March 25th - April 4th: Visit paradise in Florida, escape from horrible Michigan winter to gorgeous, sun-drenched beaches of Captiva Island. Spend an inordinate amount of time napping, or hanging out in bed, even when paradise is right outside my freaking door. Come home and slog back to work, to immediately contract throat/respiratory thing wherein, by April 10th, I am coughing up chunks of unknown substance. Ick.
April 12th: Visit to Internist, to see about amazingly long-lasting sore throat. Am prescribed antibiotic for throat infection. Internist notices enlarged thyroid, and does blood tests, schedules ultrasound.
April 19th: Monthly visit to Dr. R, the pain guy. Point out recent symptoms of mood swings, lethargy, exhaustion, increased battles with depression. Intend to speak to psychiatrist (part of the pain clinic methodology is to attack pain on all fronts, physically, chemically, emotionally, as all are connected--hence the need for the psychiatrist, instead of a therapist) about a possible increase in meds for depression. Mention thyroid stuff, and am advised to bring this up with psychiatrist as well.
April 20th: Ultrasound at Internist's office. Blood test results are back, low-ish, but normal. Prescribed second round of antibiotics for lingering throat ickiness. Later in the day, visit psychiatrist, a woman, my age, who relates completely to this tale and tells me SHE is being being treated for symptoms of hypothyroidism, even though she shared that her blood tests came out like mine. Suggests I speak to internist, after ultrasound results about being treated for same as "sub-clinical hypothyroidism." Leave with hope.
May 2nd: First possible appointment with Internist, who has been out of town for a well-deserved week in the sun. Is "meh" about the concept of "sub-clinical hypothyroidism," and decides to send me to specialist. Hope diminishing.
May 10th: Monthly visit to pain guy, Dr. R. Update him on (lack of) progress.
May 19th: Earliest possible visit with specialist. Am told 17-day lead time is actually "quick." Am skeptical. Waiting room: 55 minutes. Give more info to resident: 15 minutes. Visit with actual endocrinologist: <5 minutes. Direct quote: You're normal. I can't do anything for you. Indirect quote: That will be $150.00. Later that evening, tell Buddy I am determined to keep pushing until someone HELPS ME. Next move, call psychiatrist's office for another appointment (see April 20th).
May 25th: Return to psychiatrist. Relate complete tale of woe, and before I can even get there she says, "...and you'd like me to prescribe for you." Hope restored.
June 5th: Have been taking infinitesimal dose of levathyroxin for 12 days. Dramatic improvement. Am considering actual social life again. Much happier at work. Much happier everywhere. Even in the face of pain flare-up, unrelated, which I know can be taken care of soon.
My recommendation: Don't give up. If you can't be your own advocate, find someone who CAN be.
That is all. Thanks for hanging in there with me.
* Words of wisdom below: