I've dealt with headaches for as long as I can remember, but they became more prevalent during my teenage years. I've always had trouble with perfumes, potpourri, bright lights, loud noises, etc. (though all of these things have significantly worsened - to a point that these are triggers to disabling migraines, since my chronic migraines began a few years ago). I also had headaches that occurred sometimes when I worked out (I was extremely athletic in middle and high school - absolutely loved running and playing softball, so I guess I did my best to just get through the headaches and keep running / playing).
All that being said, I believe I was first diagnosed with Migraine, while I was in high school (~10-12 years ago). But, I was able to keep them under control by using Excedrin Migraine and Imitrex. I was episodic for years - having headaches more frequently than migraines (migraines were only a few times a year), and I was still able to function (even if only at a low level) with those migraines.
I started experiencing chronic migraines, following an auto accident 3.5 years ago. I remember when I came to the realization that my migraines were both chronic and debilitating... with no end in sight. It hit me hard, especially since I'd spent plenty of time in denial. I was left not knowing what to do, but I continued seeking help from doctors because I know I simply can't give up. And, it's been a journey of ups and downs, since that time.
This post was written as part of the Migraine Awareness Month Blogging Challenge (MAMBC), which is initiated by www.FightingHeadacheDisorders.com and the National Migraine Awareness Month is initiated by the National Headache Foundation (NHF).