After one month of Bee Venom Therapy using Amber Rose’s Lyme Protocol, it is time to reflect on the process of BVT and how it is affecting me. No deep thoughts here, no extended time needed to sort through my thoughts. It’s easy to see my progress after the first thirty days. I feel it, I know it — it is much more than hopefulness. Change has arrived.
My three worst constant symptoms have lifted every so slightly, and the effect is cumulative: Fatigue, Insomnia, and Digestive Issues (constipation due to chronic inflammation)
Even better, I am spontaneously humming, singing and laughing from time to time. I truly did not realize how dark my world has been, until I started laughing again at moments in my daily life.
This humming, singing and laughter is a huge “tell” that my health is returning. Just being able to enjoy life was, I guess you could say, physically impossible for a while. Physically impossible for a few years. Humour is healing, but you can’t force it — believe me, I have tried using laughter to improve my mood and lessen pain but to no avail. Being joyless is living in a sickly state, the doldrums being a result of the illness (i.e. Lyme Disease and its co-infections) sapping my life force away from me. Even though I had myself convinced that my dulled and joyless existence was my own fault and my own doing, it really is not, and was not, a mind over matter thing. There is a gut-brain connection that is weighted much more in biology than it is in free will. The gut is sometimes referred to as the “second brain” because that is where most of the body’s immunity and neurotransmitters are made. The bee venom has improved my health, and seeing this lifting of both my mind and my emotions, I know that the medicine of the honey bees must be healing my gut.
The first thirty days of BVT take the patient on a learning curve of understanding and being able to follow the Lyme Protocol as it is designed; in getting used to the concept of having insects sting you when you were taught as a child to fear them intensely; in figuring out how to sting yourself. In figuring out how to make peace with the death of these tiny creatures in exchange for getting your life back. In wondering if you’ll survive the itching phase. Wondering if you can keep up with the commitment, stinging 3 times per week for 2-3 years. These are the first 30 days. You get through it, because the bees know what to do and little by little, help our bodies heal from the ravages of chronic Lyme Disease.
Recently someone at church found out about my starting apitherapy. He said, “You are very brave.” I had mixed feelings about that comment!
At first reaction, the thoughts in my head were “Brave? Nah, that doesn’t describe me, I would never call myself brave. How could someone call me brave when I see it as desperation or a last resort?” What I actually said in an effort to protect myself from possible criticism was, “They say there is a fine line between bravery and stupidity.” Truth is, I don’t believe that statement to be true in my case at all and it was merely a self-negating comment. I MUST STOP WORRYING ABOUT WHAT OTHERS THINK ABOUT MY TREATMENT.
Later that day, my eyes welled up with tears thinking how true it is — yes, I am brave. Brave to try a non-mainstream therapy. Brave to do this without research trials. Brave to follow my intuition as the master leader. Brave to make the 2 to 3 year commitment that is required to heal from Lyme Disease using the honey bees.
Yesterday was my first sting day (July 12, 2015), and it went well. Nervous and excited. Forgot to bring the ice. Beekeeper was fabulous (he stung me). His apiary has at least twenty hives and thousands upon thousands of bees. Listening to the hum was meditative and watching them traveling high in the sky to and from and around their hives was mesmerizing, relaxing. I saved two bees from drowning in their drinking water, one bee scurrying nonstop on a cork like a lumberjack in a log rolling contest. The bees were gentle and did just what we asked of them. I got a good look at the underside of a bee, the stinger runs along the midline of the abdomen, retracted in “storage” until used for stinging.
Test sting & one therapeutic sting, at this, my very first apitherapy session. Done. Red welts, a bit of red/pink horizontal “brush strokes” called “banding.” A very good sign. Yes, the stings burn like a bitch. But it’s so much better than living day to day in this chronic hell. Two hours after my test sting, my ears were ringing at a moderate level. Reminds me of my inflammation flares, when my tinnitus acts up. So it makes me wonder whether this is inflammation ramping up temporarily to process the bee venom introduced today. I do hope it’s temporary. If my tinnitus ever becomes permanent, I will go certifiably insane.
The next day I was able to properly wake up. BING! My eyes are open! Not groggy, dragging through what I “should” be doing in the mornings, like it has been for years. And I pooped a lovely, beautiful, perfect poop in the morning. It was like the poops the day after the nutritional IVs (Meyers Cocktail) I used to get.
So, my leaky gut issues might actually heal. Do you hear that people? That poop right there, that’s the SOUND OF HOPE.
This is what I saw when I pulled into the beekeeper’s place and all my anxiety on the drive down, my forgetting the gel ice pack, all that unknowing — just melted away. These signs — made me smile. These signs told me I was on the right track with this apitherapy thang:
After selecting two female honey bees and securing them on locking tweezers, we got started. One test sting on the left, and one therapeutic sting on the right. You can see the area left of my spine has a less pronounced welt. That stinger was taken out immediately after the honey bee stung me, then we waited 30 minutes to be sure there was no anaphalactic reaction. We tested on the left side, per Amber Rose’s Lyme Disease Protocol because patients should place their test stings of the opposite side of their dominant (handwriting, grasping, holding) hand. Also per Amber Rose’s protocol, safety measures were in place in the event of the rare chance of anaphalaxis.
After we were sure it was safe to proceed, the second sting was placed to the right of the spine and left in for 20 minutes. When the time was up, the stinger was removed and we were done for the day! Easy peasy. Here’s what my back looked like during the very first session:
Annnnnnnd we’re off!!
Start runnin’ Lyme ’cause the bees are gonna make you my bitch!
This has been a long journey. Others that have come before me have paved the way and they have endured much, much more than I can bear. Learning from them, I know that I can’t continue my healing path the way it has been. It is time for a change, and change is a’comin’.
After a full year of treatment for Lyme Disease, I took some time to reflect on what this illness looks like in MY body, not anyone else’s. How it makes me feel on a day-to-day physical level. How certain treatments that I’ve tried have strained my spirit. Where I thought I would be at the first year mark is nowhere close to where I am right now. Whenever treatment isn’t going well, I find myself researching lesser known treatments. One in particular is my barometer for depression; when I keep picking up my book about that particular treatment, I know it’s time to check in with my doc and reassess my health status. Um, and put that book back on the shelf.
And then there were the bees.
Honey bees, that is. Not the Midwestern English use of “bees” to mean “nasty, horrible wasps” or “anything with wings on it that makes me shriek in fear.” I had been looking into the medicinal uses of honey bees, apitherapy, for a while now. A few weeks ago when I stopped myself and visualized this treatment, this 2 or 3 year commitment, this mode of self-treating Lyme Disease, well, I felt peace. I felt a gentleness wash over me that had not yet happened during any of my various treatments so far. This decision to pursue apitherapy as my main treatment is a huge decision that is not entered into lightly. And yet I feel none of that weight; rather, my soul is lifted. I don’t know how or why, but my soul is speaking and I am doing what it asks with the bees.