Dealing With Sadness

A reader asked me, "How do you and others with daily migraines have a life and not be so depressed?"

I don’t think any of us do avoid it. Sadness is just part of the disease. This is a frustrating answer, but time is the only thing that has made it easier.

I’ve learned to accept what I can and can’t do, and to give in to the pain when I need to. I also give in to the sadness sometimes because there’s no denying that chronic pain sucks. Sure, I spend more time in bed than I’d like, and I’d prefer to cry a little less, but this is my life whether I like it or not.

I try to not get down on myself or feel guilty when I feel bad so that I can enjoy the time that I feel good. And some days I can even convince myself that it’s good to have a day in bed. How else would I find the time to devour books?

Submit a comment to share how do you deal with the sadness.

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Posted in Coping. 2 Comments »

2 Responses to “Dealing With Sadness”

  1. Franco Says:

    I understand sadness well. There was a time when I had it reasonably under control, just by using a 20 mg. daily dose of the Prozac. Since my exacerbation 3 and a half years ago, wherein the headache doubled in intensity, reaching an unbearable “8”— it has been much more difficult to contain the depression, even though I have increased the Prozac to 30 mg. {I don’t like to take more than amount because it “psyches me out” too much}.

    Psychologically, it must cope with this severe depression every single day now. My music helps me allot, being a musician. I finally had a piano moved into my apartment a couple summers ago, and playing it has been a tremendous source of escape for me—from both the depression and concomittant pain.

    Strange part of the depression is that I know that I am happy underneath it all. That is, if it weren’t for the extreme chemical imbalance(s)with which I am contending—the overall circumstances in my life wouldn’t be so bad. At 40, it seemed things were really beginning to turn around for me as I moved back to a great city and had landed one of the best paying jobs of my life at the local University; had moved into a new apartment at a great new location. That was in the Spring of 2000.

    Practically, financially, and emotionally I felt I was on the verge of some sort of breakthrough; then, WHAM, during the latter half of 2001, I endeavored to come off of a nasty medication I had been on for 4 1/2 years and all hell broke loose. I ended up in detox and sadness seemed to overcome me. Anger, frustration, and then depression entered in over the fact that I should never had been prescribed a benzodiazepine for my type of headache, that it has only been approved by the FDA for seizures and panic attacks [neither of which I had had].

    I tell myself God is bigger than this, I have an angel on my shoulder; I actually talk to Angelo when I am feeling all alone and in my daily frustrations. I tell myself there are still some great pleasures in life—like eating, listening to music, enjoying beauty, talking daily on the phone to a few great friends, listening to talk radio and even watching SOAPS. I can still walk, talk, have excellent health from the bridge of my nose down to the soles of my feet.

    And at times I do go into my pain like this blog’s author. If we fight it too much, it becomes an overwhelming struggle, whereas if we become one with it, we are empowered not to let it get the better of us. It loses some of its grip on us, as we confront our monster.

    But now I am drifting off to another subject, and so will just add that neither must our depression get the better of us. We will appreciate the mountain so much more, because of our deep valleyes. I must believe that though Sadness may endure for the nite, joy cometh in the morning.

  2. Franco Says:

    I understand sadness well. There was a time when I had it reasonably under control, just by using a 20 mg. daily dose of the Prozac. Since my exacerbation 3 and a half years ago, wherein the headache doubled in intensity, reaching an unbearable “8”— it has been much more difficult to contain the depression, even though I have increased the Prozac to 30 mg. {I don’t like to take more than amount because it “psyches me out” too much}.

    Psychologically, I must cope with this severe depression every single day now. My music helps me allot, being a musician. I finally had a piano moved into my apartment a couple summers ago, and playing it has been a tremendous source of escape for me—from both the depression and concomittant pain.

    Strange part of the depression is that I know that I could be happy underneath it all. That is, if it weren’t for the extreme chemical imbalance(s)with which I am contending—the overall circumstances in my life wouldn’t be so bad. At 40, it seemed things were really beginning to turn around for me as I moved back to a great city and had landed one of the best paying jobs of my life at the local University; had moved into a new apartment at a great new location. That was in the Spring of 2000.

    Practically, financially, and emotionally I felt I was on the verge of some sort of breakthrough; then, WHAM, during the latter half of 2001, I endeavored to come off of a nasty medication I had been on for 4 1/2 years and all hell broke loose. I ended up in detox and sadness seemed to overcome me. Anger, frustration, and then depression entered in over the fact that I should never had been prescribed a benzodiazepine for my type of headache, albeit by a so-called “headache specialist” at purportedly one of the top headache clinics in the Midwest. How disillusioning. The med. prescribed for “intractable migraine” had only been approved by the FDA for seizures and panic attacks [neither of which I had had].

    And, I was never warned of the seriousness of coming off this benzo, i.e. it would take my brain chemistry up to two years to return to normal; it was like this was all I needed dealing with a complicated migraine situation. The “heartfelt” headache clinic was largely responsible for making my headache worse than ever. Coupled with the worst depression of my life, I was in for the fight of my life.

    I tell myself God is bigger than this, I have an angel on my shoulder; I actually talk to Angelo when I am feeling all alone and in my daily frustrations. I tell myself there are still some great pleasures in life—like eating, listening to music, enjoying beauty, talking daily on the phone to a few great friends, listening to talk radio and even watching SOAPS. I can still walk, talk, have excellent health from the bridge of my nose down to the soles of my feet.

    And at times I do go into my pain like this blog’s author. If we fight it too much, it becomes an overwhelming struggle, whereas if we become one with it, we are empowered not to let it get the better of us. It loses some of its grip on us, as we confront our monster.

    But now I am drifting off to another subject, and so will just add that neither must our depression get the better of us. We will appreciate the mountain so much more, because of our deep valleys. I must believe that though Sadness may endure for the nite, joy cometh in the morning.

    –Franco (alias Thom PAYNE)

    (First Revision; delete original)


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