Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Head Musings and Happiness

​The head did get worse over Monday night, but wasn't so bad Tuesday morning; I took it easy, and when it seemed to be settled, I went in to work​,​ a bit late (9:30 instead of 8). My work-neighbor took one look at me and commented, not unkindly, that I didn't look well, and we had an interesting conversation about working through pain when you don't have other options. I mean, of course I can stay home, and if I need to, I do; but I get enough headaches that I can't really afford to stay home every time I'm not 100%, if I can still function. And that was Tuesday: not 100%, but functional. I got work done. And if I had to stop and just rub my head sometimes, and if I couldn't stay late to make up for coming in late, well, I got more done than I would have if I'd stayed home. (Stupid work ethic, though: thanks, Mom.)

In the past, I've tried to come up with a scale of 1-10, or actually 0-10, to rate my headaches, but the fine delineations have defeated me. Rating the headaches as mild, moderate, or severe works better for me. Specifically:
  • Mild: Anything from "aware of my head" up, while remaining close to normal levels of functionality. At this stage, the worst pain is the worry that it will get worse.
  • Moderate: Increased head pain and frequently an upset stomach (aka the burps). The "trying things" stage, where I'll try anything that might have a chance of helping. Go to bed early? Eat something? Maybe if I lie down? Take some Excedrin? How about Alka-Seltzer? How about just a glass of water? Would a cold pack on my head help? What about a hot pack?​ Still somewhat functional, but impaired: can work, but maybe not a full day; will put off non-essential errands; and may cancel plans with friends for fear of being caught out with an increase in pain.
  • Severe: The worst, obviously. Everything gets canceled. Often accompanied by an awful upset stomach, which rarely but occasionally leads to vomiting. The body wants to lie down, desperately, but sometimes the head and/or stomach won't let me. Often found sitting on the edge of the couch, rocking a little, trying not to cry from the pain. All true, but writing it out makes me realize: This is the pathetic stage! And this explains why I am so happy that I've had fewer of these, as well as fewer total, since I started seeing the chiropractor.

So, today was barely in Mild; by early afternoon, I was a little euphoric about it. I had been a bit worried last night, when I got in bed at 8:30, then was awake for a while, then got a cold pack, then that didn't help ... but the heat pack did, and I slept pretty well.​ I felt good enough to run a few errands at lunch today, and I got some groceries after work despite feeling slight twinges of uh-oh (it's not bad right now, but it isn't gone, either). Honestly, it's a little sad how happy I am not to have a headache ... but there we are. Almost as happy as this dog:
And that's pretty happy. Another thing that made me happy today, oddly enough, was a spam message. But how could this not?
My diplomat has arrived! Or, rather, "arrive". Do you know how long I've been waiting for my diplomat to arrive? Forever! Has yours arrived yet?


Blogger Kate P said...

I don't think there's anything wrong with being happy there's no pain. Sometimes you don't realize how bad it was until it's gone. So yay!

Dog tongues crack me up. Almost as much as giraffe tongues do.

11:01 PM, July 24, 2013  

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