My quest to get healthy continues. I’m so thankful for all of the people who have so openly and bravely shared their story about life with Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis. If it weren’t for them I wouldn’t have been able to figure out what was wrong with me so I could ask for the right test to get an official diagnosis. If they hadn’t been so open about all of the ups and downs of Hashi’s I don’t know where I would be today. I mean that.
It’s hard to convey what’s going on in the inside when you look completely fine on the outside. The thyroid controls pretty much everything about me that is the essence of who I am. It wreaks havoc on my feelings and emotions, on my ability to think clearly,and on my energy levels. It constantly feeds my anxiety, robs me of the ability to sleep, and has turned me from being extremely social to always looking forward to the moments when I don’t have anything on my calendar and I don’t have to be around anyone. Not because I don’t like them, but because acting like a “normal” human being takes a monstrous amount of effort when I’m so tired and I feel so run down. For me, it’s been a real struggle to admit there are some days when I just can’t. On those days I feel like a burden to others or I worry I’m going to be perceived as lazy. I stress about how in the world I’m going to make sure nothing falls through the cracks at work or with the girls’ assignments from school or basically any number of the mind-numbing things I need to get done around the house (like every other parent in America). I don’t feel comfortable talking about it because there are so many things that are far worse than Hashi’s that people are battling every day. There are people fighting for their very lives right now because cancer has ravaged their body or their heart has blockages or they’ve been through some sort of tragic event. These are the real warriors. I’m just someone with an autoimmune disease. These feelings seem to be on a constant loop. I feel them, I don’t share them, I feel isolated and misunderstood. I feel them. I don’t share them. I feel isolated and misunderstood. And on and on the cycle goes.
I can’t begin to express how Hashi’s has impacted my life in the eloquent way that so many others have, so instead I just want to take a second to convey how thankful I am to have found them. Their stories, wisdom, and transparency have been life-giving to me and I know there are so many people out there who feel the same gratitude that I do. Anytime I visit Hypothyroid Mom I feel like she is telling pieces of my story for me. She’s had some insightful guest posts by people like Robyn Guidon, Stacey Robbins, and even one husband’s perspective on being married to someone with Hashimoto’s. I’ve spent hours reading what Sarah Wilson has to say about symptoms and the madness this small butterfly shaped organ can bring to your life when it’s not functioning properly. I learned how to really understand Hashimoto’s from a medical standpoint by reading everything Izabella Wentz wrote on her blog and in her book. I’m thankful I recently stumbled upon a post by Kelly Golightly for what has to be the most chic description I’ve ever read about life with Hashimoto’s. Her website makes me happy because everything on it is absolutely gorgeous and I get lost soaking up her stories and adventures all accompanied with insanely cool photos. Her website also introduced me to Gray Malin’s work. I’m obsessed. I haven’t yet convinced my husband that we need a $5,999 large photograph of a llama standing alone in the desert wearing big pink balloons all over it or one for $3,499 with a magnificent elephant carrying balloons with its trunk in front of the lovely Parker Palm Springs Hotel. I won’t give up though. He’ll come around!
There are at least a dozen other blogs I could mention that have made a significant impact on my journey and I’m really grateful. It’s led me to the appointment I was finally able to go to today. It’s taken more than a year to find a doctor that truly takes the time to understand how to treat thyroid issues. I had to wait a very long time to get an appointment because he’s booked out so far, but today was the start of that part of my journey. I feel a renewed sense of hope. I spent hours today getting all kinds of tests run. I can’t really put into words how good it feels to know I’m finally under the care of a doctor who can and will help me. My current doctor has basically told me there’s nothing that can be done for autoimmune diseases and that the protocol is the same as it is for anyone with hypothyroidism – take Synthroid along with a cocktail of other meds for varying degrees of depression, anxiety, and sleep meds that don’t seem to help me at all. But today, hope. The most important thing I’ve learned from all of these stories is that autoimmune disease can be managed. It can’t be cured and it takes what can sometimes feel like superhuman efforts to stick to your treatment plan, but it’s not impossible.
If you’re struggling through this or something like it right now, don’t give up. Keep searching for answers. Keep seeking encouragement and advice from people who have been right where you are. Continue your efforts to rise up and commit to the process of healing your body. I’m resolved to do the same. Everything will be alright. It always is.
Currently playing in the soundtrack of my mind: Mirrors by Justin Timberlake. Probably because JT performed it at the Super Bowl 2 days ago. Swoon.