The Waiting Game.

Today I found out my test results are in from IGeneX Inc., a Reference Laboratory specializing in State-of-the-Art Clinical and Research Testing for Lyme Disease and Associated Tick-borne Diseases.  Since  am still dealing with some strange symptoms, many of which are symptomatic of Lyme, my naturopath and I thought it wise to test for it.  A girl who has spent a lot of time in the woods, and has picked countless ticks off myself over the years, it is totally possible.  While the CDC reported approx. 27,000 cases nationally last year, they feel the number of people actually infected with Lyme could well be 10 fold - more than West Nile and Aids together. Lyme is underdiagnosed and not often recognized by the Western medical community to the scale that it shoudl be; its symptoms are similar to those of many other conditions, and often times people are simply diagnosed with chronic fatigue or other chronic conditions, or are written off as hypochondriacs.  Those who have been diagnosed with Lyme often do not receive proper treatment for as long as necessary.   Doctors who try to treat patients appropriately have lost their licenses, just trying to do what is best for the patients.  It is a highly political disease, and one that requires much more attention from the medical community, insurance companies, and the federal government.  If you are interested in learning more, check out the film Under Our Skin.  It has met rave reviews at film festivals, and is rumored as a possible Oscar nominee.  It looks at the experience of many Lyme sufferers, and exposes the controversy and fight around the disease.  There are showings all across the US right now, see a screening if you can, it is incredibly well made and informative.

My cousin has late diagnosed Lyme Disease; she has probably had it for about 14 years and was just recently diagnosed.   The last 14 years her health has been a downward spiral, and she now knows the answer.  But it has ravaged her body, and she is fighting constantly with her insurance company, only to be denied the care she requires.  Her brain is inflamed, causing vertigo, memory loss, and numbed emotions.  Her endocrine system is toast, her thyroid doesn't function, she suffers cardiac irregularities, and deals with extreme fatigue.  My whole family is on Lyme alert, and needless to say, everyone is a little anxious/curious about what my test results will say.

No one, though, is more curious than me.  

I have an appointment on MOnday at 8 am.  She wanted me to schedule an hour with her instead of thrity minutes.  What does that mean?  My mind is going, like, a million miles an hour.  Does she want a  full hour because the results were positive, and we need to go over everything I will now need to do as a Lyme patient?  Or does she want an hour because the results were negative, and she wants to discuss other things?  Why couldn't she just talk to me over the phone and let me know?  Argh.

The thought of waiting for 5 days is painful.  But really, getting nervious or anxious won't change anything, it will only get me all worked up.  And I sure don't need that.  And regardless of what the tests say, what does that really mean anyway?  A positive test means I have to start another treatment regimen, spend more money, and realized that I will live for the rest of my life with a chronic disease.  But on the bright side, it would be an answer, and I'd be catching it early in the game rather than later.  A negative test result isn't all that great either, really.  I coudl still have Lyme - it often evades testing - and should probably get a few more blood tests of the co-infections that often accompany Lyme.  If I don't have Lyme, then I still have all these goofy unexplained issues to figure out.  But on the bright side, I wouldn't have Lyme - which would be pretty fucking great, put frankly.

So, I'll wait.  Patiently.  And try to tell myself that no matter what, it will be okay.  I'm just nervous.  And tend to spin on things like this.  

Monday.  Monday.  Updates to come on Monday.