Friday, March 16, 2007

Thyroid Cancer - Stretching My Faith on the Long Journey

When I got home from this appointment I had to call the partner to let him know that there would be no way that I could return to work. Talk about stress! Now I could not go back to work and I was about to undergo another round of radiation which usually knocks me on my butt for 6 mos to 1 year afterward. My husband was still looking for work and interviewing but did not have a job.

I went off my Synthroid on April 16th and began my decent into hypo hell for the 3rd time in 5 years. This time I had two children. My son was 5 and my daughter was almost 3 years. How was I going to keep up with two kids. My son was in pre-k and they met 5 afternoons so that was good. But my daughter was home all day and did not take naps and I needed them. I used videos to get her to sit in the chair while I napped. It was so hard!

I wrote this message to a Yahoo group of Christian ladies with whom I had grown close to on April 22nd. It really emphasizes the journey and how emotionally draining it is.

The depression part of this journey has kicked in. :( I am fatigued and achy. Now I am feeling blue and just want to crawl in a corner and cry. I hate this process and am beginning to remember why thyca patients call this "hypo hell". I am on day 7 since stopping my medication. That means there is no more in my system and I suspect that is why I am sinking downward. I have 3 more weeks before I go for my blood test. It seems like a lifetime away.

On another note, I belong to a group of moms (8 other moms in the group) and we have been getting together for 5+ years now. I sent out a message when I found out my cancer was back and not one person responded. So I sent out another message saying that I didn't think they got it. Then I got an e-mail from one and a reply that she got it but would call later (never did), another responded that she would help and call later (also never did), another tried to call while I was on the phone with the ins co but is rallying the group to try to get them to bring meals. My best friend of the group just moved to IL and she has called 4 times, crying and feeling so helpless for being so far away. The rest have all disappeared again. I am so hurt. When others in the group have needed help everyone has pitched in but now they have done this to me 3 times! We started getting together 3 weeks before my first RAI treatment. I forgave that one because we didn't have the bond yet - the next one was harder. This is very hard.

Sorry to vent - I am just feeling very alone today. Guess that's just part of the journey too. I think I need to visit the ThyCa support board for a while. I think I will go SN on the Gymboree loops (not this one) too. I see so many people stressing over what they are buying and how they didn't get that one special piece and I want to scream "Who cares!! Is that what life is about? Will it change what is really important in your life?" I like Gymboree clothing too but when you are fighting for your life it just gets put into perspective.

And so it continued. I must face the reality that I was once again fighting for my life and to remain with my family. I did not want to leave my husband or my children. This was not what I planned. Why did others have a thyroidectomy and RAI and were done and I continued to have issues 5 years later.

My online friends did offer support. The scriptures were a great source of comfort. One friend sent this:

Praying Steph! I know I share this verse with a lot of people, but it's just so good!!!
Psalms 61:2 "From the end of the earth will I cry unto thee, when my heart is overwhelmed; lead me to the rock that is higher than I."
Psalms 62:7 "In God is my salvation and my glory: the rock of my strength, and my refuge, is in God."

This was the point in my life that I would struggle hard with God. I would be introduced to God’s will for our health and what we are to eat. I would learn that God wants us to be well. I visited a Healing Room at a local church that my neighbor attended. She came to my house personally one night to invite me. I was out of my comfort zone but was glad I had gone to let others pray over me. I was on a journey and God was using this time to teach me patience and trust.