Thursday, January 19, 2017

January 2017 Update

Hello friends!

Hope you are making progress and feeling a bit better each month. 
This update is long overdue and I apologize for not writing sooner. I've been pretty busy getting our new house organized. It's been 6 months and we're still sorting things out and getting things to where they belong.

Many of you know that I had been feeling really good with a lot of energy at the beginning of 2016 and I worked really hard getting our house ready to sell, sold it and moved, then moved to a new house 6 months ago. All of that stress caught up with me and I started feeling bad again. My brain fog had been worse than ever and I haven't been able to drive much. Many days I've been able to clean the whole house, do 4 loads of laundry, get in some rebounding and even a sauna and a shower, despite the dizziness that shows up all of a sudden.

I remember days when a shower is all I could manage- some days I couldn't even do that! I still have symptoms to work on and I'm not sleeping as well as I could, but I'm glad to have my head clear some days or even most of a day and to have some energy. I'm also happy to report that I've stopped losing weight and have even gained 12 pounds back! I'm now at a good weight and hopefully, that's where I'll stay.

My advice to y'all is not to overdo it for months or even days at a time. Take care of yourself! Eat food that heals, get some fresh air and a little exercise, if you can.

Now that we've settled a bit in our house and my dizziness is better and sometimes it's just off balance, plus the fact that it's January, I've made a plan for healing for this year.

1. I made an appointment to see a chiropractor...I stopped going to my chiropractor back in December of 2015 because I started working on getting our previous house ready to sell last January.

2. I made an appointment to see a holistic dentist to inquire about amalgam removal. I really want to get my amalgams out for a long time and this is the year to do it.

3. I've found a clinic less than 2 hours away from me that treats with IV ozone. I've been reading about ozone, joined Facebook groups to know more and am encouraged that it could help me get 100%.
I found a clinic that isn't too expensive (175 to see the nurse practitioner and 165 per IV ozone session) and was very professional and helpful. There are quite a few doctors who use ozone therapy across the US and around the world. If you'd like to know more about ozone, go to or look Dr. Robert J Rowen up on Facebook. He has a lot of good and informative posts.
our screened porch where I love to take breaks when it's nice outside

As for herbals, I'm finishing up my last month of the full Restore Program and will be going on a maintenance dose of A-biotic and Adaptogen Recovery. I still haven't treated Bartonella. I tried Buhner's protocol for it (again), but got the ice pick headaches again. I have added the herb houttuynia and I'm up to about 2 teaspoons a day. Instead of going through the hassle of putting it in capsules, I just mix a teaspoon at a time in a couple of ounces of water, then drink it. It doesn't taste good, but it's not bad either.

I've been getting in the infrared sauna 3-4 times a week for about a month now and feel pretty good after, although I HATE SWEATING! I'm also trying to walk 20 minutes several times a week. It's been warm enough here to do that and I'm thankful!

I don't make New Years Resolutions, but my goals this year are that I want to get rid of the following symptoms: 1. dizziness/brain fog 2. blurry eyes/stop worsening eyesight 3. bladder urgency, and of course, I'd like a little more energy!

One of the irritating symptoms that is mostly gone just within the last month is being startled at every single noise (someone sneezing, dropping something, etc.) and the anxiety of being in car when someone else is driving. Driving in a car had been a white knuckle ride for me and caused me so much anxiety. I've had a couple of days in the last month, where it's not been the case, but most days, I'm calm as we're driving down the street. In the past, I've always taken HPA Balance + an L-theanine before setting foot in a car, but I don't have to do that on most days. Some noises still startle me on some days, but overall, it's 90% better. I still have to wear earplugs when I sit in church (lights and noise) and am looking forward to the day when I don't.

the view from our porch at our mountain cottage

That's about all I have for an update.
Hope you are making some progress and I hope today is a good day for you.


PS. Dr. Rawls has a new website with lots of good information on

Here are the status of my symptoms:
Numbness, tingling in feet - seems to be getting better
swollen pads on bottom of feet near toes-a little better
dizziness/off balance- comes and goes.
difficulty finding words  about a 2 when really tired
blurry eyes - a few days clear, then a few days blurry
urgency  (3) - still a problem
noise sensitivity (2)
startles easily (1) A few days, it's worse
muscle pain -2 some days more
muscle weakness (2)
high pitch ringing in the ears/low pitch ringing - high pitch is more present,
not being able to follow directions (2-3) -comes and goes- I think it's less.
98 +   temp
My lowest weight was 113 - which was getting scary - I'm now at 125

Friday, July 8, 2016

Come Hell Or High Water

Where does the time go?

I haven't updated in several months because I've been busy.
Really busy.
I'm talking about working 5-10 hours a day on our "Get the house ready to sell" list.
I'm not exaggerating.
Of course I took breaks every hour and and a half or so. If I was tired and didn't have the energy to stand up, I would work on something where I could sit or kneel down.
Either way, the list was getting done. By April 30th. And the house was getting put on the market on May 12th. As my mama used to say: "Come hell or high water".
I was determined and we did it.
My spreadsheet that I used to keep us on track

The photographer came on Wednesday and the house was on the market the next day. We decided to hold showings until the Open House on Saturday, which was a big relief because there were a lot of little things that needed to get done so that the house could look as good as it could.
As we drove down the street right before the Open House started, I couldn't hold back the tears.
They weren't tears of sadness that we were leaving the house we'd been in for 16 years, they were tears because we did it. We finished the list and I felt relief.
The following day we had 3 more showings and offers started coming in Monday morning. We had 3 more showings on Monday and by that evening, 3 offers had come in.

Those 3 days weren't easy.
Getting 3 cats out of the house + my husband being on call  over the weekend really made showings difficult.
As for the multipe offers, we collaberated with our realtor and decided to go back to each of the potential buyers and ask them to make their highest and best offer by Tuesday at 2pm and then we'd start negotiating with the one we felt was the strongest.

Back to how I'm feeling. Dang. Selling a house is sooooooo stressful.
Stress with chronic lyme is no bueno. There were a few sleepless nights because of "what ifs" and because I was experiencing gaps in my memory concerning the house. I just couldn't let it go and the gaps in my memory REALLY bothers me. I also have some gaps concerning a few other things not pertaining to the house and last year, when I was really sick, is a big blur.
Back to stress, I took HPA balance and l-theanine in the morning on the days when the stress was really bad. I wish I had thought of this sooner, as it helps a lot.

When the stress was really bad during the last month before our house went on the market, I was having some worsening of symptoms such as my feet feeling a little more numb, my balance was off more, my eyes bothered  me a bit more, I had/have some trouble finding words and I've started losing more weight.
Overall, I'm surprised I didn't relapse and have worse symptoms, especially fatigue, because I was really pushing myself.

To add to all the stress and probably due to it, I was having trouble sleeping. Anxiety seemed to blow everything out of proportion, but I managed to hold it together with the help of my husband and our realtor. After the offers came in and the contract to purchase was signed, I was able sleep a lot better.

We still had some uncertainty when we were under contract as the house hadn't closed yet and not getting to closing is always a possiblility, but I wasn't stressed about that at all. I knew that if the buyer backed out that day or the next week, we'd put the house up again and we'd have another offer a couple of days after that because that's how things are going. That would have been ok with me because we hadn't found another house to buy at that time. This was causing me more stress, plus getting all of our stuff out of here in a few weeks.

We found a cute house in the neighborhood I was looking at and put down and made an offer the day we saw it. We knew there'd be other offers. It was a fixer for us and needed about $50,000 - $75,000 worth of work to get it to work for us. It was a small house, had a basement and needed a lot of landscaping.
The next day, I went to see another story, not in the area I originally wanted, but it did I mention it was ONE story? No stairs, except for the couple going up to the porch in the front and several in the back because the lot is sloped and the house in the back is on a high crawl, which adds a lot of storage under the house.

I had gone with our realtor to see it and my husband called and said he could come by. He liked it too.
We decided right then to rescind the offer on the other house because we just weren't up to working the next couple of years - at least getting the house renovated.
This one story house had very little yard work - I estimate we'll spend about $200 less a month on average, plus it's only 3 years old and looks brand new. True, the kitchen is much smaller than the house we were in and the office and hall bath are much smaller, but every other room is about the same size or larger than the house we were living in. The crawl could be encapsulated and provide us with as much space as we need.

I'll continue with this story another time. The next couple of weeks were difficult to say the least.

Hope today is a good day for you


If you'd like to read the 2nd half of our moving adventure, it can be found HERE.

Numbness, tingling in feet was getting worse, not getting better
dizziness/off balance- was mostly gone, but has been a little worse - I'm wobbly not just when I'm tired
blurry eyes - eyesight seems to be worse
urgency  (3) - still a problem
noise sensitivity (4)
startles easily (4)
muscle pain -not very often
muscle weakness - when I'm tired
tremors - happened when exposed to loud noises
high pitch ringing in the ears/low pitch ringing - same
Weight- down to 115
Waking up at night-  maybe twice  a night - if I have caffeine too late, the number of times goes up.

Friday, February 26, 2016

Feeling Great...month 13

Last month was pretty depressing for me.  I tried not to show it in my post, but I was disappointed in my progress before last month and there wasn't much to write about other than I tried (and didn't succeed) with some essential oils. It wasn't that they didn't work; it was that I couldn't handle the herx.

diy Design Fanatic is my other blog

After the essential oils, I tried Buhner's protocol for Bartonella since I had been having some irritating Bart symptoms and I was impatient and wanted to get rid of them.

I added Japanese Knotweed first and actually felt great the days I took them. Then I added most of the others - Arginine, Sida Acuta, EGCG, and a few others. I added everything but the bacteria killing Houttynia. You can find the list of herbs on Buhner's website or the revised protocol in the latest addition of his book Healing Lyme.

After about a week on all of those herbs and supplements, I started to herx and felt bad. I felt bad enough that I ended up spending most of the day resting in bed. All of my old neurological symptoms returned and then some. Then, a couple of days after that the ice pick headaches started, so I stopped all of the extra herbs and went back to only the Restore formulations. My goal had been to do the protocol for 30 days and I thought I could handle the herx for a month, but I couldn't.

 Those of you who have had ice pick headaches know that they are no joke. They actually feel like someone sticking an ice pick into the side of your head and mine were every 5 seconds.(I'm not exaggerating) The ice pick headaches slowed down in frequency and intensity, but continued for 5 or 6 days after stopping the extra herbs. Seems that I stirred some bugs up.

I started feeling better a couple of days after stopping the herbs for Bartonella. It's really difficult to feel awful after having a couple of months of not feeling bad and feeling good some days.

One of the main reasons why I stopped the herbs for bart is that we are getting our house ready to put up for sale in May and the "get the house ready to sell" list is really long and I need to be working on that list every day and I couldn't afford to be out of commission for even a month now that I'm feeling better.

I am feeling pretty great these days - most days I'm working on the house the equivalent of working a part time job. I still have to take breaks, but most days I work about 6 hours on the list and doing household chores.  One day I worked 10 hours with 2 breaks for meals and some smaller breaks in between. I worked pretty hard for 3 days straight, then took it easy for 2 days after that. Not bad.

I'm happy to report that the past 3 weeks I've felt really great almost every day. That's how progress seems to work... A year ago I felt bad/awful, then I started having a day or two where I didn't feel bad. Then those  days got closer together.  I started  having a day when I felt good, then those feeling good days start getting close together. Finally, the feeling great days showed up and now I'm to the point of feeling great (like I can conquer the world) most days. That's a far cry from being in pain and not having the energy or even the motivation to get out of bed (remember, I have a type A personality).

It feels good to get to this point. Yes, I still have some symptoms to resolve, but they are minor annoyances and sometimes, if I sit really still, I feel totally symptom free.

One thing I would love to share with you is that I found something that's helping me sleep better. One of the reasons why I wanted to do the bart protocol so desperately is that I was getting up to go to the bathroom every 90 minutes to 2 hours at night. Sometimes after I went back to bed it was difficult to get back to sleep. Restful sleep is so important for healing, so in my search for a remedy, I found Ashwagandha and ordered some.
I ordered this one:

I took 26 drops in a few ounces of water and drank it before bed. 

It. tastes. awful. 

But, I only woke up 2 times that night instead of 4 or 5. Progress. 
I didn't wake up feeling groggy either. I also remembered dreaming right before I woke up and felt rested in the morning.
Last Saturday evening I slept all the way through the night and didn't wake up once!
So excited about that sleep!!!
That doesn't happen every night, but most nights I'm only waking up once or twice, which is a big improvement. 
Last night I slept for 4 hours, then woke up and 4 hours again. That's perfect! I think I remember reading that 4 hours straight is restorative sleep, which is what I need.

Ok, so where am I with my healing and what does my day look like.

I still take my morning slow, but I'm waking up at 8 or 9 am, when I was sleeping until 10 or 11 in January. 
I have enough energy during the day to work on the house list throughout the day and do daily chores. I'm currently working on painting most of the trim and doors in our house. There is a lot of trim in our house because it's BIG, which is why will be downsizing!
I've been busy painting trim all over the house. My husband painted the walls, I painted the trim. The painted box is a small makeover project.
I'm able to drive to the store and shop without brain fog taking over. I still have to be careful though.
I was able to go to church last week and take out one earplug during the sermon. No, I'm not a crazy lady, I've just been sensitive to noise and anything amplified on a microphone or speaker since having lyme.  I'm looking forward to eradicating that symptom!

In summary, I've made a good jump in feeling great this past month, especially the last 3 weeks.
I've come a long way since January of 2015 and I'm looking forward to complete healing.

Hope you are having a good day and can't
wait to hear that you are making good progress if you have lyme disease. 


ps: remember the Collagen Protein from Dr. Axe I started adding to my smoothies last time? I'm happy to report that it's made my face really soft. The skin on my cheeks had been really scaley and not it's just really smooth. 
Here are the status of my symptoms:
Numbness, tingling in feet is finally getting better!
dizziness/off balance- is mostly gone - I still get a little wobbly when I'm really tired.
blurry eyes - not as bad
urgency  (3) - still a problem, but not as bad
noise sensitivity (3)
startles easily (2)
muscle pain -only on a bad day
muscle weakness (2)
tremors - only happened once during the month when something stressful happened
high pitch ringing in the ears/low pitch ringing - high pitch is not as loud and I can hear the low pitch now
98 +   temp
Weight- down to 123- 124
Waking up at night- only once, maybe twice - down from every 2 hours  or 90 minutes.

Monday, January 25, 2016

Month 12- Focusing on Bartonella

I'm a couple of weeks into month 12 on the Restore Program. The weeks since I wrote my month 11 update didn't seem to bring any progress. Dizziness was pretty common and brain fog was popping up many days. It was a little disheartening.

At this  point, I'm willing to try different herbs/oils, etc that may or may not help as long as they seem reasonable and can't hurt you. Why not?

With this in mind, a couple of weeks ago I mixed a couple of drops of each oil and added coconut oil, so the mixture was 50/50. The mixture was applied via a bottle with a roll on top and applied topically.

Two problems I really wanted to work on are bladder issues, which wake me up at night several times and partially numb feet. I did some reading and mixed up some oils and applied them topically to the areas. I took them for about 4 days, but was feeling so bad I stopped taking them. Oils will definitely make you herx. Even with extra detox (liposomal glutathione & sauna), the herx was pretty bad.
I REALLY didn't like going back to feeling bad after a couple of feeling good.
So, I stopped.

We are trying to get our house ready to sell (we're downsizing) and I really need to feel well enough to do some of the projects, since my husband works full time and can't do it all.
This was my I treat more and feel bad or keep on the same dose of Restore?

January is when I had planned to do Buhner's protocol  for Bartonella, but was hesitant because I didn't want to feel bad. I decided to go ahead and try since I ordered the herbs last month. I am continuing to take the full Restore herbs. I started taking Japanese Knotweed - 1 cap 2x a day, then bumped it up to 2  caps 2 x a day, then 2 caps - 3x a day, which is the full dose Buhner recommends.
I expected to herx, but actually started feeling pretty good, even really good - and I had energy!
The past week + has been great and I've been able to get a lot done. Evidently, Japanese Knotweed stops the cytokine cascade, which causes inflammation and makes you feel bad. (I don't understand how that a cytokine cascade is different from a herx.)
I haven't added everything in the full Bartonella protocol yet, so there's no telling how I'll feel once I have.

So far I'm taking the full dose of Japanese Knotweed, Sida Acuta, EGCG(green tea) &Hawthorn.
I also added the Arginine and Milk Thistle a few days ago and maybe starting the Houttuynia tomorrow. I'm a little afraid of taking the Houttuynia and herxing, but we'll see. I can always back off.

As for changes to diet...still aiming for 50% vegetables, gluten, dairy and sugar free. I do eat organic butter (cow) and Romano cheese (made from grass fed sheep's milk).
I've added a tablespoon of Collagen from Dr. Axe, which is made from grass fed cows. I've recently read that Buhner recommends collagen for muscle wasting. I definitely should have started adding that to my smoothies 
sooner because my muscles are pretty atrophied. I've also lost my previously latina behind and now it's flatter than flat. I've been taking the collagen every day since January 9th and already the skin on my face feels smoother. I had to exfoliate several times a week before because it felt scaly. 

The Website says the collagen helps this way

  • Healthy gut repair and brain function*
  • Greater mobility and flexibility. Strong, healthy muscles. Healthier, stronger bones and joints*
  • Vibrant, firmer, glowing skin and fight back against the effects of normal aging*
  • Easier weight management and/or weight loss, due to its satiating effect on hunger*
  • Deeper and more restful sleep*
You can purchase the collagen directly from Dr. Axe's website HERE.

As for the symptoms/areas I need to resolve(in this order please):

balance issues/intermittant brain fog
sound sensitivity - loud rooms cause tremors
numbness in feet

 I keep treating and reading and looking for information that might help. I hope you will do the same. Treating lyme and co-infections is a marathon, no a sprint. It's easy to get discouraged when you aren't feeling good or don't have any energy. Keep trying.

Hope today is a good day for you.


Here are the status of my symptoms:
Numbness, tingling in feet remain the same
swollen pads on bottom of feet near toes-a little better
dizziness/off balance- comes and goes.
difficulty finding words  about a 2 when really tired
blurry eyes - a few days clear, then a few days blurry
urgency  (3) - still a problem
light sensitivity (negligible)
noise sensitivity (3)
startles easily (2)
muscle pain -2 some days more
muscle weakness (3)
tremors - only when exposed to constant loud noises, but it's minor
high pitch ringing in the ears/low pitch ringing - high pitch is more present,
not being able to follow directions (2-3) -comes and goes
98 +   temp

Weight- I think I've lost another pound. It fluctuates up or down 2 pounds.

Most symptoms are the same, some days are worse, because I've added the Bart protocol.
Some days I have a lot of energy and get a lot done and some days I just want to sleep for half of the day- I just go with it!

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Products I Use In My Healing Journey

Those of us with lyme disease or another chronic illness are searching for products that either help get you well, treat a symptom or make dealing with the symptoms easier. That's why in the past, I've plastered them all down the sidebar or included the links in my posts.
I am finally  decluttering the sidebar and putting them into one post to make things easier.

For full disclosure here, anything with an Amazon link I will make a small commission on if you click over from my website and order the item. I thank you for that! I DO NOT and WILL NOT recommend anything that didn't work for me- with the exception that it's recommended by others - but I'll let you know that because everyone is different. Remember, something that worked for me, might not work for you and vice versa. In regards to supplements; remember, I'm not a should always check with your healthcare professional before starting anything new.

Having said that, here goes...

First and foremost, I highly recommend Vital Plan's Restore Program and their supplements since they are high quality and I've met Dr. Rawls.  The first month of Restore costs $325 as of this writing and $270 for any month after that. UPDATE: Vital Plan offers savings with their Subscribe and Save program.The first month includes his book Suffered Long Enough, 3 6 month email and video course, eating plan, symptom tracker and personalized email support.

As of this writing, I'm feeling pretty good after being on Restore for 10 1/2 months. You can read my monthly updates for more information.

Disclosure: he has sent me some products to try a couple of times, which I have and will review with my honest opinion.

EMF Blocker
Dr. Rawls mentioned the DefenderPad EMF blocker in his book Suffered Long Enough.

I've spent a lot of time on the internet  since I finding out I had lyme. Many hours have been spent researching and talking to people, so blocking emfs is really important. I also have a little Belly Blanket by Belly Armor which I lay across my lap, then place the DefenderPad on top of that. I also fold the blanket over where I place my hands on the laptop.

Essential Oil Diffuser
I have a previous model of this Naska cool mist essential oil diffuser. There are other ones on Amazon. My favorite oils  to diffuse (so far) are lavender (when I sleep) and peppermint - when I'm sleepy during the day.

I've read quite a few more, but these are my favorite.

I reviewed lion's mane mushroom HERE

[Update- I forgot I was taking this probiotic]
I will be taking this probiotic for a month, then trying the Probiotic from Vital Plan.

Jernigan Neuro-Antitox
From the website: "Neuro-Antitox II CNS/PNS is for those suffering primarily from problems in the brain, meninges, and peripheral nerves from Lyme toxins and heavy metals"

I don't have stress in the normal sense, but being a passenger in a car or being in a large space where someone uses a microphone(like in church) caused me stress and Suntheanine helped me. Read the reviews on Amazon.

Vital Plan also has a good product called HPA Balance,
which has 100 mg l-theanine in it and I'll take this if I'm driving (a short distance) somewhere.

I now take 2 HPA Balance plus 200 mg of the l-theanine before going to church where it's loud! Taking these helps me a lot.

I take 1,000 mg of Ashwaghanda before bed and it's been helping me to have more restful sleep. I've been sleeping for longer stretches and have been only been getting up once or twice at night to go to the bathroom. I had been getting up every couple of hours. My husband started taking it too and he says it helps him have more restful sleep.
This is the Ashwagandha I've been taking.

2nd Update November 2016: I now take 2 5htp an hour or 2 before bed and take 1mg Melatonin as I get into bed. I've taken both of these brands of 5 htp and they work well for me.

Pure Calm from Vital Plan helps at bedtime, as well.

There are other curcumins that are less expensive, but Meriva SR is highly bioavailable. I take it for muscle pain, plus turmeric/curcumin is supposed to be really good for you.

Vital Plan also has a good product with turmeric/curcumin in it called Joint Care, with other ingredients that help with joint pain. I don't have joint pain regularly, but once in awhile I do and will take Joint Care for a week or so if my joints start to bother me.

For Pain

I use this pack whenever my neck was inflamed or my head felt like it was smoldering.

Migun Infrared Mini Mat
I love, love, love my Migun Mat. I use it for muscle pain and in the past, I would sit on in every morning upon awakening to take away the "icky" neuro feelings. I know - such a technical term. lol. It's a little hard because of the jade stones on it, so I use a folded up twin sheet to pad it a little. It's $345 as of this writing and the place I purchased it locally will ship it for free (in the contiguous US). You can find it HERE. Say hello to CarolAnne for me. She's a nice lady who works there.

Infrared Sauna
I have a Rocky Mountain Colorado infrared sauna. After researching saunas with low/no emf, I purchased this one. I HATE sweating, but I always feel better after I get out, take a shower and rest for 20 minutes(ok there was one time in 6 months of use when I didn't).
I will be reviewing a few more products from Vital Plan and adding them to this post afterwards.

Do you have any favorite products that have helped you that aren't on my list?

I hope today is a good day for you!


this post is not meant to be medical advice. Consult your health care professional before taking any supplements.