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  • Writer's pictureMj Pettengill

Marya of the Wood: The Perils We Cannot See

Butterfly, Red Clover, Garden
Butterfly, Red Clover, Garden

Dear Friends, Do you know how I mention that I am that woman in the woods? Well, along with that are risks. From the black bears down to disease-carrying insects, there are many creatures that I must take care to avoid. I comprehend our shared space. I do know my way around the woods, but even the most experienced woods-woman will face unfortunate encounters. As of Sunday, I am on an intense antibiotic regimen because of an infected tick bite. I am vigilant and removed the tick that had been embedded in my side for what appeared to be hours. I washed the area and did all of the responsible things, but within a few days, the site showed signs of obvious infection. So here I am taking Doxycycline for three weeks.

Oh, and about having an immune system like a fortress? It's true. I do. I am not one to take allopathic medicine, but I am grateful when the need arises. I was treated very well at Memorial Hospital in North Conway, New Hampshire.

This is reminding me of when I was treated for a brown recluse spider bite (not for the faint of heart). This level of antibiotics really does a number on the flora (beautiful rain forest type system) that we have within. It took months to rebuild that rainforest back then. That experience also led me to up my game with wildcraft herbalism. In addition to the antibiotics, I am making sure to have probiotics, and also aware of the importance of the intake of prebiotic foods and various herbals, to strengthen the act of all healing agents working together. I make a poultice of fresh yarrow and chickweed to cover the wound. I gather and apply it daily. At this point, it is working very well. I feel the itching now as I type this. I will likely change the topical treatment to a different oil or salve as the healing progresses. I did, and always do, take precautions when in the wild. I understand the threat of ticks; both Lyme and other tick-borne diseases are real. I will be tested in three weeks as directed. And yes, there is a bulls-eye rash. This experience—wound healing and high doses of allopathic medicine—is a bit exhausting. And I cannot be out in the sun! (I am a lover of the sun.) I am getting much rest, writing, painting, playing my cello, and continuing to drink vast amounts of water and nourishing wildcrafted tea with organic, raw honey, lemon, and fresh ground ginger root. Other helpful local medicinals are St John's Wort, and the root of Japanese Knotweed, Burdock, and Dandelion, and Red Clover.

Your healing thoughts and prayers are very welcomed. Warmest regards, Mj


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