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Why It’s OK My Husband and I Stopped Going to Hair-Band Concerts

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I have no shame in admitting this: I’m a former ’80s hair-band aficionado. I’ve been to many concerts, including Van Halen, Def Leppard and Mötley Crüe. You know, the bands where you left the concert with your ears ringing, your toes vibrating and your spine tingling. Those were some fun times — ear ringing included. They probably helped to keep my chiropractor in business, too. And I was lucky enough to marry my “partner in hair-metal music crime.” But we don’t go to concerts anymore.

Those days of loud, thumping, guitar-blaring music with thousands of hair-metal music loving fans are gone. These days, it’s more along the lines of quiet evenings at home on the patio with our pets — no music whatsoever — and, in rare cases, company.

It’s hard to explain this new normal to our friends and family. We used to go to so many friends’ parties, birthday get-togethers, baby showers, weddings, and on and on. Then came the excuses from us: Can’t make it, the drive is too long, have to work, not feeling well. Why? I didn’t have an answer.

Making a lifestyle change is hard enough when you want to do it. But when you have to do it, I believe it’s even more difficult because you are forced to eliminate things and people in your life that made you thrive. 

My husband and I have come a long way in nearly 10 years. We have really come a long way in the last two years, and we seemed to have traveled in light speed in the last year. His diagnosis day came in February 2016. It was migraine associated vertigo (MAV), which is also called vestibular migraine. That day ended the fun weekly date night at our favorite Mexican restaurant. It ended the comedy club nights with friends. There were no more parties or backyard barbecues with friends. And there were no more hair-metal rock concerts.

They’ve all been replaced with the quiet enjoyment of one another and dinners at home with friends. And the most important things now are the new person he has become, his acceptance of his condition, how he can manage it, how external factors affect it, how he can try and explain it to others and how to live the rest of his life with a condition that will never, ever go away. 

It’s not important to us to make everyone understand what he feels because why would you really want someone to feel like he does? But it is important to find acceptance in your own shoes. So what if you can’t go bang away your noggin at some rock concert anymore? We have gladly discovered that there are so many other people, places and things in the world to enjoy.

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Originally published: November 9, 2016
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