My Essay on The Mighty: How Chronic Illness Taught me to Accept My Body


My latest essay on The Mighty, about finally learning to accept my body once I developed a serious chronic illness, can be found here  (That’s a picture of Mandelstam, whose poem “A Body Has Been Given to Me” begins the essay.  It’s not the most flattering picture of him, but it’s the bravest: it’s his mug shot from when he was arrested and sent to the camps).

In related news, I was finally, finally given a definitively positive diagnosis of Lyme disease a few days ago, after being sick on and off for more than 20 years, and so weak that I struggle to walk for the past two years.  Lyme is super-serious, people!  Check for ticks!

10 thoughts on “My Essay on The Mighty: How Chronic Illness Taught me to Accept My Body

      1. I totally get it!! I’m in Houston and I was sick with all kinds of symptoms for 3-4 years. Saw all kinds of doctors. I was finally diagnosed with CFS and Fibromyalgia. The CFS doctor I picked and went to immediately tested me for Lyme (because id had every other test!) and well…100% CDC +. Luckily she is an LLMD too. I had no idea at the time. I got lucky. Especially because “there’s no Lyme in Texas.” Not sure when the medical profession is going to wake up to this epidemic. I’m year 4 treating now and it’s been a challenging journey. Keep fighting. And if you want to exchange ideas I’m here! 💚💚💚

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  1. Yep I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia but no one wanted to take the Lyme thing serious because it’s not common here in the South–hahaha! Thanks for the encouragement and let’s all keep our chins up! I am just starting the treatment journey so I will provide be on the lookout for tips!


  2. Beautifully written! Thanks for sharing.

    I’m nine months into a Lyme diagnosis/treatment plan, following nine years of an autoimmune disease. I’m glad you were able to find an answer.

    Good luck! Let me know if I can be of any help.


    1. Thanks, and I’m glad you’ve been able to start treatment. I’ve been absolutely floored at how unhelpful so many of my doctors have been, refusing even to test me for Lyme despite my repeated requests. Hopeful that now things will start to turn around. Good luck on your own journey, and we will have to watch out for each other!


  3. Very sorry to hear that you have Lyme disease, elenapedigo, and the best of luck with your treatment. I have a friend who’s a Lyme expert — she has written books about the illness, and she and her family have been Lyme patients themselves. Let me know if you want to get in touch with her — perhaps connecting on Facebook.


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