Monday, January 24, 2011

Memories of a Migraine..,

Nary a day goes by when I’m not on Twitter or Facebook, or at least checking my email – especially on the weekends. This weekend I did not touch my laptop or Blackberry until late Sunday. I wish I could say that I had exhibited extreme self control and spent quality time with my family, or writing, or some productive endeavor. Not hardly.

I felt it coming all week…was really feeling it on Friday night, but as of when I woke up Saturday morning I was hit HARD with my worst migraine EVER. I have a long history with migraines, but never has one gone on for so long (nearly two full days!) nor been so violent. Every symptom was magnified and multiplied beyond comprehension. Even my attempts to ‘sleep it off’ were disturbed as nightmares plagued me.

Clearly stress was having its way with me. I could push it down and aside for only so long but it WOULD be heard, loud and clear!

While this migraine was so far beyond scary and painful, that I considered calling 911….it brought to light some potentially life or at least sanity saving facts.

Both from a psychological as well as mystical point of view, dreams are far from arbitrary. They play out what is in our subconscious; that which we suppress when focusing on our day and conscious thoughts, as well as that which we have pushed so far aside, not wanting to deal with. Out of sight only SEEMS to be out of mind….or rather it can drive you there! Dreams are also believed to bring us messages, insights, warnings, and direction.

My head was exploding in pain, as images of people and events past and present came marching into my mental line of vision; The dreams actually waking me even as I lay there so exhausted and so in pain and desperate to sleep.

During the awake times, even through the pain, I gained understanding. I understood why those specific things….even those from way in the past….were coming to mind, virtually screaming ‘Deal with me! Deal with me!’.

All of us, regularly deal with things – especially the unpleasant ones – on so many levels and then file them away….but those files, even if stashed away in the recesses of our minds, those files grow too heavy to bear.

We can never forget events, experiences, or people. We deal just enough ‘to put it behind us’ and ‘move on’. Yet, that file still sits there like an unresolved cold case. The files pile up. They pinch a nerve, they spasm a muscle. They bring pain in one form or another until we pay attention. When we ignore the little twinges or even external reminders, they come to us louder and louder until they still our ability to look away and focus on anything else.

People often wonder if there isn’t just some way to throw away the files…to just empty the ‘recycle bin’ in our brain. Most of us figure that disposing of the issue…the file…would be easier than dealing with it …for lack of a better term…head on.

Take it from me….when you deal enough to manage the challenge that you face, but do not deal with all the connected feelings, emotional and mental repercussions…the issues linger until you do, and that is never at your own leisure. We can never forget our experiences but we can process them so that all we are filing away is the memory and discard - not just distance ourselves from - the associated pain. “Not dealing” sounds like a survivable option….but the weight, the effect, the pain that will resurface is in essence just giving those painful people and events power to harm us for the rest of our lives. If we have had the strength to walk through the fire, why would we still allow that pain to burn inside of us and slowly consume us?

The only way I know to truly slay these demons is to make silence in one's mind. To pull out each person or event and acknowledge ‘that happened, it wasn't right, it hurt/sucked/harmed me, but here is how I gained insight or strength from it, or even just survived it (which truly does mean gaining strength or insight) and I have moved past it so now the emotional baggage is released even if the memory remains in the files of my mind.’

It HAS to be acknowledged. Looked at – NOT relived – but looked at so you can see that you can let go of the pain because you are safely past it. Honor yourself by acknowledging what was unjust, harmful, or painful. Give yourself credit for the strength you possessed to get through it, for the lessons learned and wisdom gained…..and the let it go. It is truly like diffusing a bomb. Take away the harmful power it has and you have room to let the light in….to stockpile all the wonderful memories you WANT to have and are working so hard to create right here and now.

Sounds like a headache? Trust me it is the only REAL way to avoid one! 


  1. Very insightful! Amazing blog. Every time I read one of your blogs I learn something new and useful. Please keep up the great work!

  2. OMG this line is so so true! --> If we have had the strength to walk through the fire, why would we still allow that pain to burn inside of us and slowly consume us?
    This blog is awesome!