Debbie Gibson Opens Up About Living With Lyme Disease

She’s been name dropped by Meghan Markle and remembered by fans for her music career — both her wildly successful tours and, on the other end of the spectrum, her catalogue’s lesser successful songs — and now Debbie Gibson is back not only with new music but also confessions regarding her life.

Gibson’s career launched her name into stardom in the late ’80s, and Gibson herself has remained fresh by adopting self-care routines that she takes very seriously. According to The New York Times, the “Electric Youth” singer is a morning person, always looks toward a brighter future, and doesn’t bother worrying about age. While the singer is in her 50s now, she’s only focused on what makes her happy.

Of particular consideration in Gibson’s life is her struggle with Lyme disease, about which the singer is becoming increasingly open. Gibson’s openness on it is helpful for others who share this experience. It helps them feel less alone, and it helps those who don’t have it to understand and empathize with what people with Lyme disease go through.

Her general philosophy? “I think everybody has a journey — we all have edges we’re trying to contain — but I think one of the biggest lessons I’ve learned is that I’m not people-pleasing anymore,” she told The New York Times. “I have no problem saying I need to take a self-care day.”

For Debbie Gibson, Lyme disease isn't a battle

Debbie Gibson’s openness surrounding her struggle with Lyme disease is inspiring, and it’s a voice that needs to be heard. In an interview with People, she further discussed the disease and its effects on her life. Still, her head is held high. “When you’ve lived enough life, you start to move through things with more ease,” the singer told People.

In fact, Gibson refuses to use the word “battle” when discussing her diagnosis. “For me, it’s about being zen and open, listening for answers and yes, being a warrior, but a peaceful warrior and moving through things,” she explained. This also makes sense considering that she told The New York Times that her favorite exercises are flowy ones like yoga that also move you forward in a way.

She wasn’t always this peaceful about it, though. “When I was in the throes of Lyme and didn’t really know it, I’d take a Xanax to help me sleep,” she explained. “It started wigging my body out and was triggering something to do with the Lyme, and my body couldn’t handle it.” She went on to explain to People that she has ups and downs with the disease. Sometimes her body struggles, but she now tries to find a peace of mind knowing that she’ll get through it.

This is because the disease had gotten into her neurological system, where it was getting worse. Still, Gibson is positive. “I am the girl who is relentless in looking for answers and the least invasive, most effective forms of treatment,” she explained.

This is how Debbie Gibson lives her life as an 'adventure'

When it comes to Lyme disease, which is the “most common vector-borne disease in the United States” according to the CDC, symptoms may vary, but they often include fatigue, fevers, headaches, and a skin rash. This disease can even spread to the heart if left untreated, per the CDC, making it a particularly scary disease to contract.

Despite this, Debbie Gibson lives each day to its fullest. She reminds herself daily not to “stress too much and take in the moments” (via People). This is why she continues to make music. On this process, she explained to People, “It’s a gift when an artist, or when anyone, knows themselves really well and then you can just be specific in what you need to do your job at an optimal level,” before adding, “and that’s where I am now: I know what I need, I’m not afraid to say no to things and I’m not the people pleaser I used to be. I’m just fine saying, ‘You know what? That’s just one thing too many for me.'”

Gibson talks to a therapist for her anxiety, and she also utilizes acupuncture to keep her pain at bay. Because of tools like these, Gibson sees life as an “adventure” — and one that she doesn’t plan on stopping any time soon.

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