What The _____ Just Happened???

5:34 PM AirplaneFoodCritic 0 Comments

Where did I go? Am I the absolute worst New Year's Resolution keeper? No. I am not. My whole world got turned on it's ear in the last month. I MOVED to a whole new part of California. I got the first DIAGNOSIS for my illness EVER. The bf got an amazing job so I never have to work again. And I have been really, really, really sick.

I will explain in this blog and then I will try my best to return to my New Year's resolutions. Remember those? To read more, to take care of my teeth (whitening, flossing etc) and to take care of my plants. Oh my poor, poor plants. They did NOT like the move. Nor did my friends' backs having to move all my trees! But we are settled in, for the most part and absolutely LOVING living on the beach.

I digress, I said I would explain and I am already gushing. There is a lot to gush about. It all started when I lost my insurance. Things change when you lose insurance...Specially when you have a chronic illness like I do. I mean, I was in and out of the hospital one a week at a minimum! And don't even get me started on all the medications I have to continue taking for billions of dollars. So there I was, no insurance, no job. I was still going to Kaiser to get my prescriptions because you can't just "go off" most of the things I am on. I just had to pay an exorbitant amount. the BF reminded me of a Naturopath that I had made an appointment with a couple years ago. I made the appointment but had to cancel last minute because I was hospitalized. They charged me for the visit anyways. I think the doctor felt a little bad about that and called me. I explained over the phone my issues and symptoms and he asked me to come in just for some blood tests. I never did. That is, until the BF reminded me I had a standing invitation to get my blood tested. We went in and they talked to us. We ended up making another appointment and met with the doctor face to face. He suggested I send my blood samples in for 13 different tests. I agreed because at that point, I would pretty much do anything to find out what I have. Over $3000 later I got the results.

Turns out I have...drum roll please.....

Lyme Disease!!

There is no two ways about it. I have it. The tests prove it. There are corkscrew-like bugs digging their way into my cells as we speak. Now, why did I not know about this sooner? And what happens now?

Excellent questions, reader. First, why did I not know sooner? Because Kaiser, that's why. Kaiser is not very good at diagnosing ...well, ANYTHING. But the test they use to test for Lyme Disease is not even recommended by the CDC. It is a test that was created in the 1970's meant to study the number of people with a certain outcome. It was never meant to diagnose anything. Yet Kaiser uses it. I was tested at Kaiser multiple times.  Why? Because my symptoms are screaming that I have Lyme Disease. So Kaiser, the HMO, if you are not familiar, tested me and tested me again. Then,  I requested that they send it outside and do another test, not in their labs. The results always came back negative. They told me that if I had Lyme, I would be crawling with the bugs. I later came to learn that the truth is quite the opposite.

But there I was without insurance so Kaiser would not even so much as look at me. I was forced to see a Naturopath and all the answers came flooding in. There are basically several strains of Lyme. I was tested for 12 of them. The one that came back positive was the Western Blot Lyme test. The 13th test I took was to check for the Lyme antibodies. If you have around 300 or more, you are pretty safe. I have 47. That is bad. Really bad. It means that there is no doubt that I am fighting a Tick Bourne Disease. The Western Blot Test proved which one.

Do you have Lyme Disease?
MY symptoms are many and they often change from day to day, hour to hour. I have the following:
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Rheumatoid Arthritis
Cognitive Problems (Forgetfulness, confusion)
Joint Swelling
Muscle Weakness
Night Sweats
Insomnia (which is great alongside the CFS, isn't it?)
Peripheral Neuropathy
Limb Numbness
Pain, Pain, Pain, Pain!
Heart Beat Skips
Abnormal Heart Rhythm Patterns
Unexplained Stretch Marks
Irritable Bowel Syndrome
Very High Fevers (we are talking 106 to 107, no joke)
Heart Palpitations
Burning Sensation In Feet
Over Heated Torso
Low White Blood Cell Count (I have never been able to donate blood due to this)
Unexplained Breast Pain
Tinnitus (I have that really, really bad)
Poor Balance
and more, that is what comes to mind right off the top of my head.

Here is a little link if you are suffering too, to check other symptoms. Besides the Meningitis I never really had too many headaches and I have few heart problems as well but I pretty much have every, single, other symptom possible for Lyme Disease.

Now, I am a full-blown case. Get this: The doctors believe I have had Lyme Disease for TWENTY NINE YEARS! I was first diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis when I was ten years old. This means that I have never, ever in my life, ever known what it is like to not be sick, to not be in pain.

If you are reading this and you think you have been bitten by a tick, you may not have these symptoms. I have been suffering for years and years and as such my symptoms are more chronic and severe. If you have been recently out hiking and think you may have been bitten, first you can look for the "bullseye" bruising that occurs. But that only occurs in about 14% of bites. What you want to look for is how you feel. If you get a fever or swollen glands right after being in a pro-tick area. I never saw my bite and ticks can come in the size of a poppy seed so you may never even see the bug or feel the bite.

If you catch Lyme early, you can cure it early as well. What do you use? Antibiotics. Lyme is similar in shape to Syphilis. It is a cork-screw shaped bug that drills into your body and infects you. Antibiotics kill that bug. The longer you have it and the longer it goes untreated, the harder it is to kill. Those corkscrews get deeper into your tissues and it is harder to find and kill. I will be on antibiotics for months if not YEARS with no guarantee I will ever be cured.

Ok, so that is the start of THAT. But there is MORE. I mentioned that we also moved. See, I had no job and the BF had no job and that wasn't good for either of us, but mostly me because I cost so darn much to keep alive and going. So he applied and got the best possible job out there. That meant we had to move though. Moving has to be the worst experience in the world. I am too sick to even handle it. I tried to pack up stuff during the day but man, we have so much stinking stuff!! It is far from funny. Ugh. We chose to live on the ocean so that made the thought of moving a little better. It went from a three hour commute for the bf to 30 minutes. Our new place is considerably more expensive and considerably smaller than our last place. It takes some getting used to. Again, being on the ocean really, really helps ease that discomfort. Another good thing about living near the ocean is that when I have a bad pain day, I can get the dog in the car, drive him to the dog beach and let him loose. That way I don't have to do any actual walking. My dog LOVES the beach so it is win-win all around.

Our new home

We are also having a great time trying out all the restaurants in the area. I have not been able to really cook for the past month so we have to go out a LOT. Luckily, a very short walk takes us to great Sushi, Mexican and a couple Chinese places. And when I have a bad pain day, I can get ice-cream over there too!

More views of our new home.

OK so we are all caught up. See? I told you I did not just abandon you! I will do my best to get back to blogging at least once a week. I will have to start all over with my plants. I will have to find that book I was starting on. I better get on it! Until next time...

All images are from google searches.

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