United States (Alaska incl.) - Satellite image...

United States (Alaska incl.) – Satellite image – PlanetObserver (Photo credit: PlanetObserver)

Yes, having a mum and being a mum means you can be in the crossfires of worry and anxiety for each of them. Like I am right now, Borrelia…Maybe it’s all just coincidence. But maybe it’s not. What my mum and my son are going through right now. Each of them with symptoms that immediately make me speculate (and panic) that lyme disease is pulling their strings like an evil puppeteer, too. Maybe I’m unnecessarily projecting my experience to what they are each separately experiencing.  Or maybe I am so in tune with lyme I can smell it a mile away, with the fierceness of a shark detecting a droplet of blood in the water.

The article I am reading by Katina I. Makris, CCH, CIH, makes me believe I am that shark, Borrelia. That maybe my hunches and senses are right. According to her article in the New England edition of Wisdom; of the heavens, earth, body, mind & soul,  The CDC believes that there are over 300,000 new cases of lyme disease each year, and that only 10% of them are diagnosed. That leaves 270,000 undiagnosed cases. Partly to blame, doctors who are too relaxed or uninformed or quite frankly just stubborn and ignorant. Also, lab tests that have an error rate of 60%. Climate change could be a major contributor to the prevalance of this disease. Even in the northeast, winters have become unseasonably warm, allowing ticks to “winter over” instead of die from frigid temps. As Ms. Katina points out, lyme disease is a ravaging and misunderstood epidemic that has exploded past HIV in terms of growth rate, making it  the number one infectious disease in the U.S.…why shouldn’t I be worried right now, about my mum and son…

MY MUM:  For the last 5-7 years, my mum has struggled with immune and joint related issues. She seems to be a complex case and northern Maine rural medicine is not well suited to provide her with any real answers. Her diagnosis over the last few years has essentially been a lot of “I don’t knows” followed by a lot of prescriptions to treat what they don’t know they are treating. Which inevitably, only makes things worse. Now she still doesn’t have a root cause of her pain and discomfort, and the meds have side effects of their own. They have described her at times as having borderline lupus and borderline rheumatoid arthritis. Possibly chronic fatigue. All things that you, Borrelia, mimic. They have tested her for connective tissue disease. She has described burning and electrical sensations. And tightness in her upper body, lung and heart area. And pain. Everywhere. Because they have tested her for everything and essential found nothing, they have told her “it’s most likely arthritis.” I bet you are enjoying this little story, Borrelia. Could my mum, who has gardened in my yard for the 11 yrs I’ve lived in new hampshire, have lyme disease? Could she have gotten it while gardening on a visit? Did you prey on her while she was giving the raspberry bush some TLC, Borrelia?? Am I over sensitive to lyme disease and think that anyone with bizarre symptoms must have lyme disease? Am I projecting my own experience to hers? Or am I finally the only one hearing what she’s saying? We’ve even taken pause at some of the similarities of our symptoms. The electrical jolts. The tight band in the upper abdomen. Burning feet. You know what I’m talking about, B.  I hate to add to her medical woes and appointments, but I recently told my mum while on vacation, that we need to find her a naturopath or lyme literate doctor. And that is at the top of my priority list, to help her do this.

MY SON: I could just excuse it as having lyme on the brain. My own case. Worried about my mum’s potential case as described above. However, my son did get bitten by a tick in April. The tick was engorged and sent in for testing, but as luck would have it, either the doctors office lost it and never sent it in or the testing lab lost it after they received it. So, the tick was lost, Borrelia,  and never tested and of course that would have been valuable information. I opted not to have my son tested at the time. He was treated 3 weeks with oral antibiotics. But of course it has weighed in my heart and mind since then. And of course I have been on guard about any potential odd symptoms. So yesterday, when he presented with a fever and chills and complained about arm and leg aches and back and hip pain, I can’t help but be anxious about you, you  little bacterial twit.  In the article by Ms. Katina, she mentions the life cycle of you, Borrelia, as being every 6 weeks. With what she described as having a hide and seek like effect on symptoms. Every few weeks symptoms can arise. What if this is arising now, as a result of the earlier tick bite? Are you rearing your terrible little frankenhead right now with my son, Borrelia?? Come out come out wherever you are, this mama is ready to seek. Seek and destroy, that is. I will be making him an appt. I will be having him tested. And god forbid, but if it’s you borrelia and not just a passing virus, this will be the worst game of hide and seek in your life. Course, it could take months to get him to see the doctor. The lyme literate doctors often don’t have appts. available within the next  4-6 months, they are so overwhelemed with patients. That’s a lot of time to let pass by without answers. And sickness in between. I will advocate my best to get him seen at the earliest date possible, Borrelia. Though us lymies are used to waiting and agonizing for answers. I will keep him strong and healthy in the meantime, it’s the best defense. My tendency is to drop everything and focus and fixate on this worry and this alone. Let my housework go. Lose focus at work. Skip exercising for weeks. Until I get answers. However, Borrelia, if you have taught me anything about how to live my life with you  it’s this. One step at a time. One day at a time. And move forward. Don’t stop. Move forward.

Frankenstein

Frankenstein (Photo credit: twm1340)

So, yes, Borrelia, I will go to sleep tonite worrying about my mum, and as a mum myself, worrying about my son. Hence my naming of this post, Mums the Word. However, remember one thing, Borrelia. Make no mistake.  I will never be mum or silent about you. I will talk, rant, educate, blog, whatever I need to do to inform others and their families as best I can.