Sunday, 12 October 2008

Back again

Well, it’s been a while and I don’t know why. I have been prioritising story writing, I guess. Work is also very busy at this time of year and I don’t feel much like sitting at a computer in the evening. Instead, Dani and I have been watching series one of Life on Mars, which we borrowed from the library. We missed it first time around but we loved Ashes to Ashes, so we thought we’d give it a go. It doesn’t have Keely Hawes, which is a shame, but we really enjoyed it. I did find it a bit painful from time to time and I found myself dealing with flashes of hospital memory that I could have done without. But I guess that shows it was well written.

On Friday we went to the Planetarium at Chichester. Dani had made a booking for a home ed visit and we ended up being a group of forty six. Thinking about the stars is rather good for putting things in perspective. When the papers and tv never stop about the end of the world as we know it, it is rather soothing to look at the constellations in the company of a man who loves his subject.

Sadly, Leo came down with a ferocious migraine. We tried food and managed to find half a paracetamol, but it was too late. The pain got worse and then, in a packed train carriage, the poor boy threw up. He managed to get it all in an empty Tupperware, which was very clever of him, and he then dozed a bit. He got off the train ok but then threw up again (in another Tupperware!) right at the ticket barriers in Brighton station. It’s probably one of the most hectic spots in the whole town. But it’s amazing how people can manage to avoid you if you’re accompanied by a vomiting child! He rallied a bit after that so we splashed out on a cab home from the station. We had a cold-ridden Pearlie with us too and she was pretty tired by then. She started to feel car-sick in the cab but, luckily, nothing came of it! The children retired to their respective rooms and rested. I phoned the doctor because I’d like to know if there is some better drug we could give him at the first sign of a migraine. I hope she’ll take my word for it that that is what is going on for him, without wanting to spend time and money on a load of tests and so on. Honestly, he is like a text book case and watching him has made me realise that I had migraines as a child, even though I never had them diagnosed until I was about twenty two and had one that involved my falling on the floor repeatedly! There is a certain amount we can do with rest and food, to reduce the incidence, but migraine management is tricky for an adult sometimes – let alone someone of eight. And the dread and panic that he feels when one of coming on just makes things worse, I suspect.

The kids have been busy with things and we’re all getting into the stride with our routine for the term. We shall review things at Christmas, I think, and see how everyone is feeling with the things they’re doing.

I am finding all this financial crisis stuff rather hard to understand. I understand it for about five minutes and then forget again and it all just seems like nonsense. Something will happen. No doubt, the people with least will end up suffering the most as that is what usually happens, isn’t it?


HelenHaricot said...

commiserations to leo on migraine. no sensible ideas i'm afraid

Anonymous said...

poor leo!

It's Monday now and I went into Migraine on Friday morning, and am still there.

All that mystery illness I have been having over the years now appears to be migraine and it does help to read your accounts of how it affects you and Leo.

I'm just on the codeine and paracetemol tablets the doc gave, but they don't appear to take the pain away. What else is there?

Mind you he hasn't diagnosed migraine even though I keep saying "Isn't this migraine?"

Is migraine still one of those things like PMT that they half claim doesn't really exist despite millions suffering from it?

EF x

Allie said...

I think docs' reactions vary widely. I had a doc diagnose me (though I reckon I'd had them in childhood too - undiagnosed) when I was a young woman. He was very calm and re-assuring.

I know Helen uses Imigran, which you can get over the counter here now. I tend to take pink migraleve if I spot it in time. That is paracetamol, codeine and an anti-sickness drug. But, for me, the best thing is to do all I can to minimise triggers. My triggers are very common ones - low blood sugar thing (need regular food), erratic sleep patterns, alcohol, adrenaline and hormones! Some of those I can control and some I can't. The thing is to stop triggers combining.

Dani found it very helpful to read Oliver Sacks' book on migraine. This was good at getting across the message that migraine is something very different to a headache. I can get quite worrying symptoms and they helped calm her fears. Things like not being able to speak properly (wrong words in wrong order!), visual weirdness (shimmering) and terrible feelings of foreboding are rather alarming if you don't know it's the migraine.

Allie said...

ps. If I get one that lasts several days I usually have to really 'give in' at some point - sleep, in dark, drink water, cry if I need to.

Good luck!

HelenHaricot said...

we seem to have a v similar migraine experience Allie! yes, i use imgran, as it mostly -though not inevitably - works. otherwise i also use codeine and an anti-emetic. i also can word slur and loose the words, and also don't judge visual distances well. the imigran - when works - corrects all of these, and also the gloomies. it does give me some side effects - but nothing dreadful