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We are three adults living in a polyamorous triad family. The content here is intended for an adult audience. If you are not an adult, please leave now.
I suffered my first migraine attack when I was 9 years old. In those years, I didn't really know what it was. I only knew that my neck would hurt terribly, and then I'd be knocked down with a headache that sent me off to bed, sick and crying and miserable.
After nearly 50 years, I've battled the monster in my head using every sort of trick I could find. I've used a host of medications: preventative and abortive and those intended to "manage" the pain. I've tried sinus remedies and decongestants and homeopathics and herbal medicines. I've studied biofeedback and accupressure, and I've tried chiropractic. I can give you the list of things that trigger migraine attacks for me: flickering lights, and intense fragrances, and MSG, and nutrasweet, and... Oh yeah, and big, stomping weather fronts.
I've seen doctors for years in the search to find a way to live with my migraines. Mostly, doctors who claim to "specialize" in treating migraine headaches are neurologists. I believe that I've worked with some pretty good neurologists, and I think they were doing the best they could. However, most neurologists have very broad practices. Their waiting rooms are full of people with multiple sclerosis and Parkinson's disease, epilepsy and stroke, cerebral palsy and dementia,... When I appear in the office of a neurologist and complain of chronic headaches, I can understand how easy it is to rank my issues way down on the list compared to the folks out front with REAL problems. I get it. AND, I still suffer, sometimes daily, pain and nausea and confusion and depression and anxiety, and all the rest that goes with my migraine attacks.
Recently, listening to NPR, we heard an interview with Teri Robert who has written one of the very best books on the subject of migraines. Her book is full of up to date information and the latest research on this little understood neurological condition. One of the enlightening bits was a discussion of a growing medical specialty area -- board certified headache specialists. These doctors come from a variety of medical disciplines, but they share a common focus on the causes of, implications to, and treatments for migraine and headache. Here in Cincinnati, there are three of those very rare, certified headache specialists.
According to the 2010 US census, the Metropolitan Statistical Area that includes Greater Cincinnati, has a population of 2,130,151. Some studies indicate that 13% of Americans suffer with migraine disease. That calculates out to about 277,000 people here in our town. So, our three board certified headache specialists are likely to be BUSY people.
As my headaches have increased in frequency and intensity in the last months, Himself has become more and more determined to get me to a doctor that can do something that can help. When calls to our local specialists ran into roadblocks and gatekeepers, He jumped into His lifelong ADVOCATE mode. There are times when it pays to have your very own, personal, medical establishment warrior. He has spent hours and hours and hours tracking down the people in charge of making things happen in these practices, explaining and describing and insisting and badgering and ... I don't even know what all else. I've heard the frustration in His voice as He has battled on my behalf. In the end, He has won the day. I never doubted He would. I have appointments with all three ... March 11, March 14, and then (if it becomes necessary) on May 1 with the last one. That is, for me, a relief... but it is so much more than that.
That battle, waged for me, speaks to His love and His care and His dedication to my well-being. He wanted this for me, almost more than I wanted it for myself. He chose to take up the challenge and make the calls and unravel the tangles and make it happen. It gains Him nothing at all -- except, hopefully, my improved health and happiness. There have been plenty of words written, here and elsewhere, about what it is to "belong" to another. For me, right now, in this time and in this place, nothing makes it clearer that I BELONG to Him than that He would fight so hard on my behalf. It is love made real in the real world of our real lives.
So, this is my story, but it is also my formal and sincere "Thank You" to the Man I love and serve: Thank you, My Dear Tom, My Sir. When I was too weak, too tired, too worn to fight this battle anymore, You made this happen, and I cannot ever tell You how grateful I am. I love You with all my being. Yours always and all ways...