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The Spirit Animal of the Migraine World ~Migraines & The Nausea Pain Scale

Elizabeth Bibesco once wrote, “Irony is the hygiene of the mind.”.  So it’s appropriate that after writing a post last week on the effects of stress on the body, I would get a whopper stress induced migraine that lasted for 3 1/2 days.  These are fairly common in those dealing with FMS and ME.  And if Ms. Bibesco was correct, then the inside of my head is clean as a whistle.

Migraines and the Nausea Pain Scale

Migraines are not just ‘head aches’ that require a couple aspirin and a little rest.  These are full blown, angry nerve tirades that wage war against your skull and all the contents therein:

 Migraines involve intense pain, often throbbing pain. Light or sound may cause extreme pain. Some people have strange visual disturbances, including blind spots, blurred vision, flashing lights, and zig-zaging lines. Sometimes, migraines cause nausea and vomiting, as well as other symptoms.

Migraines are believed to be caused by abnormal activation of the central nervous system that leads to narrowing and inflammation of the blood vessels in your head. They can last anywhere from a few hours to about three days.


Gary Larson ‘The Far Side’

The accompanying nausea is a fun little ‘extra’ in the migraine experience.  The only advantage to being that sick to your stomach, is it’s a great kick-start to dieting!  To quote Emily Blunt, “I’m one stomach flu away from my goal weight.” {Devil Wears Prada}


So, what do you do to alleviate the pain of a migraine headache?  Well, kinda nothing.  Short of prescription medication which may or may not work, and which could quite possibly result in the growth of a third eye depending on the contraindications, you just have to ride it out.  Rest, darkened rooms, coffee enemas, and a peaceful environment help when you’re full blown in it.  Prevention though, is our best weapon in this fight.  Try and relax as much as possible during a stressful time.  That sounds paradoxical, but becoming aware of how tight your muscles are and the fact that you’re probably only taking shallow breaths will give you the opportunity to take a moment to breathe deep and relax.  For many people, staying away from trigger foods and certain environments are also helpful.  As with so many things in having a chronic illness, being proactive and knowing yourself the key to  minimizing flares.  And when it comes regardless of your best efforts to keep it at bay, settle in to the couch with ‘Mr. Stabby-Brain’ on your lap, and stroke him gently until he chooses to remove his little razor claws from your brain.


~Buttermilk Donuts~


adapted from shutterbean.com
3 1/2 C all purpose flour
3/4 C sugar
1/2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp cinnamon
2 large eggs
3/4 C buttermilk
1/4 C sour cream
1/4 C melted butter, cooled
coconut oil for frying
vanilla glaze:
 1C powdered sugar
1/8 C whole milk (I used hvy cream)
1 tsp vanilla
cinnamon sugar:
3/4 C sugar
2 TBSP cinnamon (I also used about 1 tsp apple pie spice)
Line a cookie sheet with wax paper, and line another with paper towels.
In large bowl whisk flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt and spices.
In medium bowl whisk eggs, buttermilk and sour cream.  Add melted butter and whisk again.
Make a well in center of dry ingredients and pour in liquid.  Gently fold liquid into dry mixture until it forms a sticky ball of dough.
Turn onto floured surface and pat out into disk 1/2″ thick.
Cut out doughnuts and holes and fry in coconut oil about 370 degrees about 2 min on each side till golden brown.  Transfer to paper towels and dip in either sug/cinn or glaze
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  • Reply
    August 25 at 1:31 pm

    I haven’t had a migraine for the last few years (3 or maybe 4 years). Most of mine found me human on the 3rd day. I still have memories of my 2 year old daughter bringing me a wet rag for me head. She is 23 now. I feel so sad that you have to go through migraines. Your cartoons made me laugh but feel horrible at the same time, they are accurate. Debra

    • Reply
      August 25 at 6:09 pm

      That’s awesome Debra, not having migraine for years! I can remember my mother having a few whoppers a year. I would come home and she would be in bed with a wet rag and eat nothing but milk toast for a couple days. Don’t be sad for me! I only get these occasionally, I know people with chronic migraines that go through hell with them, now that’s a bummer! Thanks for stoppin’ and chattin’! 🙂

  • Reply
    August 30 at 8:51 am

    I am well acquainted with “Mr Stabby Brain”. I started getting migraines when I was a child. They eased up in my 30’s and 40’s but now I get them all the time. Relaxation and ginger tea help keep stress-induced migraines under control. But odors like perfume, cleaners, smoke, etc also set them off. It is real hard to prevent those unless I stay home all the time.

    • Reply
      August 30 at 9:21 am

      The ginger tea is a great tip, thank you Sue! I know chemical sensitivity is something those of us with FMS especially deal with. Thanks for stoppin’ Sue! 🙂

  • Reply
    September 1 at 7:53 am

    My cousin use to get migraines so bad he would throw up and need a black room for days. I can’t imagine the pain or dealing with them on a regular basis. You poor thing. Not that you want me to say that but with Fibro it seems you have enough pain not to deal with those too. Yiker. Thank you for linking up to Share With Me #sharewithme

    • Reply
      September 1 at 8:01 am

      Ha! Ha! Thanks Jenny, yes I remember my mom’s migraines with the dark room. Luckily, mine don’t get that bad or even very often. Stress management is the key for me to keep them at bay 🙂

  • Reply
    June 17 at 4:52 pm

    I’ve always suffered from migraines, to some varying degree, from adolescence to today, at 30, with the exception of a 4yr period where I only had maybe one or two very mild ones. There are only two things that could be the reason for the vacation from them: extreme weight loss (I was 100#at 5’7 at thinnest ) or drug addiction. Looking back (I’m now clean and have been for years, I’m also about 80lbs heavier and have two kids to thank for that, ha), I really can’t quite figure out which of the two it was, possibly a combination, plus my body was probably in such a relaxed state 24/7 (only my body, I emotionally went through hell and back during those years and was raped and almost murdered, so it’s safe to say I was a basket case and still am to some degree), that my body never had a chance to get into that state of extreme tension, where every muscle in my body is hard as stone and I’m not even aware of it. It could also have been the heron, but I’m still on methadone maintenance therapy so you would think if that were the case, I’d still be migraines free. Either way, the hiatus was welcomed during such a tumultuous time in my life! I’m not sure if I really had a specific point in this comment, but I just thought it was very interesting how they just stopped for so long. Could also have been hormones. My periods all but stopped for years and when I eventually did find myself pregnant (also when I quit using), the migraines started back up with a vengeance and are always much worse at certain times throughout my cycle. Whatever the cause, or more realistically, causes, may be, being aware and proactive of them is the only way to stay on top of them and have a chance at getting through a day without one. Sure, there are preventative meds, I’ve tried them all, there is Botox, I’ve tried that too, but, in the end, eating right (by right, for ME means no MSG or hidden sneaky MSG—btw, if you’re sensitive to msg, research it and you’d be shocked by what kinds of foods contain it under a lot of different names), and trying to keep my anxiety at Bay and my tension minimized is really the only thing I can do; and when one hits, act immediately. Don’t wait for awhile to “see if it maybe isn’t that bad” (I’m guilty of this one), taking a Tylenol and hoping for the best. Just start your migraine ritual (everyone has one) a as soon as you feel that bad boy coming. Today, I probably get 1-2 moderate migraines each week, and one catastrophic one a month when I’m watching my diet and stress. If I slack on that, start getting lax on the msg patrol, that number easily will triple.

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