Welcome to my blog! This is a place of information and hope for fellow Canadians who are suffering from Lyme disease. I want to share with you the knowledge I have gained during my fight with this debilitating, frightening, and misunderstood illness. I hope you will be blessed.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Back in the driver's seat

Today I had a realization.....a good one!  I finally feel like I am back in control of my life, back in the driver's seat!  Lyme has moved over.  It's not sitting in the passenger seat, nor the back seat.  It's in the trunk!

Yes, it's still with me, but I only notice it once in a while.....like that jug of windshield washer fluid in the trunk that clunks now and then when you take a corner.  But I am driving the car with my hands firmly on that wheel.  And it feels so good to no longer be ruled by the borrelia burgdorferi.

Returning to my teaching job this September has been great, even therapeutic.  I'm busy, my mind is active, and I'm so happy to be teaching my lovely students.  I love thinking about my lesson plans, my units, and YES, even the marking.  I'm honestly so glad and grateful to be able to keep up with the demands of my job.

Exercise is becoming another good routine that I'm putting into place, and that I'm happy to be able to do.  (Wow, I can hardly believe I'm saying this.)  A lot of flab built up since I got sick in 2011!  Laying on the couch, unable to even walk around the block, and feeding yourself comfort foods will do that, right?  It's time for me to get my body back in shape, build up my stamina, and tone those muscles.   

Finally, I feel so good to be getting my eating under control, not just for weight loss, but for good health and a healthy immune system.  For over a week now, I've been counting the "points" of everything going into my mouth (à la Weight Watchers).  I've set a weight loss goal for next July, so we'll see how that goes.  So far so good!

OK, so Lyme may always be with me, but it isn't (and shouldn't be) the focal point of my life anymore.  It is time to move on from that horror show.  It may pop by for a little unexpected visit now and then, causing me some physical symptoms, but I won't be inviting it in to wreak havoc on my emotions.  I have better and more meaningful things to do with my time.

   Forgetting what lies behind
and reaching forward to what lies ahead,
I press on toward the goal for the prize
of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 3:13, 14

Sunday, September 01, 2013

A superb book

I have finally finished Cure Unknown - Inside the Lyme Epidemic by Pamela Weintraub.  I've been working on it for at least a year!  There is a lot to digest with this book, and Weintraub has left no stone unturned in this study of the history and politics surrounding Lyme. 

Weintraub, her husband, and their 3 children all contracted Lyme disease, and she tells their story in detail.....from onset of illness, to misdiagnosis, to diagnosis, to treatment.  I'm sure many of you can relate!  (Me, too.)

Weintraub offers many excellent insights into the Lyme predicament.  One of her statements struck me as I read today:
"When it comes to science, questions on methodology are crucial.  Science can be flawed, it can be tricky, Jonas Salk taught me, but science is all we have.  If we are ever to unravel the mysteries of Lyme disease and find a cure, it is science - pure and unadulterated - that will lead us home.  We need science, but different science.  We must travel the road not taken.  Sometimes you just need to start again."  (p. 348)
This got me thinking about all of the effort that is going into this grassroots Lyme movement, led mainly by the victims and their families.  These efforts would include support groups, community viewings of Under Our Skin, interviews on local television and radio, letters to the editor, blogs, websites, information booths, Lyme walks, green bracelets and t-shirts, books, petitions, and seminars.  (Wow!)  But what, I ask, are these things accomplishing, apart from informing the public about the dangers of ticks and providing information to those who are sick?  For ALL of this effort, have we truly advanced our cause?
Well, perhaps there has been some improvement.  LLMDs are no longer persecuted in many U.S states now due to the passage of laws protecting them.  But there remains the issue of the CDC and the IDSA who have dug in their heels and refused to acknowledge that there is another useful standard of treatment.  And this is despite the evidence of so MANY clinical cases.....myself being one of them. 
So, what will it take?  What will change the system?  As Weintraub stated, we are going to need science to prove us right before there will be any sort of real change in the way Lyme is diagnosed and treated.  And so, we must do what we can to support this research and to get it published.  There is research happening as we speak, but we have yet to see a lot of fruit from their labour, i.e., true changes in the "system". 
And yet, though this post sounds a bit pessimistic, I truly do believe that one day things will change.  It will just take time.....lots of time.....but unfortunately many people just don't have a lot of time to wait.