First update in years!!

>> 3/21/18

It's been more than a couple years since I've posted. So much has happened since.

First, my oldest was diagnosed with thyroid cancer in 2016. She was 19 at the time of diagnosis. This diagnosis came two years after I kept bringing up symptoms to her doctor that I thought were thyroid related and they blew me off. Repeatedly. I finally asked her gynecologist to run a blood test. Guess what? Yup, thyroid disease. I took those results back to her doctor and she felt her thyroid, turned to me, and said, "Her thyroid is swollen. Do you see that?" Are you FREAKING kidding me? I was livid. An ultrasound and biopsy later, we had a papillary thyroid cancer diagnosis on top of thyroid disease. They removed her thyroid and treated her with RAI (radioactive iodine) to kill off any remaining thyroid cells remaining after surgery. She gets bloodwork done every six months (regular thyroid hormone level tests plus thyroglobulin to check for cancer reoccurrence). It can come back. There is no remission since thyroid cells can always grow (bringing the cancer with it, I guess). She'll have to have labs done for the rest of her life to check for cancer reoccurrence. Because of the RAI, she is also at higher risk for developing secondary cancers down the road and will take thyroid medication the rest of her life (the goal is TSH suppression to keep cancer away).

Learning your child has cancer? Hell.

Telling your child she has cancer? Hell.

Leaving her room when they were taking her to surgery? Hell.

Letting them put radioactive iodine into her body to kill off her current cancer, and hoping it wouldn't bring a secondary cancer down the road? Hell.

My youngest, who was ten at the time, was also diagnosed with thyroid disease at the same time as my daughter's cancer diagnosis. Her pediatrician tried to blow it all off but I insisted on testing. I was right to insist. She is also on thyroid medication the rest of her life.

Three weeks after my daughter finished her thyroid cancer treatment, my kids' school had a school shooting. Three of four of my kids were there. My middle daughter was a couple classroom doors down from where the shooter shot a student and was shooting into classrooms. The kids either broke through windows and jumped out or ran down halls and into fields as far as they could go to safety. The PTSD from that took a few months to get through for my girls. Loud noises were hard. If somebody slammed a door, the look of terror in their eyes was horrible because to them, it sounded like a gunshot. My son seemed like he handled it ok but he also developed chronic physical hives to heat (hot car, blushing, etc.) afterward so I'm not sure he handled it as well as he thought he was handling it.

Then! Oh yeah, there's a then! My youngest was in a school bus accident. She is in physical therapy twice a week as they try to fix the damage this inept bus driver caused. It's been four months and there's not a day that has gone by without pain. Not only did they not check students for injury, they moved them to another bus and went on with their route before the police even arrived at the accident scene!! You'd think our school was being run by a bunch of gomers. You'd be right.

The last few years? Hell.

My thyroid disease? I was doing great until I made the mistake of leaving the "good thyroid doctor" for a doctor closer to home because he agreed to keep the meds the same for that that the "good thyroid doctor" prescribed. Problem? He then retired. The latest doctor cut my thyroid medication down more than half! Talk about going hypo and hashi crazy since Fall. He managed to ruin nine years of feeling good in only a few months. Not only did I gain 25 pounds and become very exhausted, my thyroid or goiter or something is so inflamed that it is pressing on my vocal cords or something because I can barely talk. I haven't had a voice in several months. My husband says I sound like a squirrel. When I went to the doctor a few weeks ago to tell him and request my old dose back, he didn't believe me. He said it was "drainage". FOR MONTHS? I won't be going back to him.

I have since increased my thyroid med dose back to what it used to be on my own and my voice is starting to come back. Instead of sounding like a squirrel now, I sound more like a boy going through puberty with voice cracking but it's coming back.  I feel like I'm coming out of a fog. I can't get into a new, functional medicine doctor until May (meanwhile, I'm trying to get back into the "good thyroid doctor" but they're not taking more patients right now).

So, that's the not so short and not so sweet update. Despite everything, my kids are awesome kids. They're doing well in school and growing into great adults. My husband is always such a sweetheart.


Brain Fog

>> 7/31/14

I keep forgetting to take my thyroid medication twice a day. I usually forget the second dose, sometimes I even forget the first dose. This is so not good.

My brain has been in a fog the last few days. It's been an unpleasant reminder of what I lived like for nine years before I found a doctor that would treat my thyroid disease the way it needed to be treated. My memory is shot, my head feels like I'm walking through a fog storm 1700 fog machine.

I even set an alarm twice a day to remind myself. The problem is if the alarm goes off and I'm not home, or in the middle of something, I forget to do it afterward.

I really need to get more disciplined.


High School Senior

>> 6/11/14

My eldest just finished her junior year. It's time to think about senior pictures, a varsity jacket, college applications, and everything else related to the last year of high school. Who aged me enough to have a senior in high school? When did that happen?

She is moving onto vet school, pre-vet first and then veterinary medicine. She and her boyfriend are talking about marriage after college (oh please, slow down). I'm googling colleges and vet schools; I'm not to google raleigh wedding photography yet.

*deep breath* for the upcoming senior year.


Thyroid Expert?

>> 4/8/14

There's a thyroid expert named Andrea Beaman I am wondering about. Has anybody heard of her? I've heard that she has a program that can get you off thyroid medication. True or false? Anybody know? I'm curious to see if that is impossible for anybody to do, especially if you've had thyroid disease for 13 years like me. Seems like those parts of my thyroid that weren't working would be dead after 13 years.

I am going to start detoxing I think. I am going to start back on iodine and cut out sugar and try to get back into health mode again.

I don't know if I ever typed on here about redecorating the house to put it up for sale. If I haven't, we are; if I have, we are still doing it. My daughter and I are going to tackle the bathroom as a mother/daughter project after this week. Sanding, painting, hanging - mask on my face to save my asthmatic lungs. I need to find 36" Drawer Slides too and find a leopard shower curtain for the shower, which won't go over well with the husband so I'm not telling him until I hang it. He considers it "his" bathroom but it really isn't. It's just a dingy bathroom that our girls won't use so I'm going to make it more girly. He'll find out about THAT when it's done. Ha Ha!


Graduation Gifts

>> 3/11/14

In a little over a year, our firstborn will graduate high school. What do you get the graduating senior? A laptop? Money for college tuition or books? Car? (Yeah, wishful thinking on her part.) Once she makes up her mind on where she is going to college will depend on what she needs I guess. Will she need stuff for her first dorm room or is she living at home? Will she be driving back and forth to college or living at college? So many decisions!

I can't believe my firstborn is almost an adult. I can't believe I am old enough to have a child who is almost an adult! HaHa!


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