Sunday, February 6, 2011

Like a normal person

Yesterday I spent the day pretty much like a normal person. When you're unwell for an extended period of time, it's not uncommon to begin to compare yourself to what is 'normal'. Spending the day like a normal person is an exciting experience because it feels so good and it also signifies hope, that one day in the not too distant future you might just feel 'normal' all of the time.

In my mind a 'normal' person can get up in the morning at a reasonable hour feeling fairly refreshed from their sleep (not like they have just woken after a massive night out after just 3 hours sleep). A 'normal' person can get ready to leave the house without tiring, they can eat a standard kind of breakfast without feeling ill or thinking twice. When a 'normal' person leaves the house they feel ok, not like they want to curl up and sleep or as if their eyelids are threatening to close on them all of the time. They also feel relaxed, they don't worry about getting home soon or how sick they feel, they don't think twice about being on their way to a shopping centre because it's just so regular.

Yesterday I felt normal because I did all of the above with relative ease, once I was at the shopping centre I felt a little bit tired but not so tired that I wished to be at home, I was happy to be out. After an hour or so shopping I still felt ok and was still not wishing I could go home to rest, it was an enjoyable experience.

Upon returning home after many hours out and about with the boyfriend I did indeed feel tired, but not so tired that I also felt sick or that I needed to lie down and not get up for the rest of the night. It was a bearable tiredness that was not going to prevent me from feeling ok and continuing being 'normal'. The boyfriend decided he wanted to make dessert for the first time since we have begun our sugar free lifestyles. We decided to try a baked cheesecake, which involved a trip to the supermarket for ingredients. I walked to the supermarket without dragging my feet, as we walked up a slight incline I felt the muscles in my legs kick in and do what they're meant to. Just a week ago this same slight incline would have slowed me down and had me asking the boyfriend to walk more slowly, my muscles would not have 'kicked in' like a 'normal' persons, they would have gone weak and slowed me down.

We made dinner and dessert and enjoyed a nice evening in, because the cheesecake took so long to cook we ended up staying up late to be able to eat it. I was able to stay awake and felt just fine. I had successfully spent the whole day feeling reasonably well- awake and capable. I had been able to contribute to helping with housework, shopping, considering the planning of a mid year holiday and baking. Yesterday I hadn't had to make a choice between using my energy for housework or going shopping or baking, I had been able to do all three and it was a real thrill.

The other 'normal' thing that I did this week was work. I spent one day at work, helping at my parents' business. Do you know how long it has been since I have been in an office for work purposes? About ten months. I have not been involved in any official work or earned my own income (apart from a once off tutoring gig) in that long. It was a huge day for me to be up and ready for a 9am start and to deal with having to sit in the once place all day. I did feel quite tired by the end of the day and was glad that the job was not at all intellectually demanding, but I made it through.

All of this 'normalcy' has been made possible by my thyroid coming into balance, it was just two weeks ago that I was begging my specialist to let me stop taking the medication that was slowing my thyroid down (too much). She agreed that it would be safe to do so, I was going nuts dealing with the symptoms of an underactive thyroid; the worst of which was an extreme fatigue that had slowed me down to a near stop. With that fatigue came alot of disappointment and frustration that I was not yet better or feeling 'normal'. This 'hypothyroid' state was induced by the medication, just to make sure I would not return to the 'hyper' state (aka hell).

My hyperthyroidism was caused by the consumption of excessive amounts of iodine in a so called 'healthy soy drink' that was actually very dangerous. This is very relevant to my recovery, the theory is that once all of the iodine is flushed from my system and my thyroid has found balance it will remain that way.

Just 3 days ago, for the first time since my diagnosis in August 2010 my thyroid test results came back 'normal'. The results of my test go a long way to explaining why yesterday I had a normal day and why last week I went to work and felt kind of normal. The test results also signify hope for the future, that 'normal' days will increase from her on in and from there I will start to have energetic days where I feel completely healthy and day...I will live an energised, healthy and balanced life. As you can see, 'normal' is very important to me.

I doubt I will ever again take for granted how wonderful it feels to be 'ok' and to have my body be able to follow through on doing the things I want and need to, in harmony.


  1. oh that's so great to hear!! well done!!! I was interested to hear that your hyperthyroid was caused by a so called healthy soya drink. I went dairy free for a year before I was diagnosed hypothyroid and switched to soya milk. I will always wonder if that played a part in my health deteriorating. I get so cross about all these people on the internet claiming simple cures for thyroid issues when they don't know what they're talking about and could cause people to overdose on iodine, etc and get worse. GRRRRR. Very happy you are feeling better, long may you continue to improve. :)

  2. Hmm, that is an interesting thought, specialists usually suggest getting off soy with thyroid conditions. It can be dangerous to consume too much iodine. Here in Australia they have started adding it to all commercial bread to avoid deficiencies- which is a bother when your body is flooded with the stuff to the point of serious toxicity. The type of soy milk I was drinking was recalled in Dec '09 because it was found to be a danger to health, I believe this happened in New Zealand not so long ago with another brand. Something to be aware of...if you're interested to see more take a look at

  3. I know exactly how you feel. I was diagnosed with Hypothyroidism back in November, almost exactly a year my mom was diagnosed with Thyroid Cancer. My thyroid went out of sync after I had my son, so I had been living in this hell called Hypothyroidism for 3 years and had absolutely no idea what was wrong with me. Recently my doc told me the medication they put me on were too high and now I'm in the Hyperthyroidism state which is just as bad. I wish you the best of luck with your healing! :)


  4. Thanks for sharing Niki, I hope both you and your Mum are on the road to recovery. 3 years is such a long time to have been dealing with hypo symptoms, yuck! A thyroid in balance sure does make all the difference in life. Mine is now balanced- has been for a month and I feel far more 'normal' though still dealing with fatigue & can burn myself out easily. Gently does it...


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