How has Lyme Disease affected your life? What inspires you?
May is Lyme Disease Awareness Month. And although I rarely talk about my battle with Chronic Lyme and co-infections, I am posting today in hopes that I can help someone else.
In October 2014 I ran a half marathon. Two months later I woke up and couldn’t walk. I needed to be carried to the bathroom at times and use a wheelchair. My heart rate reached 200s just standing. Overnight I had developed Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome (autonomic dysfunction), light and sound sensitivity so bad I couldn’t be in stores or even sit in my own living room with lights on, constant flu like symptoms, heart palpitations, 24/7 vertigo, difficulty swallowing food, swelling of my brain, memory loss, encephalopathy, and a host of other issues.
The fatigue was so bad at times I had trouble feeding myself. The exhaustion and cognitive issues were so bad I could do nothing but lay in silence with my eyes closed all day every day. I was bed ridden for a good part of 2 years, sometimes not leaving the house for weeks. And although pictures and putting on a brave face could be deceiving, that was my reality. I lost friends, family, my career, and my independence.
This loss was all from 1 tick bite that had happened 10 years prior. The multiple infections carried by that tick were dormant for a very long time and then came out. In the time that I have been in treatment, I have taken over 35 antibiotics (both herbal and pharmaceutical). And after 4.5 long years of treatment, I still have a way to go until I am back to full health. My whole life and schedule revolve around my treatment and the dozens of daily supplements and antibiotics I take.
In this journey, I have faced many ignorant doctors and insurance companies and have had to become my biggest advocate. Lyme Disease is no joke and needs more recognition. I am not out of the woods yet, but my treatment (thank God) has been working. I recently have been able to return back to work in a part time position and I am so thankful for that. I am hoping that in this post, my journey can help someone else in theirs.
For more information on Lyme Disease visit www.ilads.org and to my fellow Lymies, we’ve got this 💚