Tuesday, February 14, 2012

The Buzz

I know I need to explain the bees, right? If you have migraine auras, you may already know what I mean by "fuzzy red bees." It's my way of describing the clusters of blurry, red dots that I see sometimes. They plague me. These bees. They start out fuzzy and red and gently moving, pulsating slowly, then quickly, hundreds of them, they change colors, sometimes, from red to green to blue, sometimes they are all the colors, sometimes they look sparkly. Usually, these bees come first, then a full-blown scintillating scotoma follows. I can best describe this as zig-zagging, circular lines of glittering colors flashing in front of my eyes in which part of my vision is blurred or absent altogether. I imagine it is somewhat like being on psychedelic drugs, though I have never done any. Though, like Carrol (or at least like many believe him to have been), I have certainly been "down the rabbit hole," and I continue to frequent this spot. This lasts for about five minutes or so, then, the migraine hits. And with it, everything else. More on that later..
Back to the bees. My first experience with the bees occurred when I was about six of seven years old. Of course I had no idea what an aura or a migraine was at that time nor did my parents or my brother, who was babysitting me at the time of the bees' appearance. I was supposed to be going to sleep. I slept on the top bun, my little sister on the bottom. My eyes were closed and the bees appeared, hundreds of red, glittery, flashing fuzzy red bees in both eyes. I was scared. I opened my eyes, sat up and looked at my closet door. The bees were still there! How could this be? I called for my brother. I told him what I saw and that I was scared and I couldn't go to sleep. He looked at me kind of funny and told me to think of something good, and I would fall asleep. I sat stiff, looking at the closet, watching the bees, closing my eyes tight, then opening them again, each time, hoping the bees would disappear, eventually, they did. They just disappeared. I finally did fall asleep. I dreamed of my boy and girl Cabbage Patch Kids dancing in front of a little cottage on a cobblestone street. Thanks, Bro.
A migraine did not follow that night and wouldn't for several years, but the bees would visit me many more times throughout my childhood leading up to my first experience with the dreaded Migraine. I just ignored them, really. I figured it was just something everybody dealt with but didn't talk about or it had something to do with my poor eyesight. It didn't hurt, so I didn't really worry about it.

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