Archive for the ‘caffeine’ category

It’s Sunday

May 25, 2008

and I’m drinking a cup of green tea with caffeine, even though I don’t have a headache so it’s against my rules. My rules I made up for myself. I am self-medicating with tea because I feel melancholy due to the fact that my vacation week is nearly over and I didn’t do anything I planned to do, just endured lousy weather and got sick and went back on antibiotics.

But I’m pretty simple minded, a cup of tea and some cookies will probably make me feel better, and I was looking out the window a little while ago and the sun came out for a minute and I noticed that one of my roses has a second bloom starting already, in spite of being totally neglected for the past year.

These are some of my roses from earlier this spring.

My neighbor told me that my roses are basically “weeds” because apparently he can tell that they are root stock. He believes that the original roses have died and their root stock has taken over. He once gave me a stick to prop up one of them (he felt for some reason that it needed to be propped up) and then told me that the stick was more valuable than the rose, so I gave the stick back to him because I don’t need any expensive sticks in my yard. I love my roses because they are happy to live at my house and I am happy to have them here. Growing like a weed and thriving on neglect is a prerequisite for survival in my yard.

This same neighbor objected to my blue fence when I first painted it. He said it reminded him of Taco Bell, a senseless insult. It still makes me laugh to think of it. My blue fence cheers me up every time I look at it. It looks cool in the summer and cheerful in the winter. I should go look at it now.


April 28, 2008

That pain on the left side of my head must be a migraine today, because I can’t think of any words when I want them. I titled this post “denial” because I was thinking “what’s that thing where you don’t let yourself do or have or eat something…?” and “you deny yourself” is as far as my brain would let me get. But “denial” is so commonly used nowadays in the phrase “in denial” that it sounded wrong. So then I went to the thesaurus and found abstinence, austerity, renunciation, avoidance, self-restraint, self-discipline, “swearing off”. As in, “I have migraines so I’m swearing off most food and activities and any exposure to light, odor and sound because they’re probably migraine triggers.”

And what brought this up was I started wondering if this morning’s left-side pain was the Constant Stabbing Headache resurfacing or a migraine starting up, and I thought I would try some aspirin and tea to see if that would help, but as I was opening the tea box I heard myself think “I hate to waste a tea bag if it’s not a migraine.”

What??!! I hate to waste a tea bag??? That’s the way I talk when I’m thinking about taking naratriptan, since it’s expensive, my insurance company limits it and I just don’t think it’s very good for me. Am I so far gone into the migraine hell of “don’t” that I seriously can’t drink a cup of tea without worrying? Why do I even get up in the morning? (Oh, wait, it’s because if I sleep in I get a migraine.)

Anyway, from reading the thesaurus I think the word I was originally looking for was “abnegation,” which I think is a pretty hilarious-looking word and not a good title for a blog post either.

Miracle Drug; or: glass pineapple justifies her pernicious tea habit

March 16, 2008

In the last 24 days I have taken only two Amerge tablets. This is in contrast to the 2 or 3 tablets a week I had been taking. What has caused this sudden reduction in Amerge-popping? It’s my new miracle drug, Caffeine!

Since I don’t drink tea on a daily basis anymore, I have discovered that I can use 2 aspirin and a cup of tea the way I used to use 2 aspirin and a Coca Cola when I was young. If I take it at the beginning of a migraine, the migraine goes away. And instead of feeling zombiefied, as I do for most of the day after taking the Amerge, I feel normal. Or should I say abnormal, in the sense that I feel okay and without pain.

I have been drinking about two cups of tea a week for the last month. I only drink it if I feel a migraine coming on. The two times I took Amerge, I was in my one-person library with no access to tea.

I suppose that it won’t last. I’ll gradually have to drink more and more tea for it to be effective, and the migraines will get closer together, and then I’ll start getting rebound headaches, and remember, my doctor told me to not drink or eat any caffeine, so I’m being an uncooperative patient.

But just think! Tea is very inexpensive. I don’t need a prescription. My insurance company can’t limit how many teabags I use per month. I love the way it tastes. I don’t hate the way it makes me feel. I personally don’t think the Amerge is very good for me.

It’s working for now. That’s more than I could say about some of the drugs the doctor has prescribed. I’ll just have to wait and see what happens next.


February 22, 2008

My doctor finally called. She’s been on vacation for two weeks. She explained the reasons for scanning my sinuses. Okay, I get it now. Then she said “I think you are very stoic about your pain.” It was a complaint, not a compliment. Apparently something she saw in my sinuses has her believing that I have been in terrible pain but hiding it from her.

Listen, doctor, I have been in terrible pain on and off since I was seven years old. That’s 44 years. The Constant Stabbing Headache is not worse than the migraines, it’s just different. When I came to see you it was because the new pain frightened me because it wasn’t a migraine. When you said you thought it was thyroid related I went along with you because what do I know? When you changed your mind and said it was a new version of my migraines I told you why I felt that it wasn’t a migraine, but you disagreed. When you told me to stop drinking caffeine I knew it wouldn’t help but I went along with it because I’m a polite person and you’re the doctor.

If I was stoic I wouldn’t have kept coming back and saying “My head hurts.” For eight months I’ve felt like a flaming hypochondriac whiney crazy complainer, but because I was so sure this new headache was going to kill me I kept coming back and doing whatever you said, on account of I don’t want to die. I know I told you with my words that I was in pain. If I didn’t look or sound like I was in pain, it’s not stoicism. It’s just the result of 44 years of trying to look and sound like I’m not in pain so I can “pass” as a normal person. It’s just a habit.

And I wish I had said all of that to her, but of course, I didn’t.

Anyway, then she seemed surprised that my ENT appointment hadn’t been scheduled yet. She said she would message that Person in her Office Who is Too Busy to Schedule Things and have her make an appointment for me. Should I hold my breath? Nah, holding my breath is probably a migraine trigger.

Nothing Wrong

February 18, 2008

Today I feel like there’s nothing wrong with me.

I dragged my bicycle out from its shed and washed off most of the dust and spiderwebs. I hadn’t ridden it since I got the Constant Stabbing Headache last May, because I was dizzy a lot of the time and afraid to try. I pumped up the tires and rode for about 10 minutes up and down the streets around my house. When I was done my legs felt like overcooked spaghetti. I guess the muscles that walk my dog don’t do bicycles.

And I suppose I’m back to day 1 of no caffeine. I’m thinking I will use black and green tea medicinally, since it worked so well yesterday. I am trying a new kind of herbal tea today. It’s called African Rooibos Red Tea. I’m not too thrilled with it but maybe it will grow on me.

30 days

February 17, 2008

30 days, no caffeine.

Today is day 31, and I have another headache on my left side, and it’s Sunday, and I just spent my whole Sunday walk with my friend being gloomy and negative, and we have a houseguest, and I don’t want to take an Amerge because I already had two in the last 7 days, so:

I took three aspirin and made myself a cup of tea. Black Lipton tea. And I am drinking it right now.

I think it is pretty nervy of doctors, who fill me full of useless pills with horrifying (or annoying) side effects, to tell me not to drink a cup of tea. “Here, take this drug that makes your headache worse and gives you suicidal thoughts. In a couple of months, if you live that long, it might start helping the pain. But no hot chocolate, it’s bad for you!”

I don’t smoke. I don’t drink alcohol. I eat healthy foods. Before I got the constant stabbing headache I exercised every day. I am in all ways a model citizen. So they ferret out my only vice and command me to eliminate it.

And why am I such a “model citizen?” (You could probably call it “boring citizen.”) When I was a child I noticed that second-hand smoke (even though that phrase didn’t exist then) gave me a headache, so I never started smoking. Alcohol gives me a migraine. If I eat the wrong foods or go too far between little tiny meals, I get a migraine. Exercising every day helped keep the migraines away. I truly believe that if giving up caffeine was going to help me, I would have figured that out in the last 40 years, and I would have given it up on my own.


February 16, 2008

I was almost beginning to believe in the no-caffeine cure, because I had eleven days with no migraine. But Thursday I had an icepick pain that lasted a little longer than those usually do, and I knew I would probably get a migraine the next day on that side, and I did. So I took an Amerge on Friday for my left-sided migraine, and another one today for a right-sided migraine.

Before I had medication for my headaches, it was common for me to have a left-sided migraine for three days, then have a day off from pain, then have a right-sided migraine for three days. Because of the Amerge, I can get that experience over with in two or three days instead of seven, and not spend any time lying in a dark room.

My insurance company would apparently like me to return to the bad old days one week every month, and have placed restrictions on my Amerge prescription to make sure that happens. What for? How do they profit from me being in pain and losing days from my life?

Okay, am I always this plaintive when I have a migraine? And I notice I have used the word migraine seven. . .whoops, that makes eight, times in this short post. If I title it Migraine (nine) that will make 10 times. World record!