lurking

He slips out of his lair. Sticking to the shadows he creeps ever closer waiting to make his presence felt. It starts painlessly, confusing and distracting so he can stay hidden. Is that him? He soon unleashes a blast of light confirming the worst. He’s back. Slow moving he intensifies the brightness before falling silent. Minutes pass.

Then it begins.


Stabbing at my eye. Over and over and over. The pain spreads. He’s now hammering my head with a bat. I feel sick but when I do vomit it doesn’t help. Only darkness can save me. Darkness and burying my head in a pillow. Darkness, pillows and drugs. Sleep. Please let me sleep. My saviours.

Hours pass.

I wake and he’s gone. Back to his lair. Back knowing he’s won again. Back knowing he will strike again and there is nothing I can do. What’s left are wounds. An aching head that will take hours and days to pass. Constipation thanks to the drugs. A lack of appetite and a massive drop in concentration. If that’s not enough the next night is usually light on sleep so even if the head has cleared a couple of days later I’m left drained. He wins again. The migraine always wins.

I’ve suffered from migraines for over 10 years now. They are far less frequent than when they started, when I used to get clusters of 2 or 3 per week, but probably average out at one a fortnight. I’ve got used to the pain and can spot the symptoms easily now. What I’ve not got used to is the disruption they cause. Take today. A lazy Saturday planned, trip out for some shopping and out of nowhere a migraine struck mid morning. Boom. Day spoiled.

I’m lucky in that I’ve an understanding boss that lets me work around the migraines when they strike during the week but the disruption to mine and others life really frustrates me. I always prided myself in not giving in to an illness but a migraine knocks me for six. I’ve never found my trigger and the majority of mine occur through the night or I wake up with the migraine already under way. For many stress is a trigger and I’ve always dismissed that as a cause as I never really feel stressed. Angry and frustrated at times but I’ve never thought of that as stress – maybe it is. Maybe I need to face up to that and deal with it better.

I’m also lucky as many migraine sufferers have it far worse than me. That doesn’t stop me dreading the next time the migraine leaves his lair.


3…Wake up feeling a bit warm but nothing unusual there

2…Grabbing some breakfast, watching a bit of news and notice ‘the line’. This is a bad sign. The line I notice is horizontal, moves up my eye over a period of 20 minutes, makes it difficult to focus on text etc and is a sure sign that a migraine is on the way. Two pink migraleve and it’s back to bed. Maybe I can stop it before it starts.

1…The calm before the storm? Have I stopped it? Maybe it wasn’t a migraine. Maybe I could travel down to Barrow?


No such luck. Pain kicks in. Vomiting ensues. I ain’t traveling nowhere. Maybe it will clear quickly. 6 hours later without much improvement I come to the conclusion it won’t. I hate migraines. I hate Mondays. Yesterday was one of the few days where I could say that I would have rather been in Barrow. Yesterday was also one of my strongest migraines in the last couple of years. Thankfully cleared today but still feeling sorry for myself.

Never mind – almost got my identity back. Just not too sure who else has got a claim on it though.