I sit here today as a free man. But, I guess the irony of the Universe wasn’t done with me, because I now have Chronic Neurological Lyme disease. Yep, I am married, I have two kids, I HAD a great job as a construction foreman and I was strong, healthy, and happy. I was the one who didn’t go back, I had moved on, life was good.
They say I have had Lyme disease for many years. Nobody can say when I got it. About 50% of those infected with Lyme never remember being bit by a tick, and never develop the tell-tale bulls eye rash. Most will be sick, with aches and fever. It’s common to think it’s flu, and eventually “recover”. But, for some, the Lyme bacteria has gone into hiding, waiting for a time when then immune system is compromised either from physical or mental stress of some sort, and then it comes back with a vengeance.
Where did I catch my Lyme disease? Nobody knows. I might have got it where I grew up, on the Guadalupe River. Or – I might have gotten it while in prison. I think of this often. I remember getting really sick once while incarcerated, and it was a weird sick. Nobody else had it, and I was bad with fever and aches. Medical care in prison is a joke, I think I got some aspirin and I stayed in my bunk and rode it out. And eventually I recovered and didn’t think more of it.
Now I think of that a lot. Is Lyme disease being caught in prisons? Prisoners often work with crops and livestock. And there are rodents all over prisons. I worked in the kitchen and they are everywhere. The common mouse is the biggest carrier of ticks there is. Not most people know that.
If you or anyone you know has done time, and has Lyme disease, share your story. Let’s get the word out. And, hope you are healing, man. This is really a bitch. Peace ~ Magnum