Will The Real MBP Please Step Forward

My M&M jar is more than half full and I’m not exactly sure how to interpret that.  Normally it would be empty after just a few days.  Actually, if I was being completely honest, normally I don’t have an M&M jar.  Why?  Well, because I love M&M’s and it wouldn’t take long for me to become accustomed to having that jar with me at all times.  Before you know it I would need to buy bigger purses, install LED lights in the lid for twilight snacking and find a car seat to keep it safe when I was out on the road searching for more M&M’s.   Let’s face facts, it’s one thing to enjoy a snack, it’s another thing altogether when it takes over your life and you find yourself coordinating your outfits with your varied M&M selection.  The pastels are out for springtime after all and I do look darling in lavender.

You see lately I haven’t felt well.  I had a massive panic attack a little over two weeks ago and after spending some time with a number of different doctors, it has been concluded that my thyroid is over medicated.  We’re in the process of taking care of that but the adjustment in my body will take approximately four to six weeks.  As of today, I have been on the lowered dose of the meds for a week and a half and the road has been a difficult one.  So difficult in fact that my deep, passionate love for the M&M has waned and my happy socks sit sadly in a drawer wondering what will become of them.

To date, I have had four more major panic attacks, am so sick to my stomach all day almost every day, suffer from terrible headaches and at times am unsteady on my feet.  I have to force myself to get out of bed.  I have to force myself to eat.  I have to force myself to leave my apartment.  There is no other way I can think to explain it other than to say my body feels like it is not my own and that it is angry.  Every day is a little different in the how’s and when’s it is going to reach out and remind me that things are not as they should be so it’s like riding a roller coaster that no longer has anyone manning the controls.  Some days I hang upside down in one of the loops for hours, and others, I jut back and forth violently as if there is a kink in the track’s mechanics.

I have been prescribed medication for the anxiety and panic and although it has helped immensely, the affects have been a difficult thing for me to get used to.  Imagine taking a wet blanket and laying it on a sidewalk full of ants.  Initially some of the ants would stop moving but there would be those that would still mill about trying to find their way out from under.  That’s how anxiety medication feels to me.  It’s like a wet blanket but I can still feel some of the frenzy bouncing around in my body.  It’s not as bad, almost as if the sharp edges have been dulled and covered in bubble wrap but I still feel it.  Eventually as the medication wears off, all of the ants begin to move around again and as the bubble wrap falls away I struggle with whether or not to calm them back down.  Being someone who hesitates to take any kind of medication, not only has the anxiety been a struggle but addressing it a challenge as well.

One of the only ways that I’ve been able to move through this period of my life, besides the medicine, the doctors, my supportive and loving family, fiancée and friends is by finding what clearly seems to be the bright side, at least to me.  It has to do with so many of the things I’ve written about here on this blog for the past two years.  You see, for a very long time I have had a hard time figuring out who I am and what I want and how I feel about things.  I’ve struggled almost constantly with pleasing others before myself and then when finally turning the attention my way, not even knowing what I wanted.  Over and over again, when I would meditate I would picture myself unzipping what seemed like a costume and stepping out and away from it.  I was refreshed, relaxed, happy and at peace.  It was such a lovely image and one that I desperately wanted to connect with in real life but had now idea how.  How did the girl in that image figure out how to step away from everything that seemed to be weighing her down and keeping her from herself?

Maybe, just maybe, the panic attacks are the side effects of my body helping me let go of all of the baggage that I’ve been carrying around for years.  Old hurts and disappointments that I used to direct my life and influence my decisions have no place in this new life that I’m building.  I’m engaged, settling in at my new apartment with my fiancée and getting to know who I am and what I want in a whole new way.   I’m beginning a new chapter in my life, one where I have stepped forward for the first time in years to take the wheel and steer and maybe I’m being rewarded for that.  After all, my thyroid is being adjusted so it can work with me and support me and help me function in a way that’s best for my body.  Coincidence?  I think not.

So, I’m going to choose to look at this time in my life as a positive one where I am getting the chance to take off the costume that I no longer need in favor of being exactly who I am, a happy socks wearing, M&M loving bride to be who looks forward not back.  Like Robert Frost said, “The best way out is always through.”  Now if you’ll excuse me, I believe the ride is about to start again and I need to secure my safety harness and tuck both hands inside the car.  I look forward to seeing you soon at the gates of the theme park where we can walk home on solid ground together.  Better yet bring your special socks.  I think it’s time we went dancing.

28 thoughts on “Will The Real MBP Please Step Forward

  1. Thank you so much for what you shared about adjusting to thyroid meds. I did a search and that’s how I found you. I am just home from my 5th trip to the ER and so discouraged I want to crawl in bed and stay there. I have been wearing a heart monitor for a month while i work I to get my thyroid levels adjusted and I feel sick nearly every day. I am blessed with a very patient husband and hope the battle will be over soon. The frustrating thing is that the doctors act like it’s no big deal. Don’t they see enough people go through this that they know how sick they can get? Some days the fatigue is so bad I can’t get out of bed. I hope you are doing better now.

    • Jeannie, I’m so glad that you were able to find what I had written and hope, that if anything, it helps knowing that someone is struggling with the same issues. I’m so sorry to hear that you’ve been to the ER so many times. The trouble with my heart rate has been one of the scariest side effects I have faced. Today my fiancé came up to me and asked that I stop constantly checking my pulse. I try but some days, it’s hard and I find comfort when it’s where it should be target wise. His concern of course is that I’m upsetting myself more than anything and it hurts him to see me like that. I’m lucky to have him and some very supportive friends and amazing parents. My first panic attack was March 9th and just last week, blood work showed that I am over active again. The meds have been dropped now three times and my hope is that this one is the charm. The nausea today was a little more than I had patience for and the feeling like I couldn’t breathe enough rattled me to my socks. The good news is I’m back at work, sleep fairly well and have rediscovered a love for walking which has kept me sane. Good luck with things and reach out any time. And if you have Facebook, look up Thyroid Sexy. It’s Gena Lee Nolin’s page and there is a ton of support there. I’m thinking of you and pulling for you!! Take Care.

      • Thanks so much for your encouraging reply. I had another trip to the ER last week – this time because I had too much beta blocker in me…my heart rate was 47, and I nearly passed out. They took me off the meds for a day, then prescribed a much lower dosage, and I’m doing better. It is so validating to have found you, as I have felt so alone in this struggle for the last 4 months. I think my situation is compounded by the fact that I started out hyper, was taken off Synthroid completely for 10 days, then have been given three different dosages since that time. My body can’t seem to catch up with all the change. That is my personal battle, but then dealing with the doctors is another challenge, as they act like they’ve never heard of anyone else having problems – so “maybe something else is wrong with you.” I KNOW they have to have seen this, and my hubby says they just don’t have the capacity to deal with each person’s personal journey, so they just dismiss that part of it, as they write yet another prescription and tell you to come back in six weeks. The crazy thing is that I’ve been on thyroid meds since 1996 with no problems, and all of the sudden, I was hyper and started having episodes of racing heart, shortness of breath, and debilitating fatigue. Thank you SO much for sharing your story and creating this blog. I can’t tell you what a relief this has been for me to not feel so alone. I’m also excited to read about your plans to shop in NYC for a wedding dress. How fun is that??

        • Jeannie, I just realized that I never responded to this! I’m so sorry. I was moving along at a decent pace and then bam, my thyroid meds were too high again. The anxiety was almost debilitating. So much so that I started a medication for it and had a rare serious side effect that necessitated I come off of it. It was a very rough few weeks but, I’m back and although I’m not feeling great, I’m feeling better. I’ve gone gluten free per the advice and evaluation of a integrative MD and that seems to have helped. I did have blood work done this morning as it’s time (I get it every six weeks now) and I’m pretty sure the meds are too high again. My heart is racing off and on, I’ve got migraines, my eyes feel strange, I’m anxious and my face is breaking out again. I’ll have the results Monday. If it helps at all, I’ve been on meds for at least ten years with no issues and then four months ago, things went haywire. I was at 200 of Synthroid, dropped to 175, dropped to 150 and am now at 137. My new endocrinologist is fantastic but, said she has no idea why my body is doing what it’s doing and also cannot believe we’ve had to drop the dose so much. To top it all off, I’ve lost between 25 and 30 pounds which she feels is wonderful but also puzzling as you normally don’t lose weight as your thyroid meds drop. Whatever is going on, I’ve gotten to the point where I tell myself I have to listen to my body and try and take great care of it no matter how it fluctuates. I meditate daily, walk daily, drink a ton of water, write in a journal (and here), eat a ton and I mean a ton of veggies, nuts, seeds and fruit, take a vegetarian vitamin recommended by my doc and try to get as much sleep as I can. All of that coupled with going to the docs and getting my blood work done is the best I can do. My hope is that in trying to take great care of myself, I will be rewarded and things will finally even out. That is what I hope for you! If you ever want to email me, you can reach me at whichwayiseast@yahoo.com (I get lost alot :). Take care and I’m keeping you in my thoughts!!

  2. Hope you get better soon. I’ve had anxiety issues, too, and it does always get better, even though every time it happens, it feels like it won’t.
    M&M’s are a fun snack. I don’t know where the mini pink ones they used to make went, though. They were the cutest.

    • The mini pink ones were pretty damn cute Duck. And you’re right, it gets better but every time, no matter what you say to yourself, it feels like it won’t. I’m working on that though and hope to find a way to keep a little calmer as the storm passes. If only I had some mini pink M&M’s…

  3. I’m so sorry you’re having such a hard time right now. :( But what a great way to chose to look at it! The more I deal with different energies, the more I become convinced that disruptions in our physical bodies are due to a shift in the energies flowing through it. Sometimes it’s because of a blockage and sometimes because of a change in the vibration. The result of either isn’t always pleasant but long term the change is a good thing. Hang on to those positive thoughts and I’ll send some of my own your way. Hoping you don’t have to deal with all this too much longer! *hugs*

    • You know dragonfae, I really believe all of this happened for a reason – a great reason. I believe my body needed a break and in doing so, I believe it will come out stronger on the other side. It just feels like something wonderful is in the air. I like it. I don’t feel well enough yet to understand it but, one step at a time. Hugs back!

  4. Cupcake,it is hard to see you in such a difficult position.I would love to put you in a plastic bubble until your thyroid is working fine and there are no more panic attacks but I do not have that power Your are so lucky to have Scott there with you .You have a loving family who is there to do anything to support you. Just take one day or maybe one half day or maybe just a couple hours at a time. I do know one thing for sure you will get better. Please hang in there.

    Love,

    Sunshine

    • I love you Momma, I mean Sunshine. Thank you and thank you for coming out to visit each week and helping me find my way. And yes, soon I will find it within me to get out there and get my eyebrows waxed. As soon as I can manage to do so without panicking myself into a corner where the girl may accidentally wax my entire eyebrow off. :)

      Love You,
      -Cupcake

  5. From the immortal words of Finding Nemo…Just keep swimming, just keep swimming, just keep swimming.You’ll get there!

    I’ve been in a funk over the last week or so, but today I’m feeling better, and I think it’s because I’m wearing my turtle and ladybug socks :) As Kate said…keep up the happy socks!

    • Jessie, I LOVED your comment and have murmured the words “just keep swimming” over and over again when I’ve needed to and smiled. Thank you.

      And hopefully you all are now on the mend? From what I hear/saw, the whole house was under the weather. Maybe we all need some new socks to kick off spring – fresh and healthy :).

  6. Those socks are adorable and I’m totally with you. Who can keep M & M’s around long enough to put them in a jar??? One day at a time may be agonizing but as you know I am here for you. It may not stop the panic attacks and it won’t lift the wet blanket but just know that I’m here. And when you are crying alone I am crying with you, not saying a word just hugging you and crying too.

    Tell those happy socks dancing days are on the way!

  7. Sometimes when life gets to be too much I believe our bodies take over until we get our sh#% straight. I find that when I’ve got too much stress, too much to balance in both work and personal life, I alway seem to get sick-physically-to where I have to stay home and sleep or bum around watching reruns of “what’s happening” and “golden girls.” it’s like your body gives you permission to step out of your daily routine and expectations. I think your body is doing the same-just hitting the reset button on your life-and getting you ready for the next big thing. Look forward to seeing you come out on the other side-socks included (and could you share your m&ms please?)

    • “Thank you for being a friend, travel down the road and back again, your heart is true, you’re a pal and a confidant.” And for you sister, I’d share anytime. Looking forward to seeing you as soon as the reset is officially, …reset :).

  8. Kudos to you on taking care of yourself and working towards getting better. Its not an easy road to go, but it is well worth the effort. Hang in there. . .and keep up the happy socks!

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