Hammer Head

Hi, I’m Nic and this is my very best friend Headache. We’re like conjoined twins only we didn’t get connected until I was eight years old and Headache introduced itself by practically splitting my head in two, making light hurt my eyes and causing me to vomit uncontrollably.

I mean, really, I vomited on the school bus (the horror!), in all manner of cups, bags and bowls, into my own arm sleeve and sometimes in the toilet. If Headache wanted to be friends so badly it could have just said so.

“Hormones,” the doctor told me later, when I had a daughter with her own headache friend, “they start at about seven or eight.”

“Kids don’t get headaches,” my mom said at first, until I threw up in the car a few times. Headache does not like car rides, no sir-ee.

I tried to kill Headache when I was nineteen and they finally had an injection that wiped it out.

Headache got me back when I was pregnant with Bunny and couldn’t take the medicine. There is not much more pitiful than a largely pregnant girl pulled over on the side of the road in a church parking lot to vomit.

I’ve had a headache on and off for a week now. It made me realize that Headache has been away for a while.

Absence did not make the heart grow fonder.

I suppose it’s the hormones, again. Now that all I have to do is think about a hot flash and it magically appears, Headache has decided it does not want to miss the party.

I’m drinking water and taking ibuprofen and monitoring my sugar and caffeine and still Headache remains angry.

What do you want from me you old bag?

When I was younger, and I could not function, I would think about the stories I heard about people who blew their heads off when they could no longer take the pain. Nowadays I would Google it, but back then it was just wild legend. I took comfort in the fact that it was never so bad I considered getting rid of my head altogether.

I used to ask people to punch the back of my head. They always said no so I did it myself. For some reason, it seemed to help for a moment, only a moment, but it was worth it.

In my old age I’m better at living with Headache. I can usually still function and I have various combinations of things I eat or drink to keep it at a dull roar. I hardly ever get to the point of throwing up.

Headache still does not like the car, though. I repeat, HEADACHE DOES NOT LIKE THE CAR.

Eventually there was a grim acceptance that this is the lot I was given. I’m probably meant to learn something.

So far I learned I hate headaches.

Nic

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