> Understand: I know we don't always 'look sick.' I know it is hard to understand why I don't want to get out much anymore or why I cancel or why it takes me a long time to return phone calls. I realize it is hard to understand how we feel or what to say and even harder to know what we need. Hopefully this post will help with that.
When you see me, simply asking how I'm feeling and letting me vent is a tremendous gift in itself. Lyme Disease is all consuming and chances are it will be all I want to talk about. Most days, I think of nothing else. Thank you in advance for your patience as we get through this nightmare. I promise one day, I will want to go out and have fun and talk about interesting things that have nothing to do with symptoms, doctors or treatment.
> Research: Researching Lyme Disease can be one of the greatest gifts you can give my family. Not only because you will better understand what we are going through, but because you will learn how you and your loved ones can avoid this terrible disease. Education is key. If you see the wrong doctor (even if you have every symptom in the book AND a CDC-positive test), you will be offered anti-depressants or pain meds and sent on your way (trust me, I speak from experience.) Most importantly, if you research Lyme Disease, you learn how you can prevent it . And that would be the best gift you may ever give yourself!______________________________________________________________
This has been the most difficult, pride-swallowing thing I've ever written, let alone post for all to see. Thank you for listening and for everything you have done thus far. Thank you for even considering helping us. Mostly, thank you for loving us...bug-filled, sicker-than-sick, too-pooped-to-party...us. We are so grateful for you....our friends and family. We love you more than words can say.
With our greatest thanks...
The Antal Family
P.S. My friend Kathy wrote an amazing post on offering support entitled How to Support Me Now That I'm Sick: An Open Letter to Strangers, Family, and Friends.