“Just take a couple of Tylenol”

sorry, i can’t go today, i have a migraine

“Just take a couple of Tylenol,  you’ll be fine in a bit.”

no, not a headache, a migraine, tylenol won’t help with this

“Why do you always have to cancel out of our plans because of a headache? We’ve been planning on going to this since last month and now you have a headache. Just take something for it and let’s get going.”

no, I don’t have anything i can take for this, nothing helps it, i have to go lay down in a dark room and stay still and quiet for the rest of the day, sorry

“You’re always sorry, but that doesn’t help. Now I’ll have to see if I can find someone else to go with me or I’ll have to go by myself. Thanks! Well, you have a grand old time with your headache, you and your dark room!”

yes, it’s a lot of fun lying here in my dark room with my head pounding away like a balloon that’s too big to fit inside trying to get out, and my stomach trying to come back up my throat, and chills that are so cold that even the heat of this summer day can’t reach me and my bones ache

i lay as still as i can so that the dizziness doesn’t take over and make my whole world spin until all i can see is gray

i try to drift into sleep and hope that the doorbell doesn’t ring or my phone doesn’t buzz or i don’t get any texts, it would be painful to hear the sound and too much effort to answer the call of the outside world, my world has shrunk to just me and my pain under the cocoon i have created with the duvet, my cat curled at my side adding her heat to my tiny space and keeping the frost away

i have found a status quo that seems almost bearable as long as no one disturbs it, fragile as a snowflake before sunrise on a windowpane, where the slightest change will tip the scales of my equilibrium

jee 9.2018



no pain..

I woke and paused to send a thread of thought out.

No pressure.  No squeezing.  No stabbing or throbbing.

No pain..   I hesitated to move for fear it would sneak up on me

as it had been doing for the past eight days.

Finding me in my weakest moments.

Just when I thought I might be free.

This time it seemed to be gone,

really gone.

Not just waiting for me to make the wrong move and set off

more pain..

that would send me back under the covers,

into the dark and quiet womb of my bedcovers.

Back to search for numbing blackness

with just the top of my head sticking out of the pile

to keep my head cool

to keep my head from overheating and exploding again.

Perhaps I could attempt to sit up – to see

if today I might be free from its grip.

I gently pushed back the covers and pushed myself up.

Tentatively taking in a breath of air, testing my limits.

A small stretch.

And then a bigger one to get out the kinks in my shoulders

from hunching under covers for so long.

Just to sit and blink at the morning light,

and listen to the morning birdsong

with no flinching or cringing. No pain..