Most of my 20s and 30s, I never really felt great. There were good days and bad. I took Tylenol and Ibuprofen when I had pain. I took allergy meds, both prescription and OTC, from early spring to late fall. I went to the doctor when I had a cough or the sniffles and usually got a prescription which helped those symptoms. But feeling great, that was something I vaguely remembered from my childhood. But I figured that was just part of getting older. And honestly, I ignored what I could and just went on with life.
Sometime in 2009, I was feeling especially run down and achy. Then one day at work, I had this strange pain in my right arm and left leg. It was hard to describe…not muscle, not skin, but more like a pain in my bones. I had never had a broken bone at that point in life, but it felt like the bones were trying to break. As the day went on, it got worse. I could walk and move, but it was this all-distracting pain that made work impossible. My concerned partner at the time insisted he drive me to the ER, so off we went.
After 3 hours in the waiting room and 5 minutes with the doctor, I was given some pain relievers but no answers, sent up to radiology for some x-rays, and told to follow up with my primary doc who, luckily, I was able to see the next day.
As I described my pain, my primary doc began to nod his head. He knew what this was! He ordered some blood tests to confirm and took a medical history from me, asking about tick bites, of which I had never knowing had one, and then honing in on the arthritis in my knee I was diagnosed with at 23. Then, he told me I had Lyme Disease, and was probably originally infected 10 years prior.