It wakes up before I do, wresting me from unconsciousness with a thick unstoppable thumping. I feel the fearsome pounding knocking at my dreams, pulling me from sleep with it’s tenacious teeth. Before my eyes even open I know the world will be too bright, too loud, too much.
Once awake I have to convince myself to move. I know I will probably end up vomiting before I am even dressed as the act of sitting up causes waves of nausea to shoot through me. I climb out of bed and stumble towards the bathroom, wishing I could teleport, fly, or maybe even sleep forever.
The light burns in my eyes as my stomach heaves from the motion. I struggle through teeth brushing, a hot shower, and the donning of clothes. The act of getting up has exhausted me. I nearly convince myself to go back to bed.
If I am lucky, I will get better enough to move about the world in dark glasses. If not, it will be me in my room with an oil lamp on. The stronger my headaches get, the more often I resort to candlelight to make it through my day. The soft flickering glow caresses my fragile eyes instead of piercing them. I have learned to read by candlelight, write by candlelight, crochet by candlelight. I mute my screen to nearly black to work and write on the computer.
I have tried so many things, medications, therapies, treatments. None have worked. At this point I wonder if I will forever have to live my life by candlelight.