On March 9th, 2017 the Global Lyme Alliance hosted an Evening of Art and Education in Chicago. It was the the first GLA event held outside of New England. The Event took place at the Matthew Rachman Gallery and featured two Lyme doctors, Dr. Casey Kelley from Whole Health Chicago and Dr. Christopher Janson.
The evening began with a social hour with drinks and gluten-free appetizers. I brought my husband, so he could meet people in the Lyme community and learn some new information.
During the social hour we met Kasey, a Chicago area Lyme fighter, who reached out the GLA to bring the event to Chicago, and did much of the planning. We also talked to a newly diagnosed patient, just starting out on the long road to healing. There was an electric energy in the room of camaraderie and understanding.
I was delighted to meet the CEO of the GLA, Scott Santarella, and introduce myself as a contributor to the GLA blog.
After the social hour Scott and Kasey talked about the GLA mission and the importance of bringing events to the midwest. I was touched when Scott said, "There is no other disease in the world where the patients are treated so unjustly."
Then, they introduced the doctors: Dr. Christopher Jason is a neurologist, who works does research and works out of the University of Illinois at Chicago. His current research on the blood brain barrier is funded by the GLA. Dr. Casey Kelley is a functional medicine doctor at Whole Health Chicago.
The doctors gave brief explanations of their areas of expertise and then answered questions from the attendees. People in the group had excellent questions about testing, symptoms, depression and Lyme, and many other important topics.
Dr. Kelley talked about how in Lyme treatment there are, "Different paths up the mountain," and that everyone responds differently. She also commented that a major part of Lyme treatment is "cleaning up the mess, so the body can rebuild on its own," and said, "remission is possible."
It was a lovely evening and I enjoyed the atmosphere. I came away hopeful, but as with anything related to Lyme, also frustrated and confused about why recognition and funding continues to be an uphill battle.
Here's a picture from the end of the evening with fellow Lyme fighter and friend, Jenny:
I want to thank the GLA for bringing the event to Chicago and I look forward to future events.
"Life is precious and time is a key element. Let's make every moment count and help those who have a greater need than our own." - Harmon Killebrew
I'm Kerry and I was diagnosed with chronic Lyme disease in 2016. This is a positive space for those of us coping with Lyme disease and other invisible illnesses.