To My Family, Friends, Clients -- "My Village"
I don't remember a time when I haven't felt tired or dealt with bouts of disorganization. I work best when under pressure thanks to the burst of adrenaline because without it, (at times) I struggle to function. In 2011 I was diagnosed with ADHD, which explained a lot, but not everything.
When I became pregnant with my youngest in 2012 my health took a nose dive. One trip to the grocery store resulted in 2-3 days of being practically bedridden. I caught every single sick bug that crossed my path and spent the second half of my pregnancy with one virus after the next. I was exhausted. My doctor suspected I was hypoglycemic, but couldn't test me since I was unable to fast before hand. I did have my thyroid checked a few times, but it always came back good.
When my son was born in April of 2013, I was elated to hopefully be on the road to happier, healthier days. In some ways I felt stronger and in other ways I didn't, I attributed it to the fact that I was a mom of four kids, one being a newborn. A mom's life was meant to be a chaotic mess of nonstop errands, kid tasks and sleep deprivation, all the while trying to not "lose myself" in the title of mom, wife and (crappy) homemaker. I could run my own business, have a social life, be a part of the PTA and my kids classrooms. I could stay up all night to indulge in a good book or catch up on my favorite tv shows (because what other kid free time did I have for that?!) This was life and who was I to not keep up with it.
Jump to April of 2015, I went to see a doctor about a few more serious health concerns I was having. (To list a few: extreme fatigue, dizziness, blurry vision, speech difficulties, tingling, numbness and pain in my limbs.) These are issues that I've dealt with for years (some dating back as far as the early 90's when I was a kid), but never this frequently or all together. It was when my legs went numb for almost five minutes that I panicked and knew I had to see someone. I discovered that I was homozygous for the gene mutation MTHFR c667t. It was assumed that my severe B12 deficiency was to blame for my ailments. I was put on a supplement and meds regimen, along with a diet change (no gluten, no gmo's, nothing processed and eventually no dairy).
A few months went by and while some symptoms had appeared to ease up, I still wasn't getting better. In the fall we did an MRI. It showed I had a "normal", functioning brain. At that point my doctor wanted to wait things out and see if eventually I started getting better. It was said that it could take up to six months before I really noticed a positive change.
I didn't. I actually started to get worse again.
During a trip to my chiropractors office, I started up a conversation with the newest doctor in their office. She was already aware of my case and we talked for a good 30 minutes. She had a hunch what I might be dealing with and wanted me to come in for an appointment.
Two weeks later I met with her two times in one week. We went over my history, did muscle testing and an exam and she ordered some new labs. I knew what we were testing for and that my symptoms matched up perfectly for more than one of the things suspected. This wasn't my first rodeo. Over the years my symptoms matched up to many things. I never had any of them. I had gone years and years with inconclusive results, no answers and the "you are stressed and depressed" answer.
Turns out every single doctor who doubted my symptoms or gave up trying to figure it out was wrong. For what we are suspecting has been up to almost three decades of my life, I have been suffering from Lyme Disease. Somewhere along the lines I also got Epstein-Barr Virus and eventually two other immune compromising infections. My adrenal glands, liver and spleen (among the rest of my body << those are the top 3 issues) are drowning in a sea of infection and toxicity.
I have gone so many years doubting and looking down at myself, wondering why couldn't I ever just get my act together. I was too lazy. Too unorganized. Not motivated enough. All of my symptoms were somehow self induced and my fault. So I continued to juggle all of the balls and ultimately feel like I was failing at life.
2016 marks the end of all of that self doubt and negativity. This is the year that I will reclaim my health and my life. I may not reach full recovery this year. In fact, I might get sicker before I get better, but I understand that is the process of fighting this disease. Finally I have something other than myself to fight against and I am going to kick Lyme right in its little Lyme balls. ;)
What does this mean for Bluebird of Happiness Photography?
I don't completely know. I can tell you that I am not going anywhere. I will still run my business, when I can. There may be times when I am too sick or have to travel out of town to see a specialist. I plan to fight this as naturally as I can. There are many unknowns in my future right now., but one thing I do know is that photography and my clients make me happy and a positive mind is a big component in beating this. So please, keep the inquiries coming. Don't be afraid to ask me if I am available. If up to it, I will take on the job and if not, lucky for you I have some amazing photographer friends that I will happily refer you to. I promise they will take good care of you until I am on my feet again.
I will also happily take any prayers and/or positive vibes that you would like to send my way. It is going to take a village of family, friends, support and understanding to get through this. If you or someone you know are a fighter of Lyme or Epstein-Barr, I would love to connect with you and hear your story. Maybe we can help each other. :)