There were times we had to take our daughter Lydia to the emergency room with severe headaches; other times she had to be carried because she was in too much pain to walk. There were times the symptoms would briefly lessen while on antibiotics and we’d go into denial that things weren’t as we thought. When antibiotics were stopped, the Lyme bug would “come out of hiding.”
During these times, keeping a journal of symptoms was invaluable. It helped me remember and see the patterns of what was going on. I needed this validation and it gave me the confidence to make good decisions, especially when the mainstream doctors were telling me I was wrong in thinking it was Lyme.
It was not long after a three-week course of antibiotics that my daughter, Lydia, started complaining of headaches and stomach aches. She was only three years of age but very bright and verbally gifted. I knew the tick bites were causing the symptoms. It was common sense: she was okay before the bites; not okay after the bites.
“Headaches and stomach aches are normal; everybody gets them,” her pediatrician told me. “Really?” I thought. “Aren’t they the body’s way of telling you something is wrong?” I trusted my motherly instincts and persisted in looking for someone who could help. I was sent to an infectious disease doctor who told me it wasn’t Lyme because she didn’t have joint pain. I now know if you get joint pain at all with Lyme, it’s generally in the later stages. My daughter eventually had lots of joint pain but it didn’t manifest itself until after the third year.
Lyme can manifest itself differently in everyone, which is why it is often misdiagnosed. The symptoms vary because of many factors: where the bacteria lodges in your body (if it’s in your brain it will present differently than if it’s in the joints, spine, etc.), how long you’ve had it, the severity and any co-infections you may also have.
My daughter’s symptoms and mine were very different. She experienced headaches and stomach aches in the early stages. Over the subsequent 10 years, her symptoms progressed to fatigue, tingling all over her body and in her eyes, anger bursts, night terrors, eye floaters, joint paint, heart palpitations and loss of balance. In the ninth year she started to have Tourette-like, involuntary contortions of the face
It was terrifying and the panic and helplessness I felt was overwhelming. My own symptoms were different and mostly affected my thinking. I experienced memory loss and was unable to accomplish simple tasks or follow a recipe. I even got lost while driving in my own town. My son had mild symptoms that went away after a short course of antibiotics. There is no “this is what Lyme looks like” standard.
In 2002, the Lyme was still present but we were adjusting to living with it. I am a songwriter, and we decided to move to Nashville, Tennessee, for my music. As the saying goes, life is what happens while you’re making other plans. When all the antibiotics were stopped, our daughter started having symptoms again. My Lyme worsened with the stress of the birth of our third child.
One day we were in the Frist Center (an art museum) and Lydia started scrunching her face involuntarily and turning both her wrists down at the same time. It was frightening and she did not even realize she was doing it. When we told her what she was doing she denied it — it was as if her brain short-circuited during the time it was happening, like a seizure. I was panic stricken, sad, and worn out in every way. During this time I wrote and published the song “Carry Me” (download at itunes.com/alicebartels). Writing music was my coping tool and a great outlet for my thoughts and feelings.
I hope the song touches anyone going through a tough time.
After countless hours praying and searching for a new treatment, I found the website for Hippocrates Health Institute (HHI). I read about the IV treatments, which included Argentyn Silver. I decided to try the treatment on myself first and if it worked with no side effects, we would try it on our daughter, who was 12 years old at this point.
To show you how sick I was before the treatment, I recall what happened at the airport on my way to HHI. The person sitting next to me asked where I was going and I had to pull out my ticket and look at it to answer her; my brain simply was not working.
During my stay at Hippocrates, I received five IV treatments of silver. I felt 80% better after just two weeks and continued the treatment at home via rectal implants for three months, with absolutely no bad side effects from anything. Feeling very encouraged, we brought Lydia to Hippocrates and she also received the silver treatment. The results were miraculous. Silver is anti-viral and anti-bacterial. Lydia had been experiencing tingling in her whole body for eight years and it went away after the five treatments. She likewise continued the three month home treatment and all her symptoms went away.
Our gratitude to God and to Hippocrates Health Institute was immeasurable. Lydia remained symptom free for a whole year, then started to have a few signs of it reappearing. We treated her one more time and since then she has been symptom free.
In the end, my instincts had been right, the Tourette-like, involuntary movements were caused by Lyme. The tingling she had all over was not Multiple Sclerosis, but Lyme; the joint pain was not arthritis, but Lyme. Today, Lydia is an honor student and thriving in every way. We are grateful and humbled in remembering what our Higher Power brought us through.
Juicing, wheatgrass, raw vegetables, exercise and prayer are part of our daily lives. I do not believe my daughter would be alive today if it were not for the silver treatment. We are so grateful Hippocrates Health Institute exists.