“I was overwhelmed by the amount of support that I’ve received on social media and messages, and all sorts of stuff from so many people — friends and strangers and everything in between,” Ryan, 46, said in an Instagram Story video on Tuesday, December 1. “So I just wanted to say thank you. It’s super humbling for me to see that. I’m very grateful for all of that support… Trista and I appreciate it.”
The former Bachelorette star, who won Trista’s heart on season 1 of the series in 2003 and wed in December of that year, also shared a rundown of the past few months with a series of Instagram posts. Ryan revealed that he noticed a change in his body in February after he underwent an 18-week fire academy with the Denver Fire Department.
“Towards the end of that process I felt more and more worn out and began feeling occasional ‘flu like’ symptoms,” he wrote via Instagram. “I was tested for COVID multiple times but never tested positive. I completed the academy and believed/hoped I would begin to recover and feel better. It’s been five months now and, if anything, I feel worse.”
The firefighter noted that he is “functional” and is still working but his symptoms, which include fatigue, headaches, neck and throat swelling, fevers, night sweats, itching, congestion, nausea and muscle aches, have persisted.
“Most days I feel about 70 percent. Somedays I feel a bit better and somedays I can barely get out of bed,” he wrote. “I don’t believe I have anything contagious as no one else in my family has been sick nor has anyone I have worked with or associated with been sick.”
Ryan told his fans in his accompanying Instagram Story that he and Trista, 48, have explored many possible illnesses in this process, including Lyme disease, autoimmune disorders and cancers.
The former reality star also revealed his “takeaways” from the past few months, noting he appears to be sick “for some unknown reason” and has learned others have similar experiences.
“The struggle to find answers in the medical world and support through the insurance industry is frustrating and lacking,” he wrote in a second post. “One must truly and persistently advocate for himself/herself if they hope to find answers or, at the very least, rule out possibilities.”
Ryan concluded that he has “spent the better part of my life challenging my personal limits,” which has led to him feeling “well prepared to take on my current health situation” and fight.
“I have a strong support group and the best wife in the world,” he continued. “Please don’t worry about me. I will be fine. If you must worry, worry about each other. Support each other. Be there for each other.”
The Bachelor Nation star noted that the “outpouring of support I have received has been humbling and therapeutic,” adding, “I could not be more grateful. I cannot imagine the healing power that amount of love and caring would have on the world should we all choose to apply it? Maybe let’s find out…”
Two days prior, Trista spoke out about Ryan’s health battle on Instagram, revealing that the family’s Thanksgiving was not-so-normal.
“This guy…my rock, my best friend, my hero, my love…is struggling,” she wrote. “Not every day, and not to the point that he can’t work or cook or exercise or be with family, but enough.”
She noted that she knows she should be thankful, but “I don’t want to be fake” after months of questions and no answers. The original Bachelorette revealed that Ryan does not have cancer, which is a positive, but they still do not know what is wrong with him.
The former TV star, who shares two children, Max, 13, and Blakesley, 11, with Ryan, concluded that the family is lucky in many ways, but they are currently in a “holding pattern of not knowing,” which is stressful.
“We lived a fairy tale on TV and have a great life for all intents and purposes, but answers would be nice,” Trista wrote. “So, I’m going to keep praying for answers and am hopeful that if you are the praying type, that you’ll think of Ryan when the time comes to send up a message.”