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Sunday, May 13, 2012

Prom 2012

I woke up Saturday morning I had a few hours to myself to think. I imagined myself dancing under a big moon with twinkly lights reflecting off of my dress and a princess tiara on top of my head. I pictured a man in front of me, so in love with the real me, the sick me, the hurting me, yet the beautiful me. The smile on his face would reflect in my sparkling eyes, and all of the pain and illness and disappointing and arguments from the past four and a half years would melt away to leave me in a state of peace even if only for a minute. That was how I wanted my second prom night to go. I did not want to worry about a medical diet and what food I could or couldn't eat, or who was wondering where I had been the past year. Most of all I did not want the worry of passing out or being carried home in a heap from Neurological Lyme symptoms. I spent yesterday getting ready slowly. I dabbed some polish on my toe nails that had not held up great from previously painting them, I put my makeup on in pieces, my mom rolled my hair and I sat looking at the beautiful flowers on the corsage for a whole hour or so. My date listened to me chatter about all the things I wanted in life and we planned on meeting my grandparents for beautiful pictures. The sun was out on the grass and a slight breeze kept it balmy and warm for the portraits. I tried to keep telling myself I was pushing through the crushing pain in my legs and torso for a good cause. That all the struggle was worth it. When we arrived to the school I almost passed out in the line for the prom march and had to sit down on a fold out stool my mom just so happened to have in the back of her vehicle. How embarrassing to see people walk by and stare you down, wondering why you think you are so special and can sit while they have to stand patiently in line with 300 other kids. I was upset and discouraged and hurting and sick. After the march I sat on a bench in the hallway trying not to cry. I felt out of place and judged and unwanted by my schoolmates that just did not get it. There was no table for me, yet again an outcast, and I was moved to a table by the teachers. The music was loud and pounded in my ears and flashing lights killed my eyes even covered with sun glasses. We decided to at least get our money worth of food before heading out and I suffered through the nausea for a plateful. Towards the end of our meal, the song 'Just a kiss' came on the loud speakers and I saw in Mike's eyes exactly what I was picturing earlier that day. I pushed my chair back and stood up, bringing him with me and we were the first to dance in front of everyone with that sparkle in our eyes, as our song reassured me all was well. In that two minutes of peace and happiness, nothing was wrong. The pain got bored and took a vacation, or I just ignored it, either way everything melted away to the sound of a few people clapping and cameras snapping. But I didn't care, I was living. Living for a few minutes more than I had in years. Loving so much my heart felt like it would break in two, and I was okay with that. I got home and did my IV after leaving early from the dance. Telling my mom about my many compliments I had received, I squeezed Mike's hand and was amazed that he would put up with someone like myself when there is so many other girls in the world. Then I remembered, I wasn't just any girl, I was Elaina. His prom date and his girlfriend and his best friend, that was what mattered most. I believe I accomplished fooling everyone into thinking I was healthy, for the most part. If you look okay, than at least you are doing one thing right.


  1. Wow! I cried as I read this Elaina! I am so proud of you for being this STRONG woman, that can smile through the pain, and share your story with 20/20 and the world!!

    I got infected with Lyme in 2009 on a family vacation in Southern Iowa. (I got the bullseye rash, so I knew right away). I tried to treat it naturally for a year or so, but it didn't work.

    I thought I was going to die a year ago. My sisters cried and begged me to seek help from a Lyme literate Dr, and after a fund raiser, I had enough money to do so. I traveled out of state to a great Lyme Dr., and after NINE months of antibiotics and other meds, I feel SO close to normal again!! I am climbing the highest mountain in Colorado on August 7th, LYME CLIMB 2012! You can check out my page on FB, "Laurie's Lyme Climb". I never thought I would be able to climb a mountain again!
    I have lost my job through all of this, now trying so hard to find another! I did an interview on a local TV station, KWWL, a week ago Sunday, to help bring awareness to Lyme. It was a short interview, but I know MANY people locally saw it. I was so nervous for just that, I can't imagine how you have felt with 20/20 being there! I have hope for you Elaina, I will keep you in my prayers.
    You GO girl!! Laurie DeGroote

  2. I can identify with the feelings you've expressed in this post! Trying to figure out how to balance a social life with Neurological Lyme. Much of your story is similar to mine: seizures, paralysis, brain fog... I am also doing IV Therapy and Percival, my PICC, is 22 months old. I am getting well, I no longer need my wheelchair or "Bart" my lime green cane. But the effects linger. Thank-you for writing and portraying your life honestly. It helps me to know there are other young people dealing with the same things I am and can still be positive! Keep it up girl!!! I think that perhaps God has allowed some of us to be chronically ill so we will fight for awareness. Who else will?? Some day, when we see Lyme awareness signs along side Cancer awareness, someone will need to organize the biggest Lyme rally ever and we can all celebrate that we've made a difference! -andrea
    my blog:


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