Brain Freeze – Part 2

5 05 2018

  

In my previous post I shared my affinity for ice on the outside of my head, but a while back I discovered the wonders of ice on the inside of my head!  Remember when you were a kid, sucking your frozen slushie through that staw as fast as you could, and BAM!  pain shoots up through the top of your skull?  Yeah, the dreaded brain freeze.  But, when you’ve got chronic, intractable head pain, that same brain freeze actually gives a few minutes of pain relief.  I don’t know how, maybe a temporary short-circuit where the pain signals get crossed up arguing over who has dibs on the pain pathway, whatever – it works.  There is one place in town that has one flavor of caffiene-free, sugar-free slushie, they see a lot of me.





Brain, On-the-Rocks

3 05 2018

 
Day two and I’m already second-guessing my decision to share more personally during Brain Tumor Awareness Month. My natural inclination is always toward more privacy, not less, but mostly I’m worried that my posts will sound like whining, and that is not at all my objective. I’m sharing because I can, while many, many more cannot. 

 I can still work, see, access resources, walk, hear, learn, communicate; live. That makes me one of the very fortunate. I interact regularly with others in the brain tumor community who would give every possession they have to be living my reality instead of the one they must navigate. So because I can, and they can’t, I’ll share pieces of our story in the hopes that greater awareness will move treatment, resources, and prevention forward. Thanks for listening, and hopefully seeing a place where you can advocate for the 700,000 Americans living with a brain tumor. 

Living with a brain tumor is a little like having a really self-absorbed, uninvited house-guest who refuses to leave. Once they’re in, there is no way to add-on space (brain real estate is a tightly closed market) so if you can’t kick them out, you spend a lot of time trying to manage them. 

 At some point, pretty much every day/night, I’ll need to ice my brain to turn down the pain signaling a bit. The top drawer of my freezer is a rather impressive collection of ice-hats, packs, and sleeves to wear, drape, wrap, or insert into pillows. The community shares new ice discoveries, we are always looking for something that’s just a little better, so I’ve got stuff from the UK, from Canada, and from around the US hanging out in my freezer. Fortunately, there is plenty of space in there since since I don’t do much of that cooking thing.  One brain, nicely chilled. 😉