I’m Not Giving Up

Thank you for the outpouring of support after my diet update. The comments and my email and Facebook have been overflowing with kindness. Assuming that the concerns of those who have contacted me represent those of many who haven’t spoken up, I want to tell you all that I’m not suicidal and am nowhere close to giving up a search for treatment.

The thought of returning to debilitating migraines again is scary and sorrow-filled. I don’t wanna go back! and I’m kicking and screaming about it, but it’s the only choice right now. Despite a generally positive outlook, sometimes I need to talk about how much it sucks to have chronic migraine. Getting my life back a little bit the last few months has been wonderful. Letting it go again is the last thing I want to do, even if it is the right decision. Not telling you how painful it is would contradict my desire to write honestly about how harrowing chronic illness can be.

Analogies leap through my mind as I try to put this experience into words. The best metaphor I’ve come up with is that of a wild animal in captivity. In my months of malnutrition, I haven’t been roaming my natural habitat freely, but I’ve been in a spacious enclosure that’s built to mimic nature. It’s exposed to the elements and the sunlight is plentiful. I haven’t been on the loose, but I’ve been pretty well off. Expanding my diet means being confined to a small cage enclosed with chain-link fencing. The floor is concrete and there’s no natural light.

More than anything, I want to be free, but the well-designed artificial habitat was exponentially better than a tiny cage. But I know what the sunshine feels like on my face and how the wind feels in my hair. I know firsthand it’s possible to get relief from chronic migraine. There’s no way I’m giving up now.

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