Hello! Husband here. Nikki has been asking me to write up an entry for this blog for a few weeks and I figured there's no time like the present, especially after the events of last night. I'm going to apologize now for my lack of writing skills, I'm just a college drop out construction worker. I haven't done anything like this in over a decade so I'm not sure where to start or where to finish but I suppose starting with last night and going from there sounds about right.
So I returned home from a long day working outside in our lovely North Eastern winter weather, ate dinner and we started discussing how our days went. I started to rant a little, as I'm known to do, and I started to realize after a while that she wasn't really paying attention. That's strange for her, she really is good at putting up with my gripes and complaints but that evening she couldn't seem to concentrate on the words I was saying. I saw what was coming. She complained of a headache to which I responded with the same line I always do no matter the time of day, "Go to bed and rest." So Nikki started her process to go to sleep; wash her face, brush her teeth, yada yada yada. I was laying down, awaiting her arrival when I heard from the other room a noise that I don't think I've ever heard before, it was a whimpering grunting type sound, super hard to explain. Anyhow, I knew something was wrong so out of bed I go. I found her leaning against a box near the wall, tears flowing, that strange noise coming from her unmoving mouth, and her having a difficult time commanding any muscle. Her face looked like that of a stroke victim, drooping lower than I thought possible and yet it was very tight and tense. It was as if her face melted, then decided to spasm and contort into an almost completely unrecognizable shape. I saw that and even though I knew a visit to the hospital would come up with nothing but a bunch of doctors scoffing at the mention of Lyme, that was my immediate response. When I told her I was calling an ambulance, she groaned in a way to say, "No." I was relieved, she was still in there. This went on for close to 10 minutes before she had strength enough to lock her arms around me and I could carry her into bed. The physical exertion from holding on seemed to put a strain on her and her upper body began to violently spasm and twist. I was terrified but I knew this attack was coming to a close, thankfully. After 20 or so minutes laying down her spasms stopped and she was finally able to communicate verbally again.
She might hop on here and said I'm over-exaggerating, I'm not, if anything, I might be down playing it due to my lack of knowledge in how to paint a picture with words. She has a hard time remembering everything that happens when these attacks happen, they are much worse than she has recalled. I've been asking her to make a post giving the gory details, just spell it all out like it is and stop beating around the bush about how hard this all really has been for her. Don't expect that post, Nikki is very strong, and very stubborn. She rarely will tell me when anything is amiss, thankfully I've known her long enough to just be able to tell and I can subtly start steering her in the direction of relaxing and resting in an effort to stave off an attack. You know that friend of yours you have a few drinks with but they seems totally unaffected but then randomly goes from sober to completely wasted? That's Nikki. She tries to hide any sign of weakness from the outside world, it's not a bad thing per say, but it does make it much more difficult to spot when she's having a hard time for most people. With that said, the majority of people don't understand just how bad things have gotten or how bad Lyme Disease truly can debilitate someone. Especially those around her that only see her when she's able to portray that she's feeling well. Trust me folks, most of the time, she's not well.
Having a spouse suffer from this awful infection sucks, hard. The late nights of watching her sleep, worrying that things have been too calm lately, waking up in the middle of the night checking if she's breathing, running for the phone every time it rings hoping it's not awful news but preparing yourself for it... it takes a big toll. She doesn't drink alcohol anymore since it affects her negatively and I rarely have more than one in fear that if I do, I won't be able to help her if she were to have an attack. I'd do anything for her and I do it all without a second thought, I love her dearly but holy shit... I can't wait for her to be on a treatment plan that works. I've told her many times, "I was with you before this happened, I've been with you through it the last 5 years, I'm going to stick around for the pay off at the end when I get my wife back." And I've meant it each time I've said it and I'll continue to mean it until we have this bastard of a disease licked.
I apologize again for the sub-par writing and my completely unstructured ramblings, but I thank you for supporting my wife in her battle.