I can remember having these headaches in my early adult years...in college I remember breaking down after a three day battle with the beast (that's what I sometimes call the headache,) and asking the one roommate that I did not get along with to please, please take me to a hospital before I lost my shit...again.
I remember staying home from high school because of them. I remember puking and loosing my vision in 4th and 5th grade when I was going through puberty and my hormones were all out of whack.
But my very FIRST memory of a headache, I was about four I think. I know this because I remember my sister Erin being there, but not Hannah. And Hannah was born when I was five.
I remember my mother being there, and it was the late eighties...because my grandparents, aunts and uncles, and my dad all still smoked in the house. Eww. But seriously, it was the eighties...and while it wasn't like Mad Men, with everyone smoking in offices and all Betty Draper-chain smoking while pregnant, it was much more accepted and done in buildings than it is today.
I hated the smell, but loved being at the farm. I distinctly remember hating that my clothes and hair smelled that way after leaving the farm or my grandparents office.
It must have been a holiday, everyone was there eating and I couldn't manage even mashed potatoes. I felt so awful.
I got up from the dinner table without asking and my mom asked me to sit down. She didn't know I was feeling yuk yet. My Ma said I could come and sit with her if I wanted...and I did.
After everyone finished eating, I went into the front guest bedroom and curled up in a chair...it was a comfy, upholstered arm chair. It smelled like cigarettes.
I laid there for hours and my mom said that she thought I was probably getting strep throat, because I always got a headache when I had strep.
Well, it wasn't my throat. It was my first encounter with the beast. After a 4 hour nap, I woke up and was fine. Strep throat, and most other illnesses do not go away with sleep.
It wasn't until years and years and years later that I realized that I had a migraine at age 5. Not until I was an adult and was asked by my neurologist at the time how long I'd had the headaches.
So that's it. The beginning of my journey from a migraine triggered by cigarette smoke as a five year old to where I am today...30 with a chronic, every day headaches/migraines.