Photo Fridays

Photo Friday – Portrait of Sick Aunt Katie

December 8, 2017 / 0 Comments

This week, most of my posts have been about kids. I wrote about a great children’s book, Noah the Narwhal: A Tale of Downs and Ups. I shared an old article, called The Kid Conundrum about my decision on having children of my own. And now I want to share a picture that was drawn by a special kid in my life earlier this year. We were hanging out while his mom took his brother to the doctor. Of course, ten minutes later I got a migraine with an aura. I stayed calm, but it’s a bit hard to corral a four year old. He immediately knew I wasn’t doing well and he curled up on the couch with me and I closed my eyes as he was entranced by the movie. I retreated to a bedroom when his mom came home. A few hours later, my little buddy came…

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Photo Friday – Miles for Migraine Philadelphia

October 13, 2017 / 0 Comments

On Saturday, Oct 7, 2017, I participated in the Miles for Migraine event in Philly. Besides volunteering, I also brought the INvisible Project: Migraine Edition display with me to share the stories of those living with migraine disease. Little did I know that I would play hostess and run around with a microphone, interviewing participants on Facebook Live. It was a blast and also so incredible to meet others who understand each other. Here are some of my favorite pictures and links to the interview sessions (including video of the fastest I have ever run in my life!).   I want to recognize Runnin’ for Research that has held multiple race events this year to raise funds for migraine, headache, and cluster research. Additionally, both organizations have a “Virtual Race” option that can be done any time of the year. And thanks to my friends at Migraine.com for coming out…

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Photo Friday – Pain Week 2017

September 8, 2017 / 1 Comment

Pain Week is an annual conference focused on pain for the health care professionals who see patients who have a multitude of disorders and diseases. Doctors, pharmacologists, nurse practitioners, and those who offer complementary and alternative therapies all gather to attend seminars on the latest research in this field. I was there to represent US Pain Foundation and the INvisible Project. Spending time in the exhibition hall, I had interesting conversations with attendees about what they do in the pain community and how the various projects of US Pain could be a good resource to offer their patients.           During the 5-day conference, topics included ketamine, pain management coaching, regulatory issues, prescribing guidelines, biofeedback, virtual reality for pain management, microbiome, patient-centered practices and addiction. Disease specific seminars included erythromelalgia, arachnoiditis, occipital neuralgia, neuropathy, osteoarthritis and fibromyalgia. For the first time, the American Headache Society hosted an…

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Photo Friday: Wisdom of Crowds

August 4, 2017 / 2 Comments

I took this photo in 2015 at the offices of Health Union, the parent company of Migraine.com. I was, and still am, intrigued by the artwork of the brain made up by hands. The artwork was created with chalk on a blackboard, with incredible detail and precision. The hands represent working together, which beautifully depicts the quote inscribed in chalk below the image: The wisdom of crowds is considerably greater than any one person working alone. Writing could be lonely…if I let it. The best part of chronicling my illness has been sharing the thoughts from my defective brain with others, creating a dialogue. Some of the easiest things to write have been inspired by conversations with my migraine and chronic pain family. There’s beauty in listening to different viewpoints to create a shared message. The notion that a crowd is louder together than individual voices extends into advocacy. What…

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Photo Friday – Past 5 Weeks of Travel

July 14, 2017 / 2 Comments

Today, I’m getting on a plane from DC back to LA. The past 5 weeks have been filled with conferences, interviews, writing, education, planning, advocacy and lots of travel. I had a friend ask me how I travel so much with such debilitating chronic migraine? My response was: If there’s something really important to me, I prepare. I rest. I find the strength from somewhere to push through. But I pay for it. I have a hard time saying no, but I’ve been better at picking and prioritizing what’s important. If it means that much to me, I sacrifice my health. Is that smart? No. But I want to live, not just survive. It’s worth it to me. I realize that not everyone can travel, whether it’s for a conference or even a family vacation. I won’t pretend that my health has been great this whole time. I’ve had my…

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Mental Health: The Universe Knows You and Loves You

May 26, 2017 / 0 Comments

A couple of years ago, Archer and I visited friends in New Mexico. On a quick trip from Albuquerque to Santa Fe, we stopped to walk across this bridge that had such an incredible view. However, there were reminders everywhere that tragedy befalls this landmark often. Since May is Mental Health Awareness Month, I thought talking about this picture was important.

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Photo Fridays – My Broken Brain

May 12, 2017 / 0 Comments

This is one of my favorite migraine awareness t-shirts. Designed by Don Vanderpool, who runs a Facebook group called “My Broken Brain.” He created this shirt last year and I wear it all the time, especially when I’m about to go into migraine battle! The back of the shirt covers just about all of the symptoms that go along with migraine attacks that I can think of. Are there any words on here that describe your migraine attacks? Hiccups, food cravings, anger, cognitive dysfunction, and restless leg are all ones that I deal with. As Don explains: My Broken Brain is intended to be a place those of us who suffer migraines can simply find others going through the same things. Family members too! I know this disease affects them terribly as well. I would love to see friends and family represented here as much as the migraineurs. Won’t find…

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Photo Friday- Painsomnia and Writing

May 5, 2017 / 0 Comments

I spent a large portion of March traveling. I found myself in many different hotels. I had trouble sleeping. I was exhausted, but stayed up late too many nights, writing to keep my mind off the pain. Late night is actually when I feel most creative. The street lights from Vermont Ave off of Thomas Circle had this amazing glow. It gave me a great reprieve from the harsh lights of conference rooms. Setting the perfect ambiance to sort all of my jumbled thoughts onto paper. Painsomnia is a perfect term to describe why I’m in pain and can’t sleep. I find solace in creating. It can help take my mind off the pain. It can also create bad sleeping patterns. Now that I’m home, I’m working on being more consistent with sleep. It’s probably one of my biggest areas for improvement.

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Photo Friday- Taxes and Deducting Medical Expenses

April 7, 2017 / 0 Comments

The deadline for filing federal and state taxes on a personal level is April 17th! I keep meticulous records of all of my expenses. As of 2013, if your medical costs are more than 10% of your Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) you can deduct them. So if you made $40,000 last year and your medical bills totaled $5,000, that’s 12.5% of your income. You can claim over 10%, so in this case you can deduct $1,000 (or 2.5% of your total medical bills), you can claim a deduction for $1,000. A deduction means more money in your pocket or less money that you will have to pay the government, depending on your situation. Thanks to @Jamie Valendy for providing this link to explain the process further: https://turbotax.intuit.com/tax-tools/tax-tips/Tax-Deductions-and-Credits/-Can-I-Claim-Medical-Expenses-on-My-Taxes-/INF14196.html

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Photo Fridays- Migraine.com Connexion Conference

March 24, 2017 / 0 Comments

On Tuesday and Wednesday of this week, Health Union (parent company of Migraine.com) invited all the HQ staff, writers and moderators to join together for the first time at their new space in Philly. One of our co-founders said it best- “Welcome Home.” And that’s exactly what these 2 days felt like.

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Katie Golden

Katie is a professional patient, writer for Migraine.com, US Pain Ambassador, patient advocate, speaker, and freelance writer.

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