Lately I’ve been wondering about the term masochist and what properly determines whether one falls under the category. I bet a lot more people qualify than they may realize. By my definition I think that all chronic migraine sufferers fit the profile, myself included.
I know I’m not the only one who hesitates to take medication and treat myself at the first sign of a migraine. It sounds crazy. Here you have a solution, the antidote to your kryptonite and yet you dare hesitate? Madness, pure madness I tell you! Why would anyone want to suffer? Especially because the faster you take these medications the faster and more effective their results. But still every time I find myself hesitating, debating with myself, those demons and angels perched on each shoulder, arguing over what is best, bargaining…
“Well, it’s not that bad maybe I can handle it. Maybe it will go away… ”
“Are you kidding? You know it won’t go away. Just take the damn medication.”
“But it’s so expensive. And you only get a certain amount allotted to you each month. Save it for a more severe situation, when you need it more. You don’t want to run out this early in the month.”
You’re supposed to treat your migraine within the first hour of feeling symptoms in order to treat it most effectively. A majority of the time I wake up with a migraine, which means I’m already behind, I’ve already missed my opportunity and then I’m left with the decision of wasting my medicine on a migraine that has already taken form and risking the possibility that medicine might not work. Or I find myself remaining hopeful that the headache isn’t that bad and it might surpass, which is crazy because that hardly ever happens.
Then there’s also the side effects of the medication. Of course, no medicine comes without its perks. Each medicine in all its forms, whether its nasal spray, pill, or injection makes me tired and sluggish. I usually need to accompany my medicine with a large dose of caffeine. I have a standing order at Starbucks.
Then there’s the issue of is this headache really worth it? Because insurance only gives me so many meds per month and I need to use them wisely. I think, “Well I only have 3 more left for the month and it’s only the 10th. Maybe I should have it for a more severe case.”
Am I being rational or am I simply being a masochist, forcing myself to suffer without reason? I don’t know. I’d like to think there’s some rationality behind my madness.
I find a tiny bit of comfort in knowing that I am not the only migraineur who thinks this way. However, I so desperately wish there was a solution. . . that we could all have enough medicine to cover us for the entire month, or we never got any headaches and didn’t need any medicine at all. But until that day comes, I guess I’ll still be fighting my demons.