“I need to send you by EMS to the hospital right away.” I could hear my doctor saying this to me. My head was not only hurting like the intense pain I feel when I am having a migraine, but now it was spinning and I didn’t understand. When I get migraines I get weakness on one side so I can’t take so many normal migraine medications but my headache this time was because my blood pressure was so high. I had checked it as soon as I had woken up with a migraine.
“Can I just have a prescription for my blood pressure?” I asked. Thinking this could not really be that serious.
“No, your EKG is not good and your pulse is very low. We cannot let you leave.” I didn’t use good judgement, but I knew I could make it to the hospital down the street by myself. I was thinking as a single mom, I needed to have my car so I could go pick up my daughter after school. I signed myself out against medical advice and proceeded directly to the Emergency room with a copy of my EKG in my hand. I had a plan in my mind anyway.
In retrospect this was a dumb idea. What if I had of had an episode and crashed my car into someone else. Believe me, the nurse let me have it once I got to the hospital.
As soon as I walked into the hospital about 12 minutes later, they took me immediately and did another EKG and said I was to be admitted right away.
” No really I am ok. I just don’t feel good and I just need some medicine to make my blood pressure go down”, I reiterated to the new doctor and now several people taking care of me. The doctor firmly said “your blood pressure is 190/110 your pulse is 47 and with all the other symptoms that you are having, you must be admitted.”
Now my mind started racing. Who would get my daughter, who would take care of the dog? No one has an extra key so what was I going to do?
Now I will tell you a secret, this has always been a deep fear of mine with my migraines. I have always been afraid that one day I would have a stroke and be alone in my apartment or worst in front of my daughter and nothing could be done. I kept a house key in my office at work and had told the office manager that if for any reason I did not come in to work one day and didn’t call, to please use my key to go to my house that something wasn’t right.
Now the day had come. While series of tests were run, a woman walked in with some stroke pamphlets. I honestly thought she had left them for the wrong person but seeing that I was in a private room, I wanted to believe it, but knew deep down that things were worst than I thought.
So it turns out I had had a small stroke a TIA is what they are called and if I didn’t get my health in better shape, I was going to have another one that might not be so small.
This really scared me. The doctors asked what my migraine triggers were I told them: Stress, sleep deprivation, and gluten. Hormonal changes will also trigger them and I have taken every medication that I could and even took Botox shots years ago before it was the norm but noting helped until I cut down on my gluten-Wheat, Pasta, breads.
I did some research from many different sites and here are some signs that you need to watch for:
Certain chronic conditions increase your risk of stroke. These include:
High blood pressure
Yes, I fit every category. It was definitely time for changes. It has been a long process to get back to my energy level to work out again. I had just started eating better and working out with a trainer when this all happened. I guess you would say a little too late for me, but I still have time and have no choice but to make some life changes.
As a single mom, I cannot let my kids down and I don’t even want to imagine what it would be like to have my youngest come in and find me. This scares me every day.
Have you taken a look at your health lately? I mean a really good look? I hope that this will alert someone else to go to the doctor and make changes if needed.