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Meet Bill Wood, Our 2018 Living with Lyme Fund Winner!

Bill Wood is a 6′ 5″ family man and Alaskan transplant, originally from Iowa. He has worked with his hands his whole life; building cabins, farming, and contracting. He has always be known for his strength and physical ability. But a few years ago his health began to change.

When Bill’s pain first began, he attributed it to wear and tear from a recent physically demanding project. After this initial attack, which greatly affected his joints, new joint pains would pop up every few months. The pain always rotated from one area of his body to another, and after awhile the frequency of his joint attacks increased and became more debilitating. Following two hip replacements, on the same leg, Bill ended up in the emergency room on three different occasions. The doctors had no idea what was causing the pain. Various diagnoses were presented to him, but all turned out negative.

In August 2016, a friend of the family was diagnosed with Lyme. Bill and his wife immediately began looking into this. Alaska is not known for being a Lyme state, creating many challenges for Bill when it came to getting tested for Lyme. Seven months later the Lyme diagnosis was confirmed. Bill says, “Because we live so far from Lyme literate doctors, we often had to wait weeks or sometimes months for the labs to be completed. Alaska is an island when it comes to help with medical anomalies like Lyme. It was really my wife’s persistent seeking for answers that helped me.” After working with standard medicine doctors, naturopaths, and even traveling out of state to work with an LLND, Bill finally received some relief through antibiotics. Then in February of this year the antibiotics stopped working.

This debilitating disease has made it challenging for Bill to work, and treatments have been financially devastating. Lyme has brought Bill exhaustion and constant pain, making it very challenging to provide for his wife and 5 children, three of whom they adopted in 2011. Functioning without pain meds is impossible. Bill says, “It is frustrating and disheartening.”

When asked what he is excited to do once he is feeling better, Bill responded, “I am excited to be restored to health so I can do activities that I enjoy like snow machining and dog mushing. I want to garden and work as I have in the past, so I can do everything I once did. I want to support my family and not spend all my money on Lyme treatments. Most importantly I want to be able to be the man of God I was created to be for my wife and my children. I want to continue to hike and canoe and do outdoor activities with my kids like I used to. I want to be the guy I was before Lyme robbed me.”

Balanced Health couldn’t be more excited to work with someone like Bill. He understands the challenges of living with a chronic health condition, his wonderful wife stands strongly by his side through all of this, and they have incredible hope for the future. Not only is Bill striving for wellness in his own life, but as a family they recognize the importance to share their story to help others. Bill’s first set of hair and saliva samples are currently being tested and his journey with Balanced Health is under way!