I had an absolutely awesome riding lesson this afternoon on my dear friend Gjinger, who was in a bit of an irascible mood, which only made me look all the better when she tried to buck me off every single time I asked her to canter and I didn't go off, and when she tried various tricks at the jumps to avoid going over them—even though she loves going over them—and I had the force of will to make her go over, every single time. Teri was very proud of me, particularly because I was doing a nine-jump pattern AND they were the HIGHEST JUMPS I've been over yet! Which means that a few were two feet tall, a couple were just under, and one was two feet four inches, in other words, up to my mid-thigh. AWESOME (and also, still, WAY below Olympic-level jumps).
Just after I turned out of the driveway and hit the road on my way home, though, I realized I was beginning to have a migraine. I could still see almost perfectly well, but I had a flash of anxiety and so I pulled into the local Shell station where Susan and I often stop for coffee (she was not with me today; she's in Mexico) and parked the car out of the way by a grass berm. I checked for more visual cues and they were scant, but I was pretty sure that would be changing anon. Without further ado I popped ½ a Clonazepam (the anti-anxiety med), and called Ian to let him know what was up.
There's no way it would've been convenient for Ian to come and get me and the dogs and the car out there, at 4:00pm on a Friday afternoon, and I told him I didn't think he would have to. I know the new and improved cycle of my migraines, and I thought it would be worthwhile to sit this one out and see what happened. "In fact," I told him, "I really think this is the perfect opportunity for me to see how I respond to a migraine when I'm on my own, you know, before I drive to Idaho next week."
I sat as my vision became more kaleidoscopic and ate some lunch—pepperoni sticks, some hunks of swiss cheese, and an apple—I was in a rush when I left the house—and Ian called back about 30 minutes later.
"The vision is pretty much normal again," I reported, "and nothing else seems to be going on . . . I'm going to go into the store and use the bathroom, then probably hit the road. I'll call you before I drive away."
"Okay, good," said Ian. "And if you need to stop again, you just do it, and we'll figure out a way to get you and the car home."
The trip to the bathroom was successful in its primary purpose and also the secondary one of interacting with someone—the clerk, who was happy to have me park in his lot while partially blind, even if I didn't buy anything—and the tertiary one of seeing how stable I was on my feet (perfectly stable). I called Ian back.
"I'm going to hit the road," I said. "I think I'm fine. I'll call you when I get home."
And I did hit the road, and I was fine. I set the cruise control at 60 and drove conservatively in the right lane (WHAT?!? THAT DOESN'T SOUND FINE AT ALL!!!). My hand started its somewhat expected buzzing/numbness thing as I switched from 522 to 405, and completed its cycle from thumb to pinky by the time I reached 520, when my speed slowed to 20 minutes/mile before reaching the lake. I made it home safely and called Ian to report before getting out of the car.
What I had initially realized/discovered/thought—that this was the Universe telling me I would be okay if a migraine happened when I was alone—was true. I sensed it coming on long before I was visually incapacitated; I pulled over to a safe place; I fed myself and medicated myself; it passed as usual; I continued on with my life.
And I'm no longer worried about the next one.