Cluster headaches

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If you don't already know me, name is Daren (DJ) Johnson. I am the webmaster/creator/owner/operator of this site. I am not a company, simply a cluster headache sufferer. A sufferer who was so tired of not being able find any information on the condition, decided to do something about it.

When my annual cycle started in April 1998, I immediately got on the web to find out if there was any information that I could possibly use to help me cope with the upcoming three or so months. Much to my dismay, there was literally NO information out there! I couldn't believe it! I thought to myself, how hard could it be to build my own site?

On April 11th 1998, was born.

I wasn't sure what to expect at first. I had never met another sufferer, but I knew there had to be others out there. Honestly, I expected to be talking to myself on the message board for quite some time. But, the hits started coming. Slowly, but surely. I spent every extra hour I had for several weeks researching how to get better positions in the search engines, since there were no other sites out there to link with. Still, slowly, the hits kept coming.

It's been over six years now. More than 3,000,000* people have visited the site, 11,000,000* hits total, and over 345,000* messages posted on the message board (* numbers as of Oct 21, 2004). I am TRULY amazed! If you only knew how many nights I've sat here, with tears streaming down my face, reading the messages from all of you. You have truly blessed my life! Like many of you have stated in messages, sometimes, the greatest feeling in the world is just knowing that someone else out there REALLY knows how you feel! That comfort, in itself, is absolutely priceless!

In some kind of awkward way, it kind of makes it that much easier when a co-worker finds out that you have a problem with headaches and says "yeah, I get REALLY BAD headaches too... it's so bad, I have to go lay down for a couple of hours till it goes away". You want to jab an ice pick in their temple, wiggle it around for a while, and say "really? Does it feel like this? No? Mine do! So don't talk to me about how bad off you have it! I'll tell you what, the next time a cluster wakes me up at 2 am, I'll give you a call and you can drive me to the hospital while I bash my head on your dashboard for a while!!!!". Sorry, I'm getting a little carried away here, hehehe.

The bottom line here is this. This site has been as much as a blessing to ME, as it has been to you. I sit here and cry as much as you do, trust me! was built for totally selfish reasons. I just needed a forum to share stories with something that has dominated nearly half of my life. Luckily, and thankfully, others have benefited from my needs. That, in itself, is worth every single penny I've ever spent, or ever will spend, to keep this site operating.

I get what seems like an email a day from people asking if they can help with the expense of this site. My answer has been the same since the site was opened the first week of April, 1998.

"Thank you VERY MUCH for your offer to help offset the costs of the site, however, this site was NOT built to make money..." blah, blah, blah.

This site is NOT about money!!! It's about sharing, it's about learning, it's about knowing we are not alone. Personally, just knowing there are others out there who suffer from this terrible curse, and I'm not crazy, is absolutely priceless to me! No amount of money could ever replace the sense of peace and comfort that this site has given me, and the THOUSANDS of other people from around the world since the site came online.




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