Our Lyme Disease Story

An Unwelcome Gift for My Fortieth Birthday

I’m not sure when my Lyme disease progressed to late-stage, but, most likely, it happened in 2017. That was the same year I turned forty. It was also the year my fatigue escalated to a debilitating level.

On January 24, I wrote in my prayer journal, “…please heal me of this exhaustion I’ve been feeling. Is it just PMS and a cold or is something more serious wrong? I don’t want to be a hypochondriac, but neither do I want to  let something become worse, because I failed to deal with it.”

Other journal entries from early 2017 revealed headaches, malaise, sleep issues, and repeated infections. Plus, of course, the ever-present fatigue.

My Birthday Weekend

Just before my fortieth birthday on April 22, 2017, my husband took me to Rocky Gap Resort to celebrate. On the way there, I tried to practice the solo I was scheduled to sing that Sunday, but my voice and energy were gone. 

Starting in early April, I had what I thought was bronchitis, a cold, or the flu. Now, I wonder if I got reinfected with Lyme disease when I went hiking in western Maryland in late March. 

Christy Brunke struggling with fatigue on her fortieth

In any case, my symptoms were vague on my birthday weekend, but I just didn’t feel well. At the time, I assumed I was still recovering from being sick with some kind of viral infection. Plus, I thought, “Man, you really do feel more tired when you get older!” 

“Is This What Forty Feels Like?”

But at forty, I felt like I had less energy than my mom and her sisters who were all in their sixties.  Granted, all three of them are dynamos, but still, I asked myself, “Is this fatigue normal? Is this really what forty feels like?”

My first attempt at a diagnosis would come later that year following a trip to New York City. Click here to read “Bad Buddies in the Big Apple!”

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