You suck. Honestly, you really do. Especially considering you barely work these days… well no, you don’t work at all. I just have this lifeless little organ floating around in there. Either way thyroid, I highly dislike you and this lovely Hashimotos thyroiditis that I acquired.
I hate you,
But I have more to say, like usual. I’m 18 years old and I’m no stranger to the thyroid and it’s problems. Before I even knew what a thyroid was I was a young girl living at our home in Florida, sitting outside my mother’s door, wondering why I wasn’t allowed to see her, touch her, or even be near her. She had radioactive iodine or whatever it is that you call it, due to Graves disease and Hyperthyroidism. Of course I was too young to understand it. I just remember my father repeating not to touch anything that she had touched. “That’s mommy’s cup, that’s mommy’s bowl, no don’t touch that” My brother, who is three years older than me, probably knew a bit more as to the situation, but I was basically bewildered. My mother was about 40 at the time. I would have no idea that in a few short years I would begin to experience the painful symptoms of what would be the opposite of her disease.
I was diagnosed when I was 11 years old, now when you’re 11 you don’t really pay attention to what you’re being told about your health and all that, so I vaguely remember what the doctor was telling me when I was diagnosed. I do remember him mentioning that pregnancy wouldn’t be a problem, which naturally made me feel a bit awkward as that was the last thing I had planned for myself at 11 years old. Basically I blew off the whole thing and continued on with my life. It wasn’t that I didn’t feel the effects, I did, but I had some weird concept that everyone went through what I was dealing with. I didn’t feel slighted per say, I just figured it was something I had to deal with, in the beginning years at least.
Until about one year ago I had always thought that my severe anxiety in life had come from so many other things. Whether it was my parent’s divorce the year I was diagnosed, when my mother simply moved us from Florida to Vermont before I even realized what was happening, or the fact that since then my father has hated me with every fiber of his being despite being my brother’s best friend. Maybe it’s the fact that our family is the basis of what you would call poor after leaving my father, and that my brother and I have to support ourselves and do so by renting a house together, working, and still attending college full time. Maybe it’s because I was severely harassed and bullied by girls in high school for being smart but different. All of those may add to my anxiety, but the real anxiety stems from the fact that I have an autoimmune disorder. A real, uncomfortable, never leaving autoimmune disorder.
It hasn’t been fun. Of course, it’s been hell, but I haven’t heard of a single disease that is a good time, so it’s not like this is some sort of surprise. I take my medication like I’m supposed to, but sometimes, with everything else, I can’t afford it. Yeah, I know that’s bad, and sometimes I have to weeks without it where I feel like im never going to wake up again. Spending much more time sleeping than I do awake, never leaving my bed, and barely eating. My nail beds are completely fucked, and look like they were shut in a car door. My hair falls out all the time, I find it everywhere. My pale skin tone matches that of an albino person, but hey, it makes my blue eyes look brighter right?
My digestion is the worst part. This is the very peak of everything where everything just adds to too much and I contemplate suicide. I’ve always had problems with depression, and in my early years of high school, self-infliction. My digestion is one of the constant embarrassing reminders that im diseased. I sit in class worried when im going to have to run out of the room, or if my stomach will make a noise. It’s all I think about and it drives me crazy. How can I go to the bathroom in public? It seems simple to other people, but not for me.
One of the main problems of stress to do with my disease actually comes from my mother. After hyper turned into hypo for her, she thinks she knows exactly how I feel. I try and tell her that my medication isn’t working, that I can’t get out of bed, that there is seriously something else going on, when I pass out almost on a weekly basis. She always answers “you think I don’t know what it feels like?” No, I really don’t think she does. Hashimotos is different than simply having hypo and the fact that im a teenager makes it all the worlds better. I can’t deal with the fact that she brushes off all the things that bother me.
Now, my silly but largest concern with this whole mess has always been embarrassing for me. Love. It runs through my mind all the time that.. how could I fall in love and be in a relationship like this? I’m such a mess physically it’s ridiculous. Besides thinking that I’m fat and disgusting, the whole digestion, hair falling out, etc. is not what I would call attractive. [It’s not that I think I’m obese, but im definitely not skinny thanks to this] I haven’t even had my first kiss because I am the most anxiety filled person you could possibly find. It’s sad really. It’s not that I don’t have a sex drive as I’ve heard other hashi patients mentioned. I don’t think that’s true with me.
However, here is my big however moment… I have never let this stop me. I have never let the fact that I’m diseased dictate important parts of my life. I am an excellent student. I got basically straight As in high school, applied and was accepted into 7 of the top art schools in the nation, and though I couldn’t financially attend them, I still go to the best school in the state where I still manage to keep my straight As and Deans list. I spent the first two months of college living in a hotel and taking a bus to campus, then moved into a suite and shared a bathroom with 7 other girls, and now I live in a house with 4 boys. It is not easy and it never will be. I can’t expect everything to fine. In fact, we started class last week and during my philosophy class I had a panic attack. Yes, right in the middle of the classroom because all I could think is how I could sit there for three hours without having digestion problems and how embarrassing and painful it would be. It was horrible, really horrible, but SO WHAT. So what? Its over, and I cant fix it. But I will never let hashi keep me from my school work. I will never let it keep me from being independent, taking care of myself and living my life as best I can with it. My dream is to teach English as a second language in South Korea. It seems random to most people I know, but if you knew me it’s really not. I won’t let something as unfortunate as being diseased keep me from pursuing it. I have days where I honestly think about killing myself because of all my responsibilities and flaws, but whatever what’s the point? Why shouldn’t I try. Why would I ever let Hashimotos keep from doing something. I am going to suffer and be in pain from it no matter what, I might as well be doing what I want while it happens.
I won’t let it run my life. I have too much to accomplish in my life. I do my best to maintain my health by being Vegan and Straighedge which I have found to be quite beneficial. I definitely recommend it. For all you teens with Hashimotos, don’t let it get you down. I’ve come pretty far since 11. I’ve lost a good portion of the weight, I take care of myself, and im hardworking. It doesn’t ruin everything. Hey, maybe one day I’ll even find love. We’ll see.
Oh, but thyroid… I still hate you.
I’m an 18 year old kpop loving college student living with a bunch of college boys. I have Hashimotos Thyroiditis/Hypothyroidism which i was diagnosed with at the lovely age of 11. It’s been quite the ordeal having it throughout all of my teenage years, but i try to make the best of it. Sure, there are extreme highs and lows, i whine a lot, but it could always be worse.