It was a typical Sunday morning a few weeks ago when it happened. My mom was cooking me an omelet, and dad was reading the paper. I was rummaging through the cupboard to get some honey to drizzle on a banana when I heard it:
“CLAW.” And then there was whispering in a female voice I couldn’t make out, which I somehow knew was about me.
“What’d you say, mom?”
“I didn’t say anything.”
I paused for a moment. “Did you say something, dad?”
After just one stride, I knew something wasn’t right.I’d always run through anything—be it sickness, rain, or depression—but today was different.Today, in the midst of training for my second half-marathon, my whole body felt like it was made of lead, and no matter how hard I tried I could barely pick up my legs.
When I was a kid, I never quite fit in at school, but the outdoors were my refuge—every day, I came home and found peace and quiet in our woods.Little did I know, nature was about to stab me in the back worse than anything the other kids might’ve said.
For the last eleven years of being sick, time has been my enemy.
The first sign I was ill was that I started moving in slow-motion—I lost awareness of time passing. Doctors thought it was late-onset Attention-Deficit Disorder. Instead, as I’d find out eight years later, my immune system was attacking my brain.
I’ll never forget the day I first set foot in a Lyme clinic, as I watched other patients with pale, exhausted faces roll into the waiting room in wheelchairs. I’d just finished another semester of college and a ten-mile run that weekend. I remember thinking, I can’t possibly be sick enough to have Lyme Disease. What am I doing here?
It’s 6:00 on a Friday night, I’m drenched in sweat, sitting on my bed with no pants on, and mumbling nonsense. Tears are running down my face for no clear reason, and I feel outside myself, detached from reality. As my mom peeks into my room to bring medicine, I whisper that everyone hates me, warning that the Universe is out to get me. I have no idea why I’m saying or doing any of this—words are coming from my mouth and I can’t stop them. Continue reading “I Lost My Mind… But Haven’t Lost Hope”→