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Normal body temperature is 98.6° The problem with "normal" however, is that normal is a guideline, and very, very few people are truly normal. I never truly wanted to be normal except for a couple of seriously misguided, adolescent years, when "normal" meant having friends. Being extraordinary means you have a life worth living.

There are, however, expections to the desire not to be normal. Body temperature may or may not be one, I haven't quite decided.

My normal body temperature is 97.6°, where "normal" in this case is defined as the temperature I get most often if I check my temperature when I'm not sick, not exercising, not just waking up and not eating. Having done this measurement a half dozen times, all with the same result, I feel comfortable in saying my normal body temperature is 97.6°

So, when I had my second migraine of the month today, I thought about raising my body temperature to see if that would help speed the thing away.

I arrived home from class around 3:30, and noticed the light in the living room was a little odd. I didn't think much past that thought about it, which cracks me up in retrospect. How many times have I gone blind with these things, each one starting the same way? How many times have I thought, "Huh? The light looks odd?" or "Everything is in really sharp focus?" or "WTF? The door is f***ing open!" Oh, wait, that last one was just one time.

At 3:45 I was half blind, sending a note to Kris that I wouldn't make practice that evening, and stumbing to the bed, dragging Bella with me. If I was going to sleep, I damn well sure was going to have a warm dog in the bed with me.

I woke up two hours later, and tried to do something, anything productive, only to have spots reform at 6:45. My first thought was, go to sleep, avoid what's coming. My second thought was, stop, this is a learned response. The shivering, the chills, the shudders, all of these I've learned over the years suffering through migraines. How about trying a proactive approach?

One of the beliefs around migraines is that the headache is caused a constriction of blood vessels which causes blood to leave the extremities, only to rush back into the head when the blood vessels later dialate. If I can heat my hands and feet and head, the theory goes, the blood won't rush back, and the pounding headache won't trigger.

Of course, lots of pain killers can do the same trick.

I took a bath as hot as I could stand the water, then turned it up higher. I started with a shower and a closed drain, sitting down and switching the water once I was standing in 4" of water. After staying in the water, only half of which I could see at this point, for about fifteen minutes, I stood up, toweled off, and left. The visual symptoms didn't disappear quickly, but I had successfully stayed awake through an entire aura.

I'll take the small victory.

When I checked my body temperature again, I was feeling feverish. Clearly I had succeeded in raising my body temperature, but by how much? Did I manage 100°? How about 99°? Even 99° would be good, I thought.

My temperature?


I was finally normal.

Of course, a lower body temperature has been linked to a longer life span, so maybe I should stop worrying and accept my body is helping me in my quest to live to 120.

I really wish, however, we could figure out the true cause of the aura. Those are what I hate. I can't trust my eyes. Seeing is not believing for me. If it were, then I have front row seats into regular rifts of the space time continuum.

And people, they're pretty for only so long.