Sunday, October 26, 2014

Brief Health Update and The Blessings of Autumn

Hi friends. It's been an exceptionally rough few months for me. Honestly, I've felt so bad and so fatigued I haven't really cared about writing. I've had many bedridden days again and I hate it. I know so many of you understand exactly what I'm saying. Earlier this year, we focused on Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever and felt my body needed to detox before working through anything more. So over the last several months I've been doing a comprehensive detox protocol, especially in preparation for a stronger, deeper level of homeopathic Lyme treatment. While I've done detoxes before, I've never done one this comprehensive. And it has absolutely kicked my butt and sent my into a crash I didn't expect. But my labs show I am in adrenal exhaustion and I know this has played a role. My doctor feels this is the reason I haven't been able to pull out of it. Between all of the "stuff" this detox is bringing out and my exhausted adrenal glands; my body is just too taxed to deal with it all. Overwhelmed. Too much physical and biochemical stress. Needless to say, everything else is on hold for now.

On a side note, I found an excellent book by Dr. James Wilson, ND, PhD, entitled Adrenal Fatigue: The 21st Century Stress Syndrome. Clearly there are different kinds of stressors, which all stress affects the adrenal glands, but in speaking about chronic illness Dr. Wilson stated, "The more chronic the illness, the more critical the adrenal response becomes." That is a profound statement and I think it's something we all need to be aware of. After 20 solid years of this chronic debilitating illness, I know my adrenals are in serious need of attention.

Also of note is that Dr. Wilson says infections, particularly respiratory infections, are especially draining on the adrenal glands. He says the more chronic an infection is, the more taxing it becomes on adrenal function. And it's cumulative. He also says if pathogens (disease causing bacteria, viruses, parasites, etc,) are present in the body, they must be dealt with first before proper function of the adrenal glands can be fully restored.

Well this is really the Catch-22 for those of us with chronic Lyme (and other co-infections). As it stands, Borrelia (Lyme bacteria) is not a pathogen that can be eliminated from the body. Regardless, I believe doing everything I can to help my exhausted adrenal glands is vitally important. But my adrenals aren't the only thing that's exhausted. My whole body is exhausted. I. Am. Exhausted. This disease itself is physically exhausting. Working your butt off for twenty straight years to be well, doing anything you can, is also exhausting; in every way. I don't even have words for it all anymore. And let me just say if you haven't been here then you cannot understand the depths of this.

I've been on basic adrenal support in the past but am now on a more comprehensive support. The foods we eat can also play a big role in helping our adrenal glands heal and Dr. Wilson discusses this at length in his book. Even the times we eat can either be beneficial or detrimental to our adrenal function. I believe in eating whole, healthy foods anyhow, so I'm really focusing on this as well. And while I felt better for almost two weeks after beginning the adrenal support, I've started feeling badly again recently. It's the crazy roller coaster ride that never lets you get off.

For years, this has been how my body responds to anything new. Feel better at first and then crash and feel like crap again. An immunologist my doctor consulted with last year said this is a sign of severe immune imbalance. He said a Lyme infection plays havoc on the immune system; especially when it's long term. His exact words: "Long term Lyme infections confuse the immune system to such a degree that it causes it to lose its intelligence." If you're interested in reading more about this go here.

We've been working on correcting this immune dysfunction for over a year. It can get so frustrating and discouraging when working so long and hard to correct something but not seeing big changes. That's not to say my immune system isn't functioning better on some level; it is. However, I still have an immune deficiency. Interestingly though, our adrenal glands have a direct affect on the overall efficiency of our immune systems. So knowing what I do now, I'm thinking my adrenals have played a role in this as well. Perhaps that's an overlooked key. And perhaps this would also explain my struggle to fully recover from a major respiratory infection I had back in 2012. I seriously hope healing my adrenal glands will also help balance and improve my immune function more. I suppose like everything else in working to physically heal, especially where the Lyme complex is concerned; it's a process.

I don't feel well enough to write anything more but given this beautiful season we're in, and because I always try to find something beautiful in the midst of this mess, I wanted to share a post from my other blog, The Ragamuffin Saint, that I wrote three years ago entitled, The Blessings of Autumn. I so love fall and wish I could get out more to enjoy it. I do have a great view from my bedroom so that is a blessing to my soul. And I try to get out on our deck with some hot tea to take in the beautiful landscape and breathe in some crisp fall air. I hope you enjoy the post and photos from October 2011; especially if you can't get out. Believe me, I understand. May it bring a smile to your face and leave your heart warmed with some of the beauty of fall.

~ Michelle

1 comment

  1. I'm sorry you've been struggling my friend. You are always in my prayers and thoughts. I hope you are able to pull out and begin to feel better soon. Lots of love. Ginny