Fat Thigh-roid Woes: The Long Walk…Off a Short Cliff
Back when I still lived with my mom, my cardio would be to walk all the way up this hill to the top where the city Christmas tree hangs out. Part hike part hard walk, it was a great workout and very peaceful – away from traffic and tons of noise. Walking by houses until I hit the hill, I always passed by an old man easily in his late 70s who was building something in his garage. I always said hello, and he was super friendly back. For about a year, I’d see him a few times a week and all these pieces started to come together out of what he was making. I had no clue what it was. A robot, a car engine, take your pick cause it’s all Chinese to me.
One particular day, I walk by and see….IT’S A PLANE. The wings were up, and he was fiddling around with the engine. I almost fell over, and this old dude instantly made me feel like the world’s biggest underachiever. I HAD to stop and talk to him, and the story was that he’s built several planes just for fun. “Does it fly???” I ask him, one of the dumbest questions I think I’ve ever asked. I just couldn’t believe that this hunched over elderly man actually built a PLANE. Out of his tiny garage no less.
“Sure, it flies, I’m going to take it out to the airport next week and give it a spin.”
“Just like that??” I reply. “Yup, just like that.” He says, no fear whatsoever in his voice.
Recently, I went to my mom’s house to hang out and decided to take the walk I haven’t taken in years since I moved out, and thereafter, since the Graves started. I didn’t work out for more than two years during the Graves bullshit, and ever since I had RAI I thought I’d give my tired overworked heart a break and not try to push it. I’ve started out slowly by walking, and using some weights. I gradually built up to a bit of jogging, but I’m obsessive about checking my pulse.
While I was getting ready for the walk, I asked my brother if he thought it was safe to go out by myself – he replies, “yeah, dumbass, it’s safe.” This is a walk I used to do by myself all the time, and all of the sudden I’m thinking about murderers, rapists, and vicious dogs waiting for me in the hills. I somehow developed newfound fear of something I used to do all the time. F that, I wasn’t going to succumb. So, I take my ipod and head out. I passed by the old man’s house, and that’s when I started to think about him, and remembering how he was so unafraid of taking a plane he built with his own hands into the sky.
I got started on the hill, and thought of my disease and new fears. Why is it that my pulse says “go ahead and workout” and I still am afraid to do so? That old man had enough trust in his abilities to build a plane, and make it safe enough to take to the skies. I need to have enough trust and faith in myself to know my limits, and to trust my gut.
I wish I had thought to trust my instincts 3 months ago, when I looked at my lab numbers and my doctor prescribed me 60mg of Armour for the RAI induced hypothyroidism. I felt like maybe that was too high of a dose compared to my labs, but I trusted his judgement and went with it. The past month I felt a little off, and I didn’t know why…I just wanted to rip more heads off than usual. I also had some weird “flight or fight” response the the strangest things, like people asking me questions. The psychosis kicked in, and I was holding myself in the corner of my room rocking back and forth.
Yup, you know what happens next. I got a call a few days after my blood work was done, and he drops the good news. “So, I overmedicated you and you’re out of range…I want you to cut the dose in half to 30mg”.
Okay fuck-tard. So, basically the Graves Disease girl is back to the hyper range thanks to this overmedication? Because of your carelessness?? I wanted to scream, and I was so mad at myself for taking 60mg in the first place and NOT starting out with what I felt I should’ve started out with – which was 15mg. That would have meant ignoring the doctors orders, and I just assumed this particular doc knew what he was doing. I mean, he went to medical school and I majored in theater…it’s a no brainer, right??
I offered this up. “Well, why would I take 30mg if my levels are ‘pretty far out of range’…I don’t want to be hyper again and have to get RAI done for the 2nd time.”
“Well, I don’t want you to either…”
“Great. So I’m just going to stop taking the medication altogether and see what happens!”
“Okay, but I wanted to go slowly, but well, I guess that’s an option too…”
You might believe I’m careless for just disregarding his advice to cut it in half. But my gut is telling me to drop it completely, go in for bloodwork in a few months and PRAY my levels have gone down to hypo or normal. You may think going hypo will be just as bad, but I’m willing to turn into Jaba-the-fucking-HUT if it means avoiding another dose of RAI. I can’t run the risk of taking 30mg for another two months, and possibly finding out that it’s still too high. Also, if I have to get RAI done again, I will drive around looking for a nice bridge overlooking gorgeous blue water, after I’m done stabbing everyone that has wronged me by this disease.
Here it is people – if something feels off, but your doctor disregards you and your concern…maybe it’s time to find someone who will take you seriously. How many people have walked into their endos office and said, “You know, I’m still dealing with mental fog – I think my medication needs to be adjusted” to get the response: “You’re just depressed. You just need fresh air and exercise, or maybe some anti-depressants”.
PS? In case anyone was wondering, I feel like so many doctors I’ve seen need a prescription as well. If the pharmacy had something in stock, I’d want it to be my FOOT, shoved up ignorant and uncaring asses. That would make me a happy camper. I’m thinking about branding and marketing my “foot-in-ass” medication, and guess what? It’s ALL NATURAL! No horrible side effects, just simply MY FOOT in some careless and ignorant doctor’s ASS.
He didn’t always show this carelessness to me, I had complete faith in this doc from the get go – which was odd, cause the reason I got kicked into Graves Disease was because of a doctor that misdiagnosed me as “Hashimoto” and gave me medication for hypothyroid! WHOOT WHOOT. Where THE FUCK is everyone going to medical school?
With the recent overmedication news, I’m trying to figure out what went wrong…maybe he didn’t know how to convert a dose for Armour appropriately, since that would require him to do math. Endos are so used to passing out Synthroid, that it just seems like they’re spinning an Armour milligram wheel in their office to figure things out.
I guess the point I’m insanely trying to make through all these stories is…no matter where you’re at with your disease – listen. to. your. gut.
If something about your doctor, or his/her advice seems off…take it into consideration. Trust your instincts. Put more trust in YOU knowing your body better than anyone else. Of course, some of you may have amazing doctors that you fully trust, so consider yourselves very lucky.
From now on, I’m going to approach them with an open mind, but I will be the one holding all the cards by trusting myself and my gut. I didn’t go to medical school, but at this point, I’ve researched my crap disease so much that I’ve given myself an honorary degree. Doctors are supposedly there to help us, and whenever it doesn’t feel like I’m getting the help I PAY out of pocket for – I will insert my foot, retract the foot, then leave.
Tags: Dear Thyroid columns, dry hair, Fat Thigh Roid Woes, Fat thigh-roid Woes written by Nicole Wells, Graves disease column, graves' disease, hair loss, how do you deal with hair loss, how does hair loss emotionally affect you, hyperthyroidism, split-ends, The Long Walk Off A Short Cliff, thyroid related hair issues