The Los Angeles Dear Thyroid Meet-Up, Written by Mel
Hello my DT community. I really enjoyed this DT L.A. meet-up for a number of reasons. I have learned sooo much from many DT members for which I am grateful for. It has been through their experiences and information that I feel as if a light has been turned on during a medical experience, which before DT, I tolerated going through the motions, in complete Thyroid knowledge darkness.
It was appointment after appointment for a couple of years, filled with anxiety prior to. Will this appointment be another waste of my life span? Not getting the most use out of the expensive doctor visits because I was not armed with the right questions to ask. Leaving the office like a clueless cattle, left to follow a one-size-fits-all medical professional du-jour. Every appointment always had some sort of “tough as nails” news to deal with or I was just better left in the dark, to thrive in my surrounding environment like a mushroom. Not given many, if any, details on how to nurture my health upon leaving the Dr.’s office. What is up with that AMA?
I have been a fighter my whole life, like many of you. So for me, upon going thru this experience I was not shocked at my body’s weakness or felt numb to deal with yet another tribulation. However, I was baffled, and dismayed how the power of one gland could cause so much unpredictability in the body and the medical community. I am a spoiled Los Angeles American… I was under the impression that all the answers were at our fingertips.
I try to not dwell on situations because I have always had to figure my own way out of trouble, being completely on my own, while it seems, many of you have to provide for others. Surprisingly, this is not a fight that has a “one answer” solution; kick it’s ass or overcome it and be done with it.
I have been able to improve my eating habits and understanding of Thyroid disease, thanks to many of you, and only you all; not through my doctor’s. I’m not hating on them; but I think we all agree that there is a huge lack of public awareness, education and compassion with regard to Thyroid disease. The other issue with Thyroid disease, is that it either opens the door for additional diseases due to the complex strain on the body (immune system), or the door is opened by other existing conditions. Therefore, I feel as if we always have to keep our eyes peeled for some new health issue, on top of managing our lifelong condition(s). By hearing all of your stories, it either lessens the blows that I deal with at Dr. visits or it arms us with the knowledge to manage our health proactively.
Which is why it was crucial for me to keep my finger on this Thyroid pulse, particularly within my own community. Due to the lack of Thyroid health awareness, as a community there is work to be done. I’m not going to lie, I was a little disheartened that in such a populated city as Los Angeles, that there were only 4 of us at the DT meet-up. I thought “what hope do the other communities have?” I know that there are a heck of a lot more people out there that could have joined us, but perhaps were busy or not knowledgeable about the organization. I hope in the future that the community continues to grow and that’s what makes it exciting, because who knew that in today’s world one could still feel on the forefront of an important cause? Where are all the “been there, done that’s?”
The meeting was still perfect between four of us, as it remained a challenge for me to pick everyone’s brain respectfully because I had so many questions. I apologize for my bad habit of cutting people off. I don’t get out much anymore and my social skills are inept.
I felt a sense of safety in sharing, knowing that we all could relate on some common level.
I feel that as a Thy-disease riddled community member, we should not succumb to the isolation, lack of understanding or approval from others. For every non-understanding person that I have dealt with, superficially or otherwise, that they have dealt with some sort of traumatic medical experience. Some people are really good at keeping secrets, lol.
And, most of the time when we have dealt with insensitive people re: health issues, I have also found that in many cases they have already dealt with something traumatic in the past, possibly medically related that has affected their emotional growth or coping skills.
We just have to be proactive good judges of character with whom we are going to share our story with. I apologize, as I am a Social Work major and am a bit fascinated by behavior.
Medical Professionals are another can of worms and I am not going to delve into this matter, as it’s an isolated topic.
I felt unpredictably empowered recently whenm for an undergrad Kinesiology course I had to fight to do my presentation with my professor on “Thyroid affecting the Aging Population and it’s affect with exercise”. For all of the fuming and postal hostility (Gra-ge?) I felt, inside that I actually had to prove my case to him, almost as if it was completely invalid (comparable to that of Diabetes, Osteoporosis, Hypertension). I was much rewarded with the unexpected compassion and shock on the looks of early 20 year old faces. I felt like I had to educate at least one person on the subject matter, to get their physicals, and so much more info. 20 year old Los Angelinos are intimidating to me with their effortless youth, beauty, hipness, athleticism, know-it-allness; And to know that @ 34, I was able to earn their respect and see most of their mouths drop at the importance of something they had never heard of, was, as I said- empowering. But, I could not believe the acceptance when they clapped at the end. My point is, let’s try to educate those whom we can and hold our head high 🙂
The DT meet-ups are a safe zone for us to share and a great way to keep our finger on the pulse of our local Thyroid professionals.
Never knew what a thyroid was until was diagnosed Graves,
Tags: dear thyroid meet ups, graves disease groups, hyperthyroid groups, local thyroid support, offline thyroid support, The Los Angeles Dear Thyroid Meet-up and support, thyroid cancer groups, thyroid groups, thyroid support groups