Hello To The International Folks! 

I don’t get a lot of specific information on who visits my blog, but it does tell me from which country people visit me.  

So I thought I would just say a special thank you for stopping in!  

Some of the most recent places: 

UK (My son’s #1 place he wants to visit) Welcome! 

France (I can’t find any brioche, my favorite bread ever, in the area! Can you believe that? And I’m really bad at making it myself). Welcome!  Sorry.  I can’t speak French.  At all.  I can’t even do a good fake accent.  So I won’t put you through it. 🙂 

Ireland (think my name is Irish much?– Shannon Devine).  Welcome!  

Other countries I have noticed: 

Poland–Dzień Dobry!  (My dearly departed grandmother taught me that one along with the national anthem and a few Polish Christmas Carols 🙂 

Brazil:  I only know a few phrases that I needed to use when I used to work as a telephone operator … Portuguese is such a beautiful language!  

A few here and there from Japan: Konnichiwa! My daughter is living in your awesome country for the (college) school year, and you are taking great care of her so far!  🙂 She LOVES it.  Except the big bees.  LoL.  

Spain— I think I have seen some from there too!  Gorgeous country! 

I have always lived in the US, right in the area I am in now.  My ancestors are from many different countries, so I am what some people call a “mutt.”  I am a little bit of each of these: French, “Bohemian,” Polish, German, Norwegian, Irish,  and Italian.  

Though I am happy to see so many interesting places show up here–it is also quite sad that Lyme and TBDs are this widespread.   

If anyone wants to leave a comment, please don’t feel shy!  I love to hear from other places, how things are over there as far as Lyme and tick-borne diseases.  

I have noticed a lot of people visit my post about the bartonella rash.  Is this something that is happening more and more in other countries or is there some other reason this is a popular post? I don’t know unless you all tell me.  🙂 

If you want to know about a specific subject and I can help–let me know that too.  

I wish there was an easier way to comment here, but I think you need to sign up.  I do also have an email address that I put on my “about” page.  I check that email at least once a day.  I don’t trust it 100% because there have been some missing messages at times, but you can try me there, of course.  

You can also visit me on Facebook under Winona Lyme.  I haven’t been updating that page as much, but if more people say hello over there, I will. 🙂 

Please take care and know that I really do appreciate every single person who comes to read my posts.  Most of them were written to get out some of my frustration in a somewhat healthy way, but if they help or entertain–all the better!  

Though it is sad so many are affected by these diseases–it does have a good side: We are such a large group of people, you will  never be alone.  

Big huge hugs all around the world! 

–Loon Out 

Anti-Vax or Pro-Information? 

Have you noticed the negative connotation given those who question the science of vaccines?  ANTI vax.  I am not going to claim knowing the reason behind anyone’s vaccine stance; I just am giving my own thoughts here.  

I started questioning the normal recommendations for vaccines after I found out that I really needn’t have had my daughter get the live polio vaccine; the other one was available and much safer. It was just more expensive.  I certainly would have paid had I known.  The problem– I was never told.  Now, this was before the 2000s so maybe things have changed.  I think they rarely give the live one, but I could be wrong about that.

The point is–information was withheld.  BI (before Internet) rarely did anyone question their doctors.  Doctors and other healthcare providers may hate that patients go on the Internet and read about illnesses (and I understand their issues with it), but for the most part, the more information the better.  

Over the last 15 or so years, there have been more and more relevations about the relationship between some physicians and pharmaceutical companies, getting kick-backs for prescribing certain drugs, the way research is many times not published to hide potential damaging findings, the collusion between researchers and their funding counterparts to develop and produce a specific result in said research … And that’s for starters. 

Some of the hardest information to find, however, is the research on vaccines, i.e., how, or even if, they work, basic safety checks, any research expanding on new findings regarding the immune system. 

While it is true one can count on others shoving money in faces of those who promise a new vaccine, I am having a hard time finding very basic studies on safety.  (And if they are out there–please share them with me).  

Case in point:  While researching the humoral immunity function in Borrelia burgdorferi (Lyme disease), the NIH funded study found that not only did Bb mess up producing long-lived immunity to Bb, but if the influenza vaccine was administered at the same time of infection, the vaccine was basically ineffective. 

Here is the author’s summary 

Infections with the Lyme Disease agent, Borrelia burgdorferi, often fail to generate long-term protective immunity. We show here that this is because the immune system of the Borrelia-infected host generates only short-lived, structurally abnormal and non-functional germinal centers. These germinal centers fail to induce memory B cells and long-lived antibody-producing plasma cells, leaving the host susceptible to reinfection with Bb. This inability to induce long-term immunity was not due to the nature of Borrelia antigens, as even T-dependent antigens of Borrelia were unable to induce such responses. Moreover, influenza vaccine antigens, when applied during Borrelia-infection, failed to induce strong antibody responses and immune-protection from influenza challenge. This data illustrate the potent, if temporal, immune suppression induced by Borrelia-infection. Collectively, the data reveal a new mechanism by which B. burgdorferi subverts the adaptive immune response. 

Well isn’t that interesting?  of course it is.  Which leads to the question: What other sort of weird things are going on with our immune system and any vaccine? What if you have (fill in disease or illness name) and you get a certain vaccine.  Is it going to work? Is it safe?  Will there be interactions?

I know it is probably not ethical to take, say, a bunch of people with diabetes and inject them with a certain vaccine to see what sort of effects it has on the immune system.  But, at the very least, those who sneer at pro-information types need to admit there is a bunch we don’t know about the human body and how it interacts with substances, including vaccines. 

It my opinion, those who take a hard-line stance in this debate on either side are not seeing the reality.  And that is

Vaccines are here to stay for now.  

If you don’t like vaccines, many people are going to think you are crazy. 

If you DO like vaccines, some people are going to think you are stupid. 

And last, but not least, it would be a wonderful idea if anyone who believes in forcing every single person in the US to get vaccines is forced to spend a day with anyone who has been proven to be hurt by one; those who reject any and all immunizations because they read something by someone on the internet once need to spend a day with someone who was hurt by not getting a vaccine.  
— Loon Out