Among my favorite things in this world are music and fashion. I don't mind a bit if you turn on some Hall and Oates and I'll get along just fine tapping my toes to the latest groove in a pair of Christian Louboutins. Both the music and the fashion are works of art that I don't want to live without.
The operative word here is "live".
Everyone of us just want to live this life of ours. We want to thrive and not just survive.
So what do I have in common with Ashley, Avril, Daryl, and Yolanda?
Ashley knows it's not in fashion.
Avril knows it's complicated.
Daryl was almost out of time because of it.
Yolanda knows it's more real than any Beverly Hills housewife.
And me...I'm a Lyme Warrior just like they are.
When your life is turned upside down, it's hard to let the rest of the world know about it, even when you're a celebrity. It's highly personal and you truly feel as though you're not yourself any longer. Lyme changes everything, and most of the time those changes are permanent. It takes a certain amount of time to learn how to navigate this whole new world. It requires courage to share your story with the rest of the world because, unfortunately there are people out there who are judgmental, some are committed to misunderstanding you and Lyme disease. Still others are just plain cruel about it all.
As for me, I'm just an ordinary woman. I'm not famous or popular nor do I have a gigantic following. I'm a human being though, and I am personally and intimately acquainted with the tragedy that is Lyme disease.
That's exactly why I feel a connection to these beautiful people, because we're in the same war together. Some of us have had it worse than others, but we're all determined to win this battle and live to see all of the tomorrows that we possibly can.
I'm grateful that these celebrities have come forward to share their very personal struggles with Lyme because it gave me the courage to do the same.
Never underestimate the power that lies in telling your story.
"When you stand and share your story in an empowering way, your story will heal you and your story will heal someone else." -Iyanla Vanzant
So, I'm telling my story. Right here. Right now. In this blog and in my upcoming book due out in May 2016. I'm shouting it from the rooftops: "Lyme disease is horribly real, life altering and frightening, but it doesn't have to be a death sentence and there is NO requirement in allowing it to steal your joy or take over your life!"
Ashley, Avril, Daryl, Yolanda and untold thousands of other beautiful people, including myself, have all been to the brink and back, but, we're all still here and one by one, we're telling our stories in the hopes of bringing someone else back from the brink of despair, as well as doing everything within our power to prevent another human being from ever contracting Lyme.
I will live my life! I will wear fashion that makes me feel beautiful, even on the days that feel so complicated. When Lyme makes me feel out of touch and out of time, I'll keep on keeping it real. I will carry on, and by God I will win and I will help others who are fighting in the trenches to win, too!