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Will it EVER stop? (Really Long)

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
Hi everybody! I MISS YOU!!!!!

I don't really know where to begin, but it all started late February/early March...

Gary and I have been trying to get a new job for basically a year. Licensing and new regulations have dramatically changed the industry in which we work, and not only are analyst positions at brokerage firms shrinking rapidly, we're an odd bill to fit as a man-wife team with a record of publishing rather outspoken, very independent stuff.

Well - we had a GREAT meeting at a mid-size firm in early March. They said they were going to make us an offer. That afternoon, a friend called and said "You HAVE to meet with this firm I just met with!" We spent a couple hours on the phone with the head of one of the departments, and decided it was worth a meet. So the following Monday, we get an offer from firm A as we're heading into the city to meet with firm B. To make a long story short, we'd be happy with either job (with ANY :censor::censor::censor::censor::censor::censor::censor:' job in our line of work!), but firm B and the opportunity is superior. So we come up with issues with Firm A's offer. They immediately come back and say it's all fine, they'll meet what we want. So we started with other delay tactics, and did our best to press upon Firm B the urgency in their dealing with us. But the guy responsible had appendicitis and was in the hospital and recouping, so that lost us close to two weeks. My fingernails are completely WRECKED.

Firm B finally sent up an offer - this past weekend. It stank, but only because this would be a new department for them and they're totally unfamiliar with this type of business and how to structure it. We immediately got back to them with all the problems, and they're supposedly getting it together and getting us an offer we can accept this afternoon or this evening. Meanwhile, we haven't turned down Firm A yet just in case... and we are under so much pressure to accept that offer. It kind of feels nice to be in this "wanted" position (after struggling so dang hard for so dang long), but the tension is going to push me right over the edge.


AND... just when it finally looks like we'll be employed for salaries again, THIS had to happen. Many of you know that Gary has had many health issues over the years. Well, he's got a real doozy this time.

Anyone heard of "Cluster Headaches?" They really shouldn't call them headaches, because that conveys the wrong thing altogether. They should be called attacks. Researchers in the field believe that those who suffer from cluster headaches suffer from the worst pain a human can experience, and partly because anyone who has them says they're the worst pain they've ever experienced. Though most sufferers are men, the women who do have them say that it's far more painful than giving birth without any anesthetic. Bear in mind that Gary was in the army and involved in the Lebanon war. He has 385 jumps, broken almost every bone in his body, has had four major back surgeries and is constantly suffering back pain; he's had surgery to remove a tumor from behind his eye, ulcers, has been blown up, had 3rd degree burns, suffered everything you can think of with his teeth; he was hit with shrapnel (and still has some in his legs), has no cartiledge at all in his left knee and needs a new knee. This is a man who is constantly dealing with managing pain. I've never seen him cry from pain before. These things.... are just devastating.

Cluster Headache sufferers get "clustered" attacks that are far worse than migraines. They get between 2 and 10 attacks a day, and they go for weeks or months at a time. The attacks last from 45 minutes to hours at a time. Some "chronic" sufferers have less than two pain free weeks a year. Hopefully Gary's not chronic - but he hasn't had one single pain free day since the beginning of March. It is an incredibly debilitating problem. There are drugs that work on some people some of the time to abort the pain once it starts. And there one or two drugs that work on some of the sufferers some of the time to prevent the attacks. But we don't have insurance now and can't afford treatment.

Over half of cluster headache sufferers have considered suicide because the pain is so great and so relentless.

"Clusterheads" say it is impossible to lie still during an attack. Gary either lays on the floor crying and thrashing around, or he stands up banging his head against the wall. I am convinced almost every time he has one of these things that I need to call an ambulance.

And they happen mostly at night for most - but Gary also gets them during the day. They almost always start right at the beginning of REM sleep, so clusterheads become afraid of going to sleep. Gary had gotten about 8 hours of sleep in 10 days. "Exhausted" doesn't even begin to explain where he was....

THANK GOD we found a site dedicated to cluster headaches (it's how we figured out what it is that he has). They have so many suggestions as to how to deal with them, and now he's got Oxygen and is taking Kudzu Root, which are both helping. But it's a horrible battle, and JUST as it looks like things may be starting to turn for us (i.e. getting a job), something like this has to happen. How will we work full time through something like this?

When will it stop???????????????????????????????

Boy - I sure hope things are going better for all of you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I really do miss TCS, but I am spending most of my "free time" on the net these days over at the cluster headache site, searching, searching, searching.....

All my best to everyone, and hoping I get not only to spend more time here, but that I actually have good news one of these days, lol!
post #2 of 15
Hi Laurie!

Wow, I'm sorry to hear that things are really intense for you and Gary right now. But it seems like things are on track with the job-would you have to move?

Gary's cluster headaches sound horrible. Could there be some physical cause, or is the cause unknown like with migraines? I hope that you can find some treatments that work for him and that they subside.

How are the kits? And Tuxie, is he still doing well?

I'll be keeping you two in my thoughts!
post #3 of 15
Oh Laurie, I sure hope a bright spot happens soon with Gary's health issues. I have heard about those cluster headaches, a friend's daughter had them and the doctors said they are also called suicide headaches, like you said, because of that reason. She was prescribed Zoloft which seemed to help a lot.

I am thinking of you two on the job front!

I think about you guys all the time!
post #4 of 15
Oh my goodness!!, I'm so sorry that things have been so rotten!, I have only heard a little about clusterheadaches...but I had no idea they were that devastating!. Many good health and well wishing vibes to you and your husband!
post #5 of 15
I hope things look up for you two real soon. Stay strong.
post #6 of 15
Wow! I really am glad to hear that the jobs are pretty positive.

Is Gary a part of the VA? Is there any alternative therapy? Cluster headaches sound just completely horrible!
Good luck with those!
post #7 of 15
Oh gosh Laurie! I was so thrilled to read the update on the job situation, as I know how difficult that has been for you. And just when there's an upside.... I hope you can take the job that offers good insurance so that you can get Gary into a doctor, and at least start trying the medications to see if they help.

Sending lots and lots of good vibes to both of you. You so deserve some happiness in your lives!!!
post #8 of 15
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by Kiwideus
...I have heard about those cluster headaches, a friend's daughter had them and the doctors said they are also called suicide headaches, like you said, because of that reason...
Yup, these are those. They do call them suicide headaches, and Kellye, I'm so sorry to hear you know anyone with them, let alone a friend's child. There are children that get them, and how horrible that must be!!!!!! Oh my heart goes out to her.

And Christie, the answer is they know very little about cluster headaches. Researchers are pretty sure they've found a link to the hypothalamus (sp?), and there is a VERY high incidence of people with clusters who also have sleep apnea. And herbs and vitamins (and meds) that affect body clock functions (magnesium, calcium, taurine, melatonin, etc.) seem to be of some help. Gary started all of the above (save taurine, I just read about that today) about five/six days ago. He has been getting some sleep the past two nights, but I think that's more to do with his having been so completely exhausted than anything else. It takes several weeks, I guess, for the body to begin to respond to those things. Less than 1% of the population has cluster headaches, so you can imagine there's been very little research done on the problem.

Imitrex injectible appears to have a pretty high success rate in aborting the attacks. A lot of people use verapamil as a preventative, and a prednisone taper is usually prescribed along with the verapamil. Apparently the pred works pretty well too, but has too many side effects to be a long term thing - thus it is a "bridge" until the verapamil starts working. But again, anything that requires a scrip will pretty much have to wait until we have insurance. And both places have GREAT insurance.

Oh - I forgot to tell you what happened with the Boca firm! We did end up getting an offer from them - it was around the same time all this other stuff started. They weren't requiring us to move, but it would have involved a LOT of travel. If we had no other choices, we would have taken it. But a friend's fiance is close friends with and used to work with the Senior analyst down there. Our friend's fiance says he is MISERABLE, and that he's really upset he moved down there for the job. So... once again... I still believe everything happens for a reason, because these other opportunities came up before we accepted the position. *Phew*

... Tuxie is doing GREAT. His last depomedril (sp?) shot was in mid-February. He is currently STILL bright pink nose & gums, and zips and zooms around here like he runs the place.

Ming Loy is just the happiest cat in the world. She thumps around with her perky manner, and just brings smile after smile. Flowerbelle is still loaded with cuteness and attitude. She still purrs while she eats, lol! Spooky isn't spooked by much any more, but WHAT a lovebug she's become. She is CONSTANTLY demanding pets. Shelly really should have been named Sylvester. He remains SUCH a character, and such a silly goofball. Lazlo, though he does love his brushes, and plays like a wild man, is still our most ferally feral. He'll sleep on the bed with us, and does love attention. But the minute he hears anything "out of place" or loud or anyone comes to the door, he's gone like a shot. But healthwise, THANK GOD, they're all doing just great.

Thank you so much for the good wishes for Gary's health. This is just a horrible, horrible thing, and I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemies (if I had any).

....we're still waiting for that dang revised contract. C'mon - be in my e-mail!

post #9 of 15
Wow, Laurie, I'm so sorry to learn of Gary's problems. I have heard of cluster headaches, and how debilitating they are, and hope you manage to find a cure for his. Good luck on the job front, too!
post #10 of 15
I hope that Gary's cluster headaches can be stopped somehow.
post #11 of 15
Originally Posted by CommonOddity042
I hope that Gary's cluster headaches can be stopped somehow.
sa a former 'clusterhead' i can sympathize. i found many of mine to be triggered by food intolerances - not the ones everyone knows about, like red wine, chocolate, cheese, etc. no, mine are weird - chicken, fish, broccoli, bell pepper, almonds - the list goes on... once i was mature enough to accept that i simply COULD NOT eat these things, my clusters went away. still get migraines, but the headache i had for 2 years is no more. good luck with finding a solution - i'd certainly check out allergies/intolerances if i were you, just based on my experiences!
post #12 of 15
Laurie, those cluster headaches sound absolutely unbearable. I hope Gary gets some relief from them really soon. I'm sending LOTS of healing prayers and vibes to him, and prayers for strength to you.
post #13 of 15
I'm glad that a good job offer came through for you two... and I hope that some of these other remedies start to help your husband. <<<<good vibes>>>>
post #14 of 15
Hi Laurie. I'm so sorry about Gary. It sounds absolutely devastating what he is going through. I have never heard of these before and thought migraines were bad but this sounds sickening.
I'm glad you've found help on the internet and this is easing his pain at least a little.
Good to hear from you.
post #15 of 15
You poor things. It must be so frightening and frustrating for you to see dear Gary go through such tremendous pain, and I am sooo sorry. Keep your strength and positive attitude, and congratulations on your job possibilities now! It is great to hear that your kitkats are doing well. How's Naomi?
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