photographer. artist. author. singer. songwriter. musician. teacher. student. humanitarian. visionary.

Day 1: Back at School

I tell you, school couldn’t come fast enough. For some people, beginning their next semester entails stress, anxiety, uncertainty, procrastination-anxiety, feelings of being overwhelmed, and feelings of general excitement mixed with doom. For me, it’s just the opposite. When I’m in school, I’m completely in my element: I know what to expect and I work best when I’m in the pressure cooker! It’s just how life has molded me to be.

I’ve added my 14 exam dates for Abnormal Psychology onto my wall planner, as well as my deadlines for my case studies and oral case study presentations. (Isn’t that a bucket of fun waiting to happen?) I’ve watched my video for Anorexia and other eating disorders for my Social Work Practice class and have submitted the accompanying assignment work sheet. My homework for the evening is to read 25 pages in each of the first chapters and take 10+ pages of notes that I’ll be tested on this week.

And then there’s my Biology lab course and Intro to Social Work! I’m still sorting out those assignments, dates, deadlines, video presentations, and other important assignments/folders. Apart from my oral presentations (and 30 + hours of volunteer work), I’ll also have two separate 15 page research paper projects in two different classes.

I’ve been hammering away at getting things sorted for the past 5 days solid: it’s a lot of work, but the preparation beforehand saves me stress later. You can hardly be too prepared for college classes.

I’m really hoping that I’ll be able to squeeze a vacation in soon as I won’t be taking a summer break this year. Four months this spring at VU and then it’s straight over to SNHU to begin work on my BA in Sociology where I’ll work without a break for the next year. I can now say that my life is planned out for the next several years!

I haven’t had a horrific migraine in more than two months; that in itself is borderline miraculous. I believe I’ve made a profound discovery. There are triggers that set off migraines when you’re a chronic migraine sufferer, as I have been for several years now. I have specific triggers that I avoid at all costs:

  • too much sugar and salt
  • too much audial, radial, and visual stimulation
  • weather/change in barometric pressure
  • grinding teeth [bruxism/night grinding]
  • stress
  • stress
  • stress
  • lack of sleep
  • alcohol [never more than two glasses of red wine- ever]
  • no yelling or heightened displays of anger
  • insufficient exercise
  • too much heat
  • being too cold

In other words, I have to walk very softly or I can get a vicious migraine that lasts for 3 days. (My blog is filled with days like that.) I’ve been my own guinea pig for more than a year in experimental home trials where I’ve undergone numerous self-testings: I’ve made some very important discoveries.

The most important discovery of all is that it could be allergens which are triggering the histamines to go to war against my own body. The result? Migraines! Through my own researches, I’ve come to learn that the sinus cavities swell when the body is under attack from various allergens. The most common ones come from cats and pet dander. Several of my family members are allergic to cats and need to take antihistamines when they’re around cats. Armed with this knowledge, I decided to start taking 1/4th of a Phenergan (prescription: it’s a powerful antihistimine that fights nausea) daily, without fail, to dry up the almost constant sinus drainage I have and have had all my life. It works like a charm! Benadryl is too strong for me, so the quarter strength Phenergan is ideal.

I’ve been doing this for a while now, and have noticed that since my histamines are regularly controlled, my triggers have become subdued as well. I haven’t taken a whole Phenergan in more than 5 years- that stuff’ll knock you out cold, but at 1/4th the strength; it allows the antihistamine to do its job (dry up the sinus cavities) while mitigating the histamine and body’s histamine reaction, resulting in a dramatic decrease in migraines, so much so that I seldom get them at all any more.

I used to think that the arachnoid cyst in my head caused these severe migraines; not any more. Perhaps the neurologist was correct: he suggested the migraines weren’t caused by the cyst and shared with me that arachnoid cysts are often congenital. Many people have them (from birth) and never know it. Some people have problematic cysts though, and the sinuses and arachnoid membranes flare up, which exacerbate the onset of migraines greatly. I believe my own body’s histamines have been the culprit the entire time. My daughter loves the kittowies too much to let them go, so I have to adhere to a strict code of health  and watch my “triggers”, but hey, I’m practically migraine free now, and as a result of my super-tight-lifestyle, I’m healthier than I’ve ever been. No complaints here.


(You know you’re getting old when you actually want to be healthy…)

ImageHelios 44-2 film lens/digital Rebel- private retreat at friend’s house- January 2014

7 responses

  1. yvo

    B you are amazing. You are your own science project. Believe I can relate and this kind of rigorous observing and adjusting is a committment not many chose to undertake. I am soo glad to hear that you are figuring out the combinations. Yes I understand about school. I was such a lousy student as a high schooler, but all the abuse and learning disabilities rendered me so very ineffective to apply myself to learn. I was in my glory as an older student and I thrived as well. I am doubly delighted for you and I hope you can manage a great vacation to look forward to. You sound great. Love to you my dear supergirl! xxx

    January 13, 2014 at 8:52 pm

    • Love back at you, hombre! You’ve been on my mind a whooooole lot, lately. I hope things are going well for you, Y. I’ve been heavy-hearted for you and have been feeling the rolling waves, so I hope you’re alright. ;0) You remain one of my inspirations to persevere in school. I can’t thank you enough for that. Here’s to another year gone by, eh? I think 2014 will be a good one! Keep me posted about your upcoming shows! I’m super excited for you. :0)

      January 13, 2014 at 9:38 pm

  2. buddha in the background nice…be well

    January 14, 2014 at 11:55 am

    • Yeah, my friend is Buddhist (I’m not) but I like to include everybody in my arena. Makes for a peaceful shot I think. :0) I stayed at her house while she was out of town and her back yard is like a wonderland filled with exotic plants that she planted herself. There’s an interesting garden there and a whole section filled with tall bamboo. This is where I happened upon the statue. I’m going to surprise her with a photo book of her little backyard wonderland- she doesn’t know it yet. (This is one of the pictures I’ll include.)

      Thanks for stopping by. :0) You be well too. x

      January 14, 2014 at 12:07 pm

  3. Good luck with being back in school! Your course load sounds incredibly intense, I’m glad you’re fond of that level of rigor. Love the comment on how you must be old because you care about getting healthy– I’m starting to feel that way myself. *sigh*

    January 16, 2014 at 12:44 am

    • Thanks, Aussa. :0) And yes, I totally love the intensity. (I’m an intense kind of gal.) You might have gathered that…heheh. I don’t think you have anything to worry about though. You’re stunning! It doesn’t hurt that you’re surrounded by beautiful people also. I’m guessing in the next few years I’ll start hanging out with 60 year olds (etc.) so I’ll look fresh and bouncy. There’s a plan, eh? ;0)

      January 16, 2014 at 1:08 am

      • Ha! I think that is quite the plan.

        January 16, 2014 at 9:53 am


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