Yesterday, I started thinking about the issues I've been having and about the fact that yesterday was so relieving at the doctor's office just to be heard and feel like something is being done to look into things. And then it dawned on me... I haven't really looked up Hashimoto's Thyroiditis. It's what my Mom has and my Granny had. I knew it ran in families, particularly among women. But I figured it was a form of hypothyroidism because my Mom and Granny both ended up on medicine for thyroidism. So I looked it up online. I have to say that if the tests come back and show that I do NOT have Hashimoto's I will be both relieved and amazed. And furthermore, it ticks me off that the 1st doctor didn't bother to run more tests other than to repeat my cortisol and TSH levels because according to what I found, people with Hashimoto's often test the TSH in "normal levels" for years. That's because Hashimoto's is a disease that slowly destroys the thyroid over time and by using thyroid hormone treatment, it helps delay the effects and replace that which is damaged. Like my Mom, people with this are told there is nothing wrong with them for years all the while they are displaying weight gain and other symptoms. After looking at the Mayo Clinic's website about it, I have most of the symptoms at various intensities. I know that alot of them could be explained by other things too. But if I was a doctor and a patient tried to tell me these things, and there's a disease out there like this... you'd think you'd at least run some tests. And when I read it, I thought to myself - uhm that sounds an awful lot like me. I'm no doctor and these things can be caused by other issues. But it still seems suspicious.
I'm glad that the new doctor is running all the tests. I promise to drop it though until I know one way or another after the tests and doctor's appointment. But I'm just sayin'...
Some of these tests are something. Last night at 11 pm I did the saliva cortisol test. I can't remember the last time I was up at 11 pm. I forced myself to stay awake by watching the "American Idol" episodes from this week that we DVR'd. You can get through 3 hours of "American Idol" in about 1 if you zoom through most of the back stories. Anyway. This test requires you to put something that seems like a long cotton swab under your tongue until it is sufficiently soaked with your saliva, then put it back in the casing and freeze it. Not the most thrilling of events, but it definitely could have been worse. I had to bring it to Quest this morning - frozen and on ice, no less. And knowing that I had a lot of blood work to do as well (not to mention the 24 hour pee test on Sunday), I decided that I would do the blood work in the morning. I talked to Mom and Dad about all the tests that were being ordered last night (let's just say the list and the insurance/medical codes were an entire page long that ran over a few lines to a 2nd page). We had a bet on how many vials of blood it would take. Mom said 3-4, I said 5-6.
I got to Quest by 7:05 am - a few minutes after it opened. You know you've been to the Quest center too much when they know you and chat it up, and you know the center director's name and have a favorite phlebotomist that you know by name and who recognizes you by sight (and is happy to see you again). I was thrilled to see Francisco and he said "oh, cortisol again I see" as I handed over my frozen sample. And then he saw the list of tests, looked at me and said "Goodness!" I told him that I switched doctors because the other one seemed not to know what was wrong with me gaining weight while exercising like mad and eating healthily and in proper amounts, and the new one was trying to figure it out. Francisco has a very thick accent, and is wonderful. He smiled and said, "Well, you look good to me. But I hope they figure it all out." We chatted it up and he told me how his daughter turned 18 and went to give blood at the blood and plasma center and passed out when she saw the size of the needle. He knows I have a hard time looking at the needle when it's coming for me, but that once it's in my arm I have no problems watching the blood flow or looking at the needle in my arm. He also remembers that my veins roll and sticks them the 1st time every time. (Except once and he got it within a second later but then apologized profusely... I'm used to people missing them all the time, so he's a pure joy to have blood drawn from.) I told him I drank lots of water for him this morning, to which he responded "Good girl!" I had to laugh. I think it took him longer to make sure all the paperwork and the stickers and vials, etc. were set up right to match what the tests needed than to extract my blood - 7 vials worth of blood. As he was about to stick me, he told me he was going to have to drain me today. And I told him that "it's a good thing I can make more." So, to say the least, I won the bet - 7 vials. 5 Big ones and 2 small ones. It's funny to think that some of my blood will be sent to California, frozen, to have testing done. And that one vial will be kept out of the light on purpose. Little parts of me everywhere.
I was hungry (it was fasting for the blood work), and knew there was no way I could get a 20 mile bike ride done as it was about 8:10 when I left Quest - not to mention the 7 vials of blood. I'm still feeling sickly - stuffy, tired, etc. too. Plus, the idea of taking the chance of passing out alone on the bike in aero on the closed road by myself wasn't overly appealing. Instead, I decided to treat myself before work to a whole grain with oats bagel with egg, ham and cheddar and a large coffee from Davis Bakery. All I can say is yum. As well as congratulations to the Bakery Owners as William James finally made his arrival earlier this week! I had to laugh because if one of our little ladies had been a little man, we would have named him William James.
Speaking of the little people, I saw an article about how sports are so good for girls' body image and overall health as they mature. I also read in Running Magazine about how children shouldn't be pushed into sports, but should be encouraged to play and not specialize in a sport until high school. Instead, if you wanted your children to get into sports you should be into sports. If you want them to run, you should run. Interesting factoid: most elite runners did not specialize in running until high school. Good stuff to noodle when you're the parent to 2 little ladies.
The night before last, I went with the girls to the grocery while Mr. Darcy painted, came back home, parked the car in the garage. The girls got out of the car and saw my bike pump. I usually keep it in the car because the bike pump is a little chicklet magnet (as is my bike in general - they love to ask me what the different components are, like shifters, the speedfil straw, the arm rests for the aero bars, the gear cassette, the brakes). Angelfish in particular likes to push the pump handle on the air pump up and down. I've often wondered what my children see when I do certain things... and this picture says a thousand words. I was thrilled that I had remembered to throw my camera in my purse after finding the battery charger after all these months.
At the time, Angelfish was saying, "I need to put just enough air in my bike tires, Mommy." I guess they do pay attention.
Last night was Team in Training's Recommitment Dinner. One of our team members dropped because she is 9 weeks pregnant. But otherwise, everyone who is on St. Anthony's recommitted. YAY! Tri-Miami recommittment is March 9th, but I'm pretty sure all of them will recommit. Here's hoping anyway. Coach and I talked about the number of people who will be at the open water swim on Saturday and the number of wet suits we have. Coach also has to go to her CPR re-certification class, so we have to get 12-13 people into and out of 5 wet suits, swim 400 meters with them, and get them out of the drink by 8:30 am... starting around 7:30 (if we're lucky). I'm thinking it should be doable, but probably pretty tight. Always an adventure! The little ladies and Mr. Darcy went to Recommitment Dinner with me, which was nice to have them around even if the girls were not on their best restaurant behavior and running around the table despite my best efforts to control the situation. Some days are better than others on the social ettiquette front, but I remind myself they are 3 1/2 and that continued effort on my part will result in well mannered children. At least they said please and thank you when asking for croutons and ordering their meals. : )
Tonight after work, we have to buy Angelfish's buddy C. birthday presents (his party is Saturday), wrap them, straighten the house (it looks like a bomb went off, quite literally), and hopefully get some rest for our whirlwind Saturday - Team in Training, Mr. Darcy's field day, C's birthday party, and the Junior League Blue Note Ball. I'm thrilled that I will have nothing but grocery shopping and laundry to do on Sunday. I may even attempt to stay in my pjs all day - although we really should get our behinds to church, and while God may accept me as I am, I don't think the rest of the congregation would approve of pjs in church.
Today I meet with the nutritionist at the Y for my lunch break. I definitely want to take any ideas she can give me about eating and implement, implement, implement! I'm excited about the opportunity to try to do everything I can to get this situation under control. If only I could squeeze a nap in too... oh well!