Call me callous, but I’m a bit too cynical for the ‘silver lining’ Lyme disease and chronic illness stories. Whenever I encounter them I can’t help but daydream about the speed and alacrity with which I would trade in my personal ‘silver lining’ for a cloudless sky at some imaginary Chronic Illness Unemployment Office (“Yes, I gave it the old college try, but Lyme just wasn’t for me, you understand of course?”) If you have no idea what I’m talking about, just bear with me, it will become more relatable shortly...Read More
I was diagnosed with Lyme disease on July 6th, 2016, just three short weeks after my wedding in Napa, California. In what seemed like no time at all, I went from being surrounded by friends and family and feeling overwhelmingly loved by the outpouring of support, to shocked, scared, lonely, confused, and very, very sick.
Looking back, I should have seen the signs and known something was up. We had a stressful year, but like anyone, I found excuses for my exhaustion and poor physical health. I blamed work, moving across the country, changing jobs, my long distance relationship, and training for my first marathon. I continued to tell myself to push through, that I would be fine.Read More
I find it almost comical, the irony of the situation from where I write this. As I gaze out at a placid lake in northern Wisconsin, the setting and soil that has always rendered me most content in my 29 years. But I am not bemused to think that it is likely the very type setting in where I first contracted Lyme disease. I mean, who is to say, as I never had sight of the bite or rash. However with a childhood that was enveloped in the woods, barefoot and drenched in everything the midwest landscape has to offer, it would come as no surprise to me once I was diagnosed. And so, with this new-to-me reality, albeit posting up residence in my cells for years now, I am choosing to lean in to it.Read More
From a Life That Felt So Certain and Clear, To Facing The Fear That Comes With Not Knowing Where Look For Hope, To a Diagnoses That Changed Her Life Forever...
This is Kourtney's story of how she was diagnosed with Lyme, and not only the pain and doubt she felt along the way, but the love and support she received from those close to her. Those that pushed her to continue to live her best life. A life that keeps her close to her sense of self. Rather, what makes her happy. And even if it's different from what the 10 year old Kourntey would have imagined, it still holds true through to her core.
As I sit here with my coffee in hand, blanket wrapped around my legs, and the sound of silence in my ears as the snow fall whispers outside, I try to come up with just the right words to describe this vibrant girl. Just a few weeks ago we had met for the first time, walking into the coffee shop looking for the other person who is also looking for another person. Her warm smile and honest words left me feeling certain that this community is carved and shaped into something bigger than us, by those that surround us.Read More
I remember the last time I felt healthy.
Just simply, effortlessly like Ari.
I'm not sure if the memory is so vivid only now in retrospect because of what has been lost since or if it was in fact, as sweet as I remember it being.
The sun rose on a beautiful mid-October Saturday in Bend Oregon, after a lovely night spent with out-of-town friends: The Reel Rock Film Tour followed by meaningful conversations about our futures over a few too many IPAs. It had only been a week since I had decided to forgo my beer-free sentence: I would conquer the stomachache and embrace the flavor and culture of beer in this well-versed town. I only wish now, that I had made that decision many weeks earlier. My friend Brooke and I mused over the somewhat uncanny similarities in our life trajectories over the last decade and I shared with her my internal battle about whether to dive headfirst into medical school or to pursue a Naturopathic doctorate insteadRead More
From curiosity about someone else's illness, to the discovery of her own, Ethel is determined to create a life for herself more than the limitations that this disease can bring; a life where raising awareness for Lyme Disease is in the forefront of her will to keep moving forward. To keep motivating herself and others to pursue dreams and goals that may seem impossible when facing such daunting obstacles.