Work and MAV

Hi am new to posting but have used this site frequently as I was diagnosed with MAV in 2010. I have had 3 bad sessions with it. I have found the postings and general information so useful so thank you. I hope you dont mind me posting.

My first bout came on spontaneously and resolved in 3 months due to dietary changes. I saw an ENT and neurology consultant. The second came on after starting an OU course then a holiday involving flying. That took 5 months to go. Prior to the holiday because was feeling so well I cut corners ie dropped supplements, had the odd coffee and glass of wine so maybe that was it. I started it up again and I was free of mav for almost a year until feb this yr and its back after a trip up the Shard in London and lots of tube travel. It was resolving quite nicely after 6 weeks but I had a holiday booked. This involved flying and I was really stressed as I knew Id come back really wobbly and I have. Last night I couldnt sleep and could feel the bed banking round like the aircraft.

When Im really well I am lucky as I only get two bad migraines a month at the beginning and end of my period. I had a few headaches as a child but relatively few over the years apart from some killer hangovers. My problems started after my daughter was born and I hit 40. It was the menstrual migraines first now mav. Extremely annoying.

My question is how do people cope with work and feeling odd at work. Are employers sympathetic? Mine has been but I hate the feeling you get. I hate the feeling of sitting at my laptopn and wanting to topple back. I often cannot string a sentence together or think straight. I work 2.5 days and going back on full symptoms will be hell for two weeks or more. I usually get daily headaches when I have these bouts. I don’t take meds although got some valium recently as it seems to calm down if Im patient and take extra extra care of myself. Ive just recently found out Im very deficient in vitamin D so trying to rectify that. Thanks for reading. I appreciate some people may not work but I gathervsome of you do.

Hi and welcome! I also used this site for about a year before I posted and don’t know how I would have managed without it, especially at the beginning when docs were sending me down blind alleys.

I am going to be positive here about work, though there’s no denying it is really tough. I -like most people here- have the chronic form of VM which never lets up, although some days are a bit better than others. So I never felt I had much choice but to carry on working as I don’t really see my situation changing much any time soon. I am the main earner in my household and I teach full time. On the plus side, it gives me a good reason to get out of bed every morning and I know I am doing something really worthwhile. I also get so wrapped up in it that I can forget about my illness and do things way outside of my comfort zone. For me it’s also a bit like being on stage so I can’t give in as the show has to go on, which forces me through it.

My tips are: try to rest as much as you can when you do get a chance, sit down and have a quiet time whenever you can; get as much sleep as you can; be as organised and prepared as you can for any difficult situations you are likely to find yourself in; take regular breaks from a laptop, get up and walk around if you can; sit near natural light and not under a fluorescent one; drink plenty and keep your blood sugar up with healthy snacks; talk to colleagues about the things you find the most challenging, they may offer to help or at least they will understand why you might be struggling.

My boss isn’t sympathetic as such, she still expects everything done to the same standard as before which is fair enough, but my colleagues have been great. They know to give me lots of room in corridors because I do bump into things ( and children!), they offer to carry things for me on the stairs, they know I will need to sit down if they want a long talk with me and they know that I might need to suddenly walk out of meetings etc for a stroll up and down if I feel I am about to fall off my chair. They also know that I might have to take home an important document to read, or that I am giving them a rough piece of work that I will need to check again later, or even get back to them on a verbal decision if I am having trouble thinking straight. I am probably lucky in that have a senior position and have been where I am for 18 years so it is bit easier for me to get away with these allowances than if I was new. But I would say be really upfront about it and I’m sure most people will have admiration that you are trying to carry on.

I also only got hit with this when approaching 40 after a lifetime without migraine. I had my son at 37 and went into early menopause at 39. I haven’t had much luck with meds so hoping that it could settle down eventually alongside my hormones.

Best of luck with your work. You might be surprised by what you can achieve if you want to. Of course I realise it’s not right for everyone but you won’t know until you try.

Thanks so much for your reply. It has made me feel a lot more positive and that I need to just press on. At the moment I am getting through each day ok. I am so impressed you work full time teaching. My husband always says what can not be cured must be endured. You have just enforced this again but with the added extra that it CAN be endured and more can be gained than you put in. Thanks again.

Nubs, your post is really inspiring. Thanks for taking the time to write it up x

Good for you!
I recently applied for a wonderful job, didn’t get it, and think it quite likely that I didn’t get it because I expressed uncertainty about how well I would handle traveling around 9-10 states attending or running meetings for about half my time. I didn’t go into detail as to why I was uncertain. … .