[Note: Mr. Tweedy's first post, Shaking It Off, went up on 5 March 2008]
Yesterday, London-based blogger Mo at Neurophilosophy alerted us to a new blog at the New York Times website entitled, Migraine: Perspectives on a Headache. A notable cadre of prominent migraine sufferers have started blogging about their experiences and answering reader questions. Bloggers include author Siri Hustvedt, author-journalist Paula Kamen, German neurologist and psychiatrist Dr Klaus Podoll, and noted Columbia professor and author Dr Oliver Sacks. The blog description is as follows:
More than 28 million Americans, and many more people throughout the world, suffer from migraine headaches, one of the most debilitating of pain disorders. Symptoms like excruciating pain, visual disturbance and disorientation are often compounded by long-term emotional, physical and financial costs. The contributors to this blog, all sufferers, reflect on how this affliction has affected their lives, and on their efforts to manage and cope with the pain.
Among this group of bloggers is one who has yet to put up a post: Chicago-based singer-songwriter, Jeff Tweedy.
For those who don’t know, Tweedy is currently fronts the band Wilco and is recognized, together with Jay Farrar in the band Uncle Tupelo, as one of the founders of the alt-country/No Depression musical genre.
Most notable about Tweedy in the context of migraines is that his struggle to find medications to manage his excruciating headaches led to opiate-dependence (primarily Vicodin, hydrocodone/acetaminophen) that interrupted his career and led to his in-patient substance abuse rehabilitation in 2004. According to Greg Kot’s book, Wilco: Learning How to Die, Tweedy’s history of migraines extended back to elementary school.
I’ll be very interested to read how Tweedy describes his struggle, both with migraines and with having to give up a drug that brought him such great relief. Tweedy’s blogging should also bring migraine awareness to a demographic group less likely to be addressed by his co-bloggers.
On a personal note, a Jeff Tweedy live appearance on his solo tour was PharmPreK’er’s first concert. After watching the DVD if Sam Jones’ Wilco documentary, I Am Trying to Break Your Heart, the little one saw Tweedy with his toddlers and said, “he seems like a good Daddy.” (In another scene, Tweedy excuses himself to vomit and then discusses his battle with migraines over the previous several years.)
I’m guessing that he’ll also be a great med blogger.
And hey, maybe we could even coax him to play a set at next year’s science blogging conference.