Migraine Journey Wednesday (Vol.22 – Ari Gieros)


I live in State College Pennysylvania but everyone commonly gets confused as I am not in college. I also have moderate high functioning autism and my jaw is still hurting but healing from the TMJ (Temporomandibular Joint) operation.

My Migraine History

My migraine history starts when I started getting really horrible stomach migraines and some people didn’t even understand or believe what I was saying. I started having stomach migraines was when I was 13 years old. I still never even want to eat or even don’t at times. Some of my triggers include bright lights, smells, and noise. Other symptoms include really bad middle stomach pain that squeezes. I also get spasms that are severe, nausea, yawning, get tired, dark shadows underneath my eyes and it gets so bad to the point of wanting to cry.

The People Around Me

Sometimes I feel very angry at everything and I use laughter to help keep the pain under control. I get stomach migraines everyday and my intensity is so severe. In my family, my Aunt Lori started getting migraine headaches in her childhood, whilst my Grandpa started getting his migraines in his head as well. This probably explains why I have them today too. My Mom, Sarah, Bobbie, Julie and my stuffed animals have been a great help to me. They understand and are supportive.

The Effect of Migraines on My Life

Migraines affected me somewhat with school because it is really hard for me to focus in class with these stomach migraines all the time. If possible, I would want to stay home sometimes because of the pain. Fortunately, my Mom told me that I could, for once a month at least. Topiramate is working somewhat for me. I’m working on it but I am hurting still. On days that things get really unbearable, I try to breathe through it, cry and just talk it out.

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Some Advice for my Fellow Migraineurs

Please remember to take your medications on time. Like early evening meds at 6:30 or earlier. I have to do it for my stomach migraines, so I get it.

I first found Migraine Buddy on Instagram and I am very grateful for the support that MB and its community has given me with regards to my head and stomach migraine. I’ve suffered for the longest time and it’s something that I probably will never outgrow. I couldn’t be more thankful because dealing with both autism, migraines and TMJ in my lower jaw has been hard but the love I and support I received has helped me through everything.

I would definitely recommend Migraine Buddy if you are suffering from migraines, it’s been a life saver at doctor appointments and has allowed me to not only track my migraines but also helped me to persevere through the years. I’ve accepted my norm and stayed strong because of Migraine Buddy.

Remember, if you don’t know what stomach migraines are, look them up. Believe someone when they try to tell you about their migraines and try to understand what they say because no one is really faking it nor making it up.

Stomach migraines are not just a headache. It really hurts. I really need people to understand me and believe me. If you don’t know what they are, ask me and I will gladly tell you, I wouldn’t mind educating you about what they are.

Thank you, Ari, for stepping forward to share your migraine journey with everyone. When you share your stories it not only helps others but you heal in the process too. 

If you would like to share your story and let your voice be heard like Ari, you may do so here: bit.ly/2rJcpMR 

With love, the Migraine Buddy team ? 

Jenny from Migraine Buddy

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