Founder of the Ticked Off Music Fest Series Shares his Lyme Recovery Story

I have included 4 profound cases of misdiagnosed Lyme disease in my new book, “Autoimmune Illness & Lyme Disease Recovery Guide, Mending the Body, Mind & Spirit” published by Helios Press with a German translation due, too. These are all real people, whom lived ‘normal’ lives in normal American towns when they became oddly ill, each in prime age and then sadly succumbed to years and decades of medical mismanagement. With so little medical research and even basic physician clinical information properly understood about this aggressive, invasive bacterial infection, serious long term damages to organs and joints can result. Early infections are erradicated with swift steady 6 weeks of antibiotic treatment, yet so many cases slip under the radar and ‘chronic’ longer duration conditions defy traditional medical routine pill and procedure care.

All the cases that recover– and these are brave, determined souls you will meet in my pages- went outside mainstream allopathic medicine to reclaim their lives. They are examples of thrivers: those that beat the odds because they BELIEVE IN THEIR POTENTIAL and do not give up. I include them as testimonies to great willpower, listening to their inner healer (intuition) and as examples to you all that even when at death’s door, healing can happen. It is often the surrender to your old mindset and holding patterns that launches the opening of energy flow and personal healing shifts.

In honor of one of my favorite Lyme disease philanthropic gatherings, fundraising for patient financial aid and harmonizing communities to education and awareness, I share the stunning and ‘out of the box’ truly restorative success of Ticked Off Music Fest genius, Gregg Kirk’s recovery story. With 5 Fests under our belt and more on the slate into 2017, this venue is the ‘feel good’ place to be, if you are ill or concerned, or just love great music and day long dancing and community building.

TOMF is in Hawaii, Jan 23 at the Blaisdale Center on Waikiki Beach ; including dynamite talent and speakers ( I had to cancel as keynote with cracked ribs and a bad injury) includes Gregg Kirk and the Zen Engines, Melissa Cox, “Survivorman” and crowd favorite Les Stroud, and our killer headliner Mike Love. Visit http://www.TickedOffMusicFest.org for more details and tickets!

Meanwhile please read Gregg’s profound recovery path and how he created these Fests!! 12189324_691609150938847_3290701499412312091_o

Thank you courageous, wise and visionary Gregg– beating lyme  is a long journey!! RESTORE; DETOX, REKNEW!!! BLESS YOU and your brilliant spirt and incredibly generous heart.

Namaste,

Katina I. Makris, CCH, CIH

KatinaMakris.com

Healing From Chronic Disease on the Spiritual Level: A Healing Journey

In November of 1999, my wife and I moved from the Philadelphia area to southwestern Connecticut to start a new life and raise a family. Within three years of moving into our new house, I began noticing some strange symptoms that were not “classic” to Lyme disease or any other illness that I knew of. At the time I was in very good physical condition and I had been going to the gym three times a week working on bodybuilding. However, I was feeling fatigued and foggy every time I ate a meal.

After two more years of bouncing from doctor to doctor, I still had no answers. On two separate occasions, I had MDs tell me, “Your symptoms aren’t life threatening, so maybe you should learn to live with them.” I was shocked at their lack of curiosity, and since I was paying them for a service that I wasn’t satisfied with, I “fired” them. In the meantime, I was feeling worse and getting worried.

Finally in 2005, I visited a holistic doctor who asked me to chronicle my symptoms in a journal for one week. The day I visited her, she read my journal and immediately said, “You have Lyme disease. I can test you to be sure, but I can start you on a round of antibiotics right away.”

I was relieved that the mystery illness now had an identity, and I was hellbent on disinfecting my body and getting rid of it as soon as possible. I began taking oral doxycycline and immediately began to feel worse.

I visited my holistic doctor a week later and she asked me how I felt. “Terrible!” I said. “Good!” she responded. “It means the antibiotics are working. They’re breaking down the cell walls of the bacteria and releasing toxins in your bloodstream. That’s why you feel so bad.”

The funny thing is, she never gave me much advice on how to rid myself of these toxins, so I continued to feel worse. It would be years until I would learn how to diminish and avoid the Jarrish Herxheimer reaction or “herx” as all the “Lymies” were calling it online.

I also learned about something called a PICC line during my daily quest for research online, and I asked my doctor about that. To me, this seemed like the “nuclear option,” which involved a port installed in your arm so you could administer your own daily dose of antibiotics, directly into your bloodstream. This appealed to my idea of disinfecting my body.

But my doctor thought the PICC-line route was too harsh and risky and would not agree to sign off on it. So I found another doctor who would, and within weeks I had an appointment scheduled at a local hospital for the procedure. I have to admit, I was not prepared for what the PICC line was all about. I thought it was a simple prick of the arm and easy insertion of the port, but it was a full-on surgical procedure. I was laid on an operating table with an X-ray machine above my chest and three attendants helping the doctor. During the procedure, the doctor ran a wire lead to route the line close to my Aorta and he went too far and jabbed my heart. My blood pressure began to drop and I began to feel like I would pass out while lying on the table. Everyone got worried, but I managed to pull through and they wheeled me on a gurney into the hallway, fed me some lunch and kept me for observation for a few hours.

I ended up driving myself home from the hospital and I felt OK until I went to sleep that night. While in deep sleep, I rolled over on my left side and apparently the PICC line jabbed my heart further because wild palpitations and pain woke me from my sleep. I didn’t know what to do, so I went downstairs and laid on the couch to see if I would die or make it through the night.

When the first rays of sunlight broke through my living room curtains, I called the emergency line at the hospital and talked to the doctor on call. His advice surprised me. “You’ve been through the worst of it,” he said. “Do you think you can tough it out and keep it in for a few weeks and try the antibiotics?”

I was so intent on ridding myself of the disease that I took the doctor’s advice and tried to tough it out. As I administered my own antibiotics each day, I began to spiral downward. I developed a severe intestinal infection, strong headaches, and paralyzing depression. I felt like a walking zombie and began to feel detached from the world.

When the PICC line was finally removed, I felt slightly better for about three months but then backslid into worse symptoms and actually had a second PICC line inserted, this time with no anesthesia and no X-ray. The procedure felt like someone jabbing a ball point pen in my bicep for 45 minutes.

Unfortunately, this PICC experience was no different than the first with the added aggravation of having this second line broken during a routine weekly cleaning by a visiting nurse. I had to have the line reinstalled again, making it three surgical procedures in one year. I had never been to a doctor for anything more than a plantars wart removal prior to this and I was losing hope after the symptoms returned three months later.

I began seeing a new Lyme-literate doctor in NYC who did further testing and found I had several co-infections; other bacteria besides the borrelia burgdorferi (Lyme bacteria). He prescribed multiple antibiotics simultaneously. I felt slightly better than I had with the PICC line but I was far from feeling “disinfected.”

I’m a musician, and one night during a performance I almost passed out on stage for no apparent reason, and I instinctively felt the need to get off of all antibiotics. I discovered another doctor in Manhattan who prescribed a combination of herbs instead of synthetic meds. After starting his protocol, I experienced stronger herx reactions than I had with the PICC line and he recommended I scale back my dosage until I felt better.

I remained on this protocol for a few years but felt my quality of life was only a fraction of where I wanted it to be. I continued to do research online and during my travels I stumbled upon a video episode of Oprah Winfrey’s, featuring a healer from Brazil named John of God.

Something about this episode appealed to me. The fact that thousands of people traveled to meet this man who healed them through energy, love, and faith, and trained doctors who had been sent to debunk him couldn’t. In fact, many of them had spiritual experiences that showed on their faces. I was intrigued enough to book the 10-hour plane flight and take the pilgrimage.

On the day I arrived, two counselors sat down with me to find out why I had made the journey and to translate my healing intention to John of God, who only speaks Portuguese. When I told them I was there to be healed from Lyme disease, they looked up from their notes and said, “and what else?”

I laughed, “Do I get three wishes?” to which one of them asked, “Why stop at three?” I could see they were serious, so I told them I’m a musician and I would like to heal people with the music I write and perform.

The next day, I went with a group of people to see John of God to be “diagnosed.” Several hundred of us gathered in an open-air room called “The Casa” where João Teixeira de Faria (John of God as he is called by the local Brazilians) took to a small stage and began speaking in Portuguese. Later, I was told that he had said that he wasn’t the one doing the healing but that God did all of it. Soon after his speech, he dropped the microphone and a shudder ran through his body. His appearance began to change instantly, and his body seemed to swell and his eye color changed. He stumbled for a second and then attendants brought surgical instruments to him and he turned to a woman who was standing as if in a trance onstage. I was standing a mere six feet away and I grabbed my camera phone and started filming him cutting into her abdomen while she neither flinched nor bled. The energy in the room made me feel as if I would pass out and one of the attendants actually did so and dropped a container of rubbing alcohol.

The woman was wheeled away in a wheelchair, and several days later I saw her on the street and she lifted her shirt to show she barely had a scar from the whole experience.

Many of the people in my group later waited in line to go up in front of John of God who had retreated to a large meditation room in the back of the Casa. We all went before him silently, while a few hundred people meditated in nearby benches that reminded me of church pews. As we all touched his hand, he told us our next step, and mine was to have “spiritual surgery.” I was told to return in the afternoon and meet a few dozen others in a private meditation room where we were asked to meditate and keep our eyes closed. After sitting in silence for about 15 minutes, we could hear John of God enter the room and offer a blessing in a booming voice. I felt electrical sensations all over my body and several members of my group confessed they had felt shoved forward or to the side when there was no person there to physically do this.

When the session ended, we were met by our group leader who put each of us in a taxi to make the block and a half ride to our hotel. We were told to immediately go to bed even though it was in the early afternoon. I laid there with my eyes wide open and wondered how I would be able to sleep, and then I woke up 16 hours later, feeling as if I had been hit by a truck.

We each went through this experience again later in the week and one day, I looked in the mirror in my bathroom and burst into laughter. The face that stared back at me looked 10 years younger. I grabbed my phone to video chat with my wife and the first thing she said to me was, “What happened? You look different!”

I choked back tears and said, “I’m healed!” and I could feel that every symptom I had ever had simply vanished. All of this had occurred through the energy John of God had brought forth but it was held in place by my faith and positive thinking, as the counselors had instructed us. Some in my group had even more dramatic experiences but I noticed that the ones who didn’t were struggling with their own limiting thoughts and internal “demons.”

When I returned home, I also experienced a surge of songs and lyrics that seemed to come from nowhere. I’ve since recorded two CDs full of music that I never would have written had it not been for my experiences in Brazil. I have returned to the Casa five times since, more for my own spiritual evolution than for healing purposes, and I have begun devoting my life to helping others stricken with Lyme and tick-borne illnesses through the music I create and the Lyme disease benefit concert series I’ve created called the Ticked Off Music Fest: www.tickedoffmusicfest.com. The funds we generate from the concerts go to research and patient funds, and I’ve begun doing motivational speaking to help others struggle with chronic illnesses.

Gregg Kirk

The Zen Engines

founder of The Ticked Off Music Fest series

“Lyme Light Radio with Katina” Celebrates One-Year Anniversary!

standing blk dress

JOIN US ON THIS MOMENTOUS, HAPPY DAY- LYME LIGHT RADIO’S FIRST BIRTHDAY– wow!!

Special anniversary show on Wednesday August 13, 4PM ET – celebrating our debut, on August 14, 2013, of “Lyme Light Radio with Katina” on a breezy summer day. My first guest was the talented nurse practitioner and author of “Nature’s Dirty Needle”, Mara Williams. Friends and colleagues in the Lyme crisis, our inaugural show was an instant winner. With phone calls, emails, tweets and Facebook posts quickly flying- Mara and I and the much of the Lyme community were all delighted.

The weeks ahead unfurled. I kept reaching out to prominent doctors, advocates, foundations, scientists and patients in the Lyme community to be guests and BINGO! Everyone but one person has said YES to coming on air LIVE on Wednesday with me on “Lyme Light Radio” to help educate, inspire, and bring help to our world-wide audience.

If you go back and look (and listen) to our archived podcasts at http://lymelightradio.com, you will be stunned at the caliber of absolutely top rate guests we have, and when you listen to our programs, the level of quality information shared so generously by these time burdened, passionate, cutting edge individuals is astounding!! They are teaching us WHY we have been getting so sick from tick borne illnesses and explaining HOW to get well -this is breathtaking, profound information- coming to you weekly,for free!!

In this amazing year I have had the great good fortune to interview guests from all over the world involved with Lyme disease- Lyme Poland, Lyme UK, Jenny O’Dea in Ireland, Lyme Norway, Canadian expert Dr Murakami and many prominent physicians and researchers such as Dr John Aucott, Dr Klinghardt, Dr Alan MacDonald, Pamela Weintraub, Dr Kerry Clarke, and more!— the line up has been sensational!! “Lyme Light Radio” has had an incredible first year! We must celebrate!

To be your host is a true honor. Every week I am given the opportunity to converse on a topic that is essentially critical to our future and something I care about deeply. The Lyme disease epidemic has raged too long, too many lives have been damaged, and too much lack of understanding has propagated an international public health crisis we can barely catch up to now. Time is NOT on our side, but the airwaves are! This dialogue we have started on “Lyme Light Radio” is pivotal and potentially transformative on so many levels. Please help me thank all the powers that be; our sponsors, my network, and my production team for helping us air “Lyme Light Radio with Katina.” Without this support we would not be here at all.

Dr. Pat Baccili, Transformation Talk Radio network owner and award winning host of the #1 show in Independent Talk Radio show, “The Dr. Pat Show,” is my guiding star. http://www.thedrpatshow.com/drp_drpat_baccili.php
Thank you Dr. Pat for giving me this chance, supporting my dream and partnering with me on so many special events – The Martha’s Vineyard Gala, The TBDA Masquerade Ball Live From NYC, and John Donnally’s cycle across America, ‘Bite Back for a Cure’ were beyond phenomenal.

To Linda Firing, Jesica Henderson, Kim Hunt, thank you for coaching me and my office assistants in radio production and so much ‘hand holding’ as newbies.

My crew at WBLQ is the BEST! Station owner Chris DiPaulo, Brian Sullivan, and Lorren Kleinkauf, each week you make that magic elixir run so smoothly – by finessing Skype contacts to my guests overseas, to John Donnally on a cellphone in the prairies, or a dropped caller in Montana, and just plain ol’ studio technical mystery that you handle with such ease. You back me up and produce our now ‘go to’ broadcasts faithfully. I understand people stop you in the street and rave about our program! How great it that? Runaway hit right away – on a key topic! Cheers mates- you are so fun, too!

To our sponsors who helped fund the production of this show – Advanced Cell Training, BioResource Inc., Deer DeFence, TBDAlliance, I am indebted. Without you, we could not bring all this help and knowledge to others. Your belief in me and this program’s mission means so much to me!

It will be time to start our fundraising and sponsorship drive soon for this next season. Listeners and friends, I hope you can help even in small amounts when we start our campaign– the show must go on!! WE have a great program going now, it is too key to loose this edge and validation of a silent epidemic. I will let you know as we start the fundraising efforts.

Special thanks no my personal assistants, Charlotte Miller, Chloe Rapp, Catherine Bailey, Arianna Meehan – OMG – you keep me organized and help me coordinate our brilliant guests and sponsors. The details are endless and the technology beyond my capacity. Bless your professionalism, camaraderie, enthusiasm and often weird hours that we pull.

To our listeners I say bless you! My heart is in “Lyme Light Radio” for the all too many millions maimed by lyme disease and co-infections. I cannot sit on the sidelines and let the suffering continue. This illness needs to be thoroughly wiped out, preventable, diagnosed properly and no longer ravaging multi-generations.

My intention is that you learn something new every week on “Lyme Light Radio,” gain a glimmer of hope, feel less alone. We broadcast out of Westerly, RI on WBLQ 1230 AM with a listening range of 1,500,000 residents, streaming live on the web via the Dr. Pat Show syndicate and Transformation Talk Radio, we span the globe to multi-millions! Our shows are archived forever http://lymelightradio.com, and on the Transformation Talk Radio mobile app https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.ttr.transformationtalkradio.

I get emails from all over! Germany, Belgium, France, Poland, Iraq, Australia, Canada, Uruguay, Iowa, Arkansas, Florida, you name it! Thank you listeners for tuning in with us, for following, for sharing tweets and FB posts, helping others find help via this show.

In gratitude to you all, my anniversary show this Wednesday August 13 is a book giveaway. All listeners can email us at lymelightradio@gmail.com with your name and address and I will send you an autographed copy of my award winning memoir “Out of the Woods: Healing Lyme Disease – Body, Mind and Spirit.”

Also, this is a different format this week – I am the guest!! My wonderful assistant Catherine Bailey will interview me!! Tune in 1 PM pt/4 PM ET and find out why I wrote my memoir, how “Lyme Light Radio” got started and what we will be doing in the year ahead! The tables are turned. I have to answer the questions!!

1962680_10203269577890007_536576950_n


Catherine Bailey is an aspiring broadcaster who lives in Manchester NH. She graduated from Southern NH University with a degree in Communications, and has been accepted to the University of Iceland in Rekyjavik for the fall of 2015. Catherine is active in local political causes, community theater, the Toastmasters public speaking club, and the performance poetry scene. She dreams of working with her voice, on the radio, reading audiobooks, and performing as a voiceover artist.


In parting I would like to say I am truly grateful for my life journey. Even with my vivid imagination, I never dreamed as a humble homeopath in a private practice, in a tiny New England village, I would be asked to walk onto the trenches of a world wide epidemic and tend to the decimated thousands of weary souls. Each of you whom I meet out ‘on the road’ when I speak touch me. Your stories are profound, your hearts are pleading and your souls are mighty. I feel your pain and I won’t stop working for us all until we affect a true healing.

It is my privilege to host “Lyme Light Radio.” We will change the future. I wear this mantle now with pride, for together we will make a difference. Thank you one and all. Join me each week and let us rejoice in the good “Lyme Light Radio” induces. Happy anniversary!! May there be many more to come!!

Follow us on Twitter @LymeLightRadio and @KatinaMakris and on Facebook /katina.makris.9 /OutOfTheWoodsBook and /LymeLightRadio. And on LinkedIn http://www.linkedin.com/pub/dir/Katina/Makris.

Everyone raise a toast, even if it is your healthy green drink, to this day of celebration! We have so much to look forward to– one new addition will be a monthly show where citizens of a specific state will call in live with their stories, politics and advances. I want to showcase what is happening or not happening in assorted endemic areas that are often overlooked. I also look forward to bringing on more scientists whom are working to crack the ‘Lyme code’ of systemic collapse for so many. WE will learn alot. Stay tuned each week and tell your friends we are here broadcasting faithfully!

Kindly,
Katina I. Makris, CCH, CIH

PS– thanks facebook friends for the photo decision making process. That was fun to work together.

PPS– If you missed this special episode, you can find it on iTunes or listen at http://thedrpatshow.com/shows/mak-140813-makris.mp3

Lyme Music Festival in the South Rocked Florida!

Lyme in The South Music Fest 2014Lyme in the South Music Fest was sheer magic! Thank you to the enormous collaboration of so many folks’ efforts, energy, talent, time and endless details that went into creating this beautiful event. Melissa Bell, Greg Kirk, Amy Boggs, and a troop of volunteers worked for months masterfully pulling off the first Lyme disease fundraiser and awareness festival in Florida.

I have to admit I am smitten with Jacksonville, Florida. I never expected this port city to be so enchanting – pristine weather, sunny skies, and a glimmering skyline welcoming us all. Our hosts’ gracious hospitality filled us with care and charm. My new posse of ‘girlfriends’ feel like kindred spirits to me, beautiful ladies who synergistically resonate over the Lyme disease atrocity.

Thanks to Dr. Kerry Clark for your brilliant, tireless tick studies; to Dr. Shirley Hartman for being wise enough to face the illness, and integrating so many recovery tools in your practice. Thank you to Dr. Terry Hashey for your open-minded and patently generous heart. Thank you to the 300+ people who came to the festival, some in wheelchairs, some using canes, drained with fatigue, to share with us all! Your spirits are mighty and your willingness to support this cause is ultimately life-changing on so many levels.

The venue was lovely, an open air restaurant and deck perched on the riverside, with food and beverages, a stage, and a great view. Newspapers, TVs, media attended. CNN coverage! The Lyme in the South Music Festival made a BIG footprint in the sand! We blew the lid open on the denial of Lyme disease existing in Florida and other Southern states. Every person I met at the Fest either had firsthand experience with Lyme disease or were there in allegiance. The case numbers are climbing. As Dr. Clark and Dr. Hartman pointed out – misdiagnosis is extreme!

Greg Kirk did a masterful job of coordinating the talent. Our performance schedule was dynamite. The seven hours flew by and seemingly without a hitch (though I know “behind the scenes” fires were being snuffed out). Our lineup was stellar:

  • 3:45 PM – Speaker: Melissa Bell of the Florida Lyme Disease Association
  • 4:00 PM – Greg Kirk of the Zen Engines
  • 5:00 PM – Speaker: Dr. Shirley Hartman of the Mandarin Wellness Center
  • 5:30 PM – Piano Rock Musician Alisa Turner
  • 6:30 PM – Speaker: Dr. Kerry Clark of the University of North Florida
  • 7:00 PM – Les Stroud of the “Survivorman” TV Series
  • 8:00 PM – Speaker: Author and activist Katina Makris of Lyme Light Radio

What an honor to be the keynote speaker, bringing hope and healing insight to our audience. As a recoveree and seasoned natural medicine practitioner, I aim to ignite your heart and will; then you can move mountains, personally and beyond.

Our musical performers were all phenomenal! As these Ticked OFF Festivals make their way around the country in the upcoming years, I tell you now – ATTEND! You will be blown away by the talent, the information, and the magic of synergy.

Our music opened with Gregg Kirk of the Zen Engines band, bringing us his beautiful new music, now healed from Lyme and attuned by his John of God experiences. Alisa Drake is a miracle. Atrociously stricken, bedridden, and now cured, she played her heart out. I was so moved by her exquisite songs and her truly lovely countenance. Bless you both.

Les Stroud is dynamite! Known for his blockbuster TV wilderness show “Surivorman,” I never knew Les is also a brilliantly talented songwriter, musician, and charismatic performer. He rocked the house – “Flying” was an exceptionally mesmerizing song.

Our closing act was the very renowned Pat DiNizio of the Smithereens. Besides his phenomenal guitar playing and songs, Pat is a hilarious storyteller. He held us in rapt attention, one vignette falling from his tongue after another.

Now soothed in Floridian night air, Jacksonville’s skyline filled with twinkling lights and starlight bathed us from above. I felt attuned to higher purpose as the “team” gathered on the top deck for a photo op. There we were – advocates, patients, musical performers, speaker, doctors, and real human beings, strung together in fellowship and cause from all walks of like and backgrounds, we banded together for this special festival and fundraiser. I felt grace, and in all honesty, I saw my future laid before me – crystal clear.

Healing, hope, education, breaking down walls and hard work are my chords to strike as the months and years ahead unfurl. More Ticked OFF Music Fests to come! “Lyme Light Radio” to continue soaring around the globe, another book to complete, and joy, beauty, and love to be my wings of flight!

Thank you Florida Lyme Disease Association, Ticked OFF Music Fest, lovely Jacksonville friends and all the attendees. You are beautiful, wise people! And an extra dose of love to my sister, Barbara, who drove up from South Florida to join her big sister with the “Lyme Light” of change.

Visit Facebook to see photos – what a spectacular weekend. It goes down in my history book, for certain.

Namaste,

Katina I. Makris

Lymelightradio.com