Like three million other Americans, artist Rachael Jablo suffers from chronic migraines. One episode that began for her in 2008 lasted a grueling 4 and a half years. “Without medication, the pain makes me lose the ability to speak,” she writes. “With medication, I have side effects that cause me to forget words.”
To help make sense of the jumble, she took to the medium she finds most comforting: photography.
Today at a meeting with students at UCLA Medical School, the 38-year old artist will talk about her intimate chronicle of that time, recently published in a book by the German publisher Kehrer Verlag called “My Days of Losing Words.” The pieces are also on display in the gallery space in the entrance to the school. These pictures, she said, “create synthetic memories of my lost words and this time of being inarticulate and in pain.”
By having her speak to medical students, the school hopes to “raise future doctors’ awareness of illness from the patient’s perspective.”