25 January 2014

Let's Talk About Lyme, Baby: Reflection

I can always relate to Mulan

...But on a serious note...

Have you ever been startled by your own reflection?

Maybe you were washing your hands in the sink only to look up and be caught off-guard; perhaps you were entangled in some daydream...or just really focused on getting that grit out from underneath your fingernails. Whatever the case, you probably know what I'm talking about.

You can sympathize, then, when I tell you I stared at my blank computer screen for at least 45 minutes before registering the fact that I was NOT looking at an apparition. And when my heart rate slowed its gait after the sudden relief, I almost had a heart attack when it galloped to full speed when I realized, "That's not just an ordinary human being--that's ME!"

It's not like I was unrecognizable due to some huge change in physical features. I hadn't cut my hair recently. There was no new makeup on--actually, no makeup on at all. I was unrecognizable because my brain has some bugs in it (literally and metaphorically).

Like any complex system, the brain doesn't always run as smoothly as we'd wish; it has glitches, hence the metaphorical bug reference. Now, don't squirm too much--my brain literally has bugs as well. Spirochetes to be exact. This is the reasoning behind my inability to register my own face at that moment.

But I don't want to delve too deep into the science of it all. I'll explain how spirochetes and Lyme disease work more in detail later. For now, I just want to take in the fact that I literally just did not recognize myself.

So, just in case you're new to my blog, or even if you're a steady reader but would like a "TMI" fact:

My name is Chelsea, I have bugs inside of me, and sometimes I forget what I look like, or who I am, or if "Chelsea" is even my real name.

That is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to chronic Lyme disease and its many confounding elements.

Once again, if you ever have questions about Lyme disease, never hesitate to ask. You can comment below or e-mail me at oneticktobesick@gmail.com

The next time you look in the mirror, don't take it for granted. Instead of picking out all your flaws or barely even looking at yourself, soak it in. Really take in who you are. Try not to even think anything, just look at yourself, knowing that this is you and no one else, and that's how it is and that will never change.

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