Monday, January 15, 2007

Sense of Betrayal

I've been feeling like death warmed over for the past couple of weeks. I did pretty well, moodwise, through Christmas, and then I started to slide. Even the past week of cold, mostly clear weather (both temperature and lack of precipitation are unusual for us this time of year), which I love, hasn't been enough to bring me to functional. I had blood drawn for a thyroid test last week and received the results today.

My thyroid, which has been slowly meandering downhill in function, has pretty much tanked. T3 was at the lowest point of "normal," and T4 was so low it was out of range.

I feel betrayed by my body. I know it's an irrational reaction, but it's there. I should be happy. But no, I'm pissed off because my body says enough is enough, you are gonna have to give me a pill pretty much every day for the rest of our life. Meanwhile, low/non-existent thyroid (even with non-prescription supplements, btw) is possibly a major contributor to my depression, effortless but unnecessary weight gain, lack of energy, scattered thoughts, easily broken and prone to falling out hair.

In some ways, with a low thyroid diagnosis, all those things are no longer my fault, no longer my character failings. Everything up there, except maybe the hair, I have taken as signs of my weakness, my not-worthiness. I'm having trouble grasping this emotionally. For anyone else, I could say, "Yes, of course. You're low-thyroid, so of course those things would happen to you. How exciting that you've found a cause and can do something that will help you feel better." With myself, I get pissed off that my freakin' thryoid gland had the nerve to up and quit on me. On me! And then another voice insinuates itself into my head asking, "So, what did you do that made your thyroid quit? Must've abused it, huh? Didn't take care of yourself, did ya?" Meanwhile, yet another part of my brain is trying to figure out ahead of time how to act when the thyroid level rises. What will it be like to have energy? What will I do with it? What should I do with it? Is that what other people would do with it? How will I relate to other people? Will I want to? Where will I get the skills? What if I'm still depressed afterwards? That part of my brain is not keen on living in the moment, because it's hard to meet everyone's expectations if it doesn't plan ahead.

Welcome to my head, land of "you can't win." Well, I can't win in my head, and normally we don't let too many other people in. There's not much room what with all the observers of thoughts and observers of other observers running around.

Fortunately, I had a counseling session set up for this afternoon, so I was able to deal with some of the crud written above. Even if you can't tell, a lot of that was written after much of the emotion had been released. Now I worry about the emotion coming back and tackling me again. That's in addition to the whole "I've been unemployed for 9 months now. What do I plan to do short-term and long-term to develop an income?"

I guess we know whose blog had better remain anonymous to the IRL folks. I'm pretty much a "know me, know my dogs" woman, so the pictures are pretty much a dead-giveaway to the IRLs, anyway.

I would like to receive feedback on this post, if you'd be kind enough to leave it. Writing style or content or both, your choice. If you can't comment here for some reason, my email address in my complete profile. Thanks!


Joy said...

Listen, I can relate. Having just started a job after looking for four months (and really I wasn't employed for months before that but I moved) I didn't have structure or people to talk to. It is so easy to be upset with yourself. Maybe finding out about your thyroid gave you a focus on your feelings. Yes, you can get help for that and you can start feeling healthier.

Take one day, one moment at a time. Old advice I know. But base nothing on now when tomorrow could bring you new info and new perspectives. Find one thing to help you now.

I'm starting to deal with my new job. It's almost a job from heck. The boss is kind a nightmare boss. And I have to figure out what I'm going to do. First and formost I've decided I can't panic. I can't run out of here like I'd like to. I did go to an interview and it helped to have a different view. I didn't get it but we shall see what else I can /cannot do.

I've got a lot to do to get healthier, get my apt. nicer, the way I want it and to take better care of me. For now, I'm going to do it off line. I know I said this before but I can't write about this job. It feels I need to take constructive steps beyond blogging. And I'm going to be fine, eventually!

You've been a kind supporter of me. Thank you for your friendship. Think of this. Today you know more about you and what to do than yesterday. And who knows what tomorrow will bring.

Be patient with yourself. Treat yourself as a treasured friend. Do something just for you. I'll try to visit and see how you're doing.

Jenny F. Scientist said...

Here via PS's WW.

On energy: I felt the need to comment because I spent YEARS really, really depressed. Once I finally got properly medicated, it was like a switch flipped: This is what the rest of the world feels like ALL THE TIME! Energy! Amazing! So for me, it was the difference between being exhausted all the time, and being able to do my work and still, say, wash the dishes at night. It just made everything easier to have energy. So maybe it could be simply a good thing and not another thing to have to do (i.e. relate to others).

And on thyroids: I don't know if you're from the 'Goiter belt' but there's a whole region where the water is low in iodine. Most of my relatives, therefore, have thyroid problems. I understand the tendency to blame one's self -goodness knows I do it!- but maybe you could blame the water supply instead.

Camera Obscura said...

I lost my thyroid to cancer. My mom's just quit on her, like yours has done. You just train yourself to take the little pill first thing in the morning when you get out of bed (because it wants an empty stomach). No bigs.