#HAWMC Day 14: A Case of the Mondays

Pain. We all feel it. It could be short lasting or seemingly never-ending. We get hurt, we cry, we heal.

My pain is constant. The throbbing sometimes has mercy and I feel “fine.” Other times, it’s relentless and merciless. This past week has been a week of the relentless kind of pain.

On my good days, I go to bed with a headache and wake up with one, but on my good days I am not bothered by it because the pain is so minimal that I’m able to wake up with a smile. On my bad days I go to sleep with a 7/10 headache and wake up with a 7/10 headache, or worse. I’ve been having more bad days than good, lately. It’s extremely frustrating. It’s more frustrating than people can imagine. It’s so frustrating that sometimes, it’s all I can think about. I can be with my friends, and I’m thinking about how my pain is never-ending. I can be in church, and I’m dozing off to think about how my pain won’t let up. It occupies all of my mind and energy.

It bums me out when I have to cancel plans because I feel crappy. It bums me out even when I didn’t even have plans, but I know that I’ll be staying in even if I wanted to make plans. It bums me out to know that I’m no where near as healthy as my peers and even so, no where near as healthy as I, my chronically ill self, have felt before.

bummed-dog

It can be hard to go to sleep and tell yourself to begin the next day with an open and optimistic mind, when every day feels like the same broken record playing over and over again.

Even though it’s hard though, I try my best every single day to remind myself to have a better mindset. I remind myself to attempt to shut off my feelings of “but tomorrow I’ll probably feel awful again,” and instead try to turn on my feelings of “but tomorrow, what if I feel even just a little bit better.”

 

HAWMC Day 10: Yahoo Has All The Answers

Yahoo Answers

Q: My head feels like it’s about to explode. The throbbing is so intense. Can someone’s head actually explode?

A: No. Your head cannot physically explode. It will feel like it at times–the throbbing feels intense enough that it feels like something will erupt from within your skull–but no, your head will not explode. It will be over soon.

ryan-gosling-headache-meme

 

HAWMC Day 8: Little Engine Post

  1. I think I can find a combination of treatments that help drastically reduce my chronic headaches
  2. I think I can find an exercise routine that doesn’t drastically increase my exertional headaches
  3. I think I can eventually monetize off of my blog
  4. I think I can increase traffic to my blog each month that I continue to work on it
  5. I think I can bring together people who have similar health issues or similar battles and give them a positive, supportive place to turn
  6. I think I can lose those extra few pounds by turning my diet around and really eating well for my body
  7. I think I can increase my income through outside, freelance and side jobs, in order to help feel more comfortable with my finances
  8. I think I can motivate others to share their stories, as I am sharing mine
  9. I think I can improve my handlettering/handwriting skills
  10. I think I can eventually use Etsy to sell products with my handlettering/handwriting on them

  1. I know I can make a positive difference in the health activist community and grow as a health activist, myself.
  2. I know I can make a big ripple, even though I’m one single stone being thrown into the pond
  3. I know I can gather and maintain the strength, both physical and mental, to keep fighting my everyday pain with chronic daily headaches and migraines
  4. I know I can continue to grow The Headache Heroine into what I what it do be long term
  5. I know I can make a difference

HAWMC Day 7: Starting My Advocacy Journey

We all need people in our lives who push us to do and be greater. Sometimes it’s hard to accept advice that someone has to offer, but most of the time, it’s worth it to hear them out.

I never even thought about sharing my story about living with chronic daily headaches, because I never thought anyone would really need or want to hear and read about it. The thought never crossed my mind.

That was until one day, during a pretty dark and frustrating period of my life when I was experiencing 6+/10 head pain every single day for a long string of time. I was living with my older sister at the time, so she knew and could see that I was living in constant pain and that I was having a difficult time dealing with it. One day she suggested an idea that turned out to be my motivation behind creating The Headache Heroine. She said “Why don’t you write about all of this?” She suggested I use it as a coping mechanism, since I already had a love for writing. Why not take my love for writing and do something positive with it? She helped me realize that it could be therapeutic for me, which turned about to be very true.

At first, I was worried that sharing my story would just make me sound like I was throwing myself a pity party and was inviting people to bring gifts of sympathy. But that’s not what I was going for and that’s not the kind of vibe I wanted to throw out into the world.

What actually ended up happening, was that I got an outpouring of encouragement and praise for being “brave” for being vulnerable enough to start opening up about my health and really putting it all out there. I had been hesitant to share my blog posts on platforms like Facebook and Instagram, because I didn’t want to bug people and add things to their newsfeed that they didn’t want to look at/read. But then I realized, that if people wanted to skip over what I shared, they would, and if people wanted to read what I wrote, then they would. I eventually created a separate Instagram account for my health journey, but I still tried to tell myself not to worry about what others thought.

After a few months of being worried that people would judge or roll their eyes at the stories I was posting and sharing, I slowly grew much more comfortable with sharing my story. I realized that I was actually reaching people who really appreciated and benefited from my words. I became less concerned with those people who didn’t care about my story, and focused all my attention on the people who did care and who actually benefited from hearing my story and my advice.

While advocating and getting my voice out there actually helps me cope and feel more positive about myself and my life with chronic daily headaches, I also know that I have helped other people who are facing similar health journeys. That fact alone keeps me writing and sharing, and it should help encourage you to do the same!

HAWMC Day 6: Superpowers Wanted

I’m never able to settle on just one answer when I’m asked “What superpower would I want?” But for today’s purposes, I chose flying.

Cliche? Yes. Practical? Yes. Awesome? Yes, yes and yes.

How would I use it? The real question: How wouldn’t I use it?

It’s crazy expensive to travel the world, or even travel through the country. It’s even more of a stressful decision when you have medical bill after medical bill rolling in, staring you in the eyes.

I dream about visiting different cities and countries, exploring the vast world around me. I hate knowing that I’ve seen so little of this world. But I have to force myself to be realistic and save my plane ticket money and use it to keep collections from hunting me down.

But if I could fly, well I could see the beauty around the world and still have money to pay off the inevitable debt that medical bills create.

balloons_flying_sky_striped_54350_3840x2400.jpg

 

HAWMC Day 5: Favorite Platform for Getting My Voice Out

I love utilizing every one of the platforms that I use to get my voice out there. I love Instagram because I’ve found that I can reach a lot more people than through the other platforms I use. I also love Instagram because I’m able to show my hand-lettered quotes and what not. I also think that pictures are more initially captivating than just a bunch of words. It gives people a quick glance at what you’re all about.

While I love to use Instagram for building my brand, I have a different platform preference for actually getting my voice heard. That platform is blogging on WordPress. By writing on a blog, while my reach not be as wide as it is on Instagram, I am able to write in much more detail and really write in the voice I want to. I’m able to share more information–holding nothing back. I have received really great feedback from people who have visited my blog saying that what I’m writing is really resonating with them and that the way that I write is unique and beautiful. I don’t share that to sound boastful, I share it to explain why blogging is my favorite platform for getting my voice heard.

What’s yours?

social-media

Image from Skyscanner Business

Health Activist Writer’s Month Challenge: Day 2-How I Write

My writing style isn’t necessarily a style, exactly. I don’t follow one set pattern or stick to one particular habit. Most often, I get inspired and just start to type away. I let my brain and fingers do the work and I don’t stop until they’re done. When I’m in this inspired, must-write-right-now kind of mood, I just hit publish and send my words out into the vast internet universe.


However, sometimes I am a bit more calculated. Sometimes I read over every word, every punctuation mark, every sarcastic remark. Sometimes I plan out ahead of time what I want to write about and sometimes I work on a piece for a couple days.

More often than not though, I write on a whim. I write when a light bulb goes off in my head, or I write when my head pain is so bad that I have to write in that exact moment to pull myself together.

lightbulb.jpg

Whatever your writing style may be–whether it’s habitual or sporadic, you just keep doin you!

Health Activist Writers Month Challenge: Day 1-Why I Write

I didn’t plan on sharing my story with the the world. Not until I was encouraged to do so by a loved one who saw me struggle with my health and the consequences of my health problems every day. Before I started writing, I never really believed that there were other people out there who lived with chronic daily headaches like I do. I had never met or talked to anyone who lived with anything close to what I live with. I live with chronic daily headaches and migraines. For me, this means that I have a headache 24/7. It sounds like an exaggeration, but I promise you that it’s not. I have some type of headache all of the time. While the intensity varies and changes frequently and without warning, the frequency is the same: it’s always there. It has made me change my way of living, from an active young adult always looking for adventure, to a wishful young adult who lives a rather stagnant lifestyle yearning for more adventure and more answers.

I started writing because I needed a coping mechanism. I had to find some way to release all of the frustration that had been building up over time, weighing me down. It has helped me more than I ever expected. When I find myself feeling very low, I turn to my writing. It helps pull me out of the darkness. As I found myself climbing out of the darkness, I realized that maybe I could help pull others out their darkness as well. I realized that while I was helping myself cope through my writing, I could also help others like me who really needed a hand to help them up.

I write to help people feel supported. To help them feel less alone. To help them remember how strong and brave they are.

brave

Vote For The Headache Heroine in the 5th Annual Health Activist Awards!

I’ve been nominated for three award categories for the 5th Annual WEGO Health Activist Awards this year! The categories I’ve been nominated for are below:

  • Best in Show: Instagram
  • Best in Show: Pinterest
  • Rookie of the Year

Please take a quick minute or two to vote for me on my nominee profile!

I truly appreciate all of the support and am very humbled and excited to even be thought of for these awards! It’s extremely touching and motivating to know that I’ve at least reached and helped one other person over the past year through The Headache Heroine.

Thank you in advance ❤