Femme migraine

Letter to my Migraine Wife

Apr 12, 2021

Your excuse: “I have a migraine”

My sweet,

We have been married for almost 20 years and for as long as I have heard you regularly say to me: I have a migraine. At first, I was compassionate and wanted to help you. As time passed, I told myself that you must be very tired to always invoke the same excuse .

I used to think that you probably didn't feel like doing housework and that a migraine is good for staying in bed. I also happened to think that it is very practical at the end of the day or during the weekend when we spend time together. And then I moved on.

Then your migraine became a habit. Every week, I heard your little voice telling me that you still had a headache , another migraine that was brewing. I knew then that you were probably going to stay in bed for a few hours, leaving me to pick up the children (which I absolutely don't mind, by the way), to prepare dinner, to manage the household, while fulfilling my own obligations, in addition to yours. Then you would reappear, gray and swollen eyes, proof that something was going on in your head.

I remember having accompanied you to the first doctor then a second and a whole bunch of other specialists and later, to the institute. But nothing helped. I even remember even asking you the question: "Are you sure you really have a migraine?" Although your migraines had diminished in number, the ones that remained were visibly colossal, bedridden for long hours, sometimes even days.

Yet I never heard you complain. You have endured, during all these long years, this pain that I did not understand. Then, with the weariness of having to live together (you, me and your migraine), I, too, began to feel dizzy. I was nagging, squeaky, naughty and probably tiring too. But you took those harsh words on yourself and turned them into kind smiles, into sweet, loving words.

Today I have the same excuse as you

Today, here I am lying in the dark, with tears in my eyes and a jackhammer located just under my scalp. The slightest noise plows my skull, and a simple smell makes me want to give back stuff I ate last year. You come to see me every half hour to put a damp cloth on my forehead and caress my cheek, telling myself that it will pass. You are so sweet.

But it doesn't happen. It's so painful. So piercing that even the rotation of the planet hurts me. I don't know how many hours passed before I could finally open my eyes without having a thick haze in place of my brain. But, I could hear my thoughts again and form coherent sentences. It's not the drugs that relieved me or the remedies of grandmother but it is the softness of your hands. I am sure of it.

I didn't know the migraine excuse would be so heavy to bear. Today I know it. I don't regret my past thoughts about your condition because regrets don't allow you to grow. However, now I understand because I have experienced it. And I can tell you're a strong person for putting up with this for so long.

I love you.

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