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Mind, Body Help Defeat Lyme Disease

For Deni Weber, Lyme disease is a gift, but it has not always felt that way, she told a small audience at a talk she gave at Weston Library on Tuesday morning.  Weber, a psychotherapist who says she focuses on the connection between mind and body, has suffered with debilitating pains throughout her whole body and hearing loss for over ten years.

“Lyme kind of humbled me. I couldn’t do it all on my own. I didn’t have all the answers,” she said about the tick-borne illness. “The physical aspects of it have kicked me and punched me and knocked me out.”

She said she has learned to cope with the pains and the loud noises she hears in her ears through meditation and listening to her body. “I’ve always believed in the body-mind connection,” she said. Weber explained that she listens to cues her bodies gives her. She had no bite mark or rash and she only knew something was wrong  because she suddenly felt extremely fatigued and achy, a lot like the flu, she said.

Those who attended the talk were other long-time sufferers, worried mothers looking to protect their children, and a concerned young woman who had recently moved from Canada with her husband and had been diagnosed with Lyme just four weeks ago.

“I think all of us know someone or have ourselves been affected by Lyme disease,” said Weber.

Several of the women talked about the importance of education and not being afraid of the disease. Cathie LeVasseur has had Lyme for over 20 years and said she is not at a point where she cannot feel afraid of the disease.  Her 13-year-old son and husband are both sufferers as well. Her son was so deeply affected by Lyme that it affected his reading and writing skills and he has not been able to attend school in three years, she said.

LeVasseur said that education about the disease is growing in the school system, but as it stands, many people do not understand what it can do, she said.

Several said that there are some doctors that do not believe Lyme disease exists in the body after the first three weeks of treatment. The trick, they said is finding a doctor who is open to listening to your symptoms.

But in the meantime, prevention and early detection are key. “There’s stuff you can spray in your yards and natural sprays,” said LeVasseur. “Roll your socks over your pants. I don’t know that I would let [your kids] play in the woods.”

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