Sunday, January 13, 2013

Blessings In Disguise

Last month, because of a problem (on our end) with our insurance company, I wasn't able to start the new treatment protocol for my Lyme disease, which was to get a PICC line. But, this "problem" with the insurance has turned out to be a major blessing in disguise for me!

When we last left off, I was doing very, very poorly. I quit my previous treatment (Bicillin shots) because it was not working any more. My next and only option--as long as the insurance would approve it, was a PICC line. I was (and still am!) very terrified of getting a PICC line. My doctor had been wanting me to get one for months. It took a lot for me to admit that it was finally time to go that route, but the last time I saw my Lyme doctor, I told her it was time.

I figured it wouldn't be long before I started the PICC line, but because of this issue with the insurance company, my doctor hasn't been able to start the paperwork for my PICC line. I've been off treatment now for almost six weeks--the longest I've been off of antibiotics in nearly two and a half years!

So here I am, a month and a half in without antibiotics and I feel...really, really great! A few things have changed recently and I feel like they have played an enormous part in my sudden improvement. I started a few new supplements and have also been very strict about taking all of my supplements. One of the new ones is an immune booster, a Chinese medicinal herb, and right after I started it, my energy levels starting soaring.

I was also recently diagnosed with a vitamin K deficiency, most likely from long-term antibiotics. I started a combination vitamin K/vitamin D supplement about a month ago, and I really think it has made a big difference. Another thing that I have been doing that I feel has greatly added to my health is that I am participating in the 30 day hula hoop challenge: 30 minutes of hooping a day for 30 days! It's a very difficult commitment, and I often don't get my peak energy until about 11 o'clock at night, but I'm hell-bent on finishing this challenge, and the extra exercise has really helped my body.

I know that a huge part of my feeling really great also has to do with being off of antibiotics and that's a bittersweet feeling. The fact of the matter is that I would not be here without long-term antibiotics. My body was shutting down. But how many of my "Lyme" symptoms were actually just side effects from the medicine?

It's frustrating to not be able to discuss all this with my Lyme doctor, but the insurance issue should be resolved this week (fingers crossed!) and then I can tell her what's going on. It's an unpleasant feeling for me to think that I was so sick that I was ready to get a PICC line, and now I'm doing very well without antibiotics at all! Ugh....

As I said, this whole insurance thing--while it has been a nuisance--has been a blessing in disguise. There's a new Lyme test out that tests for the actual Lyme spirochetes as opposed to just antibodies for the disease like other tests, but you have to have been off of antibiotics for at least a month to do the test. I was taking Samento, which is a natural antibiotic, so I have to wait about two more weeks for it to be completely out of my system, but I'm pretty sure I'm going to do the test. The downside is that it is expensive (around $600) and not covered by insurance.

A pony hug a day keeps the doctor away!
While I'm feeling a lot better, I'm not symptom free. I have daily reminders that Lyme disease and co-infections are still lurking in my body, but I'm really hopeful that my immune system has kicked into high gear and can handle the threat. I'm relishing better days and hoping with all the hope in my body and soul that it lasts!


  1. So glad you're feeling a bit better. And, even happier, you've found a blessing in disguise!!!! I love you, friend. Let's make 2013 a kick-ass health year. Shall we!?!?

  2. Holy cow that's awesome!! What a change!!!!

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  4. Such great news! YAY! Congrats Alyson!

  5. That is awesome <3 I always love your pictures.

    1. Thanks! It's actually really hard to get good pics of my horse because she is so affectionate. She never got the message that she isn't a dog, and a lap dog at that! Lol.