Written by Becky Briese for Chronic Migraine Awareness
My name is Becky Briese and this is my story. I have had migraine and headache since I was eleven years old, but I was not diagnosed as chronic until my late twenties. I had lived in Wisconsin my whole life and found that weather changes were one of my biggest triggers. Cold was brutal for me as winter was one of the worst times of year in terms of frequency. In Wisconsin I found inconsistent weather patterns and barometric changes were contributing to my migraine attacks. The few times the weather was consistent, I would feel great. Years of injections, Botox, time in the infusion clinic, medications, and time in bed were no way to live. I was missing work and time with friends and family. My husband would often find me lying in bed with the drapes closed. One night out of curiosity I started to research the best places to live with migraine disease. There were several on the list and so many factors that went into the cities that were chosen. Some were more cost prohibitive than others. One area in particular stood out to me that I was fond of and had been to before: Arizona. I loved the dry heat and while the weather was not perfect, it was more consistent year-round. Fast forward to late 2020 my husband and I both learned we would be able to be permanently remote with our employers. My migraines were becoming worse, and as much as I did not want to leave my family and friends, I felt as if I did not give this a try, I would regret it. My health needed to come first. We have now been in Arizona two months, and I have felt a significant improvement. I am not perfect, and it is still early on, but I am hopeful for the future. I have found a new headache specialist here and we are working together for even more improvement. I may have taken a more radical approach on my migraine journey, but it was one I felt I needed to try for my own good. I am grateful that I had the opportunity to have tried this for myself and I hope my story helps others who may be considering something similar.