Reni’s Migraine Tips are inspired by playtime with my granddaughter, Reni, who has episodic Migraine without Aura. Children’s entertainment is packed with lessons we can apply to life with Migraine. As we discover little nuggets of Migraine wisdom, Reni and I would like to share them with you. It’s our hope that you’ll be inspired, too.
Today’s tip is inspired by the duet performance of “True Colors” by Justin Timberlake and Anna Kendrick in the 2016 DreamWorks Animation movie Trolls. This psychedelic animation takes us back to 1970s disco with a timeless message about loss and healing. While watching the movie, Reni danced around the room, singing along with every song. The powerful message of helping others wasn’t lost on our girl. Even she recognized that in caring for others, we heal ourselves.
Losing our true colors to Migraine
In the story, each troll has a unique color that reflects their personality and individuality. Losing their color is often caused by painful trauma. Just like the characters in Trolls, we can lose our true colors because of Migraine. The challenges of living with Migraine can strip away our sense of identity, leaving us discouraged in a cold, dark, colorless world.
Migraine swallows us whole
In the movie, trolls are the favorite food of the Bergen who now threaten the lives of everyone in Troll Village. Many trolls have died and more will soon follow if a sanctuary isn’t found soon.
Migraine is like the Bergen. Unchecked, it devours everything in its path. The joys of life disappear as those closest to us are chased away by Migraine. Without taking action, we risk being enveloped in Migraine darkness. To save ourselves, we must often step out into the unknown to find answers.
Losing our true colors
The heroine — naïve, happy Poppy — sets off with her grumpy pal, Branch, to save the village. Poppy soon discovers that even her contagious enthusiasm is no match for the Bergen. All of Branch’s dire warnings begin to come true.
A few of us are like Poppy. Full of positive thinking and contagious enthusiasm, we’re convinced that everything will work out to our benefit. But most of are probably more like Branch. We’ve been wounded by Migraine. Thanks to Migraine, we’ve lost some of our most precious loved ones. We have good reason to be skeptical, even cynical. Like Branch, we are dull and gray, having lost our true colors long ago. Getting back to our former selves seems impossible. We may even give up trying.
Finding our lost colors
All of Poppy’s great plans fall apart when the Bergen capture her father and most of the villagers. She loses all her color and sparkle. Without her happiness to lead the way, the remaining trolls give up, too. It all seems hopeless until Branch arrives. He can’t stand to see his friend in such a miserable state. Despite his own pain, Branch reaches out to Poppy. Then a miracle happens. In helping Poppy restore her hope, Branch renews his own as well. Encouraged, both trolls regain their color and the strength to rescue all the trolls.
Let’s take Reni’s tip to heart.
The true hero of Trolls isn’t Poppy. It’s Branch, who reached out to a hurting friend through the darkness of his own pain and healed them both. Like Branch, we can easily get lost in our own pain. Often the path to our own healing leads through another’s sorrow.
When we offer compassion, encouragment, and hope to someone else, a bit of it rubs off on us, too. A little spark of that hope remains in our hearts. It doesn’t take much to restore us. Just a little light will bring out our true colors. Despite our own Migraine, and more often because of it, we light a spark that restores two lives.