How To Stay Sane With Lyme Disease - Lessons from Patrick Plum

In 2015, Patrick Plum uploaded a video to Youtube, the title “I’m sick with something the doctors can’t find”.  From there, he began connecting with so many people with a similar experience. This was after his Lyme disease diagnosis.  Through recording his experience, Patrick decided he wanted to be the change he wanted to see in the world.  Since then, he has touched thousands of lives through his witty, sarcastic, honest expression of his Lyme experience.

Earlier this month I had the pleasure to interview Patrick on my YouTube channel, Tapping Into Lyme. In this week’s blog I want to share a few tips from this hoot of an interview.

The interview begins with Patrick’s explanation of the isolation associated with Lyme and other chronic illness.  Patrick stated that “If 90% of my friends and family have left…I start to feel like I'm the problem. Modern medicine does not support Lyme disease sufferers at all.” Patrick explains that he had very little family support due to people just not understanding how to react. Patrick goes on to say that an important part of maintaining healthy relationships with loved ones that may not fully understand or know how to help, is to look for support for Lyme elsewhere. He states its important to reach out to people that are either going through it currently or have since recovered.

Tip #1 Look for support in the right places.  Do not expect family members and friends with limited understanding of this complex disease to be your primary support.  If you find they cannot, then seek support from those that have either experienced the disease or are Lyme Literate.

Next I ask Patrick what he would love to go back and tell or give his newly diagnosed self in order to make the process of healing a bit easier. We got 2 great tips out of this conversation!

Tip #2 Don’t’ Be So Hard On Yourself

Tip #3 Everyday, Try to Understand You Are Doing the Best You Can

Tip #4 Let Go Of Anger and Resentment. Patrick does clarify on this one that while there may be valid reasons why you are angry, it is important to resolve toxic emotions for the sake of your health.

Patrick really urges listeners to stop avoiding or ignoring their emotional health and to begin taking steps to address it, whether that’s with a professional or with understanding supports as well as using humor. I appreciate Patrick and his way to compartmentalize his Lyme experience.  He describes “keeping his Lyme experience” in his video recording studio. 

Tip # 5 Separate Your Lyme Recovery From the Rest of Your Life

Patrick then follows up with some of the best advice he ahs ever heard from a physician, which was “what we talk about, we become”.  He makes a point to speak often about health, wellness and recovery rather than being caught up in spending 24 hours talking about his illness. Patrick shares his thoughts on using language to heal.  He says that talking about Lyme should be a balance of sharing to a point where you feel supported, then moving on to talk about other things.

I appreciate Patrick so much! Don’t forget to take a look at the full interview on Tapping Into Lyme.