This month is the awareness month for so many illnesses (I have a few!), so I thought it was appropriate to share my story posted on Lyme Expressions And Fellowship (LEAF) a few weeks ago.
I always like to bring attention to these illnesses when I can here and on social media, and I try supporting others who do the same.
Thank you LEAF for raising awareness!
I was a very energetic and spunky gal.
Growing up I played competitive basketball and loved traveling with my family.
In college I threw my heart and soul into studies and getting involved in as many things as possible.
After college I worked three jobs (at the same time) and continued to push the rest of that year to get ready for missions in Slovakia.
In Slovakia I fell in love with the people and the ministries and spent countless days following sleepless nights pouring myself out.
I acted like I was an ever-ready battery over there for 6 years.
During the middle of that 6th year though, I felt something weakening in my body.
I was burning out and getting some symptoms of exhaustion. As always, though, I pressed on.
Months later in September, worse for wear and in desperate need of rest, I woke up one morning a little past midnight with an extremely swollen upper lip (and only one side was swollen).
During my panicked and groggy inspection, I saw what looked like a faint bite hole in the middle.
In the 3 months that followed, my exhaustion turned into dizzy spells, pain, insomnia, cognitive dysfunction, digestive issues, tremors, amnesia and muscle weakness.
I had to return to the States to recover from what I thought was simple Adrenal Fatigue/Exhaustion. My only prayer was that I wouldn’t collapse en-route.
A year later I was even worse and diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome by an infectious diseases doctor.
Four years after I got sick, I asked my doctor to finally test me for Lyme (and a bunch of other diseases).
To everyone’s shock, I tested positive for Acute Lyme.
I was put on 2 weeks of Doxy and retested. The test came back negative, yet I was still very sick.
Six months later in December, 2017, I went to a Lyme specialist (to address what I thought were just lingering symptoms) who retested me.
Again I was positive for Acute Lyme. This was when we realized I have Chronic Lyme.
With a diagnosis like Lyme Disease, there is sadly a massive blind spot with most traditional and even non-traditional doctors.
Treatments for chronic Lyme aren’t covered by insurance, and even Lyme experts are still unsure about some of my basic questions.
I’ve decided to treat first with botanicals to see what happens before ramping up to using prescription medications. So far so good!
By God’s grace I’ve been feeling better now than I have since getting sick, and I can’t wait to see what will happen the rest of this year!
I had forgotten what it was like to look at a computer screen without getting woozy, or drive without feeling exhausted after.
There is so much we take for granted when we are healthy, but I am thankful for every part of me and every moment I get to be.
*The two pictures were taken at around the same time. One represents what people see in public when I muster up the strength. The other one represents more accurately how I used to feel and look in private.
Other stories that readers of FoodFaithFatigue have submitted for May Awareness