It's Day 30 of my chronic headache, and I'm curled up on the couch with my laptop and one of my cats, Lily.
I am envious of Lily's ability to relax. Her head rests on my leg and occasionally, she lifts her paw and puts it on my arm, asking me to pet her. I comply because I cannot resist her sweetness. I want to achieve the level of ease that she oozes. The way her body meets the fabric of the couch says she knows tranquility.
Cats, I am guessing, do not get muscle tension headaches. The most stressful events in my cats' lives are (1) and empty food bowl and (2) a full litter box. My cats are brilliant at resolving those two issues. They knock stuff off my shelves and bat them around the tiled floor. They know the tile makes more noise than the carpet. They know I will take action.
On the advice of several friends, I visited a chiropractor for the first time in my life. I worked for an orthopedic surgeon from 1985 to 1992 who was anti-chiropractic, and he would roll in his grave if he knew what I did today.
But, frankly, I am tired of conventional medicine. I don't want to take medication. I don't want see any more specialists. I don't want to have any more tests, scans or blood work. I don't want to wait in any more lobbies and fill out form after form and sign HIPPA releases and carry those little white squares of scribble to the pharmacy. It's. Not. Working.
The chiropractor poked and pulled around my neck and said my symptoms sound less like migraines and more like muscle tension headaches.
To admit I am stressed feels like admitting I am weak.
I don't want to admit that I have muscle tension anything, which appears to be the root of my problem. Stress is the root of so much evil.
As much time and effort I spend on good nutrition and regular exercise, it's not enough. I need to be more like Lily. I need to relax and let my body melt into the couch. I need to stretch regularly. I need to bat my eyes and get people to do things for me. I need to refuse to do anything I don't feel comfortable doing (ever try to snuggle a cat who wants to be left alone?). I need to stare at random spots on the wall and suddenly dart from the room ...