Monday, June 29, 2009

This is my brain!



I wrote this haiku the other day because it felt like my head was fire.

blistering brain cells
they pop, sizzle and crackle
bacon fried migraine

and I tried to make this doodled collage to go with the haiku. I'm not sure what a shrink would say about my interpretation of my brain cells.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Migraine Haiku-The Sequel

who is this stranger
walking in my shoes each day
migraine for a crown

pain transforms my words
thin wisps of dark filaments
floating in my eyes

a toxic harpy
she tries to bite my head off
co-worker from hell

pain flutters its wings
its constant chirping so loud
a bird on the head

I lurch and stagger
pain brain sloshes in my head
zombie in training

migraines steal my words
and sends them to outer space
leaving me speechless

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Migraine Doodle



I'm trying to use some of new doodling skills to make a migraine doodle. The girl is from Dover Clip Art. The Migraine part is how I feel today.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Are You a Migraine Zombie?

A dear online friend suggested to me, after we wrote some migraine zombie haiku, that perhaps we should rename Migraine Disease to Zombie Migraine Disease and then perhaps there would be more understanding in the world, but how do you know if you have Migraine Zombie Disease?

I have used my extensive zombie knowledge to come up with the following questionnaire. If you answer yes to any of the following questions during a Migraine Attack, you might be a Migraine Zombie!

1) Do you often lurch and stagger around?

2) Do you emit low and guttural moans from time to time?

3) Do you have decreased motor function in your hands and fingers?

4) Do you have an unhealthy obsession with brains, such as "what is wrong with my brain? Why does my brain hurt so much, etc"

5) Do you have an increased sense of smell? Zombies can smell something from miles away.

6) Have you awoken from a nearly catatonic state? This could be The Migraine Zombie Coma.

7) Have you lost your vision capabilities? Another zombie symptom is degeneration of the corneas.

Remember one of the first signs of being infected with Zombie Migraine Disease is headache or migraine!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Migraine Stories at The Migraine Research Foundation

Two of my migraine collages are being featured at The Migraine Research Foundation under The Migraine Stories Section.

"Almost everyone either knows someone who has suffered from migraine, or has struggled with migraine personally. For many sufferers, migraine interferes with their ability to function in everyday life, whether that is going to school or work, caring for family or attending social functions. Here are some of their stories."

Migraine Chick uses her artwork to express her experience with migraine.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Book Review-A Brain Wider Than The Sky

I really liked how Andrew Levy used his book A Brain Wider Than The Sky to capture the struggles of living with migraine along with a historical journey of migraine treatments of the past. He also writes about artists and personalities throughout history who also had migraine such Virginia Wolf, Van Gogh, Freud, and even Elvis.

Living with chronic daily migraine, I was interested to learn about how migraine has influenced literature, music and even religion. I had no idea how migraine had permeated the realm of artists like Van Gogh and writers like Emily Dickinson, nor was I aware that the book “Alice in Wonderland” was about migraine symptoms experienced by the Louis Carroll.

On a personal note, Levy explores the effects migraines have on relationships, exposing the range of emotions one has to go through in trying to maintain a relationship with a loved one when you are in chronic pain.

This book really expanded my knowledge of migraines impact on the world, and it made me feel not so alone with living with this illness. It also gave me hope that there can be life and positive creativity even when you have migraines.

Friday, June 12, 2009

My Comics in Neurology Now


Neurology Now magazine is featuring Migraine Chick Comics in their May/June issue under the Speak Up section. They selected three of my comics and they are using one of my collages for the author bio picture.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Migraine Monster



I visited the Toledo Zoo recently where I snapped this picture of a gorilla. I really like how the glare from the window transformed his head. It reminded me a lot of how a migraine can feel sometimes. I think he also makes a good migraine monster don't you?

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Migraine Barbie and Her Aura



Although Migraine Barbie's aura always looked like candy, she knew a migraine was sure to follow after she saw them.

Monday, June 8, 2009

New Headache/Migraine Online Tool

There is a new online tool to help headache and migraine sufferers. It's called Headache U

"The National Headache Foundation has developed an online tool that allows each individual to become a student of his/her own headaches and to seek and find resources that will be especially helpful, given his or her experience. "Headache U” was developed under the guidance of an advisory panel of physicians who specialize in headache care, and people with headache."

It looks like it is fairly easy to sign up for, and there is a great "The Complete Headache Chart." There is also a good section that explains aura.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Zentangle

I totally find that making collages is a great pain distraction for me, but it's hard to work on them in some places like lunchtime at work etc, so I was so happy to find another crafty type distraction called Zentangle, where all you need is some pen and paper.

Zentangle is drawing elaborate patterns in a form of meditation. It's like doodling on purpose, and even if you can't draw, like me, you can make them. I never realized before that you can teach yourself to doodle, and the great thing is that I'm hoping to incorporate these designs into mixed media collages.

Here are some links about Zentangle.

Zen Doodle

Zendala How to Draw a Mandala

Zentangle

How to Start a Zentangle/YouTube Video

Crazy Art Girl's Musing-a newbie Zentangle

Thursday, June 4, 2009

New Migraine Heroes Book

CureTogether is releasing the first Introducing the First Crowdsourced Book on Migraine. It's called Migraine Heroes: 271 People Share Their Experiences and Treatments by Alexandra Carmichael and 271 CureTogether Members.

This looks like a great resource for migraine sufferers. Inside the book, 271 people share stories, symptoms, and triggers. Also there is information on data on co-morbid conditions, and detailed comments on treatments by real patients. All proceeds from Migraine Heroes go to fund the Migraine data community at CureTogether.org.

What I really like about the book is the Comments On Symptoms section, where migraineurs discuss things like excessive yawning, short-term memory loss, excessive urination, and trouble concentrating. It's such a relief to know that I'm not alone with these other symptoms during a migraine, and it's not just me!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Botox Follow Up

I saw my neurologist for my follow up appointment with the Botox shots. I'm still not having any results from it, and he said that I maybe a "non-responder," but he would like to try again in two months with another series of shots. This time with more units of Botox and more locations. If that doesn't help, he said he would not continue with the shots and we would try something else.

As for the side effects that I've been having with stiff neck and sore shoulders, he said they were typical side effects and I can use heat and massage now to try to get some relief.

I'm not sure if I'm going to get the next series of shots. With the cost and the discomfort and no relief from my migraines, I'm not sure if it will be worth it, but then again what if the next series of shots help. I'm going to have to give this a long think in my noodle.