The International Lyme and Associated Disease Society conference, held in sunny San Diego was a sight to behold. 420 attendees from all over the globe, on lush Paradise Point Resort. I must say it was a true privilege to be conversing and dinning with world class researchers, doctors, practitioners, advocates, innovative thinkers, risk taking individuals and many Lyme patients. My mind was swarming with new information, brilliant moments of synchronicity and the back drop of glimmering Mission Bay bathing us all in good fortune and promise for creating a healthier Lyme-free or at least Lyme-controlled tomorrow.
A special thanks to Dorothy Leland of LymeDisease.org whom invited me to come give the inspirational speech at the Lyme disease Walk and Rally on Saturday, and for ILADS executive director, Barbara Buchman for recognizing the value of the enormous amount of Lyme advocacy work I do speaking nationwide and the launch of the brand new, already popular, “Lyme Light Radio with Katina” show I host, on The Dr Pat Show Network, every Wednesday- reaching a global audience in the multimillions.
Nancy Dougherty, Bonni Ronney, Joy Rothberger, Mualla McManus, Mara Williams, Dr. Kenneth Liegner, Dr.Micheal Arata, Dr Andy Kopelman, Dr. Christine Green, Dr. David Kaufmann and so many, many others I shared meals and moments conversing with was just as fabulous as the material taught at the conference.
As we dined al fresco, Perseus Major, Venus and the golden full moon bathing us in a fluid blend of companionship, passionate commitment to a public health crisis, and the poetry of inner attunement to mankind’s plight, I felt at times as if I was living in a chrysalis of another reality. Like we were gestating and weaving together; harmonies, individual talents, trainings, visions and the personal ‘ Lyme trenches’ experience of tragedy, coming to the table in a certain gestalt, preparing for the birth of something very important.
This is my Intuitive self speaking here~ a sense of something beyond me personally, beyond each of of us individually, but palpably threaded in a cohesive tapestry. It is a work in progress, like any great painting or sculpture; melding, blending, growing in proportion and form. I do not know the final outcome, but I sense it will be real, and valuable and we will turn the tides of this now worldwide infectious disease epidemic. I know millions of people (me included) have lost years of our lives, incomes, careers, relationships, homes to mismanaged Lyme disease: faulty lab testing, inadequate physician training on signs and symptoms as well as treatments, along with slack prevention alerts, allowing a microscopic stealthy and seriously damaging bacteria to creep its way into our homes and communities. People are ravaged, lives have been lost, too many spirits have been broken.
At ILADS 2014 I listened to the brilliant and interesting presentations on co-infections, glutathione pathways, retroviruses, biofilms, endocrine disorders, Hyperbaric oxygen therapy and much more. The very obvious pattern at this years ILADS was that it was VERY treatment based and less science research focused compared to 2013. Practitioners left with many ideas and tools to implement with their cases, helping to rebuild depletions, attack infections, and to a veteran Homeopath like me, the most ASTOUNDING realization was that Integrative Medicine was being promoted!!!!
30 years ago as a newbie Classical Homeopath I was looked at as an odd-ball at a cocktail party, my job too ‘weird’ sounding for many to stomach. To find this cutting edge, open minded Medical based health care community gladly reaching to enzyme therapy, homeopathic formulas, detoxification methods and herbs to kill bugs and rebuild damage was beyond my wildest imaginings from decades ago (antibiotics still in full force for acute infections and dire central nervous system issues). BUT, if it takes a public health care crisis, called Lyme disease, to marry the two hands of health care, well than let it be!
I don’t ever wish Lyme disease or a tick borne co-infection on anyone, it can be traumatic and life decimating. BUT, America is beyond the times— we sorely lack the Integrative Health Care models of Germany, France, UK, Canada, S. America. Our pharmaceutical based methods of wiping out an infection with antibiotics, ignoring the restorative capacities our very resilient body is capable of when given proper support with nutraceuticals and other modalities, and the idea of just squelching a symptom via a palliative drug is soon to be ancient history, a relic of 20th century doctoring.
To quote Thomas Edison: “The doctor of the future will give no medication, but will interest his patients in the care of the human frame, diet and in the cause and prevention of disease. ~ ”
Lyme Disease can be a deadly illness. It affects every person in a unique way beyond the initial feverish, flu-like pains and malaise of the acute phase. It morphs and lingers, disseminates and moves its way into the central nervous system- ALS, Parkinson’s, Bells Palsy, Lupus, CFS, migraines all too ugly when not ‘caught’ quickly enough. Hourly, I learned a story of death to Lyme disease from an attendee. This illness can NO longer be brushed off. We must work HARD! We need billions of dollars, the way AIDS received in the 1990’s, to crack the code. Right now that is NOT happening.
Some excellent studies are being done to figure out the persistent nature of the illness in certain people and the reasons why it triggers ‘auto-immune’ style states in so many. Also, how can more rapid, accurate diagnostic tests be developed quickly? But, sadly, the NIH has doled out very little money to the Lyme crisis, unlike the ample amounts diabetes, MS, HIV receive. And, shockingly the Lyme numbers are more frightening!! We need help now, and fast. Money must be granted, raised, donated immediately.
At the peak of the HIV/AIDS epidemic in the early 1990’s the annual cases contracted were 104,000, while the CDC acknowledged in August 2013, that over 300,000 Lyme disease cases are contracted annually just in the USA (Australia, Norway, Germany, Canada are stricken perhaps even more densely)!!!! That is 3x higher than the AIDS peak and climbing! And, yet Lyme receives a mere fraction of NIH funding or attention. The tides must shift if we wish to protect our very vulnerable nation. Everyone is at risk; not just IV users, homosexuals or prostitutes. Children in tall grass, a hike in a national park, gardening in your own yard puts us in proximity to ticks- the primary carrier.
A particularly poignant moment came for me, when a small group of 4 of us stood on the soft San Diego beach sand, city lights littering the bay and a giant full moon dangling overhead, nurturing and inspiring the Earth. Renowned physician Dr. Kenneth Liegner serenaded us with his marvelous trumpet playing, ending with a very moving rendition of TAPS, played in memorial for all those whom have died due to Lyme disease. Our hearts hung heavy and I was deeply touched to be in such sterling company of dedicated people.
It was my great privilege to give the inspirational address at the San Diego Lyme Walk and Rally. What a great group was there! Dr Richard Horowitz, Brooke Landau, Mara Williams, Dr Stricker, Lorraine Johnson, more. How many impassioned voices, hard working folks and frail victims.
I have survived the Lyme Calamity- I work daily to voice the need for recognition, Integrative Medicine, spiritual healing for the very weary and worn. May “Lyme Light Radio” be a channel of dialogue, education, tools to battle this problem. I am blessed to be a messenger and healing vessel for many. I need your sponsorship too, to help this show continue to broadcast. Visit LymeLightRadio.com and see how you can help. I am aiming to start an IndieGoGo campaign to get what we need. (any volunteers to help me launch this? please email me).
Please do not sit on the sidelines regarding Lyme disease. If you are too ill to move, tune into TheDrPatShow.com or WBLQ.net every Wednesday 1pm PT/4pm ET, put LymeLightRadio in the search box and listen to my fabulous guests. They will give you tools. If you are mobile, get to or start a Lyme disease support group. If you are a health care practitioner, start learning about Integrative Medicine or align with one in your community or get ILADS trained on Lyme disease treatments. If you are curious, go to TBDA.org, ILADS.org or LymeDisease.org and get involved. WE all need able hands, minds, sympathies, fund-raisers to arrest this plague.
I left ILADS 2013, buoyed with hope. Brilliant, devoted people converged for 4 days, learning, sharing, caring about this illness, the victims, what they can bring to the table, what they can bring home and utilize. Or how they can better educate or evoke change of consciousness?
Meanwhile, I packed up Sunday night and had a delicious water side dinner with old friends. While walking along the bay, a wizened old Haitian witch-doctor sat crossed-legged on the grass alongside the quay in the park, reading palms and telling futures. Ever curious me, I sat down with the aged one, leathered dark skin, glowing amber eyes, peering deeply into my own. I asked for a ‘reading’.
“I am in the presence of an angel” he spoke and bowed to me, taking my hands, cupping them in his warmth. “You are a gifted and powerful healer, a soul older than my own. My skins prickles with your mighty powers bathing me now,” his lyrical voice streamed.
I felt my spine tingle and was caught a bit off-guard and even doubting. The soft California night whispered in the palm trees. He sprinkled me with “Florida Water” and said,
“You will not pay me for this time. It is not right. You are a mystic. It is my privilege to be with you now.”
I did not know what to think. Was this old man ‘putting his moves on’ me or onto something deeper than I even sensed?
“ A man has left your side recently (my mate, Hunter, this June). A family member, a man, died 3 years ago (my dad). But, do not worry, I very big heart will be with you soon. Someone grand and generous who understands you are a very rare person is coming in the near future. A man of deep love and wealth. You will have 5 grandchildren. You are on a mission, like a saint or Queen. Do not hesitate or feel sad for yourself ever. Your eyes tell me it all. You have seen the great mysteries of the Universe. I can teach you even more, the old ways of African priests. You will heal thousands, maybe millions. Allow me to teach you.”
I am sitting, listening, semi-uncertain and beckon my best friend of 43 years over to hear this. She sits near me. She listens too. She smiles at the witch-doctor/shaman when he repeats,
“She is an angel”. She nods a Yes.
He proceeds. More prophecies are shared, some about my writing work and speaking to large masses of people. I do not know what to truly absorb. Eventually, with the cool night steeped in purple hues, I stand and bow to the old man. He hands me his bracelet, a worn woven wrap and a CD of his own healing music.
“I pass this to you. Protection in the sea of life. I will pray for you every day. Come here again. I will teach you to SEE even deeper. Through thousands of years.”
“I live 3500 miles away, it is impossible,” comes my reply.
“Nothing is impossible. You are a master healer. I will teach you, even if I must come to where you are. I have been waiting for you to appear from my dream for a very long time. I must do a ceremonial cleansing Botanica on you for more teaching to come. Are you here tomorrow to take the rites?”
“No, I fly out in the morning.”
Is this guy a nut or truly a sage? Now, completely bewitched with eve falling, I shake hands with the crinkled one.
“Thank you for seeing my true essence,” come my words of gratitude. “You are a kind man, and very generous.”
“I am only reminding you to BE who you are,” his Haitian accent, jumbled and colored with rhythms and melody convey. “Very big work lies ahead for you. Do not be afraid. Your spirit knows what to do. Just listen to it. I will not push you. But, you will call me when you are ready to learn more. As a mystic you know just what I mean- words are not necessary.” He smiles, yellowed teeth flashing in a quick crescent. “God bless you, Angel of Mercy. You move with God’s protection.”
We walk away, or rather I float away. I am anointed in ancient magic, while simultaneously steeped in 4 days of modern medical training. What do I think? How am I the conduit, the elixir, the carrier of Mother Earth’s Universal wisdom entwined with Western medicine’s scientific workings. My senses swim. I am in semi-trance, all of this somehow stewed together within an eclipsing health crisis and a full golden moon riding in the Eastern sky?
Nancy looks at me, grinning her mischievous smile.
“Leave it to you, to find a witch-doctor in the wake of this weekend of left brained didactics. Somehow, you manage to meld the two halves of healing, old and new, heaven and Earth.”
We both chuckle, our eyes locked together in a smile; over four decades under our belt as soul-sisters, with my mysterious nature always magnetically drawing unusual folks and circumstances out of the blue.
“I don’t know what to really think of him?” I question her.
Pragmatic, poised, regal Nancy soothes, “He is correct. You are a powerful healer, he probably really does want to help you and YES, you are positioned exactly in the midst of a health care crisis with personal experience and professional knowledge and skills unique to all others. I believe his vision that you are destined for something important. It is just for us to wonder if he is a charlatan or not regarding the training? Sit on it for a few days, you will know.”
I nod. I ponder. I sense. I want to try his ancient African healing magic. And, I will leave on a jet plane in the morning. Somehow, I try to let it all sift through me. I feel a bit off kilter. But, really I intuit, I am just rebalancing. ‘Prince Alex’ the soothe-sayer helped recalibrate me in that reading. After 4 days of science mind and analytical reasoning, he brought me into my right brain hemisphere of sensing, intuitive knowings.
Whether he is correct in his prophecies or not, it is OK. I must walk my path, lamplight of inspiration lit for those struggling on The Lyme Road. As a messenger I offer hope and faith and information. ILADS, Lyme support groups, clients in need, radio audience, publishers and editors, friends and community, I ‘move with God’s protection’, though the footpath is never so clear.
Step by step, day by day, I meet the sun, the sky, the ebony night and the unknown challenges, plus the remarkable beauty of it all. We will amend the Lyme disease travesty. I am forever grateful for all who I meet in this incredible journey of discovery and living. Thank you ILADS 2013 for an absolutely stunning conference and ground breaking work being shared. It was such an enormous privilege to be gathered with such talented people. The sun, the moon and the stars all aligned for the highest good.
Blessings to all.
Katina Makris, CCH, CIH