Sarah Wartman, Thyroid Thrivers
33 years old
Fort Wayne, IN
Sarah is an average girl living with hypothyroidism…this is her story! (Cue Law & Order’s *dun dun* music)
I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism years and years ago (seven, maybe?) after a significant
increase in my weight. I have battled the scale almost all my life, but in my twenties the pounds really started to pile on. I had tried everything I knew to do to try and lose the weight….Weight Watchers, Atkins, South Beach, Nutrisystem, Advocare, Beach Body, etc. No, seriously! You name it, I’ve probably tried it. I was (and still am) desperate to drop the pounds and feel healthy– like my old self again. Some things I tried would work for a while, I’d lose 10 pounds and then I’d just plateau, without any drastic change in the way I was eating and no change to my exercise routine. I couldn’t figure it out and it was driving me crazy!
A friend of mine was seeing a “weight loss doctor” in Kansas City and encouraged me to go see her. After some routine blood work, she diagnosed me as hypothyroid with high cholesterol and put me on Levothyroxine (for the hypo) and Simvastatin (for the cholesterol). Feeling somewhat lucky to have a reason the weight wasn’t falling off and that I was now on medicine, that I thought, would help me. Not just with being able to fit into some of my favorite clothes again, but also to make feel good. I continued consuming these drugs for years without ever researching my condition or the medications I was taking. Which seems crazy to me now. I would just stop by a doctor every year to get my blood work checked and my prescription refilled. So foolish I was. I cringe just thinking about it sometimes. It wasn’t until just recently, that I decided to find out what it truly meant to by hypothyroid, or to have hypothyroidism. What does it mean for me now, long term and possibly for the future of my children, if and when, I decide to have them. Why didn’t I question this before? I just listened to and trusted the medical world.
All of a sudden, my symptoms started to get much worse. First, I noticed the chronic fatigue,
about 9 months ago. It was very odd and hard to explain (but not for the many in this wonderful and supporting Thyroid community, as I would later discover). I would be EXHAUSTED all day and then fall asleep on the sofa at 8 o’clock at night. Way too early for someone of my age. But, even with all that sleep, I would never feel fully rested or that I had gotten a good nights rest. Waking up every few hours, certainly didn’t help matters. Then, to my horror, my hair started falling out in, not just single strands, but in clumps! My nails were super fragile and very brittle. Headaches were much more frequent and excruciating. Let’s not forget the dreaded weight gain. Again. Don’t even get me started. I couldn’t take it anymore. I just knew something wasn’t right with my body and this medicine wasn’t helping. I had to try and find some answers.
There was no stopping me–I was hooked. I researched and learned as much as I could about my condition. Hypothyroidism.
My first step was purchasing Mary Shomon’s “The Thyroid Diet.” Which, was a wonderful start to my healing journey. I eventually, advanced to her newer version, “The Thyroid Diet Revolution”. From there, I was on a roll. I jumped on Google and searched ‘hypothyroidism’. I wanted to immerse myself in knowledge. Knowledge, of the obviously, unknown, to me. This is the same knowledge, that seems to elude even the best of doctors. There was no stopping me–I was hooked. I researched and learned as much as I could about my condition. Hypothyroidism. Immediately, designing my new path to healing, I started a blog, appropriately titled www.hypothyroidismsucks.com Documenting my journey and sharing my thoughts and findings with others, was my new part-time calling. I have truly enjoyed making connections, like this one, with Thyroid Nation. And, I know I will continue to connect with many others along the way, which is comforting.
We may never feel “normal” again, but trying is half the battle.
Unfortunately, I still don’t feel great. Boo! After going through several doctors, I was, finally able to find one that let me try Armour thyroid. I go back and forth between feeling well and feeling like I’ve been hit by a bus. (who can relate?) I feel best when I’m taking my Armour, eating a Paleo lifestyle (another of my research findings), working out (I’m obsessed with Crossfit) and getting a good night sleep, not counting sheep. I am trying my best to wake up feeling rested. Everyday is a continuous battle, but this disease does not have to define me, or any of us. We may never feel “normal” again, but trying is half the battle. Finding people to connect with that share your battle, makes the fight so much easier. Follow me here.
You are not alone. Stay strong, thyroid warriors–Thyroid Thrivers!
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