I have suffered from migraines since I was three. Since I was five, I’ve been to ER’s all over the east coast, and I have been hospitalized for over 15 days twice in the past year. I am 18 now and have lived with chronic daily migraines for the past four years. Being a teenager in high school, I have lots going on — academics, sports, friends, and college looming. I have accepted the pain that’s always there and learned that distractions are necessary. It is not impossible to deal with migraines every day — it just takes a lot of courage. You have to take it a day at a time.

It is hard, and what makes it harder is people treating me differently, and always asking how I’m feeling. I hate it when my family call and their first question is “how are you feeling?” Or when people call me with another pointless “cure” they read about on the internet. Yes, I know that they do this because they love me, but that doesn’t help much.

It is depressing knowing that I will have another migraine every day, and it is anxiety provoking waiting for it to hit. People ask me, “how do you deal?” My answer is simple and always the same — I have no choice. You can’t curl up under your covers and watch the world pass you by. Although I wish I could most of the time. You only have one life, and just maybe, the next medication will work. [Tweet this.]

I recently dealt with having two bad drug interactions that looked like seizures while I was in school. Even though I was scared, I had to play them down so my school would not get upset about them. But they did. They decided they could help me by lightening my load and made me drop a subject I love. What they didn’t know is that my work is what drives and distracts me. It pushes me out into the light. They wanted to help, but ended up making it worse for me. This is just one example of what migraine sufferers have to deal with on a daily basis.