I could hear everyone laughing and talking. They seemed to be having a great time. Gathered around the table enjoying a yummy Easter dinner.
And there I was.
Lying in the dark on the couch in pain. Because of a migraine.
The frustration of it all made me want to cry. But I fought back the tears knowing they’d only make the pain worse.
All I could do was lay there and suffer through the pain, nausea, and dizziness. While everyone else was having fun.
And I couldn’t help but think, “Migraines are ruining my life.”
What Is It Like Living with Migraines?
A migraine is a neurological condition that is often inherited. They affect over 144 million people worldwide. And they tend to affect women more than men.
The way one person experiences life with migraines may be drastically different than another person. Because there are so many different symptoms, triggers, and coping strategies.
What is the root cause of a migraine?
While the root cause of a migraine is unknown, migraines could be the result of abnormal brain activity that affects nerve signals, brain chemistry, and blood vessels in the brain.
There are certain things that can be triggers for migraine though.
Such as diet, certain foods or smells, environmental factors like weather, stress, lack of sleep, and many others.
How to Find Hope in the Pain While Living with Migraines
There is no cure for migraines so the best thing to do is find ways to make life easier. And boost your morale.
Leaning on Jesus in the midst of our pain is one of the best ways to live well while dealing with migraines.
He can bring us comfort and peace. Even in the midst of difficult things.
Because when all the comforts of this world are taken away, we realize He is the only One we need to get through our day.
His provision is sufficient.
Our faith in Jesus helps us live well by showing us how we can live with migraines, while also finding hope in the pain.
And it teaches us the value of the following 5 important things.
1) The value of PAIN.
So often we try to avoid pain. We want to be comfortable. Happy.
We want life to be easy.
But if life is easy, we won’t be motivated to grow.
We admire people who do things like climb Mount Everest. Win a championship. Come back after a tough injury. Or overcome their disabilities.
And yet, we don’t often think about what it took for them to get there.
They had to go through pain. And lots of it.
They went through times of intense training. Sacrifice. And tears.
As Christians, we know God has promised that everything we go through in this life can be used for good. (Romans 8:28)
- To help us grow in our faith.
- Learn to lean on Jesus.
- Be grateful for what we have.
- Give comfort to those around us.
- Look forward to Heaven.
And so much more.
While going through painful things isn’t fun . . .
Just as pain breaks down muscle fibers so they can grow back stronger . . . when we face painful circumstances in life (like dealing with migraines), our selfish flesh breaks down so our character can grow back stronger.
Which is a very good thing.
2) The value of REST.
My migraines are often caused by my POTS symptoms. This condition causes blood to pool in my feet. And the lack of circulation to my brain can cause a migraine.
So, for me, a migraine is my body’s desperate attempt to get me to lie down and rest.
Finding a quiet, dark place to rest and lay flat allows my body to relax, get the blood flowing back to my brain, and to find some much-needed sleep.
And in general, by the next day, the migraine is gone.
However, rather than waiting for a migraine to stop me in my tracks, it would be better if I made regular time to rest.
There is a reason Jesus stressed the importance of observing the Sabbath. Because He knows we cannot keep working ourselves to death.
We need rest! (Matthew 11:28-30)
While it can be hard in our fast-paced society to slow down, it helps to think of rest as a way of recharging.
Just like our phones must sit on a charger so they can continue to function. We need to find ways to recharge, so we can function to the best of our abilities.
3) The value of GRATITUDE.
Thinking about the pain we are in and everything going wrong in our life can lead us on a downward spiral of despair.
Especially if we have been dealing with migraines for a long time.
It might sound trite but counting our blessings really does move us to a better place both mentally and emotionally. (Phil. 4:8-9)
It can help us think more positively which in turn makes it easier to handle the difficult things we are going through.
Being thankful gives us hope . . . while helping us keep in mind that this too shall pass.
4) The value of HOPE.
As Christians, we know our suffering in this life won’t last. And someday our beloved Savior will bring us home.
To a place where there will be no more suffering. No more tears. And no more pain. (Rev. 21:4)
Thinking about what we have to look forward to makes it easier to face the things we are going through.
Because it gives us a reason for hope.
Even in our hard times.
5) The value of JESUS.
The reality of living with migraines is that sometimes there is nothing we can do. The pain isn’t going to go away. The symptoms aren’t going to stop.
And in those hard moments, we have to make a choice.
We can give into the darkness. Or we can turn to the One, True Light.
Jesus is with us every step of the way. To bring us hope and encouragement. And to remind us of all the promises He has made to us.
Promises that inspire us to keep trusting the God who loves us. Even in our most painful moments.
Lean on God. Pray to Him about your migraines. But then choose to trust Him.
God is good. He has good plans for us. And so, if He is allowing this pain in our life, then He is going to use it for our ultimate good. (Jeremiah 29:11)
We may not understand. But we can trust that He has a plan.
Because God is always working . . . often in ways we cannot see.
Can You Live a Normal Life with Migraines?
Yes, it is possible to live a normal life with migraines. But this doesn’t mean it will be easy. Or that it will look the way we think it should.
But who decides what is “normal” anyway?
For me, a “normal” life with migraines looks like working part-time so I can lie down every afternoon and rest.
This means I get to spend more evenings with my family, rather than being trapped in a quiet, dark room due to the pain of a migraine.
But this also means we must live on less.
My life definitely doesn’t look the way I thought it would.
But it is still good.
Because of Jesus and everything He has been teaching me in the pain.
Not in spite of it.
If you found this encouraging, then please share the hope of this message with someone else!
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