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A Cluster Headache Is


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A cluster headache is ...
Like being hit in the eye by your own brain at random times of the day and night.
Of course, your brain is wielding a baseball bat.
With nails hammered through the business end, sticking out menacingly at acute angles.
Nails, which have been heated in a fireplace for hours until they are glowing red.
Sure, the first time the bat makes contact, you only wince in pain for a moment and try to brush it off.
After fifteen minutes, it starts to take its toll on your pain threshold.
Thirty minutes in, and you want to pluck what is left of your eyeball out and soak it in ice cold water, you know, just for a refreshing break.
But of course you can't. There's not enough of your eye left to pluck out.
The migraine you had has long fled in terror.
An hour in, and your sanity is as shredded as your face feels.
Two hours in, and you're a blubbering mess. You have real bruises now from hitting your own face and from that dent in the wall, in an effort to distract yourself from the real pain.
Your eye is bloodshot, your nose has been running non stop and your face looks like it is melting.
Eventually though, the beating stops.
You're hungry and thirsty, the attack has taken a lot out of you, but you also have no energy or desire to move.
If someone would only bring you some chocolate, a coffee and a tall glass of cold water.
Quietly, a voice from the depths of your mind whispers, 'post-traumatic stress attack starting in 20 seconds... 19... 18.. 17.'
You have enough time for a deep breath. Maybe two.
Then absolute terror grabs your soul by the throat.
It shakes the very core of who you are back and forth like a rag doll, and then throws it into the far corner of the room.
Rocking back and forth, body shaking from your bones to your skin, you huddle in the corner in utter terror.
Every muscle cries out in fear.
Tears seem to escape through the very pores in your skin and flows from your eyes like a river.
You don't know when the bat will return to continue its work, but you know it will.
It always does. It always will.
Note: Today, I only had a brief attack, measured in seconds. It was my third, and shortest cluster attack this week. But, it managed to bring back this flashback from when they were bad. Or, perhaps a flash-forward to when they'll be bad again, for surely they will. That is their nature. Not one word above is an exaggeration, if anything, it undersells the experience.
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You are quite good in your descriptions, scarily so. Take some comfort in what you say often, when you think you knpow them, they change, so perhaps, this change will be them not coming back like they have before, if the only constant is change, then it is a possibility.

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