Migraine helps reach power of Now

The pounding in my head started before dawn. I wasn’t sure what it could have been from, at first. 

I’m religious about hydrating with a minimum of 40 ounces of water a day. I rarely drink alcohol, and if I do, it’s one glass of wine. I make sleep a high priority, so it wasn’t fatigue.

Muscle tension from a new fitness class? Onset of the flu from babysitting a flu-recovering child? 

The headache ebbed and flowed over the course of two days, diminishing to a mild ache, or ramping up to a nausea-inducing jackhammer that forced me to lie in bed with an ice pack. In the end, I determined it was from the vog.

I happened to have a library book called The Power of Now by spiritual teacher Eckhart Tolle. I’m not into self-help books, but I like spiritual pursuits, and so I borrowed the book more out of curiosity because over the years, several people I know keep referencing him. 

He talks about the power of “now,” of living in the moment. “The present moment holds the key to liberation,” he writes.

Art by Sado.

As a Buddhist, this is not a new concept, but I like how he put it in words for Western digestion. He says people think too much and should just learn to be, to exist in now.

Such a simple edict. So hard to achieve. 

Then I realized that if there’s one good thing about this stupid headache, it’s that it’s forcing me to live in the now. I lie down with the ice on my head and I feel the waves of queasiness come, go, come, fade. I feel my body loosen and relax when the pain subsides.

There is no room in my brain to think about anything else. Past hurts, current disappointments, future goals. It takes too much energy when your head is throbbing. In its own way, it’s quite a relief to be free of thought. I’m only feeling my body now. 

I could certainly enjoy doing this without the headache, but it was interesting to realize that the pain provided this real-life illustration of what that feels like. I look forward to practicing the Now… without the acetaminophen.

Author(s) on this Post

Diane Ako

Peace of mind By Diane Ako I like to reflect on life. Sometimes it’s philosophically. Sometimes it’s humorously. For all its beauty, life is far too difficult a journey to take alone. You need the support and connection with others to help carry you along the way. Writing brings me that connection– within and without. It clarifies my thoughts and feelings. It helps me reach out to others for advice, wisdom, or feedback. Your thoughts become your actions. Your actions become you. A wise yogi- Patanjali- said, “Speak what is true. Speak what is pleasant.” Let’s speak of things pleasant to one another and seek some peace of mind along the way. ABOUT Diane Ako joined Hawaii: In Real Life in October 2016. She likes being part of a community of local bloggers – people who like writing and sharing, like she does. Ako is an anchor/ reporter at Island News (KITV4 – ABC) in Honolulu. She previously anchored and reported at KHON2 (FOX) and KHNL (NBC), and at stations in California, New Mexico, and Pennsylvania. She freelance writes for NMG Network's magazines. In between news jobs, in 2017, she launched and ran her own p.r. company, Diane Ako PR. From 2010-2014, she headed the public relations department at Halekulani Corporation, which oversees luxury resort Halekulani and boutique hotel Waikiki Parc. She’s been blogging since 2009 – before Hawaii: IRL, she wrote for The Honolulu Star-Advertiser, the state’s largest daily newspaper, where her stories garnered a dozen journalism awards and an Emmy nomination. Ako has a BA in Communications from Menlo College and an MA in Political Science from University of Hawaii at Manoa. She volunteers as a board member of the Honolulu Gay & Lesbian Cultural Foundation, a Shinto shrine maiden at Daijingyu Temple, a citizen-scientist studying shrimp, and a yoga teacher at a senior center.

Diane Ako has 274 posts and counting. See all posts by Diane Ako

3 thoughts on “Migraine helps reach power of Now

    • April 6, 2017 at 6:57 pm

      Thank you! I’m OK now. And really, it was an interesting experience if one gets past the pain. I had just picked up that book and realized, Oh, THAT’S how it’s done to live in the moment, to feel the body, and not think so much!! I appreciated it.

      • April 13, 2017 at 9:08 am

        Dorian, It’s been a week. I’m going to pick a new winner because we haven’t heard back from you! Sorry! CC: Your email as well.


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