Thursday, March 14, 2013
The reason why I haven't posted is because I know this was going to be a long one.
I haven't really posted much about my thyroid, but I really want to mention it because I feel fixing it is one of the biggest things that has held me back on my weight loss. However, it's not all about my thyroid. I still have to eat healthy, still have to make sure I don't pack on the carbs, but for the first time in my life I feel like I can eat like a normal human being.
I'm not counting calories but it wouldn't surprise me if I'm eating around 1,700 calories or so a day. That's GOOD! I'm actually losing with the amount of calories I should be eating! Not 1,200! Before I would just maintain or gain with 1,700 calories depending on the week. Now I can just eat when I'm hungry, emphasis on the hungry. I try my best not to mindlessly snack, because at that point my body does not need the fuel. If it's late at night and I'm starving, I learned to just suck it up or go to bed. My body only wants the carbs because it's tired and needs fuel for me to fight staying awake-- but at that point none is required because I should be sleeping already!
I'm still pretty far from where I want to be concerning my thyroid. In a way I feel like I am regressing, and I'm wondering because I've stayed at this low dose for too long. I did my blood work about a week or so and my TSH was around a 2.6 or so, don't remember the exact number. Anyway, my doctor thinks that 2.6 is normal and that no further treatment is necessary. I have yet to see her, but when I do I'm going to ask for a referral to an endocrinologist.
Whatever happened to our game plan? She said most patients feel best around a 1, why does she think that 2.6 is the magic number for me without even asking me about my symptoms? Considering I complained about major fatigue when I was at a TSH lower than that, and it wasn't until my TSH nearly doubled and I felt like the walking dead did it even come up on the blood work. Yes, I'm not exaggerating when I say the walking dead. Or feeling like I'm 60 years old when I'm in the body of a 22 year old. Yes, my blood work is "normal" but how I'm feeling is not normal. I do feel better now on a low dose of Synthroid, so I know my thyroid has something to do with it.
This is how I see it, if I'm going to have to take a medicine for the rest of my life-- why isn't my doctor trying her best to find me the perfect dose for my body? What is so bad about wanting to have optimal hormone levels, and not just livable hormone levels? It makes absolutely no sense. It's like a person breaking their nose and needing surgery, and the plastic surgeon saying "Eh, you know, maybe it's better if we leave a little bump there to make it more 'natural'. I don't see why you feel you need to have the perfect nose." If you're going through the trouble, why not get it right? Why stop half way?
I implore all of you to check your TSH levels. A doctor saying you're in the "normal" range does not cut it. Ask for your lab work and above all, ask questions. Why do they think the level they want to leave you at is the optimal level? If your medicine is not working then why do they feel like you need to continue taking it without any changes?
My doctor is annoyed with me. Obviously she's not use to people wanting to be informed about their own health. That's why once I get my referral to an endo, I will find another general practitioner and will look forward to never meeting with her again. She is nice, yes. But obviously she's not willing to take the time and work with me and my symptoms. Also, I do NOT feel better when the doctor says "You're OK. I've seen patients with way worse thyroid problems than you do." Everyone is different, and just because (thankfully) my condition is not worse than my neighbor, does not mean I should receive less adequate care or attention. That's what the doctor is paid for. I'm not the type that likes jumping from doctor to doctor, and I've had this one doctor for the length of time that I've lived in West Virginia... But enough is enough!
You want to know why I'm lucky enough to not have Hashimotos? Because I was consistent and I asked questions. If I would have just taken my doctor's word for it a few years down the line it would be very likely that I have Hashis or thyroid cancer. I didn't think "It's normal just cause the range says it's normal" was the appropriate answer. If they wrote that in their medical exam would they have had that question right? No! So why should it be a sufficient answer for a patient?! I don't believe that "I'm right" and "they're wrong" but I do like listening to their reasoning, especially so that I can better understand my own condition.
Hypothyroidism is not fun. It's not glamorous. You feel like a sloth. No one wants to take medicine every morning one hour before breakfast. No one wants to have brain fog, anxiety, depression, feeling cold constantly, and body aches just because a doctor thinks your condition is not serious enough to warrant medical attention. Is it normal for me to sit in the bathroom for 15 - 20 minutes in the morning because I'm freezing regardless of the temperature and the only thing that makes it better is direct heat from the bathroom heater? No. It's not normal. Maybe I'm just at a different level of normal, I guess.
By the way, I completely recommend Kimya Dawson's song "I Like Giants." Really helps put this body loathing issue into a rational perspective. Hope you love this song as much as I do! She's amazing.