We all have our struggles and for the past few years, especially the past six months, mine has been migraines. But guess what, nerds? I think I've kicked them!
It turns out my body might not actually hate me and that my real nemesis is actually (wait for it...) dairy.
It's been about a month since I gave up dairy per the recommendation of the naturopath. Two weeks after that I had a chiropractor appointment where I was informed that my head is actually sitting straight (because apparently I'm a freak with a slightly tilted head thanks to wacky neck bones) and it's probably because my body isn't so inflamed. Not the kind of inflamed that makes my clothes fit better, but the kind that makes my bones and joints and muscles or what have you sit happier and easier and be less angry with each other.
Aside from the whole neck bone being less angry and jutting out thing, I actually feel better. My whole state of being hasn't changed and it's not like I feel like I have more energy or anything, but it has been five weeks since my last migraine. Five. Weeks. That means I'm three weeks overdue for one migraine and a week overdue for another. Bi-weekly migraines can go eat it. As long as it's non-dairy.
I haven't had this kind of lengthy migraine interval since AUGUST.
I realize that a month off of dairy might be a little early to be shouting victory from the rooftops, but hey, even small victories are victories nonetheless.
Next weekend I hit up the naturopath again to talk about the next step in my dairy-free process. I'll give her all my money to suggest that I try goats milk and cheese and see how that works for me. Maybe I won't have to be completely dairy-free. Even if I am, though, it's not too bad.
Dinner's been less exciting without cheese, but that just means I need to think a little harder. I made French toast with almond milk the other day and it actually tasted better than usual. Take that, cow udders.
It's funny, I used to drink chocolate milk after a run because I heard it was good for you and I wanted an excuse to drink chocolate milk. There was a period there where I thought exercising might be causing my migraines. I guess in the grand scheme of things I'd rather have the ability to kill myself running than drinking chocolate milk.
The dairy-free transition hasn't been very difficult. Because I had my adenoids removed and a lot ear infections as a kid, the naturopath suggested dairy might be my culprit. The other option was gluten. I would so much rather have a dairy allergy (my first food allergy!) than a gluten one.
Giving up things I love in my diet isn't actually that foreign to me. One year ago today I decided to kick my caffeine habit in the teeth. I even gave up bananas. Bananas eventually found their way back in to my diet (which is good because they're my favourite food ever), but I only ever tripped up once on the caffeine train and it triggered the never-ending migraine train I'm just getting off of now.
Giving up caffeine was hard, terrible, and I was so grumpy. But I did it. No. Regrets.
I used to think that maybe chai lattes gave me migraines from the caffeine or spices. Ironic, eh? It was the milk not the chai. Go figure.
While caffeine might no longer be the nemesis I thought it was, I'm not going back. I'm a decaffeinated, dairy-free type now. I also think a good Friday night is spent at home watching television with my husband and knitting. I'm basically a senior citizen/hippy. My knees even crack sometimes when I stand up.
Is it possible this no dairy thing is having a placebo effect? Maybe, but I don't care. I'd rather trick myself into feeling good and give up dairy than live the way I have been since September.
So, one more time now, all together. Let's do this thing.