Friday, July 1, 2011

Cycle For Lyme lives another day!!!!!

Happy Canada Day!!
I would like to say that my first day back on the road was an enthusiastic one, but after two full weeks of Lyme symptoms, yes it is back and doing well inside me, I ended up a rather crabby old man today.  Hours later, I am in pain, but unfortunately not from riding.  What I will say is that it is truly incredible to be able after over twenty years, to precisely distinguish between what is an authentic physical Cycle For Lyme pain against that which comes from Borrelia.  I said this a couple of weeks ago, and I will repeat it again.  If I could just transfer what I feel today for 24 hours to a doctor so he or she could understand what reality we Lyme sufferers live in, it would be a great accomplishment.  This brings me back to what a doctor once told me about what my real problem was - he said that it was clear that I had a low tolerance to pain - in other words - I was a whiney suck.  If I could transfer for an hour what sucky pain inside me now, what a difference it would make to the many who feel what I feel right now.
The ride down County Road 44 from Kemptville is a beautiful one.  As much as my brain was coping with, it went quite quickly.  And while highway 2 from Johnstown to Brockville is a treat in a car, it is simply fantastic on a bicycle.  We have a country that we blast across on highways such as the 401, and we miss so very much along the way.  Despite what I have gone through for the past two decades, I have seen much of what this country has to offer, yet undertaking Cycle For Lyme has reinforced what I often forget.....that we simply do not adequately appreciate what we have on our doorstep. 
In dealing with having Lyme back for two weeks now, when not sleeping, I made a point to make some calls.  One thing I learnt not only surprised me, but rather made me very upset.  I discovered that the only research being done to determine tick and/or Borrelia infestation in Ontario is being done in the Brockville / Thousand Island area.  As I sit in Brockville writing this blog, I realize how excellent this is for the people living in the Brockville area (like the locals don't already know Lyme is here) - yet how unfortunate it is for the rest of the residence of this province.  How can politicians and/or bureaucrats, the folks that ultimately determine our health make informed decisions about such an epidemic of such significant proportions, when not a dime is being spent to properly study the extent of how Lyme infected ticks have infiltrated Ontario.  I can be quite often be heard privately using the term "let the people die" as a half hearted way of dealing what I have been through, but the reality is that my humour is all too serious, and all too real.
I went on the Toronto Star's article archive last week and found an article from 1989 - the year that I was bit and became infected with Borrelia.  The article point blank stated that if we (our government and healthcare providers) didn't wake up and accept that Lyme is here to stay, Lyme had the potential to become an epidemic in the next 10 to 20 years.  Well Hello Ontario - 22 years later those who ignores those words need to be both ashamed and accountable.  How our government can continue to cling to the position that we only just learnt about Lyme a couple of years ago need to listen close - we have proof that you have been in denial for a long time - STOP THE RHETORIC AND DO SOMETHING ABOUT LYME BEFORE MORE OF US BECOME INFECTED. 
As I told him briefly what I was doing, I handed a flyer to a man today.  He had a good working knowledge of Lyme.  He response was only two simple words, "Thank you".  Two of the most generous words I could ever hear.
Don't blame me - I told you up top that I was a rather crabby old man today.

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