Right. So. It’s been awhile since I updated. Not that I haven’t drawn, but haven’t had the sauce to sit and scan and correct and upload.
What I’ve learned in the past 6 weeks: Lyme, like any auto-immune disease, can be exacerbated by the simplest things. A cold, for instance. I was going along, having a lovely January, or beginning of January, on the steam of an entire 5 weeks without the headaches that make me not want to wake up.
I began to toss around the word, “cure.” I climbed stairs without pain or going all black around the edges. I swam, not just laps, but numbers of laps, with just some twinges in my shoulders. One day, I stood in front of my husband and announced I had no pain in my body, anywhere. Nothing. Not a stitch, burn, stab, bruise, ache, nothing. Nothing. I posted that on Facebook, and the next day went out in the world and caught a cold.
By the end of the cold I spent days in bed in 8 kinds of pain, a fever, nausea, the whole kaboodle. There have been some med changes. I stopped tolerating an antibiotic, and so set it aside for a couple of weeks. Maybe that was my downfall. I’m really not sure.
Some new symptoms and worsening old ones. I have a kind of quivering on my right side, every couple of minutes. No one can see anything but goosebumps when it happens, but it feels to me as if I were doing the horseflesh thing, shaking off flies. And a new weird sunburn sensation, as if patches of my skin were sunburned almost to blister-stage. I keep looking, thinking I’ll see or feel the burn with my hand, but nothing is there. This migrates, wakes me up, annoys the crap out of me. And my heart. It just races and races. And it hurts. We don’t have bad hearts in my family. We don’t know the first thing about it. The language of heart problems is one I just really don’t want to learn. I know the word tachycardia now.
But! January gave me a clear picture of possibility. It’s possible to recover. It’s possible that I won’t have to walk like a duck in braces forever. It’s possible I’ll be swimming again.
Much conferring with all my docs about this. I’ll head to New York for the one-year-treatment-checkup with the Lyme specialist. I’ll meet a cardiologist with experience treating late-disseminated-Lyme folk with heart symptoms.
Also, meantime, I’m working on the storyline for a complete comic about my lyme experience. Working on characterizing the antagonists: Borrelia, Babesia, Ehrlichia. Those are my three beasts. The voices in my head, Nebby and Chachky, I think will remain. I think so. We’ll see. I will start posting all of my working sketches in rough form and photographed through my phone so that I don’t fuss quite so much about scans and resolution and touchups while I get the ideas out.
And some of these images I’ll put on stuff and put up for sale to raise money for research and for my own survival. This damned disease has sucked the yolk out of my nest egg. But meanwhile, it’s all CC licensed folks. Feel free to print, share, repost. Just point back to the url when you do: lymejello.com.
Oh! Also, got tired of losing my hair and watching it get thinner and thinner, so I just whacked it off. Thinking about whether to show that in the comics or not… No decision yet.