With one year of care with my “alternative” practitioner under my belt, good things were happening. I had more energy, could breathe better, and was gaining back some of my lost cognitive skills. My twice weekly appointments were reduced to weekly then monthly appointments. It was a welcome relief. Each round trip of two hours was a white knuckle experience on the highway. I would pray my way there, and pray my way home. Each visit would yield a goodie bag full of supplements and herbal remedies, and a bank account that was diminishing at an alarming rate. My husband would remind me constantly that he would rather be broke and have me around, than be a single dad with a healthy bank account. I can not begin to tell you what a blessing this man was and is to me!
Unfortunately within a few months my health took a backward turn. All of my old symptoms returned and brought along some new friends to the party as well. I was frustrated beyond belief. I increased the frequency of my appointments, but at this point, it seemed as if everything I tried was fruitless.
I am thankful that we don’t have the ability to know what awaits us up the road. Had I known what was about to occur over the next few months, I may have likely opted to dig a hole and hide in it. In addition to all of the previously noted symptoms I was experiencing, I now was having issues with my heart. I would experience episodes where my heart would race. I’d sit there and take my pulse and cringe as I saw some really high numbers. Then there were times when my blood pressure dropped and my heartbeat was faint; I would teeter on the edge of passing out. I would lie in bed most nights listening to the sound of my heart reverberating in my ears. I would be awakened by huge spasms and startled out of a sound sleep by a heart that was beating at twice its normal speed.
It had gotten to the point that I dreaded heading off to bed. It had become the scariest part of the day. I knew that I needed to try to sleep, but when I would lie in bed I became keenly aware of everything that was going wrong. At least during the day I could attempt to keep myself occupied and force myself to think of other things. But at night, there was nothing to distract me. I could hear each attempt to take a full breath. I could feel all the twitches and spasms. I could see all the spots and flashes that filled my field of vision. I could feel my pulse throbbing. I would clutch my pillow and pray. I would curl into a fetal position and cry. And for the first time in all of my life, I contemplated my own mortality. During the quietness of the nighttime hours, I thought about dying. I would lie next to the man I loved and imagine my side of the bed empty. I would envision my children growing up without a mom. Reality was settling in; I was not sure how much more my body could withstand before I had a heart attack or stroke.
Not many people know this, but in the weeks to come I made preparations of sorts. I began to compile a binder full of my family’s favorite recipes. I typed out instructions and phone numbers. I compiled account numbers in one place for my husband. I increased my life insurance policy. I made a gift pack for each of my boys. It included a Lenox snowflake Christmas ornament, our favorite family book, and a few other odds and ends for them to remember me by.
The only thing that sustained me was my faith. I knew that the Lord held my feeble life in His hands. He brought me into this world and would take me out of this world in His time. I honestly didn’t think it would be this early, but then again, not many anticipate an earlier than expected exit. In my heart I knew that if He chose to take me, He would also care for my family. I wasn’t scared of dying because I held onto the knowledge and promise of where my eternity was. I was mostly broken-hearted thinking about my family.
With these thoughts in my head, I returned back to my primary care physician (my newer one). She sent me to a cardiologist. He wanted to put me on Beta-Blockers and Nitroglycerine, but I declined. He sent me home with a heart monitor, only for the results of that test to come back normal.
I proceeded to talk to my alternative practitioner. He gave me some new liquid remedies to try. Thirty drops, twice per day were the instructions. The next day we were slated to take a much needed vacation to Williamsburg. A friend allowed us to use their timeshare, and with all that was going on, it seemed like a good idea. Cue the foreshadowing. We arrived and got settled. The next day we went to the Jamestown settlement and The Yankee Candle Factory. While at the candle factory, I began to have a very difficult time breathing. I asked my husband if we could leave. The drive to our condo was no more than 10 minutes, but within those 10 minutes I experienced near breathlessness. With each attempt to breath, I became more and more anxious. When we pulled into the driveway, I stepped foot out of the car and saw everything around me go black. I hurried inside and gasped for breath. I sat on the edge of the bed, my horrified children in the doorway as onlookers. My husband called 911. Off to the emergency room for me.
They stabilized me, ran bloodwork, ordered CAT scans, and took my history. Someone had enough presence of mind to grab my goodie bag of supplements. Everything I was taking was recorded. My nervous system was such a mess that I could hardly sign my name. Like every other story I’d heard from every doctor, I was told that nothing major wrong with me. My potassium was low, and I had a minor urinary tract infection. I was given a very strong antibiotic. Before I left, the doctor held my goodie bag and warned me about supplements. I didn’t have the energy to tell him all that I had been through, so I nodded. I agreed to stop taking them. We headed back to the condo, I took my second round of the antibiotic and fell soundly asleep.
When I awoke an interesting thing happened, I could barely move. I know now what I didn’t know then; I was experiencing “herxing” or “die off”. This occurs when the Lyme spirochetes are killed. They release toxins and make you feel quite crummy. Whatever antibiotic I had been given, it was working on the Lyme. This was good news.
We returned home and I felt “with it” enough to really start researching. The first item up for examination was this new remedy I had been taking. Come to find out that the maximum dosage per day is three drops. Three. I was told to take thirty drops, twice per day. You do the math. It’s only by God’s grace that I am still around because the side affect for overdose is listed as cardiac arrest.
I completed my prescribed antibiotic and was feeling markedly better. Not long after, a dear friend of mine discovered that she had Lyme Disease as well. Doctors had discovered this while she was being treated for cancer out in Arizona. She returned home with her doctors’ recommendations for treatment. Part of that treatment was a noninvasive, non-medicinal treatment that had proven to be effective in zapping and killing the spirochetes. I was very familiar with this protocol. I knew it was effective, but we were just not financially able to afford the purchase of the required equipment. She proceeded to tell me that she was all set up for treatment not only for herself but for me as well. Such kindness would prove to be life changing and would finally be the turning point for me.
Next up: The Sun Begins to Shine Again!