Welcome to My Migraine Life
First, I’d like to tell you a bit about my migraine life and how it began. My first memory at age 5 was having a migraine attack. I was at my cousin’s baseball game and threw up 3 times from the crashing pain at an ice cream shop afterward. It was the beginning of a long and ongoing journey. Both my mom and grandmothers lived with migraine and we knew what my “baseball headaches” were before a doctor diagnosed me. My mom understood and supported me making my “crazy” feel less horrible.
Growing up with Migraine
Next, I continued through high school, sports, and life while struggling silently and hiding a lot of how migraine made me feel crazy. How can a young, athletic, ambitious girl have a headache every day, feel dizzy, get auras, and be sick so much? It was confusing and as puberty hit my body was going haywire. This is when I learned about medication overuse headache (MOH). I was taking over-the-counter medication every day to treat my migraine and this, in turn, gave me a headache repeating the cycle.
Over this time, I learned triggers, foods, and situations that did not make my body and head feel well. Before leaving for college, I had many tests done concluding that migraine was the culprit and no medication was approved to treat my disease. A doctor gave me a strong prescription that was not considered for my new lifestyle. I rapidly gained weight and experienced side effects while being on my own for the first time. This is when I learned the intense lesson about withdrawal and weaning off medication properly. I then tried medication after medication not approved for my condition (because there was none) while experiencing huge side effects that were often worse than the attacks. I was episodic through college and was able to live a somewhat normal life. This is when I met my husband and biggest supporter.
Teacher with Migraine
As an adult and intervention specialist to children with moderate to severe needs, my condition worsened. Stress became my biggest trigger and switched my brain from episodic to chronic. My principal told me I had to come to work because it was just a headache. This is when I knew stigma needed to be addressed. It’s so much more than a headache. Stress, a bad diet, less working out, and all of the sacrifices I made for others changed me forever.
Next, I stayed home for 5 years to have and raise my babies. That was a roller coaster! It got better when I was pregnant and nursing, my first pregnancy was harder than my second and it was all very different. Staying at home was by far the hardest job I had while my husband traveled close to 60% of the time. My migraine attacks came back strong and frequently. At this point, I felt alone and misunderstood. This is when My Migraine Life was born.
My Migraine Life Blog
My blog has served as a source of therapy. I tell my stories and help others better understand migraine and all it's complexities. I pass along information, therapies, and products I’m trying while discussing the mental part of living with a chronic disease. Through this, I have joined many important migraine associations and hope to share what I learn from them and how you can get involved.
Most importantly, it makes me feel less alone and inspires me to help the millions of others with me. My passion is helping and teaching. I now teach preschool part-time at my children’s old school while freelancing and advocating. I love my family, traveling, fitness, food, and ending my nights packed in ice from a migraine. At the end of the day, I hope to encourage people to live their healthiest and best lives in whatever way possible. I’m living life through migraine……this is My Migraine Life.
I hope my journey helps you understand yours better. Remember that I’m not a doctor or giving you advice on what will help you. I don’t know your body and it is very different than mine. Take what you will from my blog and talk to a doctor for medical advice. I hope you find something that helps you or others in your life.
Work with Sarah Rathsack
I like to share ways to lower stigma and raise awareness through foundations, events, and other health information. Please contact me with your ideas on collaboration.
I review products in hopes of improving the quality of my life. Check out my reviews and the products I love. Giveaways are a fun way of giving back to my amazing followers. If you think you have a product that may help My Migraine Life, please reach out. *Note: I will not review something that I don't love or use and I am often an affiliate since I love it so much. It helps fund my blog and work.
Finally, thank you for reading and following! Your encouragement gives me so much inspiration and each comment, share, follow, and like fuels me to continue.