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Last night, I got the most powerful sense, as I looked at the people we walked past on the way home, that there was something wrong about their faces. A mask-like quality, angles too stiff, origami-fold flesh around flattened eyeballs,none of the angles entirely meeting. It would have been scary had it not come with phantom pain, faint nausea, an elevated sense of taste and smell. New, but quite recognisable. My fortnightly friend, my migrainous phase.

This was a very mild effect. Some people fetch up with the centre of their vision punched out, but because of the way the brain works you don't necessarily see the hole unless you're looking directly at something compicated, like a person's face. This is common enough to have a name: "doughnut face". This was so barely there it almost looked real, a distortion of my vision so subtle it took the complications of a human face to bring it out.

I went home, took my pill. Packed up all those letters for people, pasted up Drake's 7, did the washing up. My pills are great. But today I've forgotten them (they're still where I left them last night). I try to carry them always, but you always forget them when you most need them, stuff that acts on your brain is just like that.

So. Stabbing pain in my head. Vision already beginning to tangle. Floaty arms. Sick. Head wrong weight. Fifteen minutes before I can take (more conventional but much less effective) pills. At least they'll dim the pain. I don't even have a cool flannel here ...


( 3 worms — Feed the birds )
12th Jul, 2002 13:55 (UTC)
Doughnut Faces, etc.
Migraine is such a weird, poetic malady. I'm fortunate in that I don't get the pain & nausea,usually, but I suffer from almost constant visual & sometimes sensory disturbance, Van Gogh-style 'haloes' around lights, rubbery pavement beneath my feet, etc. Doctor once said it's 'a form of migraine'. Specs certainly don't help much, and as I've had it as long as I can remember, it wouldn't be a brain tumour (-whew-) It is scary at times, but I guess you've just gotta accept it as a rather annoying eleement of yer genius...
13th Jul, 2002 13:53 (UTC)
Re: Doughnut Faces, etc.
Better now! ... my pills really are superb. My Doctor calls is "atypical migraine". And yeah, I don't get much pain and nausea (and when I do get get pain and nausea, they tend to be dissociative, in some sense obviously without physical cuase), all my symptoms are concentrated up the weird-ass end; sounds, smells, touch, topological, all that.

I was worried that mine was going to turn on to constant, since my second attack was 12 months after the first, my third six months after that, my fourth 3 months later, etc. Even if it's not painful (a "benign" syndrome) it plays hell with my concentration. I couldn't see myself managing a job if it went constant ...

On the other hand, given that I'm already in treatment, if that happened they'd probably just slap me on the preventative version of what I've got, and hullo to medicated life. I'd miss it, I think.
12th Jul, 2002 18:45 (UTC)
migraine sympathy
I've been lucky that I haven't had a migraine attact for years but I used to go blind from it. The 'hole' in my vision would grow and grow until I could only see the peripheral edges of my field of vision. I couldn't do anything except lie down until things returned to normal. My attacks went away of their accord - I can hope your attacks vanish too.

( 3 worms — Feed the birds )