Jami’s Fight with Chronic Lyme Disease Story
GiveForward has seen a lot through all of the pages that have been created on our site. One of the best moments for us is seeing how we help people out during their hard times. Jami, one of our GiveForward friends, shared with us what GiveForward has done for her, and chronic lyme disease story, “I just uploaded a video on Youtube that talks about my story. You can check it out here! The short version of my story is that I have been sick for 20 years. I have seen countless doctors for countless symptoms. Along the way I had 12 surgeries in 14 years for various conditions in various areas of my body. At the time each one seemed unrelated. I now know that many were related to chronic Lyme disease. Some of the surgeries were unrelated to Lyme disease, but the way I healed from the surgery was very much due to the Lyme disease. I have dealt with chronic pain for over 15 years related to Lyme disease as well. I now know that Lyme has spread to my muscles, connective tissues, myofascial system, nervous system, major organs, brain, heart, cardiovascular system, and autonomic nervous system. I have two children aged 12 and 9 that I used to home school. I can no longer home school them due to my low energy level. My activity is extremely limited now. I spend most days at home laying in bed or working puzzles. I have widespread pain that increases with activity. Something as simple as a shower can exhaust me. It is very frustrating. I am trying the best I can to be a good wife and mother while trying to stay positive in spite of Lyme disease.
Jami’s battle with Lyme disease has been a long term fight, and for most of it the Lyme disease was not diagnosed. So, how did she get diagnosed after such a long period of pain and unknown? “In November of last year, Lyme traveled to my heart. I did not know at the time that it was Lyme, so I saw many specialists trying to find out what was happening. All of my tests were coming back fine, but my symptoms continued. The doctors I was seeing were confirming that I had a problem, but they could not find out what was wrong. A friend from high school saw that I had posted on Facebook about being sick. She private messaged me about a friend who had ongoing, mysterious health problems that was finally diagnosed with chronic Lyme disease. I researched chronic Lyme and was surprised to find all of my symptoms lining up with the diagnosis. I researched blood tests and asked my doctor for a specific test that research showed gave more accurate results. I was so happy to have the results be positive because I finally knew what I was dealing with…not just with my heart, but so many other areas of my body that I had problems with over the past 20 years. Over the next few months my eyes were opened to how sick I really am and how much damage Lyme disease has inflicted on my body,” she shared.
Like many diseases, Lyme disease is accompanied by many challenges. Jami shared with us some of the challenges she has been dealing with, “There are so many challenges with chronic Lyme disease. Insomnia, constant pain, low energy, intestinal problems, heart problems, blood pressure problems, brain fog, and on and on. One of the biggest challenges, though, is not being able to live the life I want to live. I want to be active with my kids and husband. I don’t want to miss out on activities because I don’t feel well. I want to be involved in volunteering at my church and in the community.”
So with all of these challenges, we wanted to know how we were helping. One of our goals is to allow people to access help to other people, so Jami shared with us what GiveForward has done for her, “GiveForward has been an amazing platform to help me in my journey to get help for Lyme disease! The treatment I need is not covered by health insurance and is much too expensive for us to handle. I have been overwhelmed by the generosity and support I have been receiving through my GiveForward page. I not only need to raise money for treatment, but have so many medical bills from over the years that have left us scraping by financially. I have hope that I will be able to raise money to help lessen the financial burdens my husband and I feel as we continue to try to get me well. We have been fighting a medical battle for my health our whole marriage. Now that we know what we are fighting against, it feels so great to have people rally around us to support us emotionally and financially.
In addition to her story, Jami shared with us some advice to others who are battling Lyme disease or another chronic illness, “My advice would be – Don’t give up! Keep fighting! There is hope for us struggling with Lyme disease. Solid treatment options for chronic Lyme disease are not easy to find, but they are out there. Do your research and find a comprehensive treatment plan that will help your whole body get better, not just mask the symptoms. If finances make it difficult, consider a GiveForward page. You will be surprised how many people are willing to help support you!”