Tara Urban (Amgen) Migraine Story
Tara is employed by @AmgenBiotech, a sponsor of Miles For Migraine. However, Tara did not receive additional compensation for participating in this activity.
Tara Urban (Amgen) Migraine Story
“I remember my first migraine headache vividly. I was about 7 years old when my family was touring NYC. This would have been in the early 80s and my dad used acupressure on my hand to help control the pain. I remember getting quite sick and these types of episodes continued on a regular basis throughout my life with no clear reason why. I thought everyone got headaches and you can imagine my surprise when I met people who rarely got them.
On a scale of 0-10, 0 being no headache and 10 being an uncontrollable one – I don’t know that I was ever at 0. The times my headaches were at 10 are quite memorable to me. In my early 20s, my boss found me with my head laying on my desk. She drove me to the hospital where I admitted the headache was going on day 27 and I hadn’t found the right mix of medicines to help it go away.
To try and control my headaches over the years, I went to neurologists, headache clinics, nutritionists, chiropractors, massage therapists, acupuncturists, took numerous medications…no matter where I went or what I took, it only provided temporary solutions.
Headaches mark many significant events in my life both good and bad. The night my dad unexpectedly passed away, the morning of my wedding, attending my cousin’s wedding, the week my daughter was born, my husband’s work party, an important work function, going to the beach, honestly, it could be any number of events in my life- headaches and migraine took center stage.
My husband and kids used to get upset when I would get a headache that interfered with an event. I think over the years with education they began to understand that I wasn’t in control of my headaches. They began understanding my headaches were debilitating and that I needed support. My migraine headaches required a dark room, ice packs, no noise, and when available someone pressing on pressure points I found to be useful. Migraine recovery was sometimes equally as debilitating. With 8-15 headaches a month, you can imagine how time-consuming they can be.
About 15 years ago, I did find something that helped my migraine. But I was given only a limited amount a month so I would use the 0-10 scale to determine if the headache was worthy. I would hoard my migraine medicine, always had over-the-counters with me, and just hoped for the best.
It took 40 years, but I finally found a migraine management plan that helped reduce my monthly migraine days significantly. I still experience migraine days, but thankfully they are fewer and farther between.” – Tara
Jamie Valendy’s advocacy story is written and told by Jamie Valendy and edited by Miles for Migraine team. Miles for Migraine’s Advocacy Stories highlights the many different ways that health advocacy shows up as individuals advocate for themselves and others. This project is not limited to migraine and other headache disorders, nor is it limited…
This Giving Tuesday, see your donation in action. Miles for Migraine empowers people living with migraine to live full and productive lives by reducing stigma and advancing research, education, and treatment. This year, we have partnered with 24 headache centers across the country to fund and steward fellows training for a specialty in migraine disease.…