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It’s been nearly three years since I first found out I had Lyme disease (and other Tick borne infections). I’ve come a long way in those three years and I’m still hopeful that I’ll improve enough to have a somewhat normal life again. But it takes a really long time to get well depending on how long you’ve been sick, (at least 15 years for me) how old you are, (I’m 54) and how many different kinds of infections you have (I have at least four). I hear numbers like 3 to 5 years, but there just aren’t that many accurate statistics out there. This disease, like most I’m sure, affects your emotions as well as your physical health. And right now I’m very depressed. I had been doing really well (relatively speaking) in the late summer and early fall. But I’ve been going downhill lately and I’m not exactly sure of the cause as there are a few different factors to choose from.
1 – This healing process has always been two steps forward and one step back. So maybe this is just my one step back.
2 – My Dad was injured last October. He had been living in Washington with no one living close enough to care for him. So my family had to figure out what to do so he could get the care he needed. This was very stressful as I don’t get along well with a couple of my family members and I’ve been so worried for my Dad. We ended up moving him, last December, into an Assisted Living apartment about three hours from me, which means he’s finally close enough to visit. The drive and staying overnight is still incredible hard on me, but I haven’t seen much of my Dad in the last 30 years so I’m going to take advantage of this as often as possible. Which was twice in December, not a smart thing for me to do, but after all he is my Dad and I've been missing him so much.
3 – My expenses increase by $400 a month last October, so I had to cut way back on my supplements, medicine, treatments, and Doctor visits. My Dad was helping me financially, but now that his circumstances have changed that’s not really an option anymore.
4 – I had just gone through a really tough six months at work. My boss retired (in March) and I took on some of his tasks as they didn’t replace him, which at the time was easy and fun to do. Then the upper level manager got cancer and was gone a lot, so it was chaotic at best at work. Late in October that manager died, it was a great loss, and I miss him so very much. But we finally replaced the boss that retired and some of the stress was removed from me. But like a good little B blood type, did I just collapse because the “emergency” (of the last six months) was finally over for me?
5 - I got a bad case of the flu in early January. It's the one that starts out like a cold and in my case very quickly moved into a sinus infection. Believe it or not, it's actually good news when a Lyme patient gets a cold or flu. I haven't had a cold in many years! Usually our immune systems are so low our body doesn't even try to fight the new virus at all. But I'm in that in between stage, where my immune system has started working again but not quite well enough to take care of the job. I had to use some sinus sprays and other medication to clear up this new infection.
It’s so discouraging to have these nights again where I’m up all night long with pain and other uncomfortable symptoms. I’ve started to have trouble concentrating again and having memory lapses. The depression of course doesn’t help matters, but it’s actually one of the symptoms, so it’s not so easily overcome. Only time will tell what the cause of this set back is. My guess is it’s a combination of all five of the factors above. Here’s hoping last Friday night is as bad as it gets and I start moving back in the “right” direction soon.
Thank you so much for your kind words. Connie
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