9. Lyme disease can be extremely isolating.  When you’re chronically sick, you often miss out on a whole lot. Little things like parties and get togethers. Big things like graduation and vacations. It’s hard. It’s heartbreaking. And it’s difficult not to feel extremely alone at times. If you have someone with Lyme in your life you’ve likely witnessed them canceling plans because they were too sick to attend. This might have been annoying to you, but I can assure you they felt completely horrible about it and wish more than anything they didn’t have to cancel on you. If you have a friend with Lyme offer to come over and visit them. Or pick up some groceries or Lyme-friendly take-out for them. Even come help them cook a few meals to make the next week easier. Help them advocate for better awareness so it’s not such a struggle living with a disease so many know nothing about. Reach out to them. Try to put yourself in their position. Would you find it easier to have friends who tried to help or just ignored your situation completely? Maybe you’re waiting to see them until they are feeling better. Unfortunately it could be a while. Make an effort to make it happen sooner rather than later. It will be appreciated. It will show your friend you are one of the few who doesn’t abandon your loved ones when times get tough. That makes you a great friend and an amazing person. Hold that title proudly!

10. We are just regular people too, this can happen to anyone. Get informed and be compassionate. Something I did before I got sick was take my health for granted. Sure, you hear about people getting cancer, getting scary rare diseases, going through tragedies, and much worse… But that kind of stuff just always happens to other people. Never to you, right?

The truth is Lyme disease (and any chronic illness for that matter) can happen to anyone. No one is immune. Sometimes it’s easier to just put this kind of stuff to the back of your mind and not think about it. That way you don’t have to deal with it. But what happens if one day you find yourself or someone close to you suffering from chronic illness? Would you not want people to at least try to take the time to get informed, understand to the best of their ability, and do what they can to make it easier on you? Practice patience, compassion and empathy not just when it comes to dealing with the person you know that has Lyme, but in all aspects of your life. These traits are so important and when you have them you become an invaluable friend and person in people’s lives.

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