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  • Earle Levenstein

My Migraine-free Zone



…just going a little further—if you don't mind—with my belated realization that my year-and-a-half Migraine holiday in France wasn't a gift; a wish granted.

Or that the year-and-a-half holiday ending—a 3 AM icepick driven into the right side of my jaw just below my ear that shot me out of my bed onto the tent floor—was just the unexpected return of Migraine. Nope.

I created the whole scenario. Switch turned on when my troop ship pulled in to the dock at La Pallice and I began to dream; fantasize; about living in France; forever in Paris at the Beaux Arts; walking the city; sketching in one of my untouched sketch books; writing in one of my many blank-paged journals; letting my creative imagination run wild; free at last; free at last.

Dream ending week of my icepick episode; my assignment in France at an end; my fantasy just that; a fantasy; couldn't allow myself to make it real; to finally be myself; to explore who I am; not to perform; to respond to everyone's needs. Never to recognize my own.

So—I'm baa-ack!—Migraine returned to business; picking up where I'd left off; a punishment; a warning; from me to me; don't ever even think about being yourself, kid; your goose is cooked; this is it for life. You and me; together forever. Won't that be fun?

And then—talk about taking my time—years of reflection; self-examination; recriminations; breast-beating; to read the message on the wall; simple; direct: You are in charge, kid. The Boss. Suck it up and be yourself; write, draw your brains out.

Do that and keep doing it; watch out for traps; catch yourself before you're caught. Beware of temptation; it's a trap; a trade-off; Migraine is ready and waiting in the wings; never rests; ready to break in and nail you.

Have I been totally successful? Nah. Nobody's perfect. Least of all me. Slip and pay the price.

Worth the work? You better believe it.

Saddle up folks…

Be yourself.

What've you got to lose?


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