Migraine Update: Rebound Headaches & Weaning Off Meds

I haven’t done a migraine update since July and SO much has changed since then. I’ve worked really hard the past six months or so on my health. Being in a vicious migraine cycle for the past 7+ years was a nightmare and I knew that something needed to change. I couldn’t continue being in constant pain everyday.

Before I continue, please read my migraine story and know that my journey will be different than yours if you also have headaches or migraine. I should write an updated migraine story since I wrote that one in 2018 but I have done many migraine updates since. It took me years to find a Neurologist that worked with me and understood me. My story would be much different if I hadn’t found my current Neurologist.

Muscle Relaxers

In July I wrote about taking muscle relaxers at night to help me sleep and lessen the tension in my neck and jaw. I was very skeptical when my Neurologist suggested muscle relaxers but I’ve been pleasantly surprised! I only take them on the weekends because I do sleep almost too well and have a hard time waking up on workdays. But I do notice a huge difference when I take them and it really has helped me.

Rebound Headaches

How many times have I mentioned rebound headaches now? For years I lived off of ibuprofen because I was in constant pain and it was the only thing that made the pain manageable. Taking all that ibuprofen was not only extremely unhealthy but also put me in an endless rebound headache cycle.

I made it a goal this summer to break my rebound headache cycle which meant weaning off of ibuprofen and any other pain medication that I was relying on. It’s almost like an addiction and I didn’t think that I’d be able to get through it. It’s been about 4 months since this journey began and I’m happy to say that I’ve only taken pain medication a handful of times per month since. I still can’t get through a bad migraine without rescue meds but I don’t take anything daily for pain.

I should mention that weaning off of pain medication was very painful. I had about a month of severe pain and basically withdrawal symptoms. I’m still in awe of myself that I was able to break the cycle. I still have daily headaches and migraine cycles a few times a month that last days but I know my overall health is much better now.

Weaning Off Medication

I’ve always wanted kids but it’s felt impossible because I was in constant pain and relied of medication to keep me going. Over the past few months I’ve finally felt like I might be able to start a family which is a huge deal for me. I’ve watched friends and family members start their families while knowing that I might never be able to have that same experience. Now I feel like it’s a possibility.

Because of that, I made the decision with my Neurologist to wean off of my daily preventative medication. These meds were also controlling my tremor so weaning off them meant that my tremor would come back full force. It took about a month for me to completely wean off of them and I really noticed a difference right away. I have a constant headache, tremor, and an increase in migraine days.

It won’t be easy but I hope that weaning off of this medication will be okay. It’s only been a couple of weeks now so it’s hard for me to say. I hope that one day soon I feel comfortable and confident in deciding to start a family. The thought of being pregnant still terrifies me but I hope it’ll be worth it!

So much has changed in the past several months and I feel like I have a lot to be proud of. My journey with Chronic Migraine hasn’t been easy but I’ve learned a lot.

Photo by Logan Nolin on Unsplash

July According to my iPhone

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July was another crazy busy month! I’m trying to enjoy every minute of summer but it’s going by way too quick. In July I got to celebrate the birth of my twin nieces, lots of birthdays, family time, and unfortunately, the death of Brett’s grandpa.

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My husband, Brett, works for an airline but he also works as a Media Director for a local airshow and balloon festival. The airshow takes place the week of the fourth so leading up to that I got to watch all of his news interviews on TV. He does such a great job!

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I don’t really care for airplanes but I do love seeing the hot air balloons! This picture was taken at one of the night balloon illumes. I especially love the American flag balloon!

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Next we celebrated the birth of my sister in law’s twins! Her and her husband had been trying for kids for at least 5 years before these little miracles were born. Ava and Elizabeth were born July 12th at 35 weeks. Their mom had been hospitalized since 31 weeks. Mom and babies are doing great! The girls got released from the NICU a few days ago and are home with their parents.

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Oscar got to come to work with me for the afternoon! He loved meeting my co-workers, getting lots of cuddles, and sitting on my lap while I worked. He’s such a good boy!

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Brett’s grandpa passed away on July 15th at 97 years old. Grandpa Ed was in the Army Air Force in WWII. We went down to Florida last week for his service and to clean out the house. He was buried with full military honors. Grandma Emma who passed away in 2017 was buried alongside him.

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We also had to say goodbye to Emma and Ed’s house in Florida. We spent four days cleaning everything out, organizing, and dividing all the belongings. I had a hard time leaving because I have so many great memories from our many trips to visit.

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These two were my favorite! Just look how sweet they were! I have so much love for both Ed and Emma and know that they loved me just as much. One of my favorite things about this trip was looking through the millions of pictures they had collected. Ed scrapbooked before scapbooking was cool! His scrapbook from WWII was one of the coolest things I have ever seen.

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Brett’s Aunt from Tennessee is visiting this week. They had a family reunion on Sunday so she’s been staying at our house since. It’s kind of fun having our first real house guest!

July had many highs and lows. It was hard to lose Grandpa Ed but we gained two new lives at nearly the same time. We had prayed for Ava and Elizabeth for years and I can’t wait to pass on the stories of their amazing great-grandparents to them.

How was your July?

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April According to my iPhone

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April went by so fast! This month we were busy at work finishing up everything before the notorious tax day. My department is always pretty crazy during tax season and this year was no different.

April was also the start of our annual walking challenge at work. The challenge this year is to reach 10,000 steps every day. The team that finishes the challenge with the most points gets an extra vacation day or additional wellness dollars! Extra vacation day for me, please! Oscar is happy about the walking challenge because it means he gets to go for extra walks to help me reach my step goal.

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My bosses bought our team some games this year to play on chill Friday afternoons. One of the games is this giant Jenga set. We usually have 4:01s on Friday after the stock market closes where we unwind by playing a few games of Jenga together. Work hard, play hard. It’s all about balance afterall!

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As always, I spent a ton of time cuddling with my fur babies. Oscar is our dachshund mix and Lucy is our cat. I love how much they love each other too!

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I was heartbroken to watch the Notre Dame fire in Paris. I watched pretty much the whole thing live and felt devastated. I love history and am very lucky to have been able to visit the Notre Dame a few times already. This isn’t necessarily about a building or a church, it’s about living history. Everyone has their own opinions but I’m sad for the people of Paris and am hopeful to be able to see Notre Dame restored at some point.

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Brett has been traveling a ton for work. When he was in Atlanta for a week I made sure to FaceTime him every night so we could catch up and he could talk to Lucy and Oscar.

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Oscar’s first Easter with our family! He was probably living on the streets last year at this time which is really sad to think about. We love our rescue pup so much!

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Here’s a little look into our Easter decor. We hosted Easter dinner for Brett’s family. We used the dining room table (pictured below) to display the food and setup another table in our living room to eat. It turned out great! This was our second Easter in our home.

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Please note that I successfully cooked my first ham! Also note the Easter basket with the two pink eggs. My sister in law did her twin gender reveal on Easter! They are having twin girls and I could not be more excited! Baby shower planning is now in full swing!

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Our best friend graduated from college last weekend! We threw him a surprise graduation party in our backyard and invited all our friends and his family. He thought he was coming over so that I could drive everyone to dinner (professional DD!) but instead he found everyone waiting in our backyard ready to celebrate! It did snow a couple hours after this picture was taken. Michigan is unpredictable!

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I’m not sure that I’ve mentioned it on the blog but my parent’s adopted a dachshund puppy named Bruno in December. He’s a brindle like Oscar and they are best friends. Oscar is on the left and Bruno is on the right! My dad brings Bruno over to our house a lot for puppy play dates!

April was a super busy and super fun month! Looking back at all of these pictures makes me feel like a lot happened in only 30 days. I’m looking forward to the things to come in May including my cousin’s baby shower, Memorial Day weekend, lots and lots of dog walks, and (hopefully) the start of summer weather.

How was your April?

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