Saturday, July 9, 2016

" i can't talk now, i'm in a parade; can't talk right now, i'm in a parade....... diagnosis: thyroid and breast cancer; prognosis: guarded; occupation: pharmacist. " lyrics ( changed a little) from a new song by paul simon, called " in a parade"

when i am at work, especially, i feel exactly like i am in a parade. my thyroid medication is still off, so add that to chemo brain , the lymphedema, and the other things that breast cancer brings with it and i feel like it takes every bit of energy that i have to march on down the road. i can do it, and i would never put anyone in danger, but it takes a lot out of me. i also have to remember the sad fact that i am not in my twenties anymore. i feel like i should be able to do everything that i was doing before my cancer diagnoses and not feel tired. even a family gathering, or a long day out shopping, wears me out. FATIGUE is one of my worst enemies. i had major fatigue before both cancers were diagnosed, so it is troubling to have it going on now.

some people think that after your thyroid is  removed, you take a tablet and voila! you are good to go. as the majority of people reading this blog know, that is simply not the case. in april,  my thyroid levels were too high, so my doctor had to go down on my dose. but now, i think they are a little too low- i tend to crash, or feel like it, in the late afternoon. if you want an intelligent conversation with me, it would be best to call me before about three or four in the afternoon. after that, i will be in a parade. too much talking, lights, noise of any kind, to name a few things,  simply wear  me out. i feel like my eyes glass over. you are probably wondering if you should perhaps get your prescriptions filled in the morning when i am working? like i said, i push through the fatigue, but it does cost me. i pay the fare usually the next day- i am pretty much toast and just rest, usually. and if it makes you feel any better, i do not work two days in a row. i always have at least one day between work days.

 believe it or not, i am not complaining. i do not work a whole lot- only about 4 or so days a month. but i would like to feel better on a daily basis. and i am getting there, but it is slow going. if i could recommend one, well two actually, things to patients post thyroid cancer and/or breast cancer surgery, it would be physical therapy and therapeutic massage. i did not get any after my thyroid cancer, and i am dealing with those problems now. i had eleven lymph nodes removed from my neck, as well as my entire thyroid and two parathyroids. i did not know about the "lane merging theory" until my physical therapist explained it to me when i started physical therapy last month. i had three more lymph nodes removed with my breast cancer. i have lymphedema in one arm, but also swelling in my side, back and neck area. the problems with my neck occurred  after my thyroid cancer surgery. it would have helped me tremendously if i had gone to PT then. the therapeutic massage has been great as well. i think those two therapies go hand in hand, pun intended.

i have incorporated  a lot of holistic, you might call them, techniques to try to regain some of my strength and feel better. mild exercise, physical therapy and massage, vitamins, trying to get more hours of sleep each night, having a better diet, etc.  i can not return to zumba, which i had previously done for 5 years. this is partly due to my lack of energy, but also i was supposed to have one of my knees replaced a week before my breast cancer surgery. boobs trumped knee, and i will have to wait a while for my knee to be fixed. besides walking, i think that tai chi would be a good, gentle exercise for me. unfortunately, there are no classes at the wellness center near me. i have purchased a DVD on basic tai chi ( for old people and the physically challenged- i  fall into both categories, i am afraid). so far, all i have done is take the wrapper off the DVD. it is propped in front of my DVD player, and so far, all that we do is  just stare at each other. i am hoping to pop it in the DVD player one day soon.

everything i have said in this blog harks back to being your own best  patient advocate. if you are not feeling well, find out what other things might benefit you. do not rely just on that one thyroid hormone pill. no matter how good the medication, it can never replace a healthy thyroid. adding other, holistic methods is an important  key to feeling as good as you can, i think. even with all of this, though, i still have times, every day, when i can not cope as well as i did before thyroid and breast cancer. i suppose it is like that for almost everyone who is dealing with these problems. parade, anyone?

No comments:

Post a Comment