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neurological Lyme Disease

Beautiful Disguise

Those of us with chronic mental or physical illness are constantly living in a world of pretend, well at least to the extent that we not only hide our pain from others but also hide the pain from ourselves. I’ve been struggling with Lyme disease and multiple co-infections since age 10 and finally received a diagnosis of neurological Lyme Disease last summer at age 20, the same diagnosis as my mother, who was misdiagnosed for 12 years. Watching my mom power through the pain has taught me how to keep going myself even when it feels unbearable, or when friends and family get “annoyed” with my complaining. I’ve come to the realization that even though my pains may be horrible in certain moments, it doesn’t mean that others aren’t going through their own kind of pain, regardless of how severe it is. Pain is pain. So what keeps me going is my rational mind and faith in myself that I can push through. And believe it or not, we all have the power to make it by. 

Beautiful Disguise

by Katie Lustig



and Robbing of my fragile spine.

I lay here, thinking,

just to pass the time.

But somehow

burning flames

still penetrate my mind.

Anger, frustration—

deep down inside.

Leaving me lonely,

forcing me to hide.

Because if I decide

to cry out my eyes

in front of society’s pitiful guise

then I would be the one in disguise.

You see, I’d be lying

If I said my pains were

worse than your baby’s crying.

Because, simply we’re all just trying

to comprehend why

such awful things happen

to those trying to get by.


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