Finding God amidst the Migraine

The pain, the knife cutting at my scull with a pull and a thug,
Not letting up, the great grey mass jumping around in the scull,
Bouncing off in the dark corners, pushing, and sliding, the swish
The bang, and all that one can see is darkness, drowning, and a
Wish of wanting to be drawn into death’s welcoming hand
As a temporary release.

The sky has this dark obscure look today, it kind of reminds me of how my brain is reacting before, during and after a migraine attack.  It always takes a few days to go back to how I was before the attack.  It’s pouring with rain.  Pouring, pouring, and pouring.  Water falling from the sky.  Peace will come. Sunshine will come after rain. Kind of a metaphor of my life.  I trod the uneven hills of God’s earth and sometimes I have this mammoth task of having to climb this big mountain to find the peace of God.  To sit at the foot of the cross, and sometimes I can walk besides still waters and feel peace rain upon me gently with God’s love.  Walking to work was no small feat, gigantic puddles to navigate myself around, as cars fly past, and water splashes in big heaves against me. Soaking wet.  Trying to graciously say ‘thank you God for this beautiful day filled with water.’  Every tear drop is a prayer.  Every splash of water is a prayer.  It’s a reminder of God’s love for us.  A reminder of God’s strenght in this world.  Of God’s beauty.  God is truly amazing – don’t you think?!  Water and more water falling from the sky.  I used to think that God was sad when it rained like this.  That God was sad with His people for all the sins that they committed.  [He is definitely sad.  I am thankful that the Lord forgives me for my sins, and that He picks me up when I fall.]  But when there was thunder and lightning I used to think this is God expressing his anger at the world.  I remember thinking this when I was a young child and still had no real concept of God. The peculiar thing is that one part of the sky is white, and then in the far off distance there are these dark menacing clouds ready to burst its dams so that water can be released, rather the water is pounding down on earth’s surface in angry heavy drops.

On Saturday 21st May, I went out to participate in the ‘colour run’.  Only for me to go home, and suffer from a debilitating migraine attack afterwards.  The migraine lasted from Saturday evening till the early afternoon of Sunday 22nd May.  I was barely able to function.   I hate having migraine attacks.  They make me feel week, nauseous, miserable, and much more.  I still had a headache on the 23rd of May, and now it’s the 24th and I just feel sluggish and warn out.  Depressed. Low.  No energy.  No motivation. Needy. Vulnerable.  It brings out all these strange emotions out of me, after an attack like that on my brain.  I have to remind myself at times like this that I have to rely heavily on God, that God is the only one that can pull me through this haze of emotions.  That God can teach me something about these migraine attacks.  That perhaps clinging onto him, is the best way forward in life? On this particular occasion, I was glad, thankful to the Lord that I had the migraine on the weekend, it meant that I didn’t have to worry about going into work, feeling completely unable to do anything.  Often times when I get a migraine it happens during the working week – after all there is more chance of a migraine attack to happen on a week day than on a weekend day.  When I get them during the week, I have to force myself to go to work.  Sometimes, though it is impossible to go into work because the pain undermines my determination to get into work in one piece.

Thankfully, the migraine attacks are not as bad as they used to be, where they used to come once or twice a week, and I was succumbed to the mercies of a migraine.  Now it comes every two to six weeks, and when it does, I lay down at the foot of the cross, and I thank the Lord for this trial, and ask Him what He wants to teach me during the attacks.  I guess one of the biggest lessons God is teaching me when I get a migraine attack is taking much needed rest, and allowing my soul to be cut open for God to do ‘open heart surgery’, so that when I come out of it, I come out of it stronger, and full of prayer I pray that I will have a deeper relationship with God, and that I will come to rely on him more and more during my ‘episodes’.  Seizures and migraines are very similar things.  They have commonalities:

Migraines share some common features with epilepsy. Like seizures, they can be triggered by stress, fatigue, menstruation, and alcohol and much more. The aura before a migraine is similar to an aura before a seizure. Even the brain activity detected by an EEG may be similarly abnormal during a migraine attack and a seizure.

On Sunday when I couldn’t go into church, I lay on my bed in complete darkness, with no noises, in complete solitude.  I was talking to God, allowing Him to heal me and to touch me with His love.  Allowing Him to hold me, and to speak to me in the stillness of my home.  I am thankful for moments like that, when I can really rest in Him.  Though unable to worship whole heartedly, God knows my heart, and God sees my anguish.  God knows my needs, and sometimes probably thinks this child needs to rest.  She never rests.  So I rest.  I sit in solitude.  I enjoy His company.  I enjoy talking to my God, my heavenly father.  I love my heavenly father.  And yet all at the same time I could feel the throb, throbbing throb, at the back of my eye, nagging me, wounding me, but I clung onto God, I trusted God that He would get me through it.  I remember laying on my bed in complete darkness, just feeling this severe throbbing at the back of my eye, wishing the pain away, learning to be patient, and waiting to feel God heal me.

After the attack of a migraine I tend to feel that my spirit is down, and that I don’t have the energy to be social, or feel like I am able to talk much or make much sense of my life. I always feel like I am having a déjà vu moment after a migraine attack, or I feel like I am falling, falling, falling into this bottomless pit of despair.  But that feeling of dread thankfully only lasts temporarily, usually.

Now, as I sit at my desk in work, staring out the window, out into the grey rainy distance, I wonder what the future holds for me.  I am thankful that I have this deep relationship with God, I am thankful that He is very much present in my life.  I am thankful that I rely on Him, and that He hears my prayers, and allows me to have rest in him.  Isaiah 53:5 But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed. God heals us.  When we allow Him into our hearts. When we open the door and cry out to Him, God hears us, and He comes and looks after us, and His heart grieves with us.

My prayer for today is this: Dear Lord, please help me to focus my eyes on the cross, and you alone.  Please allow me to sit in your presence and worship you with all of my heart.  I love you Lord, I am thankful to you lord, for the peace that you give us, and the respite you give us after a migraine, or a particularly difficult trial.  Thank you God for the rain, every rain drop is a prayer falling from the sky.  Thank you God, for your love, and your wisdom.  Thank you God for your grace.  Thank you God for your strength and your guidance to get us through a day of hardships.  O Lord we come to you and we worship you, we pray to you, we give you our all.  We love you Lord.  More Jesus.  More Jesus.  More Jesus please.  Come Holy Spirit, come Holy Spirit. Help us to seek your presence.  Help us to pour our hearts out to you.  Help us to see you and give you our all. Thank you Lord for loving me, and for teaching me so much.  I commit this day in your hands and I trust in you fully.  Thank you Lord! I worship you.  I praise you God.  In your most precious name I pray.  Amen. Hallelujah.

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