*(Above) This is my husband, Mike, with his baby boy.
It’s an early fall evening, 2008. Sara is staggering into the kitchen of our apartment, weaving, washed out with fatigue, and collapses into my arms. We sink to the floor. I hold her, unable to fix whatever has happened, has been happening.
What is wrong with me, she sobs.
The next years will be brutal, but she guts it out, and we learn to survive, even thrive, albeit with changed and changing definitions.
Fast forward to 2010. It is about 9am on a chilly December morning. I am playing with our 4 month old son, Wyatt. He’s a beautiful boy. He’s beating all of his milestones by weeks and in some cases months. He’s gaining weight. He’s growing. He’s Lyme free.
This little boy is not the offspring of a woman still battling the vicious aftermath wrought by a decade of untreated Lyme Disease. How could he be? He’s too strong, too happy, and too much a part of his world.
We’d been pregnant before. There was a short lived pregnancy immediately before the worst of the lyme symptoms. Before wheelchairs and months long stints laid out on the couch, sinking under waves of panic and neurological chaos.
Eighteen months or so down the road, miles of IV tubes and thousands of pills later, there was also a set of twins who either didn’t want to come to the party or couldn’t find the house.
Wyatt was the one that stuck around. Sara knew he would. Barely a day after we’d had the sex that started Wyatt, she called me at work.
This woman, I’ve learned, is connected in ways that I can’t fully explain.
I’m pregnant!, she said. Great!, I said.
It wasn’t an easy pregnancy, but it wasn’t the tumultuous rollercoaster to doom that I had, in my darker moments, envisioned. And there were darker moments, I assure you. But they gave way to lighter moments, which mean that much more for trouble endured.
There were concerns throughout the pregnancy. Antibiotics. Would our baby come out deaf or blind or worse due to the continuous stream of toxins? If Sara relented on the medicine, would our baby then come out with a nervous system compromised? We found ourselves questioning symptoms. Baby or spirochete? Spirochete or baby? We’d talk at length. We’d add it up, chop it up, and distribute accordingly. We were keeping a close watch on the home front.
Who had answers? It took 10 years and luck to diagnose Lyme in Sara. As for Lyme’s impact on pregnancy? Good luck, sweetie. The primary Lyme Literate doctor who’d been overseeing treatment had effectively washed his hands of Sara until such time as she was without child.
So there were trips to more specialists. Lyme could be transmitted across the placental barrier, they said. Then again, Lyme could not, they said. What of breast feeding, doc? You shouldn’t. Spirochetes can travel that way, they said. Then again, no they can’t, they said.
Such is lyme disease in the days of cover your ass medicine.
There were brief scares. Unexpected cramps here. Spotting there. A night or two in the hospital for observation, for nothing other than piece of mind. Lyme had made the pregnancy high risk, but we’ll never know to what degree, if any, that Lyme played a role in the pregnancy.
Wyatt, however, was sticking around. No matter the cramping or bleeding that occurred, or days of numb arms and legs, or twitching and body-wide electricity, or forgetfulness, or any of the usual symptoms that ebbed and flowed, Wyatt remained the serene little center of our universe, dividing cells and becoming more discernibly perfect with each ultrasound.
Sara has poured herself, sum and detail, into this blog, and I know it has been of some assistance and hopefully some comfort to the many women out there that find themselves at the beginning of all this craziness. As for the partners of those women, and the fathers of those children soon to be, I can pass along some advice:
Everything will work out. The odds are solidly stacked in your favor. There is every reason the pregnancy and new life will be just fine. Stay positive and treat yourself and your partner well.
Whatever trouble you are having with your partner’s Lyme Disease and pregnancy, it’s harder for her. A whole hell of a lot harder. Be gentle. Be easy. Be calm. Listen always. Guide when you can. Above all, be the voice of hope and strength when she is spinning out and falling apart.
Be cognizant of her physical and mental shape, and check in with her from time to time, but don’t make the disease the focus of the relationship. She is sick enough, and pregnant enough without the continuous reminders. Distraction and healthy denial is sometimes as good as medicine.
The Lyme and the pregnancy are hard on her body. Do as much as you can to help her with the things she has a hard time getting to. Walk the dog. Clean the house. Make dinner. Do what you can to make sure she has some down time that is all hers.
Our experience appears to have a happy ending. Wyatt is a tough little dude. Neither of us can believe we made this amazing child. Amazing and healthy child.
Mom is hanging in there. The worst of the Lyme is behind us, and we know better how to deal with flare ups. We take it day by day, hour by hour. We steal the best moments, as you sometimes have to in life.
Roll it back to July 22, 2010. It’s a warm Summer evening. I am outside the swinging doors of the operating room where doctors are separating Baby from Mom.
Mom is silent, fully anaesthetized.
Baby comes out screaming.
A nurse brings out our wet, unhappy but completely healthy son.
Sara, there is nothing wrong, everything worked out fine!
Not all obstacles of Lyme pregnancy are physical, but sometimes it's easy (or necessary) to put other important parts of our lives on the back burner because all we can focus on at the moment is fatigue and pain.
There's a stupid cliche I hear once in a while... something about love and our spirit and our relationships being like flowers that need water to grow. I can't remember it now (nor do I want to--it's cheesy), but let's just put it this way: In order to function as a happy, healthy family, ALL aspects of our lives need watering, not just our own physical needs.
I've received a few compliments lately about how wonderful my husband sounds. I'm so tempted to make a messy husband joke here, and trust me, I could, but I won't because these compliments are true and he deserves some credit. He is more than I could ever ask for when it comes to being understanding, supportive, and loyal during our long battle with this illness.
After reviewing my relationship and how we came to be a family, I got to thinking about what a tremendous decision it is for a couple to decide to have a baby when the mother of that baby is sick. Even without children involved, it's a constant struggle (though most won't express this publicly) to maintain happiness, balance, and normalcy in a relationship where Lyme is involved. I would say that this area of my life has needed as much water (if not more) than my physical/treatment area, and if there's one piece of advice I can give you before you try for babies, it's that you should make sure you and your partner are in love and ready to move on with a family because you want to and not solely because you feel like you're running out of time or you're trying to rekindle a dying flame that's been snuffed out by years of illness.
Regrettably, I was married once before to a man who didn't believe I was sick and often accused me of being a lying hypochondriac. He was terrible and downright cruel to me at times, and he's not even worth taking up anymore space writing about.
Mike, my real husband, was the best friend who helped me through the hard times that follow a divorce. He was charming, funny, kindhearted. He was the exact opposite of the evil ex-husband. We ended up quickly falling in love.
This was all before my diagnosis. I remember telling Mike after just a few months of dating that I truly believed something was wrong with me and that I feared it might be cancer. At that point I knew there was something terribly wrong, and no one was able to find anything concrete, so I figured there was a tumor or two growing in me somewhere that they hadn't located yet. Instead of running away or chastising me, he looked at me calmly and said, "Yes, for all we know you might have cancer. But I'll be right here with you no matter the outcome." That's when I really knew I had found my partner.
A few years and many hospital visits went by. I'd go through periods of having a normal life aside from constant fatigue, mixed with a few bad months. September of 2008 was when the big and final crash happened--I was not bouncing back from this without serious help and a diagnosis. This also marks the time when our relationship started to require some extra water.
At our highest, we shared loving moments you only read about in sappy Nicholas Sparks' books: I had just been diagnosed, I was lying on the couch herxing my brain out, eating some soup Mike had made for me, and both of my hands suddenly stopped working. They just froze turned into bent little lobster claws. The spoon fell to the floor, and I just sat there, horrified, dead silent, with tears streaming down my face.
Mike calmly got up, got another spoon, and simply said, "It's OK, just calm down...you need to eat. This will make you feel better." Then he started feeding me. If no one has ever had to feed you before, let me tell you, it's all at once the most beautiful, humiliating, loving, vulnerable, heartbreaking thing ever, especially when you're young and afraid you might be dying. But I trusted him and he obviously loved me, and for a while our relationship was adequately watered.
At our lowest, he became the caretaker and I became the sick person. A year and a half in, it no longer seemed like a temporary situation, but a deep rut we had both fallen hard into. He'd come home from work to a knotty haired, unsexy, sweatpants wearing invalid. I forgot how to do things for myself and relied on him heavily out of habit. I had lost my independence, even though I wasn't as sick as I used to be. (*Spoiler alert: If your illness takes over your life and becomes who you are, you will never ever heal). Mike started to make himself feel like he was obligated to fix everything, placing unrealistic expectations on himself and then resenting the relationship when things didn't get better. He felt responsible for me, like a guardian, and grew tired of the routine where we talked about my symptoms ALL the time, even when he initiated. We were feeding off of the ugly roles we had created for each other. Our relationship was in a drought and in desperate need of water, and a few times things got so dry we thought we wouldn't make it.
Obvious statement of the year: Lyme Disease affects everyone you love. The problem we get ourselves into is that the person infected starts to feel guilty for holding the partner back or being too much of a burden, whether it's mentally or financially or whatever else you can dream up while psychologically punishing yourself as you lie insomnia-ridden in bed.
Let's be honest though-- Lyme Disease is a burden. The key words here are Lyme Disease--not you. The person is not the burden; The disease is the burden. We couldn't fully move on until we internalized this. It has the potential to ruin a couple, but it doesn't have to if you can separate yourselves from it. The financial issues, the days spent in bed, the endless physical ups and downs, are a result of bacteria, an illness a Lymie has no control over. Putting blame on yourself or another person is counterproductive to healing and loving.
Anyway, back to the point. At our lowest, we gave it one more shot. We communicated our anger, fear, resentment, sadness, frustration, all of it. And then we decided that our love for each other (as people, not the roles we sometimes play) was stronger than spirochetes, and soon were were ready to do whatever we could to live a normal life together. Sometimes that means I don't complain out of habit (trust me, your partner knows by now you feel like shit 24-7). Sometimes it means my husband has to work a long day and then take care of the baby because I need rest in order to be a good mom the following day. When you can work together and feel optimistic as a unit, you are ready for babymaking.
I strongly believe that if two people are in a solid, loving relationship that they are happy to be in (despite stupid disgusting Lyme Disease), there's no reason why they will struggle too hard as parents. Just know that it will take extra extra watering sometimes, and often a lot of added responsibility for the healthier partner. Please read the next post written by my husband. I swear, I didn't pay him to say nice things about our relationship. We've worked hard for all of this because it's worth it.
Heather's had her fair share of struggles with Lyme. She's a huge inspiration to me, as she's still in the beginning stages of her treatment (remember those extra scary dark days?) and still manages to care for her kids, all while battling illness, making a difficult move across the country, and doing what's best for her family, even when it means making tough decisions and sacrifices. Here are some of her thoughts based on her Lyme pregnancy experience:
How long have you had Lyme; When were you diagnosed?
I have had Lyme disease since 1989 when I was bitten by a tick in the Sierra Nevada mountains in CA. I wasn't diagnosed until mid - 2010 and my real, debilitating symptoms started in 2007. Were you treated before and/or during pregnancy? If so, what were/are you taking?
I was not treated before or during either of my pregnancies because I didn't know I had Lyme! I suspected I had something that could be killed by some sort of anti-fungal or antibiotic so before my second pregnancy I was on Olive Leaf Extract and Lauricidin. DURING my second pregnancy I was on Lauricidin, Vit. D, and prenatals. But I had no idea I had Lyme or that whatever I "had" could possibly be given to my unborn child. I'm thankful for (so far) very healthy girls.
How did you feel physically during your first trimester?
Both of my pregnancies I was so so exhausted the first trimester. I could hardly do anything. I was also so nauseated that I threw up until week 21! I tried all sorts of anti-nausea meds and none really did the trick. Second? Like I said, mid-way into the second trimester I still was throwing up. But once it passed I felt great!!! NO fatigue, no joint pain, everything was awesome physically! My husband and I actually thought that being pregnant was the answer to avoid all the pain and fatigue I had been in. Third? Both pregnancies ended up with me having kidney stones in the third trimester. There isn't much they can do for you when you're pregnant so I just had to stick it out until they passed. And toward the end of both pregnancies I was pretty tired.
How did you hold up mentally during your pregnancy?
First trimesters I was always depressed. Probably because I felt so ill with no "light-at-the-end-of-the-tunnel". And my second pregnancy I was also depressed in the third trimester but it went away fairly quickly after my daughter's birth. Again, since my Lyme symptoms had disappeared during pregnancy and I also didn't KNOW I had Lyme, there wasn't much to worry about. I think if I got pregnant again now that I know what disease is hurting my body, I'd worry so much just because those hormones make you so imbalanced! Crying and irritable and for me, irrational sometimes.
Did you experience a flare-up in symptoms after delivery?
Most definitely, but not until about 2 months after the birth did the flare-up symptoms creep in. Joint pain, fatigue (not your normal baby-sleep-deprived state of mind), mental confusion, and twitches.
If so, how severe has it been, and what are your limitations?
After my second baby, I was diagnosed with Lyme and within a few weeks of finding out, I started having seizures for the first time. But before that, I was debilitated enough. The joint pain was manageable (meaning I could work through pain) but the fatigue was impossible to manage. There really isn't anything you can do about being so fatigued you can't move. I was confined to the couch or bed and my two littles had to be cared for by loving relatives and good friends who would come to the house during the day until my husband would get home from work.
What was the hardest part about pregnancy with Lyme Disease?
I think just not feeling well but having to care for another child and thinking that you'll have TWO soon and now sure how you'll feel physically after the birth.
What is the hardest part of being a mom with Lyme disease?
The hardest part of being a mom with Lyme disease is the physical limitations. Most moms have an instinct on how to balance life with one or more children alongside the normal requirements of home or work life--multitasking. With Lyme, I found that I went from someone who multi-tasked very well, to someone who could NOT do more than one thing at a time and could only really BARELY do the bare minimum for my kids (feed, change diapers, and put down for a nap). My sole focus went from being my kids' mom to being someone who could barely even care for myself. The GUILT that comes with that is almost unbearable. You feel as though you aren't good enough for your kids and that they are missing out on a normal childhood; wishing you had the energy and state of mind to read to them, enrich their little learning brains, and giving them the physical loves and hugs they need. I find myself needing to tell my 3 year old multiple times a day, "No, you can't sit next to me, you need to sit on the other couch" just because of my pain level. And it kills me every time. I try to take advantage of any "good" moments I have during the day to encourage, speak kindly, and give hugs to both my girls.
One of the toughest decisions my husband and I had to make was to send our oldest daughter (only 3 1/2) to stay with her grandparents for a month so I could get the rest I needed before making a big move across the country. Thankfully we felt comfortable with my parents caring for her and trusted them, but still, it was hard to be away from her (they lived out of state) for that long. But it was a wise decision because my body was able to get some rest that it needed at the time.
Do you have help when you need it? In what ways were you able to reach out for support, and have you been successful?
Most of the time we have had help when we needed it. When my husband was deployed to Iraq, I was at one of my sickest times and my family really stepped up to help me. Even some close friends would step in to chop veggies for that night's dinner if my wrist joints hurt too much to do it or even just stop in to clean my bathrooms or do other various household chores every once in a while.
When my husband was home and a year or so later, I became really sick again and we found that our church friends really served us with earnest hearts. They found time in their busy schedules to come babysit the girls while I lay in misery on the bed or couch, or made dinners for us since my husband would get home too late to make a meal for us (I was too weak and fatigued to), or even just come and clean the house for me every week or so.
We have also had really supportive family even though they live out of state. They have flown multiple times to stay for weeks at a time to be "live-in" help for us. We have always been honest with them as to just how bad my illness is and they have never been unsupportive or questioned my Lyme disease. Even with conflicting information out there, they have always trusted us and seen with their own eyes just how bad this illness can be.
Looking back, would you have done anything differently (treatment courses, outlook, doctor communication, or would you have waited longer, for example)?
I think in my case, I had a gut feeling Lyme was the culprit for my sickness but I was so scared of it that when I was initially tested and it came back negative, I just accepted that. But deep down I knew it had to be Lyme and I wish at that point I had sought out wiser LLMD who could have diagnosed me properly. If I had done that, I MAY be feeling better today. But I know God has His plan for my life and sickness and He has me in this season for a reason. I definitely have grown a lot through it even though it's the hardest thing I've ever had to go through.
What's the best part about being a mom? Are you still able to enjoy motherhood even when you're feeling ill?
I love that even though I am feeling rotten, I get so much joy out of both of my little girls. My 3 year old is walking entertainment and I find myself writing down multiple quotes a day to tell her dad when he gets home from work. She makes me laugh all day, even when I'm feeling my worst. And my 10 month old is all smiles most of the time and I just love enjoying both of their personalities. Even when I feel my sickest, I can still enjoy their cuteness. My children bring SO much joy to my life that I do believe it keeps my spirits up even though my physical life is down. I've never regretted having my girls even though I'm ill.
How was your experience with doctors and hospitals? Were they accommodating? Did they understand your Lyme?
I've only had to mention Lyme to a general practitioner a few times because of how recently I was diagnosed. But the time I mentioned it to my doctor a year or two before being diagnosed, he tried to convince me that it couldn't be a possibility even though I had been bitten by a tick and gotten the bulls-eye rash. But, being a humble man, after I explained what I knew of the disease, he was willing to test me; it just wasn't the right test.
Now, trying to get a general doctor in the new place I live, was more nerve-wracking THINKING about it and whether I was going to be met with kindness or animosity than it was actually meeting with the new doctor. I was blessed to find a doctor who didn't know much about Lyme and felt compassion for me seeing me in a wheelchair at such a young age. He said he was willing to work with my LLMD and also said if there was anything else he could do for me, he would.
What advice would you give women who are considering having a baby?
I guess I would give the same advice I'd give to anyone considering to have children -- make sure you're ready for all the work it takes. It truly takes up every ounce of your body -- especially those first 2 months!! Know that having a baby is hard and even more so when you're ill. BUT -- it also is one of the greatest joys. You'll never regret having children. And I recommend having a great support base as you'll most likely need help. And most definitely accept help when it's offered....this took me a while to do but as I've lessened my pride I can see just how much I truly need/needed it.
As far as the possibility that Lyme can be passed to your children -- well, in my case I didn't know I had it when I had my children. But I am here to say that both of my girls are really healthy. We do suspect my oldest MIGHT have Lyme (only because of one symptom so far) but according to my LLMD, we wouldn't do anything about it until more symptoms arose and all other medical tests were exhausted. He said not to get stuck worrying about every little ache and pain but to let her grow and that we will "know" what to look for and when to seek help.
I'm not going to lie--the first trimester with Wyatt, my first baby, was TERRIBLE. I had the worst morning sickness, my Lyme symptoms flared up, and I was in bed for the first 12 weeks. I went totally off my Lyme diet, because the only food I could keep down was mashed potatoes, morning, noon, and night. I was achy, Lymie, whiny, and I'm sure my poor husband wanted to jump out of a window after having to tolerate me.
Second trimester was cake compared to the first. Nothing special to report there--I even started to enjoy pregnancy.
Third trimester started out great, but at 35 weeks all hell broke loose and I was in some serious trouble. The Lyme symptoms were unbearable-- I was twitchy (and the tics were constant), my limbs went numb, and I could barely walk. Don't get me started on the bone and joint pain and vertigo. I ended up being induced at 36 weeks, because according to my OBGYN, keeping the baby in there "would be cruel torture" (to me, not the baby).
Don't get too scared--the pain didn't last forever, and the symptoms lessened almost immediately after birth. By the time I went home from the hospital, I was wiped out, but I no longer considered jumping out the window after my husband.
Fast forward a bit, and it's all water under the bridge. I am thrilled to be doing this all over again, and I mentally prepared myself right away for some rough times ahead.
Here's where it gets interesting:
You know how they say every pregnancy is different, and you never know how you're going to feel?
I. FEEL. AMAZING. Not just good. AMAZING!
I don't know why, and I realize that it could all go down the toilet in the blink of an eye, but oh my god, at (nearly) the end of my first trimester, I'm doing more and feeling better than I have in years. All while caring for a six-month-old.
So if you had a nightmare Lyme experience during your last pregnancy, it doesn't necessarily mean your other pregnancies will be the same. I would never have believed that if it wasn't happening to me. I actually feel like I have somewhat of a life back. Granted, I need lots of sleep, and I nap every chance I can get, but the improvements are astounding.
This is simply a case where pregnancy is masking the Lyme symptoms. And though I'm way too cynical to get fooled so easily (there will surely be some tough times), I'm just enjoying this moment.
Mostly, I'm enjoying being able to tell you that it is possible to get through a first trimester and actually feel great.
Now, if someone could invent a pill that takes rid of cravings, that would make my life complete. Something tells me that Cheetos aren't Lyme friendly, but I'd kill for some right now. Gross, I know.
*Above: The healthiest, strongest baby on the planet! Kidding. Sort of.
Couple of updates: I received a bunch of requests for more info on breastmilk testing, and for more info on my friend who just had a baby very recently and had decided to breastfeed. I'm sorry to say I can't post much on either yet... BUT
I last spoke with my LLMD's PA, and sadly, she didn't seem very knowledgeable about the breastmilk testing at all and offered, "Regardless of testing options, I don't think Dr. ___ would recommend breastfeeding to you anyway." I couldn't get an actual appointment with my doctor until February 16th, so please hang in there.
There is one person who knows how this all works, and that's my friend with the new baby. From what I know, her little one is absolutely perfect and healthy (and cute as a button--she sent me a birth announcement!) but as much as I want to hound her for information, I have to respect that she is a very new mom, and her priorities involve getting settled and healthy, and of course spending time with her new family.
In the meantime, I ordered the milk testing kit from IGeneX (I might have mentioned that in a previous post--my brain is fried as usual). I'll post pictures and info soon, I promise.
As for me, I feel comfortable sharing that I am a proud formula feeder--it has worked out well for us for a few reasons:
1. In the beginning bottle feeding was less stressful on my body and by not breastfeeding I was able to rest at night and heal faster (nights up with a newborn are treacherous, whether you're sick or not). I know, "Why not pump?" Because it's a pain in the ass (and the boob), and I know this might make me sound selfish, but I swear, my intentions have always been to give my son the best, most normal childhood possible, and if my health and sanity are at stake, no one is happy or feeling normal at all.
2. There's no chance of my passing Lyme on by not breastfeeding. I'm not sure whether this is a legitimate fear--there are a bajillion different opinions. It's just one less thing we have to stress out about.
3. For all of you fearing that formula kids get sick more frequently or aren't as healthy as breastfed kids--I haven't seen that. Wyatt is an ox. Knock on wood, he has not gotten sick yet, and I'm even thinking that he SHOULD get sick at some point so his immune system can get more exercise.
4. When nosey people ask me if my kid is breastfed (yeah, they really do ask sometimes), I just lie and say yes because it's much easier than feeling like I have to defend myself. One lady at our local farmer's market responded, "Oh I can tell--he's such a strong healthy baby!" And I was like, "Ha! Sucker!" No one can tell the difference. Really.
5. Most important to know: My baby is well fed, happy, and meeting all of his milestones early even though he arrived a month ahead of schedule. So no, formula does not make dumb, slow, weakling babies. If I hadn't been able to take the medication I needed to start beating this Lyme, I would have felt and acted like a dumb, slow, weakling mommy. That first month was ROUGH. But the medication switch made the biggest difference in the world, and it allowed me to care for my baby in the best way possible.
Newbaby (that's it's name for now--original, I know!) will be formula fed as well. Done deal. I'm not even stressing about it this time around.
I can't say enough that I am not trying to push a decision on anyone. There are some women who are dead set on breastfeeding, and that's awesome. I don't expect everyone to share my opinion. PLEASE do what you feel is best in your heart and what works for your family. The only reason I'm mentioning this is because when I was first searching for Lyme pregnancy info last November, I had NO IDEA what anyone did when it came to ANYTHING.
So this is just a note about what I do when it comes to feeding. It's just one way to do it. So far it's worked out beautifully. If you have other feeding experiences to share, please leave a comment. We are all searching for answers, and your opinions really do help.
Tonight's our big night. In just four hours we find out if there's an actual baby growing inside me. I keep looking at the clock, wondering what the hell kind of ultrasound tech only works evenings--I was ready to know the second I opened my eyes this morning!
I'm 50% hopeful, 50% already saying, "Don't worry, if this doesn't work out you can always try again when you're actually prepared." Honestly though, as much as I've tried to play it cool, I'm attached to this little life, and I hope with all of my soul that we see a heartbeat tonight.
With Wyatt, I had every symptom in the book and then some. Seriously, I was a hot mess. This time around I have NO symptoms. In fact, I haven't even had any Lyme symptoms (for the first time in years). Not that I want to complain about that--I just feel like it's too good to be true. I've read and heard about how symptoms of painful, chronic conditions are masked during pregnancy due to the increase in hormones, I just didn't think it could happen to me. Am I just lucky for the moment, or am I not experiencing symptoms because there's no baby in there?
I guess we'll find out soon enough.
Please keep your fingers crossed for us. Hoping to report good news shortly.
I am a mother and writer with Chronic Lyme, on the road to acceptance and recovery. I was bitten in 1996, diagnosed 2008. I am living proof that it is possible to live meaningfully and have happy, healthy children while battling this terrible disease.