A person afflicted with Lyme is unlikely to get the help they need on their own. The gradual onset of the disease at first can impair judgement, reason, and the will, rendering the afflicted unable to act effectively on their own behalf. As the first and most important of the four steps to a cure is to find a Lyme-literate doctor, or LLMD, this is often done by a concerned family member or close friend. After nine mis-diagnoses over 33 years, and testing for Lyme for the third time before finding the right doctor with the right diagnosis, it took another person to intervene on my behalf to make this happen. That person was my Mother, with me at 49 years old. The role of the Advocate, the Caretaker, and the Benefactor in the recovery of a Lyme victim is often what it takes to get them the right help. A friend, family member or a loved one often play this role, sometimes, all three roles, and is often essential for the support needed during the recovery period. Should it become necessary that you need help getting help, approach someone you can trust, and rely on their judgement to get you where you need to be. I had to rely on family members and friends completely during my 44 months of antibiotic treatment, as even the most basic tasks were impossible.
Persistence and sheer determination are essential during treatment. After establishing an antibiotic protocol that is effective, maintaining a persistent and consistent course for the duration required to rid the body of the disease for as long as it takes is essential to be cured. A stubborn countenance is helpful in these circumstances. It will test your resolve, your endurance, and your will. I took 400mg of Biaxin, 200mg of Plaquenil, and 400mg of Doxycycline for 44 months before the symptoms finally subsided, and recall only one time when I forgot to take it – NYE 2010. And that was only for 12 hours. I couldn't even tie my own shoes, but the one thing, the ONLY thing I was determined to do was to keep taking that protocol regularly and consistently. That determination and consistency got me through to the end.
The role of “supplements” - diet, vitamins, natural herbs, and pharmaceuticals – all play a big role in your ability to withstand the excruciating symptoms of recovery. Medication to control pain, anxiety and depression are often essential. They are our “temporary friends” while we endure the course of treatment. I took Lyrica for widespread pain, clonazepam for severe anxiety and sleeplessness, and Prozac for depression, and these were absolutely necessary for me to withstand the relentless symptoms of treatment. There were many times I resisted these temporary helpers, but it was always at the expense of my own unnecessary agony. There is no advantage to being resistant to taking these supplements – they are necessary, but temporary. I am now completely free of all these medications, including the antibiotics.
For most, money is an issue with Lyme treatment, even if you have more money than most. Health insurance, like most doctors, do not recognize Lyme as a legitimate disease, and those resources are not generally available. In losing my career, real estate, and essentially the ability to earn a living, the costs were enormous, not to mention expensive doctor visits and medication. It could be said that I lost almost everything, but consider the alternative – I have my life back, obtained disability benefits, and have re-established myself. The alternative was a nursing home, hospice, and in the end, death. When it comes down to paying the mortgage or getting better, there is no alternative. You will need to do what needs to be done. Period.
And finally, a closing remark about plain old-fashioned dumb luck. I was lucky to have my Mother intervene on my behalf and setup that third test with a Lyme-literate doctor. There are many reasons why this may have never happened, and I had nothing to do with those actions. Sometimes you just have to be lucky, and I am one of them. In fact, I am the luckiest person, by far, that I have ever known. Lyme Disease