This is a very personal subject to me. I have put off writing about it for quite sometime, because of the emotional impact it had on me. I was almost afraid to write about it, because of all the recall of past pain. But I realize that pain brings growth. Writing on lyme disease is part of many individuals story. And I want you to know, I understand what you are going through, truly…I felt it first hand.
How many times have you had individuals, friends, family, etc. not understand your pain, because you “look” normal. But inside they did not know what was going on. Your tendency to keep to yourself, be reclusive, was only an attempt to conserve energy, because of constantly defending what you felt or feel inside. It’s a disease that is hard to understand.
I personally experienced the symptoms of Lyme Infection at the age of fourteen.
I had a little puppy at the time who I thought had gotten lost in the woods by my house. I searched all morning for him, only to find out he had found his way back to the house when i returned.
As I was getting ready to shower, I noticed dirt all over my legs. But it wasn’t dirt, it was tiny seed ticks. I had walked through a nest of them on my search for the pup. I spent most of the evening scraping them off, and when I was done I just went to bed thinking nothing more of it.
After about 6 months had passed, I noticed my legs felt as if something was crawling up and down inside of them. This led to sleepless nights because of this sensation, and I stayed up most of the night thinking it was just a coincidence.
I battled insomnia for almost 2 years, and I had night terrors that felt so real that I would wake up thinking that the event actually took place. It made me afraid to go to sleep.
There were many days, especially in the summer where I could sleep to 1-2pm and didn’t think I got enough rest. I was chronically tired in high school and I noticed my hands would sweat heavily while sitting in class. In fact, I don’t remember much from high school. As much as I have tried, there are parts of my youth that I can’t recall. My sister and brother can think of events when they were five years old, I hardly remember what happened in 9-12 grade.
The chronic fatigue haunted me through undergrad and graduate school. Without me knowing, I was battling Lyme and it’s confections for many years.
It culminated in 2011, when I had a sensation go up my arm while I was working on a patient. I almost passed out, and from that point on, I had full blown Lyme symptoms:
- Heavy heart beats and heart palpitations
- Chronic migraines - pain so intense I thought my head would explode
- Panic/anxiety attacks (which I never experienced)
- Flashing lights in the eyes
- Sudden ringing in the ears
- Blurred vision and even small forms of blindness
- Chronic digestion problems
- Sensitivity to coffee(which I love!) and almost every food
- Leg weakness and Joint Pain, especially where I was bitten - below the knees
- CHRONIC FATIGUE
- Night Sweats
- Nervous Tics
These next few days, I want to write on the symptoms and where they may come from. This is only to give more insight to what you feel. It also lets you know that there are people out there that understand. Keep strong, don’t give up. I hope to give suggestions, even if they are small, that may help you unlock your hidden energy and strength.
I have no more symptoms of lyme. You have the capacity to heal.
Photo and Style by @lindsayblaze