The last couple of days I have started dancing to music. This is an excellent sign, since it means my energy is coming back.
However, it comes and it goes. After spending an hour or so sitting or walking or occasionally dancing to music, I would become incredibly tired and have to lie down on the couch for an hour. But, I’m getting there. 🙂
My voice is also coming back nicely. My mom, dad, and the friend I called on Friday (I feel bad, I have’t called my brother yet!) all say I sound pretty normal. It’s still a little hoarse, and the longer I talk, the more irritated and hoarser it sounds, so I still have to avoid unnecessary conversations, or at least, long unecessary conversations.
On Tuesday, I go to my follow up appointment with the surgeon. That’s down at the Clinic. I’ll probably also get the pathology report on my thyroid. She said that the thyroid nodule was very well deliniated, so that means there’s a good chance it isn’t cancer. Of course, that’s exactly what the doctor said when he did my biopsy, and my biopsy came back with abnormal cells and a 50% chance of cancer.
The decision to take out my whole thyroid was a tough one. It does bother me that I have to take medication for the rest of my life. I keep thinking about this one episode of a survival show, where they talked about this couple who were vacationing in Central America, and they got lost in the jungle. During the time in the rain forest, the woman didn’t have her antidepressants with her, and she became suicidal. I just keep thinking about that. If I get lost in the rain forest without my medication, I would eventually die. I don’t know how long I would last without my medication, but I would eventually die without it. I can’t get lost in the rain forest now! Not that there are a ton of rain forests in Cleveland.
Of course, if I had left part of my thyroid in, I would still have been on medication. First of all, the doctor told me half of the thyroid would probably not be enough to keep me off medication. Second of all, I tested positive for Hashimototo’s Thyroiditis. That’s an autoimmune disorder where your body’s antibodies attack the thyroid and eventually destroy it. This tends to run in families, and it would explain why most of the women on my mom’s side of the family have hypothyroidism. Now, my mom didn’t need thyroid replacement therapy until she was in her early 50’s, but my grandmother went on thyroid replacement therapy in her early 30’s! Even if I had left part of my thyroid in, and even if it worked, it would probably not work for very long.
Not only would I have still needed medication, but I would have risked more surgery. If the pathology report came back cancerous, they would have called me last week and wheeled me back in to the operating room to take the rest. More surgery! Another week of being exhausted and having an incredibly painful throat and neck ! No thank you. Even later on, I would have risked surgery. I already had a nodule on the left side of my thyroid, and the autoimmune disorder would have only caused the nodule to grow. I would have needed an ultrasound once a year, and probably more biopsies and maybe eventual surgery. Surgery is no fun, and I’d rather have as few surgeries as I possibly could.
Anyway, on the whole though, my strength is returning. Right now I feel as though I had a bad case of the flu. My voice is still somewhat hoarse; I doubt I’ll be singing along to music in my room for a couple more weeks. And I still get weak; I know that my first day back at work I’ll come home and lie down on the couch and may not get back up again. But I’m getting there. And that’s a great feeling. 🙂