First, my apologies for being absent so long. It’s been nearly three years, but my journey has taken me through many setbacks one of which was an illness that compromised my cognitive and neurological abilities. I had Lyme disease that over several years had gone misdiagnosed and untreated. By the time it was finally discovered my way of life had been compromised making photography and writing nearly impossible. However, with attention and treatment from Lyme Literate MDs along with a fierce determination to regain as much of my life as possible, I’ve made a comeback.
As a celebration of the recovery I was challenged by a friend to tell my story with a photo essay, combining my visual fascination with a desire to write. Taking on her challenge I began to tinker with a storyline making images fill the narrative. As I toiled with captions, it became apparent the story needed more robust text filling the gaps between the viewer’s visual photographic touchstones. In three or four weeks I realized it was more than just a dozen photos with one-line captions. It was inevitable that the result would become a book, Shadows of Lyme Disease, (commercial alert) which can be purchased through Amazon in either print or eBook format.
Filled with images of reality and symbolism it tells my story of the onset, struggle, and long recovery, as I moved from a colorful world to colorless despair and back. I hope it might offer empathy to anyone in its grip and insight to those who have been mercifully spared its ravage. For those who haven’t experienced it, it’s a horrible disease; for some leaving them with permanent neurological, cardiological, and muscular damage. In extreme cases it has resulted in death. Lyme is a misunderstood and little known disease, recently moving into the spotlight as the medical world gains a better understanding of its etiology and treatment. I hope my essay adds to that body of knowledge with my firsthand account that uses both images and words.