Migraine headaches are a huge writing buzz kill. I don’t get them near as often as I did 10-15 years ago (or as bad), but they still rear their ugly heads from time to time. Usually, I know I’m courting trouble when I’m eating too much chocolate, or if I have a beer (even just one) during a football game. I’ve largely given up alcohol of any kind because it’s not worth the three-day migraine that follows. Chocolate is not so easy to walk away from, but I do what I can.
My biggest headache problems these days are poor sleep and drastic weather changes. I thought, moving south, that I would have fewer weather related problems. You know, winters are milder…blah, blah, blah. What I didn’t take into consideration is that, yes, South Carolina winter temperatures are 40-50 most of the time, but when the cold snap comes, it’s a drastic change. In one day, the temperature went from the 50s to the 20s with single digit wind chills. For a migraine sufferer with a weather trigger, this was not a happy forecast. Right on schedule, the mercury went down and the throbbing in my head started to heat up. It’s quiet at first…convinces you that if you take your meds RIGHT NOW you can abort the headache and move on with your life. Stubbornly, I dove back into creating the written picture of the flower garden tucked in the small yard of my character’s home in the city.
Margaret carefully swung open the gate – if the wind caught the wrought iron gate, it would cut off all the…
What kind of flowers were they again? Common all over Charleston…
And then I have to google search the name of the flowers because my pounding head is preventing the stored memory of the azaleas from reaching my fingers.
Right…azaleas…it would cut off all the azalea blossoms, scattering the damaged petals like the pieces of a torn love letter.
Wait…can wind whip a wrought iron gate in the first place?
This happens a hundred times while writing with a migraine. How do you spell wrought? What’s the other character’s name? What are those flowering trees that are all over the place? This sentence is crap – delete. This whole paragraph is crap. At the same time, my mind is saying, “my head hurts, my head hurts, my head hurts, my head hurts, my head hurts, my head hurts…”
Maybe I should give my lead character migraine headaches too – then my fuzzy head could be her fuzzy head. (Although, in the 1800s, I don’t know if a chronic condition like migraines would have earned her a one way ticket to a hospital for a lobotomy. I do know that’s not the direction I want my story to go.
Crape Myrtles…that’s the flowering trees.
My head hurts.