First impressions.

Leslie Hodge was hiking in North Carolina in 2005 when she found a tick embedded in her. After several weeks of flu-like symptoms she found a rash on her arm. Her doctor identified it as a bullseye rash and immediately put her on antibiotics. Her symptoms were primarily a deep exhaustion, a ‘perpetual cold,’ high blood pressure, and a weakened immune system. Her recovery has taken ten years of hard work, but now she is symptom free.

“It was one day in April and I remember waking up saying, ‘It is what it is…thank you Lyme for teaching me all these lessons.’ ” – Leslie Hodge

The emotional component is a huge part of any chronic illness.  Couple the normal struggles of severe chronic illness to what Lyme can do to the brain’s physiology, and you have a perfect storm of uncontrolled thoughts and feelings. You see it every day on Facebook. My heart goes out to them. The message about Lyme cannot be said enough times by enough voices, in enough ways. Every little bit we do, helps. Gather enough snowflakes together and we’ll  make a storm.


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Lyme Ninjas

I’ve been talking to people with Lyme from all over the country. I am always amazed by how knowledgeable and educated they are about Lyme. Some are passionate about gathering political support. Some are passionate about alternative treatments. Some are passionate about helping others. They all share a deep commitment to make their pain and suffering a positive contribution to the world. That’s why I call them Lyme Ninjas.

I feel the photos below really capture Leslie’s spirit.

Mackay Rippey

I practice acupuncture in Clinton, NY, a small village in the geographical center of the state. Once I became aware of Lyme and other insect carried diseases, I started seeing my chronic patients in an entirely different light. Join me as I speak with the the most fascinating people in the Lyme community. If you know someone I should interview, let me know.

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