Welcome to the boards.
I really don't know when the ticks "come out" but you have to agree that the weather has been so crazy the last few years the ticks may be like the flowers and not know what season it is. I feel I contracted lyme in Bar Harbor, Maine over 5 years ago but we stayed at a cabin (clean but rustic) in Virginia on the way there and have often wondered if there was one in the bed there too. We were also tromping around weeds here in Texas looking for retirement property right after the trip too so who knows maybe I was bitten in Texas. I never had a rash and didn't get flu like symptoms either but did have a sinus infection after the trip and a lot of people on here have had the sinus infection not the flu. Must be related somehow.
I fee my immune system was handling it because other than the sinus infection I had no symptoms for a few months after the trip. That was in October and I got sick in December (2000). I had a close friend die in December and my husband's job was going south. I think some of us can handle the bacteria if our immune systems are in good shape but the stress I was going through set it off. This is very common. Have you been going thru any stressful periods before getting sick? I hate to say it but you also could have been bitten in the past and something triggered the onset of symptoms now.
My advice is to be tested thru Igenex labs in California because Quest and Labcorp do not use the best antigen for testing lyme and that is why they have so many negative tests. Even if the tests come back negative you could still have lyme because as the CDC states the tests are not very good. But then they talk out of the other side of their mouth and say you aren't counted as positive unless your test is positive according to their standards.
Lyme is the fastest growing disease in this country and will soon if it hasn't already hasn't surpass the AIDS virus. All you have to do is go for a walk in the woods or have a pet to contract it. The jury is still out on sexual transmission but it is known to be passed from mother to child during pregnancy.
You need to seek out an LMD (lyme literate medical doctor) and if you want someone here can point you in the right direction. I can guarantee you that you will get nowhere with the general physician community because they follow CDC standards and will tell you that you don't have lyme most likely. Believe me time is of the essence. I was told for 2 years I had MS although no tests proved it. After huge doses of IV steroids prescribed by my neuro I now can only walk with a walker and am basically housebound. My first symptoms pre-steroids were nothing compared to my life now.
I don't say this to scare you but to impress upon you that time is crucial especially if this is a new infection. The sooner it is caught the easier it is to cure. I wish my doctors had thought of lyme instead of being so single minded. I now travel from Texas to Missouri to see an LLMD. Please visit often with any questions you have, somebody on here will answer. They will become the best friends you ever had if you have lyme.