A Day Out with My Brain


To the trains!

Today was a most intrepid day. I had Bowen lady followed by a neurology appointment.

to the trains!

Ten came with me, because, you know, traveling. The first half of the day was easy enough, but by the time we’d done it all I needed serious supervision to get home.

I’d wondered what he was going to do for the hour I was having the Bowen treatment, but I needn’t have worried, he’d already hooked himself up for a hang out. Turns out he has a friend who runs an arty bookshop just round the corner. We were a bit early so I got to meet her. She was very nice and advised me about selling my signed Damien Hirst book, which might be worth a bob or two.

I’d thought we should eat in Bethnal Green, but I felt too nervous, and wanted to be as near the hospital as possible in case of EVENTS and being late and everything. I am hardly ever late for anything. I get too nervous. Then I am stupidly early and have to hang around.

So it was a happy thing that Ten remembered the cafe at the Mary Ward Centre, where I taught once upon a time, so we went there because it couldn’t really be nearer the hospital without sitting in it’s lap.


This hospital is the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery so you’d think all the doctors there would be pretty fancy. But no! It turns out my doctor was “only” a neurologist, and I would have to go to the extra super fancy Headache Clinic there to get the botox, but get it I very well may – ON THE NHS  no less. And at £600 every three months to get it privately  it’s rather worth the wait to get it free. Eight months waiting list to see them, she reckoned. But she also told me some useful stuff to do in the meantime which would mean I wouldn’t have to mess around having more appointments than strictly necessary before getting the good stuff (assuming they see fit to give it me).

Whereas our good friend Giles Elrington at the National Migraine Clinic (very worth the name drop as it turns out) will give you botox, if he sees fit, whatever drugs you are taking, this clinic want you to be off as much as possible, and will even have you in to get you off your drugs, so assiduous are they.

remember giles? he does as he sees fit. you can tell, can’t you?

Now, it has never been suggested that I come off the preventative pain killer I take (naproxen) before, but this is what she says they would want me to do. She also said I should go up on my mood stabilizer – this being a project I had put on hold for the winter because every time I go up a dose I have at least a week of ricochet headaches before it settles down, possibly because it has an effect on hormones, so these may be ‘period migraines’ of sorts.

See, the migraine clinic is a private charity – hence the cost, and also hence I could get the botox treatment before it was available on the NHS in London. So what I am thinking is that if i get Dr Elrington to hit me up with the good shit for one more time then I can a) feel a bit better at a time of the year when I traditionally start going on the skids pain wise, and b) get a kick start on the drug withdrawl.

I have done drug withdrawl many times, and I do know not to go cold turkey, but even so, it’s a hard thing to do when not all your pain is rebound pain. Because, dur, you are going to have ALL THE PAIN and it will be bad and it will continue. So having something to leven that with will be most welcome and certainly worth £600.


Just as an aside, really, I have to tell you I was super nervous about seeing the neuro. Doctors have a lot of power, and I’d never met her before, so I was worried about that, and also because my brain isn’t what it might be, and because I have had this for so very long, I certainly can’t remember all the drugs I have tried. Anyway it was all fine, she was kind. And impressed with my name dropping (thanks, Giles, for being so very name droppable).

As we approached the hospital I started feeling a little hysterical. I started wanting to shout “TAKE MY BRAIN OUT!”

When we got to reception there was a man working there with a huge bulging forehead.

einstein’s brain. thank goodness someone had the foresight to steal it! (click through for more einstein’s brain goodness)

I found myself having a kind of tourettish urge to shout about his massive frontal lobe. My internal head shouting continued after that at various intervals (I never gave in to it – I have SUCH restraint) up to and including when the neuro lady said that under some circumstance or other I would have “less” headaches.

Gentle reader, it took all my strength not to shout “FEWER”.

A Blog a Day, Miranda goes Climbing with Bear, and Taking Poppet out with Ken


By the powers vested in me by the existence of blogging, my internet connection, and the fact that i can read and write and have a laptop I AM GOING TO BLOG EVERY DAY FOR NOVEMBER!

Last time I blogged every day it was for migraine month. I think it went pretty well. In order not to alienate my existing readers and also not to bum myself out too much I stuck to a formula for that whereby I posted three things – one from the migraine prompts and two others, just to give things a bit of balance. I don’t set out to be a ‘migraine blogger’ or any other kind of a niche blogger either.

“I should be driven desperate if I knew who I was. I meet somebody who says “you’re this or that”, and I feel like I don’t want to be anything.” - Virginia Woolf  Selected Letters

I don’t know what the prompts for this NaBloPoMo are going to be like, I only just took a look at it. It was a bit of a faff doing all the linking and whatnot for the migraine month, but once I got the hang of it it was okay. Still trying to work out the ins and outs of this one, though, so bear with.

It would seem that wordpress always have a daily prompt. I would not usually be interested in such a thing, being the raving snob that I am, but I am suspending disbelief for the duration of this month. So here goes;

Daily Prompt

When was the last time you felt really, truly lonely?

Nice. Just jump straight in, won’t you? Weasel away at my deepest darkest private moments, please, just go for it. So there’s no dipping a toe in here is there?

Gently does it, then. OR NOT!

This is going to sound absolutely pathetic, but I feel absolutely bereft whenever I’m not with my dog. If I go somewhere without her I feel like something is missing – even if that thing is having my shoulder joint pulled out for the duration. ALSO, sometimes Poppet goes a little holiday to visit my good friend Ian, if, frinstance, I am too ill to look after her. She is what is known as a ‘velcro dog’ because she doesn’t often take alone time, so I am used to having her nearby at all times.

I’ve not been away from Londinium much over the past couple of years, but if Poppet is not invited or, say if I would have to go to somewhere abroad or whatever, I would be discombobulated to the max.

perhaps not the most glamorous shot, but a bit of a favourite of mine – pops relaxing on her back creates the most mad face. and for maximum funsies simply turn your monitor upside down. see? super funny.

I think the last time I had to go somewhere without her was a hospital appointment. I could have used her support. It was a psych appointment and I had to really let it all hang out. Which was alarming. I should have dressed her up as some sort of person… that, or make her a fake service dog outfit. I heard tell of someone who actually did that. Took her dog into shops and her untrained dog would wreak havoc, much to the annoyance of her friend who has a real service dog. Also, the outfit was really badly made. ::snork::


When I said bear with I was referencing Miranda Hart’s show Miranda in which she has a friend whose habit it is to pause the conversation with an authoritative “bear with” while she is on her phone. Typing it in to yootoob I didn’t get the example of her comedy stylings that I expected. What I found was a whole programme of her doing mountaineering with Bear Grills. You can see it here;

Which I think is rather good. If you like your survivalists mixed up with your comedians. Which I do. I mean, I get most of my news filtered through the medium of comedy, so you can imagine this is rather up my boulevard. If I must watch people battling the elements I’d rather at least one of them was a professional comedian.


So, what have I even been up to? Well, one thing I have been doing is playing hostess to one @lahikmajoe who is away on a wander with his mother up north and expected back sometime soon. He wrote this blog post to suck up to me.

ken had the idea that if he came with me to bethnal green we could take poppet. he and pops hung out here at lock 7 while i went to my appointment.

Ooh, isn’t their website nice? lock 7

Right. I am now going to try to see if a) I have done this right at all and b) I can bear to do whatever it takes to be *in* whatever this thing is…

bear with.


ETA I just found the NaBloPoMo prompt page which is here. I used the wordpress prompt for this, which is here. So, two totally different things. HOWEVER! all is not lost, since yesterday’s NaBloPoMo prompt was

Thursday, November 1, 2012
Tell us your favourite quotation and why.

and I just so happened to have included a quote! SPOOKY, RIGHT?

So! I am on course. As you were.