An excellent article on Lyme Disease, if you like the outdoors you need to read this.
Michelsen is a rising star. Fifteen years ago, he was the toddler who burst out from behind the curtains singing Elvis’ Viva Las Vegas. As a young boy, he played the lead role in Oliverin his birthplace of Bermuda, before moving with his family to Toronto five years ago.
Now, as a 17 year-old high school student, he’s a gifted singer and dancer, and attends the renowned Etobicoke School of the Arts. He works as a professional actor and has appeared in numerous high profile television programs, including Murdoch Mysteries and Flashpoint. In short, Rian is more determined than ever to realize his dreams. But last year those dreams were almost destroyed by a debilitating disease that went undiagnosed for several months.
“He couldn’t get out of bed, he felt his brain shaking at night, had floaters in his eyes, he couldn’t walk and every time he stood up he felt like he was going to fall over,” explains Tanis Michelsen, Rian’s mother.
A series of blood tests revealed that Rian was reactive to the Epstein-Barr virus, had a very low white blood cell count and was low in vitamin B12. His family physician suggested Rian take vitamins and rest. He did that but still didn’t feel well enough to rehearse or perform and came home every day after school exhausted.
“We were frustrated and upset going to many specialists, having blood tests, MRIs and not getting any answers,” says Tanis. She remembers one specialist saying to Rian, “If you don’t want to go to school, you need to have a better reason.” And another specialist who, although extremely kind, professional and caring, chalked Rian’s symptoms up to a “severe case of anxiety.”
“Here is my son who has always been so grounded and active; he had never been run down like this (or anxious for that matter), so to see him not be able to participate in school and have no explanation for it was awful. Trying to find out what was happening was impossible.”
That’s when Tanis Michelsen decided she needed to look beyond the Canadian medical system.