What THE HELL happened last week??
Work stress hit me like a 40 foot rogue wave. Boy Whisperer’s second exposure to lyme made me nauseous with “see sickness” after spotting a bullseye rash from a tick on his arm. And post traumatic stress from “the Florida episode”–a stroke like event I experienced brought on by Borrelia–had been flooding my dreams. It was the perfect storm. The convergence of these three fronts over my lyme weakened nervous system created rippling effects throughout my body–twitching, buzzing, weakness, lightheadedness. And all out panic.
Only it was not the Andrea Gail sailing a stormy sea. It was the Lyme Whisperer trying to stay afloat. Trying not to pass out. Trying not to collapse to the floor. Trying to steer away from a repeat of “the Florida episode.” Trying desperately–desperately–not to capsize. You pathetic, disgruntled and opportunistic little deck hand, Borrelia. I can’t believe you would wait for me to be weakened by stress and panic to crash over me. Wait, yes I can. That’s what you do.
On Monday the panic was crippling. I couldn’t breathe. Could not get oxygen. It felt like I was drowning. In my office. Until rescued by a colleague. A 4 hr panic attack. On Tuesday, I woke up in a panic. And had the same experience at work I had had the day before. By Wednesday, the third morning of panic, I sent out my Mayday. Calling my doctor for Ativan. I was nonfunctional, I needed a life preserver to get me through the week. I was in a neurological tailspin. Getting sucked in by a panic attack whirlpool. But wait, was it panic? Was it stress? Was it lyme? Was it a stroke? They all have overlapping symptoms. Which only added to the panic.
The doc took on the role of captain. Getting to the root of the anxiety overload. Work stress? He prescribed Beach day Fridays. Kid has a tick bite? 21 days of doxy is the right direction. Post traumatic stress from stroke like event? Lets get a carotid ultrasound on you and rule it out. And here. Here’s your ativan.
Okay, I could actually feel myself breathing again. Yes, the ativan helped. Yes, my son was being treated and that’s all I could do. Yes, thank god, the carotid ultrasound came back clear.
I still have my sea legs this week. Still a little shaky and weak. And Dizzy. But I’m not needing to shoot out flares for rescuing. Good for me. I survived the storm. Not even Sebastian Junger could write a chapter in The Perfect Storm of Lyme.