Through October 2017, we were able to raise several hundred dollars for Wesley's Recovery from Lyme Disease. With these funds, he was able to purchase a juicer for nutritional treatment, and to see a physician to map his long-term recovery plan.
A HUGE THANK YOU to all those who helped make this happen!!!
Below, you'll find Wesley's story in his own words, and learn more about what it will mean for him to walk out his healing over these next few years. Here is our opportunity to walk alongside him, listening, praying, giving.
November 6, 2017
My story begins November 2016.
I consider myself one of the lucky ones, because I had an entire tick fiasco as my origin story. I’ll spare some private details of the week, but it culminated into a late night voyage to the ER. The clock ticked for 6 hours, and I was sent home with Doxycycline. Later, got the news I tested negative for any sign of the disease, and not to worry.
For quite some time, I went unscathed after the bite. I was carefree and had no real concept of what Lyme disease was. Even after the initial intrusion I maintained a good enough health to hold down a job at REI, celebrate with friends, and still play hard. I never felt back to normal, but life demanded that I man up my way through the dark cloud. After the first wave of resistance my forces held their ground and with little casualties I went about my life ignoring the subtle aches and pains. I had no idea that Borrelia burgdorferi would be my kryptonite.
If Lyme disease were a book, Stephen King would have written it. May 2017 introduced the plot twist of finding out I’ve got it. “Lyme” is the nickname of just one particular strand of infections. What is actually taking place is a complex infrastructure of different diseases, parasites and pathogens. They brilliantly build upon themselves like a great, ancient city woven through every system of your body. Their purpose is to light you up like a torch, and then set the entire city on fire. And your life just kinda takes place in the plot of it all.
I am your stereotypical artist, who has vast affections for the outdoor life. Painting and camping are some of the things that I live for. I’ve pushed through my weakness the most I can to keep the heart of my life beating. This summer, I summited my first mountain. The tallest in the lower 48 states. Later, I went backpacking in the Rocky Mountains. A 7 mile one way trek to our temporary home at Lone Eagle. One day we were caught in a snow storm, with lightning and thunder pulsing through the night. We woke up in a wonderland. Those will be the last of my escapades for awhile. And I moved on from a job I loved for one that fostered the halt on my life.
Since the, I actually haven’t been able to walk like I used too. Sometimes the grocery store is more challenging than the mountain. I can’t take my husky, Levi, out anywhere, which used to be daily. Not even a walk down the road, it hurts too much. My mind glitches in conversations. Low motivation, chronic fatigue, and depression look so much alike, I’m not sure which state I’m in. Sudden shut downs. Vertigo. Flash fevers. A constant fog. Back pain. Heart pain. Stomach pain. All of the melancholy inspires me creatively, but I’m too distant within myself to paint or write. Which triggers a depression of it’s own kind. Poor concentration and blurry vision encourage me not to drive some days. Did I mention sleeplessness yet?
And I’ve not even mentioned the regular dr visits, medicine, remedies, strict diet, nutrition, or the social expectations, disappointments, and failures rippling out from all of this. Generally I’m of good cheer, but now it’s getting real and fast.
Every single person with Lyme has their own variation, their own signature, their own unique, personal disease and version of it. I’m working on mine and tailoring my own path with a knowledgeable, naturopathic doctor who has his own story too. He’s cured. I’m in some of the best hands I can be, and within the first year of contracting the disease. Sadly, many cannot say that. For the short term goal, we’re looking at an 18 month journey that I cannot afford, and cannot afford not to do.
“Honey, we have to trust them. Okay? This is our government. They're on our side.” -Ted Wheeler
Here’s the strange thing. I can’t do this on my own and I need a help which will not come from the system. The disease is strangely political and the CDC denies the existence of chronic Lyme. Insurance companies are not required to cover costs related to the disease. This is all out of pocket, or nothing at all.
As I live in The Upside Down, I’m looking at $400-$500 per month on this 18 month expedition. My Dr is mindful and working within my means, so this is minimal and includes regular visits, meds, supplements, and infrared light sauna. As important as those things are, my daily lifestyle and diet is the essential house for all of this to take place. Eating organic, gluten free and something like the Ketogenic or Paleo diet is my lifeline.
To all my friends and strangers reading this, any donation you can give would mean so much to me. With utmost sincerity, I appreciate you just reading this. Giving $5 and sharing can impact my life in instrumental ways. Though Lyme disease was once an intrusive foreigner that I felt disregard for, it has taught me that the Will to live is inside of every organism.
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- Maryalice Coleman
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