Hey there, body, I’ve made a decision. I’m no longer going to let you control me the way you have for so long. That’s right, I’m taking my life back. I’m not going to be sick anymore. I’m not going to let you stop me from living and enjoying my life, however painful it may be, so deal with it.
If only it were that easy…but maybe it can be easier that it has been. I’ve been thinking a lot about the psychology behind chronic illness and what it does to a person- how it breaks one down. The endless visits (that sometimes seem like interrogations) with doctors and specialists you’ve never even heard of and don’t know how to pronounce their specialty until you have to go see one…the painful and frightening medical tests and procedures and the anxiety leading up to them…the late night ER trips…the terrifying relapses…the ever-growing pile of medical bills…the boxes and boxes full of prescription medications, vitamins, and supplements…the judgment of everyone who isn’t sick and has absolutely no idea what you deal with every. single. day…the guilt you feel for not being able to be the friend or sister or daughter or employee you once were…and the list goes on. It’s a lot to deal with.
I’ve always considered myself to be a very strong and independent person, but there are times when I feel like this disease has stolen everything from me. Not only that, but I’m caught in the middle of one of the most controversial diseases imaginable for which there isn’t a cure, and there aren’t any clear answers or treatment protocols.
On one side is Western Medicine, which for the most part, will not recognize or treat Late Stage/Chronic Lyme Disease, but is more than willing to run tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars of the wrong kinds of tests, only to tell patients there’s nothing wrong with them- or that something is wrong, but they just can’t figure it out…so take a bunch of these pharmaceutical drugs, mask the symptoms, and slowly deteriorate.
The other school of thought is at the way other end of the spectrum, and those are the the LLMDs (Lyme Literate Medical Doctors). They test you for a billion things- none of which are covered by insurance, and then tell you that almost EVERYTHING is wrong with you…and maybe it is, but I found out the hard way that some of these LLMDs are extremely dangerous and are really playing with fire when it comes to treating their very desperate and very scared Lyme patients. They sometimes prescribe so many antibiotics, drugs, herbs, and supplements that the body can’t process everything, and it can lead to things like organ failure or a drug interaction/overdose.
The worst part is that there is no middle ground. These two sides couldn’t be more opposed, and the patients are the ones paying the ultimate price with their lives. So which would you choose? A life of pill popping pharmaceutical drugs that do nothing for you, are highly addictive, and have tons of side effects? Or would you risk your life and your savings (assuming you actually have some) in the hopes that you will somehow make it through the brutal treatments some of these LLMDs subject you to for a chance you might go into remission?
Well, at this point, I’m choosing neither. I know there are some brilliant and wonderful, good-hearted doctors on both ends of the spectrum with nothing but the best of intentions, but in my experience (which is unfortunate) they have been few and far between. Many of the Western Medicine doctors just don’t know enough about Lyme Disease, so I can’t fault them for not knowing…I do hope they soon realize how serious this ever-growing epidemic is and take it upon themselves to learn about it. I also believe there are some really good LLMDs out there who truly understand this disease and all that goes along with it, but the wait to get in with a good one is outrageous and seeing one will undoubtedly drain your bank account very quickly. Things must change.
So for now, I’ve decided to focus on wellness rather than sickness. I think it’s the only way I can win. It’s easy to let this disease consume you and to allow the fear from it destroy you, but I’m done with that. I’m shifting my mindset to focus on being healthy instead of being sick. I am stronger than Lyme Disease. I’m seeking alternative and natural ways of healing (I am still taking the Mitosynergy, some herbs, probiotics, etc.) and I’m confident I will find my way back to health by giving my body all the tools it needs to become strong again. I hope I will soon find an amazing doctor I feel safe trusting my life to; one who can help guide me down this path. In the meantime, I believe taking some time away traditional doctors is better than seeing all kinds of doctors who haven’t a clue what they’re dealing with. I have been feeling a lot better since I stopped taking most of the things my LLMD had me on, so I think I’m headed in the right direction.
In addition, I’m doing everything I can to reduce the stress in my life, slow down, sleep more, meditate, eat well, strengthen my immune system, detox, etc. I also want to start doing yoga regularly, try acupuncture, start painting again, and for the first time in my life, put myself first. I have to or I’ll never be able to fully recover and I’ll never truly be able to help anyone else. I’ve come to the realization that I need take a step back from everything in my life and focus all of my energy on healing myself. I hope those who love me can understand this.
I’ll leave you with a fun fact about Lyme Disease: it also attacks the teeth. I had another oral surgery today. So far, so good- hopefully it doesn’t cause me to relapse. Thanks for all of the love and patience. It really means the world to me. Stay tuned. This should be an interesting journey…