We Have Lyme, Lyme Does Not Have Us

This picture makes me so happy.

Not just because I was on a boat with my family. Not just because the sun rays were splendid and that night gave our painted zona sky a run for its money. Not just because my dad was feeling well while we were there. There was a lot to be happy about. But what I see when I look at this picture is more of myself than I have seen in a long time. 

In early May, I was still bed ridden most days hiding in my sea of white blankets and pile of pillows with the shades drawn tight and a movie I had seen a thousand times mumbling in the background. That was my life, and I often wondered if it would ever get better or if this was it? It’s the unknowns that strike a fear that is hard to describe, it’s the misunderstanding of how you can be functioning, be fine and yet not fine in the same breath, hour, week, or often simultaneously. 

I don’t know if I will ever be in that state again. I hope not with every ounce of my being. Progress is being made every day because people are using their voices and telling their stories and making people see. And in this photo, I don’t see the pale, exhausted, pained person Lyme morphed me into…I see me. I wasn’t thinking about detoxing and medications and doctors’ appointments, I was just basking in the warmth of the setting sun and smiling at my sister and I felt a peace knowing that I was doing everything in my power to just live with whatever time I get. 

We have Lyme, Lyme doesn’t have us... 

I know it feels that way the majority of the time. But there is courage and hope and strength in every moment you fight to and get to live as yourself. Even when you feel pain, and fatigue, and doubt….keep going. Don’t stop doing the things that make you happiest and surrounding yourself with people that make you feel like this life is worth fighting for, because it is! 

And someday the tough moments will become less frequent, and your eyes will shine with a little more spirit and conviction and your smile won’t be to accommodate others or hide your pain. 

Your smile will be because in that second, even if it lasts for just a second, hope silences fear and you remember what it’s like to be you.

Written by the always inspiring, Jess Unger (@Jessunger22). To find out more, head to her blog, here!


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