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Why Family Gratitude Letters, You Ask?

Post Published: 23 June 2009
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Category: Dear Thyroid Family Letters, Dear Thyroid Updates
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I, Liz, would,  like to think if anything good can come from the thyroid hell that I sometimes (or, okay,  alot of the time) am forced to live in and with, it would be this: someone else — ANYone else — understanding just how important good health is.   Sure,  we,  toast each other good health at holidays and major,  life events and sometimes say things like, “your health is all you really need in life.”   But until that good health is irrevocably stolen, we cannot grasp just how true and poignant it,  really is, or why we wish each other those things to begin with.   For me, this good health isn’t only important so that we don’t die, but it’s important so that the years we do live are not restricted,  or filled with too much pain.

I’m about to hit the two-year anniversary of my diagnosis, next month.   As with most significant dates in life, I can remember the whole scene and all its minutiae: me, so nervous and sitting in the chair in the corner of the small and clean room in the university’s health center, pretending to read the magazines and sip every now and then at the extra large/super gigantic coffee I was drinking once or twice a day everyday, all so that I’d actually/potentially/possibly stay awake; the doctor finally walking in with the official word and a hopeful message that in three months time and with one little pill, everything would be,  completely better;,  and me, smiling and shaking his hand so hard because I thought — at the time — this was the end,  to my,  problems.   July,  2007 isn’t the date all these Hashimoto’s,  symptoms first started,  happening,  but it is a significant marker because it was the day I thought I finally got the answer (I later realized the answer isn’t an on-paper medical definition to,  describe what my body is doing to itself; the answer, instead, is the way I,  make an effort,  to cope and not be overcome everyday).   And in these past two years, I know for a fact that the people around me have been able to gain something good from my disease.   If there is a “good part” of disease, I can be satisfied knowing it’s this: my friends and family now, officially, love their thyroids.   Not only that, but they know what the hell a thyroid even is.   They know where it’s located (at the base of the neck), they know its shape (a butterfly), they know its so-necessary-for-life function (regulate almost all the body’s hormones), and they know lives are impaired when it stops working.

Dear Thyroid expanded our submission guidelines to include letters of gratitude from such people with healthy thyroids all because our disease can and does affect those we know in a good way: it makes them grateful.   Also, it’s important to highlight people without disease who now appreciate the service their gland does for their entire body because there’s some amazing awareness being created here, don’t you think?  With thyroid disease on the rise and with millions of people walking around as of yet undiagnosed, we need a good dose of awareness; it makes for a better quality of life.   And hey, I’d say it’s a,  pretty positive message too: be thankful.   These gratitude letters remind us as we read them that there is so much to be grateful for, if only we’d just realize it.   One need not be,  at,  the mercy of a temperamental thyroid,  to understand life really ain’t so bad, and our bodies — always tirelessly at work — are so deserving of our thanks.

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