I ended my last post saying that I was about to start a life on Synthroid after talking to my doctor’s nurse who called me back with answers to my questions.
I stopped at my pharmacy after work. It is literally on the way home. I pass by it everyday going to and from the office. Unless I take another route to avoid traffic that I’ve seen. I patiently waited for my pharmacist to fill it and he made sure to give me verbal instructions how to take it. For those of you who use chain pharmacies, I recommend changing to a small mom and pop place. My first time at this pharmacy, Frank made sure to introduce himself to me and he knows every single person that comes in there. It makes all the difference. He personally does verbal education on the meds every time I come in with a new prescription. That afternoon, he made sure to emphasize to take it on an empty stomach and to not eat for 30 min to an hour after taking it.
I got home and went through the medication information that Frank included with my prescription, as well as the extra stickers on the bottle warning me not to take certain supplements for at least 4 hours after taking the medication. I hadn’t started taking it yet and it was already changing my world.
I like to eat breakfast when I wake up. I’m normally STARVING by the time I wake up. My thought was, How the heck am I going to be able to be awake for an hour BEFORE I eat? Then there was the question of when to take everything else I took. It was took complicated to figure out, okay I can take this with it, but this has to wait. My brain wasn’t functioning well, remember. Trying to think like that was too overwhelming and actually trying to put a plan into practice would have confused me. My fix: Get up, take the Synthroid, take shower and get ready for work, THEN eat, and take everything else with me to work to take four hours after I had taken the Synthroid. That worked for a little while.
I had a hard time with my morning routine and by the time I was ready, I was near to passing out because I needed food. Next fix: Keep Synthroid by the bed with a glass of water and take as soon as I opened my eyes even if I went back to sleep. I was able to eat after I woke up, but it was still slow going for me.
I sent a cousin of mine who had thyroid cancer and asked about her experience with it since she had hypothyroidism symptoms before her operation. She had good and wonderful things to say about the medication and made me feel better with her tale of how she felt before she was on Synthroid. She gave me hope when I had none. She reminded me of what I knew about medications taking up to 4-6 weeks before being fully effective. That gave me more hope.
My husband and I flew back to Moloka`i at the end of January for my grandfather’s funeral. By the time we got there I felt worn out and near passing out. The only thing that kept me going that night was being with my family again, even if it was for a funeral. While sitting around with uncles and aunties and cousins, my feet felt like I had been on them all day. They had bothered me on the plane and I had to adjust my laces because they were swelling more than normal when flying. My thought was that it was my circulation. So, I put them up as much as I could.
I have very little memory of actually doing prep work and cleaning that weekend. We spend days cleaning and preparing for big family gatherings. It starts early in the morning and everyone is expected to help. 6am calls aren’t too difficult when the rooster wakes you earlier than that. I know my husband did a lot of cleaning, but I really don’t remember doing much except for on Superbowl Sunday because I kept asking my auntie, “What do you need me to do?” all morning. I do remember having difficulty getting up from my chair A LOT. It was like I had no strength in my legs at all. I knew this was something I was going to have to mention to my doctor and thought it was my circulation and that the plane ride triggered it.
We returned home and I still felt like I was going downhill. I didn’t feel any better and I was spending more time in bed. I had no energy for anything. Planning things with friends was tenuous because if my energy was really low, I didn’t feel like going anywhere. I felt like that pretty much all of the time.
My brain seemed to become even more fuzzy. I would think of one word and end up typing a completely different word. I was flipping numbers around and I had never had a problem with dyslexia.
I don’t think I mentioned the cold. I’m an island girl at heart, so cold and I don’t really get along at all. My first winter in Kentucky and I was wearing my winter coat in October. Okay, so it was Fall. I’m not used to Fall weather. Give me terminal Summer any time and I’m happy. After a few years I finally got acclimated to Winter and could tolerate it. The Winter of 2008-2009 was possibly the worst Winter ever. For me. I was cold all the time. I felt like it was really 30 degrees colder than it actually was. It also didn’t help that the heat and A/C in our building at work is controlled by Central State Hospital and most of the Winter the A/C stayed on. It wasn’t unusual to see me in my office with my coat and scarf still on, sometimes my hat and sometimes my gloves if I wasn’t typing on the computer.
I was miserable and all I could think was, I can’t wait for my next labs. My levels can’t be at therapeutic levels and he’ll up my dose.
Hang on to your hats, people. It’s looking like a bumpy ride from here on out.