Lyme disease — also known as neuroborreliosis when it invades the central nervous system — does not discriminate among potential victims. Best-selling literary novelist Amy Tan has suffered from Lyme since 1999.
Her disease baffled her doctors at first. She experienced the usual flulike symptoms, rash, and then muscle pain, but as the disease escalated, she began to hallucinate. “My memory was held together with friable threads … ” she writes on her Web site. “I easily became lost in stores and would panic, certain I was losing my mind … Eventually, I could no longer leave my house alone … My muscles were stiff, my knees and hips ached. And I was almost too tired to care anymore.”
At last she was diagnosed with Lyme and has become an activist in the fight to boost awareness of the disease. Amy Tan’s 2003 essay collection, “The Opposite of Fate,” includes an account of her experience. For more on Amy’s story and a list of links and resources, visit: amytan.net/