Time to Rebrand Myself!

Now that I am feeling so much better, I am on a new mission.

I am on an exciting quest to rebrand myself.

Similar to how Madonna rebranded herself from her Material Girl days to her bold Vogue debut, I declare myself fully emerged from my butterfly cocoon and in need  of a new and inspiring makeover (see my blog, Summoning Butterfly Strength, for more details).

For my debut (and because I have several free hours each day and LOVE research), I have been spending a ridiculous amount of time watching free webinars on Facebook discovering how to rebrand the new ME.

Yes, each of the webinars ends with an opportunity to spend hundreds to over a thousand dollars (No, I was not born yesterday; there is no free lunch).

Thankfully, I have taken Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University, so I am pretty responsible with money, and I am not like a crazy QVC shopper with daily deliveries coming to my door (We paid off $72,299.24 in student loan debt and were debt free until my Lyme illness and the subsequent medical bills)!

I was about eight, free webinars in to my research when I came upon a webinar inviting me to Badass My Brand.

Bells and whistles!

Whoop! Whoop! Whoop!

Side Note: Even though I have always worked in government, education, or, most recently, for a religious institution, I have great respect for people who use bold cuss words well.

It is an under-rated art form.

Did You Know: People who cuss a lot are more intelligent.

It’s the truth! I read it on Facebook!

Even while working for the church, it was not unlike me to color up my communication within the church walls with a s***, d***, a**, or maybe even an F-bomb for appropriate emphasis.

Yes, I pray constantly for forgiveness.

Additionally, though, I do think God has a fabulous sense of humor along with His overwhelmingly generous willingness to forgive: I have 42 years of anecdotal evidence of this.

Anyway, this webinar got to me.

Five hundred dollars later, I am super-psyched and spilling over with enthusiasm about my new, badass self!

This course is supposed to take about eight weeks to complete, but I am almost 1/3 of the way in after three days.

Why?

I can only explain it as God’s leading and prompting.

I am officially rebranding myself as Karin LaMothe, Fierce Lyme Warrior.

Now, just to be clear: I am not letting my illness define me or own me; indeed, I am simply making peace with my new DNA and using it to provide hope and inspiration to other fellow Lymies fiercely battling this disease.

Must we be martyrs, lonely and without hope?

No, we need fellow warriors to give us hope and to share with us to keep our fears, hopelessness, and struggles from taking strongholds.

Little kids in hospitals get visits from super heroes.

Who is to say Lymies could not benefit from someone in their corner, as well?

Can you picture my caricature?

Yes, I WILL wear a cape, and, yes, it will be green (not sure which shade).

No, I will not require an eye mask to protect my identity, but, yes, my dream outfit is quite similar to Wonder Woman but in bold shades of green.

If the Wonder Woman theme does not work out, perhaps it will be like Tinkerbell but with a She-Ra/Ninja Warrior twist.

I may even have a green stripe in my hair. Not sure on that just yet.

I do not have many other details to reveal for now.

Will I speak, sell things, or visit sick people?

I am not sure just yet.

REMEMBER, I still have 2/3 more of my branding campaign left to go!

I am not feeling led to wear a super hero outfit for reals (except maybe on Halloween), but maybe that will change.

My sister sews amazingly well, and perhaps I will honor my inner super hero and sport it out to Lyme events.

Who knows?

What I do know is I feel more alive, creative, free, and happy than I have felt in years, and I thank God for that each moment.

Thank you to everyone who has been praying with and for me on this journey.

By no means is my journey or struggle over yet, but I am well enough to know it is now time for me to be helping others and paying it forward.

God bless!

My Next Crazy Healing Adventure Has Begun!

People diagnosed with Lyme by a Lyme-literate doctor are fortunate.

Well, fortunate at least to finally identify the monster living within they must now attempt to kill.

Yeah, I do think that is the best way to say it, even though chronic Lyme is apparently only manageable, not “killable.”

AND even that can be debated, as, according to one of the best hospitals in Michigan, chronic Lyme disease does not exist.

This would be one of those times when I will not mention the name of the hospital whose staff laughs condescendingly at you and dismisses your intelligence if you mention you have been diagnosed with Lyme disease, even if you show the positive results of your bloodwork (I am certain most hospitals in Michigan have the same opinion, anyway).

We need not go in to that right now, as the argument I had with the doctors regarding Lyme was not pretty…

Let’s just say a legion of pit bulls came charging out of me.

This all happened when my husband, Shawn, was admitted into the hospital because he was dying from a systemic yeast infection from the antibiotics he was taking to treat his Lyme.

He did not die; in fact, he has lived to tell about it.

Yeah, not one of my better moments, but remember, I detest bullies, and I am a raging Mama Bear when it comes to people messing with my family.

I will not be running for office ever again, so I am not concerned if my raging rant was caught on tape.

When Shawn was diagnosed with Lyme, his main symptoms were urticaria angioadema and extreme anxiety.

My symptoms were horrific neck pain, fibromyalgia, migraines, vertigo, extreme anxiety, and a never-ending case of shingles on my optic nerve.

Same disease,  different immune system response.

So, just how have I been going about trying to kill (aka. put into remission) my Lyme disease infection?

I have been on oral antibiotics for over six months now.

I have also received ten not-yet-approved-by-the-FDA ultraviolet light IV treatments (aka. “UVLRX”).

My bloodwork did not improve, though I felt significantly better afterward.

Following those treatments, my doctor started me on an anti-parasitic antibiotic, which seemed to be working well, but my insurance refused to pay for it after two months.

Why? Well, remember, “Chronic Lyme does not exist.”

Then I attempted a new antibiotic, which almost killed me.

Turns out, one of the side effects of that med is it prevents the steroids I take for my adrenal insufficiency from working.

Yes, I am a bit complicated.

That was when I became suicidal and thought, “Hmm, I am just going to let this med take me out.”

Yes, that thought went through my head, as I was in unbearable pain, had no time left on my short term disability, and did not see any light at the end of the tunnel.

My adrenal crisis last October brought about a quick journey into unconsciousness, so I was hopeful this med would lend a similar and speedy decline.

It was more like torture waiting to die, unfortunately, as I got weaker and weaker day by day but still woke up each morning.

I guess this is where my lack of patience actually helped me for once: I grew impatient waiting for the med to kill me.

There must be a zombie deep inside me, because each morning I still had just enough strength to stay alive and to mourn my existence.

I finally gave up and thought, “This dying crap is taking forever! I guess I should call the doctor.”

My doctor placed me on a new supplement, which has trace amounts of viruses and bacteria that serve to strengthen one’s immune system.

Yes, Lyme patients WILL try just about anything that might work (if we can find a way to afford it).

Surprisingly, I have felt quite well on the new supplement.

Though it is not cheap, thankfully it is available over the counter, so I am not threatened by insurance coverage issues.

My chiropractor, who practices kinesiology, also uses laser technology, which has helped significantly with my lymph drainage issues (my lymph gets clogged when the bugs die off and toxins build up).

Now, I am on to my next healing adventure.

I bought a Doug Coil Rife machine.

It is a super-powered machine with three large and heavy components; it basically looks like a computer from the 1980s.

I hold on to a copper coil as I set the controls on the amplifier to send energy frequencies through my body.

This freaky thing goes through bone, the blood-brain barrier, walls…

You must keep all electronics at least eight feet away or they could blow up.

I accidentally left my emergency alert bracelet on the other day when I started a treatment, which never touched the copper coils, but it got so hot it burned me when I took it off!

Have I noticed a difference in how I feel?

Absolutely.

Look up information on the Rife machine.

It is fascinating how the FDA crushed it, making it illegal for doctors to use to clear all kinds of dis-ease.

Diseases like Epstein Barr, cancer, candida, fibromyalgia, multiple sclerosis, HIV, arthritis, asthma, diabetes, depression, diverticulitis, gout, lupus, migraines, epilepsy, hypertension, and Lyme, just to name a few…

The list goes on and on.

I understand if a regular MD gets caught owning or operating one of these, he/she could lose his/her license.

I am not an MD.

If anyone reading this blog wants to come over to use my rife machine, let me know.

I like to think of myself as a Rebel With a Cause.

Maybe this is part of my new cause: to give people access to treatment they cannot find elsewhere, so we can get healthy and strong to live out our God-given missions together.

As for now, I have a ten-mile bike ride to complete before the sun goes down.

Peace out!

Time to Blaze a Fiery Trail

On October 29, 2015, I was hospitalized for an adrenal crisis.

It was a long time in coming now that I know how to listen to my body and recognize the symptoms of adrenal fatigue.

I had burned my candle at both ends for far too long, and my body literally collapsed as if to say, “I’m out!” (Fade to black.)

My diagnosis of adrenal insufficiency came just fifteen days before my brother’s tragic death, so to say I ended 2015 as a hot mess is a gross understatement.

I was a flaming hot mess.

Over the next several months, I had umpteen visits to numerous doctors and specialists.

I received a fibromyalgia diagnosis, lack of consensus by several doctors on whether or not I had a mini-stroke, treatment for listeriosis from eating contaminated bagged lettuce, and confirmation of chronic Lyme (I was first diagnosed with Lyme in 2013).

I have been through the ringer a time or two this past year, and I have the scars to prove it.

I was heading for a full KO, or so I prayed.

I have begged God over a dozen times (sometimes in a given day) to let me die and to take me from my misery, but He either totally ignores me (and that is TOUGH to do), or He has a different plan for me.

As it has been the better part of a year since my initial collapse, I am settling on the fact that God has a different plan for me than an immediate departure.

Good news: I am no longer looking for a Thelma and Louise escape off a tall cliff.

Now that I have acquired some self-acceptance of my health issues, as well as a return-to-normal of most cognitive brain functioning, I am looking at life from a different vantage point.

Getting so close to daily glimpses of my possible demise caused a fresh, new perspective on life to be exposed, and a different me has now emerged.

Not a new and improved me, but a different me.

I am different from the inside out, like I have been shaken up like a puzzle in a box and put back together: I have all the same pieces, but they are in a different order.

The puzzle pieces could not go back the way they were inside of me; the pieces had to be re-organized.

Like un-birthing a baby (“Not a flippin’ chance that’s ever gonna happen, no way, no how!” says EVERY mother I know);

or un-molting a grasshopper;

or un-metamorphosing a butterfly or a frog;

I cannot go back to the way I was.

Now that my eyes are fully open, I am getting the most spectacular, awe-inspiring, breathtaking glimpses of what is possible and why I am really here.

I am on a mission, here to blaze a God-inspired, fiery trail, and nothing can keep me from fulfilling that commitment (except death, of course, but I am NOT afraid of death; Death and heaven are just a beautiful promise of what is to come).

In reflective moments like this, I realize that before I had this ongoing day-in and day-out brush with my mortality, I was alive-but-dead, going through the motions of life, existing but not living my life for the reasons God put me here.

How can I explain it?

It’s like I’ve been launched like a rocket, and my incredible speed and urgency prevents me from focusing on anything but the mission.

Like a two year-old, I now question the importance of everything that used to waste so much of my energy:

Why?
But why?
Why not?
How come?

And then, comical as it sounds, I burst into song, “Let It Go!”

Like a Disney princess, I spin and dance all around in my kitchen, or living room, or dining room, or shower, or bedroom, or wherever I happen to be when I realize I am getting pulled away by unimportant matters.

For those of you who know me, you absolutely get how ridiculous this looks, but you know better than to ask me if I care! (You already know that I don’t.)

Yes, even in the Jeep with the top removed, the doors off, and the volume turned all the way up, “Let it Go!” is on repeat, replaying over and over and over.

The more wind blowing through my hair the better!

So, what in the world do you want me to do for you, Lord?

Calm, laser-like focus is now my method, unlike the hysterical, frantic, anxious, super woman I once was, trying desperately to prove I can do 5,347 things at the same time.

It’s amazing how differently the world appears now that I have a one-track mind and no time to waste.

Opportunities cannot be missed.

My conversations are important.

Relationships are cherished and honored.

Actions are key.

Things that once consumed my precious time are now trivial; like white noise from a fan, I choose to block them out.

[Insert heavy sigh of relief.]

I have found that I have little to no patience with structures, rules, chains of command, people, or other ego-driven conversations that serve only to squelch, silence, sabotage, or stop me from staying God-focused.

I realize that I do not fit in (and, most likely, I never did), though I had tried to by wearing down my 90 degree angles of squareness to fit into the round holes of society and its norms.

“Wake up!” I want to scream at everyone, but then I remember my sweet, kind, loving, older brother pleading with me to “Wake up!” just months before he passed away, and I realize that people will wake up when it is their time to do so.

It is all part of God’s perfect plan.

So now that I am awake and focused on hearing my God-inspired mission, I need to ensure I use my spiritual gifts, talents, and passions.

Do you know what your spiritual gifts are?

If not, find out now. Don’t waste another moment.

God has a mission for each one of us to fulfill, and we are to use our God-given gifts, talents, and passions to do so.

This doesn’t mean we won’t face failure and disappointment, but He will walk with us, and guide us, and mold us, and love us through it all.

My dear friend, Beth, recently gave me a t-shirt.

The back of it reads, “Don’t ask yourself what the world needs. Ask yourself what makes you come alive, and go do that. Because what the world needs is people who have come ALIVE!”

Don’t you just LOVE that?!

God, I am listening.

Tell me what is next.

Lord, I’m ready now!

Whose Life is this, Anyway?