Remember when Jonathan was really sick last year? I blogged about it here. We were thrilled by the end of last January to think that we’d gotten to the bottom of what was causing all of these health issues… it seemed to be a reaction between two medications he was taking, which was an easy fix. We were also completely relieved to know that what had been bringing him down hadn’t been anything “major”.
This summer, then, when all of the nasty symptoms he’d been experiencing last winter reappeared with a vengeance, we were baffled. Symptoms like debilitating muscle cramps, severe depression, fatigue, tremors, loss of memory & concentration… the list was longer and scarier than anything we’d seen before, but this time, there was no reason behind it at all. Things got so bad this fall that we came to the heartbreaking decision to close the church that we’d begun a number of years ago – a dream of Jonathan’s that has been such a beautiful and integral part of our lives. With the extra time and energy, we’ve been meeting with doctors and specialists in an effort to figure out just what’s at the root of all of these troubling issues.
A few days ago, we got our answer. Jonathan was diagnosed with advanced Lyme Disease, an infection that he’s had, apparently, for over three years from a tick bite he got while camping up in Wisconsin. It all makes so much sense looking back… the exhaustion, the depression, the pain… it’s been there the whole time, coming and going, but always stronger than the season before. We’re working with a fantastic clinic up in Fon du Lac, Wisconsin, where they currently treat over 1,200 patients with Lyme Disease. The specialists say that he most likely has the disease in 6-8 different forms, not to mention a number of co-infections to boot.
Treatment starts this week, and will last anywhere from 4 months to 4 years, depending on how he responds. Because the infection has gone untreated for such a long time, we are told to think in terms of years, not months. But who knows? From what I understand, he will be quite sick as the antibiotics begin to fight the many forms of infection, and things will most likely get worse before they get better. But just knowing that things will get better gives us so much hope!
I’ve truly debated how much of this to share with you guys. I mean… it’s kind of a downer, not to mention that words like “depression” and “tremors” can make people instantly uncomfortable. I finally decided to share because we see SO many of you not just as clients, but also as friends, and we’ve never been ones to keep much “behind the curtain”. I hope that’s ok with you. I also wanted to share it here because, as a number of you could probably attest, we’ve dropped plenty of balls this fall trying to balance the photography business with all of the confusing and scary health issues at home. We are BEYOND grateful for the patience you’ve shown us this fall. Now that we know what we’re up against, we’ve already begun to start thinking through the changes we can make on our end to get things running smoothly again.
We did our family pictures a few weeks back (thank you Heidi Peters
!!!)… you’ll get to see a bunch more soon, but I wanted to share my FAVORITE with you today, which also happens to be the front of our Christmas Card this year. It brings me a smile every. single. time I see it. Because I’m learning that life marches on… but we do not march alone. : )