It's very hard to believe I'm writing this, and I'm extremely emotional looking back at the last 2 years of my life that I will never get back. I have Lyme disease and I need to ask for your support to get treatment in Germany. Your financial support, anything you can give, will literally save my life.
I'm Louise, 37, from Tralee in Kerry but have lived in Galway for the past 16 years. I have Lyme disease. It was on 8th December 2019, after being bitten in Dangan sports ground in Galway, I was given the devastating news by my G.P. that my results for Lyme disease were positive. I couldn't believe it, but to be honest I did not panic as I've never been sick and felt that whatever came along, I would be able to fight it............I had no idea what terrifying days lay ahead for me.
Not many people will know this, but the last 2 years have been a living hell for me and my loved ones. They've watched me go from a busy, happy young woman who would love to train, walk, play with my best friend /dog Alfie, sing and work a full-time job to become bed bound, unable to move with crushing fatigue. I was unable to shower or eat for almost 9 months. Life for me stood still as my symptoms progressively got worse. I'm currently taking 25 pills a day along with many other herbal protocols and tinctures. For the past two years basic medicine for Lyme has cost me a minimum of €800 per month, every month without getting better.
Lyme disease is a bacterial infection that can, if caught within days, sometimes be treated successfully with antibiotics however in many cases, as in mine, this was not the case and I've gone on to develop chronic Lyme disease. Chronic Lyme disease is not recognised in Ireland and therefore there is no public treatment available bar high priced private treatment. Dr Jack Lambert, infectious disease consultant is the only person in Ireland treating people presenting with chronic Lyme disease. I have been under the care of Dr Lambert for 14 months taking treble antibiotics daily along with multiple other supplements and medicines. However, unfortunately this has not worked for me.
Lyme disease feels like having your worst hangover every day, waking up every morning feeling like you have 20% of your normal energy, fainting episodes, heart palpitations, unexplained bruising all over my body and regular air hunger which causes devastating panic attacks
The only hope I have to recover fully from this disease is to travel to a clinic in Germany namely "St Georges Clinic", where I will receive 3 weeks of intense treatments including hyperthermia, which is where they heat the body up to 42 degrees, this kills the bacterium borrelia burgdorferi which causes Lyme disease.
Lyme disease is an illness that you cannot see by looking at me, however this disease attacks the individual both mentally and physically. My hormones have been hugely impacted by the disease-causing horrendous depression and anxiety. This along with so many physical symptoms have caused me to reach terrifying lows that only those close to me have witnessed. I'm a very happy, positive person with a loving family, partner, and friends, however when faced with the notion that literally no one in the country could help me with this illness, all hope disappeared, and the depression took over. Many nights I literally wailed in my mother’s arms and prayed I wouldn't wake up in the morning.
I'm saying this as I want people to know how devastating this disease is and to hopefully, with enough public awareness, the HSE will eventually have to start treating chronic Lyme disease appropriately in this country.
Germany for me is getting my hope back, I have read countless stories of men and women like me ,getting their life back from doing this treatment. I need to get to Germany ASAP as unfortunately Lyme has now, after 2 years, reached my brain and is causing neurological symptoms such as memory loss, cognitive and sensory problems.
This illness is horrific and if nothing else I hope to raise awareness that this can happen to anyone and I would encourage people to become tick aware particularly in Galway where it has been noted to hold the highest number of infected ticks of any city in Europe!!! Tick Talk Ireland has been an invaluable source of information to me on a very lonely road of Lyme where everyone I turned to had no answers/help for me. They are a voluntary organisation that are helping people all over the country feel less alone with this awful disease.
Thank you for taking the time to read my story. Your financial support will go towards the three weeks of intense treatment in Germany I need, costing €29,000, anything you can give will literally save my life.