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Saturday February 16th 2019


Fat Thigh-Roid Woes: Disjointed Mumbo Thigh-Jumbo

Post Published: 27 August 2010
Category: Column, Fat Thigh Roid Woes, Graves Disease Symptoms Column
This post currently has 9 responses. Leave a comment

I have no attention span right now due to the heat and I live in a 2nd floor apartment.  Central air?  Pffft, try a lame wall unit.  Since my brain is so jumbled right now between LIFE and more LIFE stuff, my column is broken up into two parts that have nothing to do with one another.  I will NOT apologize – do you have ANY IDEA how hot it is right now?  UGH….

The common thread we all seem to have in the face of disease is feeling alone.  No one understands, no one can ever understand unless they deal with it, and sometimes – the people we thought cared actually don’t.

I feel that each one of us pulls inspiration from somewhere during the shittiest days of thyroid disease, whether it be from an actual person, a fictional character we’ve come to love (as stupid as that sounds, but I have a list), or even a damn good and powerful song.  There has got to be a reason to get out of bed in the morning, put on our either too tight or too loose clothes, and get on with the day despite all the palpitations, aches, and anger.

How many of us live in a perpetual state of gloom & doom from being beaten up by Graves, Hashis, or thyroid cancer?  We might throw our own pity party from time to time, but who wants to live in constant misery and not put up a fight?  I had days where I was the cliche of sad songs, staring at the wall, staring at myself, crying, slamming my fists, you name it.  I stopped myself from wallowing one step short of standing in the shower, while pressing my palms up against the tile as the water spilled over my face.  It’s like, HOW MANY TIMES HAVE WE SEEN THAT IN A MOVIE?  I’ve seen it ONE too many.  At least I’ve never gotten on my knees and yelled WHYYYYY up into the sky, if that happened, I could never look at myself in the mirror ever again.

After a few days of wallowing, I would try to snap out of it.  I pulled strength from my mom.  I know, not too creative or clever.  Just being honest.  I could’ve said “Shakespeare” but nah, he didn’t do it for me…

My lovely mother insisted on coming with me to the County Hospital – and to go to county to support someone, that’s PURE LOVE.  Some might say she’s controlling (and I would be the first one to say she is) but it’s cool, I got used to it.  I was a nightmare to deal with, but she was always there for me even when I was biting heads off.  I suppose that’s in the job description of being a mom, but I think I got lucky with mine.

Who was/is there for YOU through your disease?  What makes you get out of bed in the morning?

This next part is just a bit of fun really – I live in Los Angeles and it’s about, oh, 150 degrees right now and I’ve been straddling my AC all week.  As I was getting dressed yesterday I remembered how awful Graves made me feel in heat like this before RAI. The two years of being super hyper, I didn’t need a jacket in any cold weather and wore a tshirt all year long.  I live in the valley, and it gets SUPER SICK HOT here in the summer because all the heat just gets trapped somehow (I am not a meteorologist or any sort of scientist, so don’t ask me how and why this happens).

Needless to say, if I needed to leave my house for those two summers (as I often did, you know, to get out into the world) I would be in a constant state of panic.  I wore dark colors to mask the sweat.  My flip flops were sweaty too, and if I put shoes and socks on my feet would get feverish.

The two items I couldn’t live without were baby powder and cotton underwear. I powdered my entire body to be the first line of defense, and even powdered the inside of my clothes.  Have you ever seen a pair of white chalky flip flops?  I walked around looking like a cocaine deal had gone awry.  I did my best to ignore the paste that occurs when sweat overpowers the powder – by that point I was in my car and driving to my 2nd shower of the day.

I carried extra underwear in my bag if I was going to be gone for a long day – not ever for the purposes of getting lucky, cause that would be too much fun.  Strictly for the purposes of changing into them at El Pollo Loco after the current pair would be soaked from sweat by NOON from the blistering heat.  This disease is absolute bullshit I tell you!  The only good part?  I was thin enough to avoid the “fat girl thigh chaffing” that pops up from time to time in my life.

So yeah, once again, I air my dirty laundry (no pun intended) for all of you at DT.  Well, it’s not really dirty laundry, but you know what what I’m sayin’….

You might think I’m a bit cranky right now, and guess what?  You’d be right.  For the past 3 weeks I have been on a calorie restriction and using a lot of exercise to try and take off some post-RAI weight.  I will update you on how it’s going when I can pass the five pound mark, cause yeah, THAT HASN’T HAPPENED YET.  My stomach has gotten a little flatter, but my hips are hanging onto cellulite for dear life.  When I get frustrated with my efforts, all I want to do is break into the Cheesecake Factory and clear out their display case.  Emotional eater much?

SOS, HELP, and xoxoxo,


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9 Responses to “Fat Thigh-Roid Woes: Disjointed Mumbo Thigh-Jumbo”

  1. Amanda says:

    We bring new meaning to that whispered sentence… “she is soooo hot”.

    My husband would be insane and try to give me a little hug… then back away saying “Jesus girl, what the fuck?” He didn’t believe me all winter/spring when he was happily loading up the ol’ wood furnace and the house was 90 degrees while it was -20 outside. I was happiest in a tank top and shorts. He is mental. He works in an industry where he is regularly in area’s that are up to 130… he loves it. Baby, you wouldn’t love it if that heat was coming from the inside.

    I am still working on the “sweaty underwear” problem. In the back of my mind I think comando would be the best, but I am sure my family and friends would feel otherwise.

    As for who I turn to when the going get’s tough? My tough love sister. She has a way of dealing with turmoil and not showing that it affects her. She is a rock like that. Her meltdowns are bizarre and never turmoil related, so I help her through those. I don’t think I have ever, or would ever turn to my mom. I envy you in that. My mom is not helpful. Leave it at that.

    ps. you crack me up on a daily basis [tumblr]… so I count you as someone to lean on.

    • Nicole Wells says:

      Dear Amanda,

      Thank you so much for following my Tumblr, I hope you know, you’ve become a source of strength for me as well : )

      I’m sorry your mom isn’t a source of help through this disease, but you’re very lucky to have a no-nonsense sister that will be real with you – and btw, I love the stories about your family on Tumblr!



  2. jillautumn says:

    Having both Graves and Hashis has made my thermometer malfuction in the most dificult of ways, so after clearing the smoke from short-circuiting I understand completely. The heat kills me, but the cold does as well. I thought I had started going through menopause at the ripe old age of 23 because I would have to stick my head in the nearest freexer to get some relief. My mother in law bought me a hand held fan for my purse. How sad is that? I go from feeling like someone lit a fire up my ass to feeling like I could shit ice is you paid me too. I have to take a change of clothes with me wherever I go because I never know what to expect from my body. I dress for excessive heat and extreme cold with hardly anything in between and I am constantly accusing someone in my house of screwing with the thermostat. I feel for every stinking one of us on this issue.

    When I am having a rough time, which is all the time, i turn to my husband. He is my rock, the only one more educated than me on what I am going through becuase he took the time to find out. Although I may not always want to be comforted, he does it anyways. He is with me at all my appointments, has taken me for all my tests and goes to bat for me with family and friends who don’t care to understand. I could not do this without him. My children are what I get up in the morning for. All three of them are affected by some medical disorder or another. What kind of role model would I be if I just gave up. I never want them to to even contemplate that as an option. I have taught them to fight in life for the things are are important and that you have to work the hardest for the things that matter most. I think that your health is no exception. Its taken me some time to figure that out.

    Thanks for the post. You deserve the right to be crabby!!

    • Nicole Wells says:

      Hi Jill,

      You’re so lucky to have a husband that doesn’t make you feel bad for having this disease. It’s hard to find a quality man like that! PS – quality men are very hard to find in Los Angeles…

      You seem like such a fighter, and I love that! It’s hard to not succumb to our diseases, the fighter spirit is essential in kicking Graves, Hashis, and cancer in the ass. I only allow myself X amount of time to wallow.

      I’m curious, have you been diagnosed with both Hashis AND Graves? It’s my understanding that they both have different anti-bodies, so I’m confused by your diagnosis of both. When I thought I had Hashis, it was because my body was in a kind of “pre-Graves stage”, before it went full blown. Therefore, it kind of masked itself as Hashis, but was really Graves. Therefore, I’m super curious about your situation, kick me down with some knowledge, girl!



      • jillautumn says:


        The first autoimmune disorder I was diagnosed with was Celiac disease. What I found out is that it is common for Celiac patients to develop other autoimmune disorders if they are not diagnosed early and continue to eat a normal gluten filled diet into adulthood. After being extremely ill for most of my 20s and finally switching to an excellent GP iin my 30s, I was diagnosed with Celiac disease. I was having some severe symptoms not explained by the Celiac, so they decided to check my thyroid. Thats when I was diagnosed with Graves disease. One month after receiving my graves diagnosis, and experiencing both Graves and Hashis symptoms most of my adult life, they tested me for the Hashis antibodies and discovered that I actually produce both antibodies. It is not the most common disorders to have from what my doctors say, both Graves and Hashis, but it does happen. It is apparently one of the hardest things to treat in thyroid patients because treating one can cause the other . I have symptoms of both at all times which makes for a miserable day. LOL. I’ve learned to laugh about this all and have a sense of humor because it helps me to make it through.

        I have some cardiac issues as well and am starting to show adrenal fatigue so they have to be careful in how they treat me. They have just started slowly introducing thyroid hormone into my system and Ive been warned that its not an easy fix and that I am in for a long ride. After they have exhausted all medication routes I will have to go the RAI route. I have spent a lot of time talking with my GP, endo and cardiologist. I have done a lot of reading as well but I am still learning and am still confused by a lot of things. I hope this helps. As I learn more I will post on on my board.


        • Nicole Wells says:

          Hi Jill,

          Thanks for explaining – I know that a lot of people with Graves can take on Celiac disease. I try to avoid gluten as much as possible just because, hey, it can’t hurt.

          I’m fascinated that you have both sets of antibodies – and yeah, I can imagine how confusing it would be to treat you. However, if you did have RAI done – would it be easier to treat you going forward? I had RAI done in January, because I was allergic to both PTU and Methimazole…so yeah, I had no options. Surgery wasn’t an option either cause my heart was pounding like crazy, so they wouldn’t dare operate.

          Please keep me updated, and if you have any questions about my experience with RAI – let me know : )

          Take care,


  3. Melissa Travis says:

    Ahh Nicole – You are so beautiful. This is so well written. There is SO MUCH BULLSHIT to go with disease and illness. You are so right!

    This is a REAL AND POWERFUL SENTENCE: “The common thread we all seem to have in the face of disease is feeling alone.” Very real and raw.

    I’m feeling it now. Only too well. I’m so sick of healthcare providers NOT getting it or judging people. I’m OVER my ill friends trying to WHINE THEMSELVES WELL? I just want to snap into health myself but it doesn’t seem to be happening.

    This is a powerful read. And in someways hitting home because I want a strong mama bear to come and sit with me during it – and FORCE some closure on somethings that are TAKING TOO MUCH TIME… and for all of us with autoimmunity WILL NEVER COME TO CLOSURE.

    Thank you for sharing. Hoovering cheecakes sounds divine right now too.

    • Nicole Wells says:

      Dear Melissa,

      Thanks lady! Btw, YOU are powerful and raw, and your column hits me with pure shameless honesty…I love that about you! We don’t need to be afraid of explaining what these fucking disease do to our bodies, and it’s cathartic for me to say “yup, I have had explosive diarrhea from this disease.” I mean, FUCK IT, BALLS TO THE WALL, right??



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