So many of you who know me in person know that I've been dealing with an aggravating progression of symptoms and a frustrating set of encounters with doctors. I won't go into details on most of this, but this is why I've been, well, preoccupied lately. Or a zombie. Whichever it appears to be. I feel like I'm moving through mud and not connecting to the rest of reality very well.
I went to a new doctor on Monday who looked at my chart and asked me, well, every question she asked me I could answer in the affirmative: are you cold or hot? (cold) Are your eyes dry? (yes) Are you tired all the time? (yes) Do you have muddled thinking or 'brain fog'? (yes). And so on. Everything she asked, lo, it was something else on the list of bizarre symptoms I've been having with increasing regularity and severity since Leo was born.
I'm very very mildly hypothyroid, and this was diagnosed in 2005 when Maeve was about 10 months old and I felt like this (but I don't think I felt this strongly like this, if that makes sense). An extreme low dose of levothyroxine and all was well. Then in 2007 I couldn't get pregnant and kept not getting pregnant...the doctor doubled the dose and I was pregnant with Leo in a month and a half.
And here I am again. The new doctor took a bunch of blood to look at the specifics, but she's reassured me that she treats patients, not blood test numbers. Which is good because on my level of levothyroxin, my TSH levels are very normal. But when I said this, she just shook her head. No, we'll be doubling your dosage and switching your medication to a different blend of hormone.
Then I mentioned that my grandmother took thyroid medication (when she was alive--my mom's mother, not the one I've been talking about lately). And my dad's sisters. Then she took a long look at me and asked if anyone had ever said the name "Hashimoto's Disease" to me. No one had, but she decided to test for thyroid antibodies as well. It's an auto-immune disease, like type I diabetes or lupus, but the focus of my stupid, stupid immune system is my thyroid. Super. I know, life could be worse. And maybe it isn't that. Nothing is for sure.
Test results were supposed to be in by today, but when I called the very very nice receptionist told me that sometimes it took a week--she reassured me that the doctor would call by Monday. And that's ok. I can wait, knowing that she took a look at me and not just my bloodwork. I'm not worried at all now--this will begin to work itself out. And maybe come 6 weeks from now my fingers won't hurt and my ankles won't hurt and the weird headaches will stop and I won't sleep 12 hours a day and still need a nap and I'll remember what I'm talking about and I'll lose some weight and I won't freeze to death this winter and all will be reasonably well. It was so nice to finally have a doctor who didn't downplay my symptoms and assume I was just lazy or stupid or depressed or whatever. Seriously.
But in strict accordance with my own neuroses, I'm not saying everything is fine and I'm so terribly happy with this brand new thing. I'm still holding my breath and not canceling the appointment with the gynecologist Janet recommended for the same symptoms and treatment. But I think I've found my way.