My wife gets migraines and it’s really starting to wear on me. I feel sorry for her and hate that she has to go through it a few times a week, every week, for her whole life, but jeez. It’s become a drag around the house and I don’t think she even notices!
Sure, it’s tough to get a migraine, but what about everyone else?
She texts me from work, saying that she sees the visual aura that indicates another migraine is looming, setting into motion another depressing night. While she finishes her work-day and navigates rush hour in devastating pain, the kids and I grudgingly prepare. I get her side of the bed nice and cozy, making sure a cold wet washcloth is nearby to rest on her pounding forehead. We turn off all unnecessary lights and stumble around the dungeon of rooms like moles, already dropping our voices several decibels. I dig out some bologna, sniff it, and grab ramen for our dinner and make sure she has her cache of medications and Pepsis on standby.
When she finally makes it home, we launch into full funeral home-mode. We speak in whispers as I take her by the arm and lead her to bed, which will be her resting place for what feels like the next month. She croaks out commands and I field them one at a time, cooing and fanning and patting until I’m numb. The kids are troopers – they are used to it – and do their homework, bathe, and stifle their horseplay. I am proud of the joyless creatures that they’ve become.
The night inches along and I work through my chores: brushing the children’s teeth, talking about their days, reading to them. Once in a while, I peek in on my wife and address her current need. I may fill up her glass of water, or fetch another Goody’s powder, or the remote control. I ask if she needs me to change her bedpan and she rolls over and faces the wall, not up for joking. When the kids are in bed and I come back to the bedroom, she is still in a lot of pain. She has mentioned before that it can take a whole day to feel better and it always makes me depressed. I suggest that sexual intimacy may help, and she cries.
I try to shrug off the slight and finish up around the house. When I finally come to bed, my wife is wide awake and jacked from all of the caffeinated migraine meds and soda. Her head is still pounding, she says, and now feels like she could throw up. I find the football game on the TV and try to fall asleep, hoping things are back to normal in the morning for me and my poor wife.