Health · Uncategorized

Just went in for my thyroid ultrasound and follow up

It was my first ultrasound since my surgery 2 years ago.

I found out the cysts on my right side (only side I have left) haven’t grown, so I don’t need to have another scan for about 2 years but I had my lab work done and they had to up my dose.

It seems every 3 months, I go hypo but this time I didn’t get such extreme symptoms.

I have been really tired and a little grumpy but I figured it was stress and the hours I’ve been working. Starting my days around 6am and ending around 11pm tends to wear anyone down over time and it’s my normal.

I also have been slowly gaining weight, after losing 20lbs, I’m up 9 and I’m not eating any different (I’ve been gluten free since July of last year, stopped November and December and restarted in January and have been strict since)

I have been waiting for the “right” time to go fully dairy free as well, that will help bloating but I can’t explain the weight gain and weight loss- both happen with me not doing anything different.

I guess when I’m in a bad mood, tired or even gain 1lb I can count that as my thyroid. I have started to notice that I only really have anxiety attacks when my thyroid is off so I guess that’s a good indicator and it helps me knowing that my anxiety seems to solely be linked to my thyroid. Maybe if they could get that under control, it will help that issue.

I usually have more extreme symptoms, but I guess since they caught me when I was slightly elevated as opposed to a major elevation, the symptoms didn’t have time to come on as bad.

Either way, you’d think after 2 years, they would have me straight by now… This is getting frustrating. I have gone from 25 to 50, 75 and now I’m at 88. I guess my next step will be 100.

dream/divination · Uncategorized

Dream Journal Template I Created

This is a digital download I created to serve as a template to record your own dreams and help with analyzing.

Download one time and you can print as many pages as you need to create your own journal. The template is for one dream, no need to repurchase for each additional dream. It’s meant for personal/private use only. If you want it for commercial use, please contact me and we can work it out.

https://www.etsy.com/NewAgeDreamChick/listing/498483970/dream-interpretation-detailed-dream-pdf?utm_source=Copy&utm_medium=ListingManager&utm_campaign=Share&utm_term=so.lmsm&share_time=1523678550430

Uncategorized

Planting seeds

I started prepping for the garden today, finally. I have 6-8 weeks until it’ll be time to plant them in the ground.

My two year old helped me put the dirt in the pots and I actually got the 7 year old to plant a few. Of course, neither of them wanted to go with my plans (neat rows with each type of flower/vegetable/herb labeled so it was haphazardly tossed in and it’ll be a fun surprise when they grow.

My first year with a garden, I had sunflowers the size of the first floor of our apartment and very healthy tomato plants. I also made the mistake of planting basil in an uncontained area. I was literally chasing people down the sidewalk with handfuls of basil asking if they’d like some (had a few bags frozen and was using some to cook with- just had way too many plants pop up)

The second year, my plants failed to come up. Everything I tried, nothing was living and the garden didn’t look half as good- even with pre-grown plants and we moved the next year and got a very late start. All the plants I pre-planted had died by that time. We had a hideous bush our landlord was saying she’d have removed. We finally got fed up and my husband cut it down. We kept a bit of stump and stick and I’ve been perching some decorations inside. I’m thinking about painting it and tying different color ribbons.

This year, I’m planning on having as full and beautiful a garden as I can. I planted extra seeds (I used the full packs) so hopefully I’d have enough healthy enough plants to fill our little section of land.

 

From the time I was a child, I had plans laid out for a huge, elaborate garden- the type that fills up at least one acre of land. It came complete with benches, patios, a stone walkway and lots of statues and fountains. It’s still a vision in my head- that I want to make reality. When I was young, I played Rollercoaster Tycoon and always had awards for best scenery- I’d build the park up then expand to design the gardens.

I think planning for my garden and actually laying it out is my favorite part of Spring and the time is finally here to start my plans. My goal in life is to live out away from everything and live sustainably- plant my own fruits, veggies, get my meat and eggs locally sourced (or through hunting) and have a well for water. I don’t trust grocery store produce, although I do have to eat it and I don’t trust grocery store meat- although we do have to buy it. I have toyed with making my own facial products, cleaners and dishsoap. I attempted to make my oldest’s wipes but couldn’t use cloth diapers.

I have no idea when I started to take an interest in that way of life, but it seems peaceful, relaxing and a lot of fun.

dream/divination

Dream Meanings Part 3- Kissing and Sex

I have had people ask me questions about dreams that really bothered them in the past. In the dream, they were kissing a member of the same sex whom they admired and at times it had them questioning their sexuality.

Dreams about kissing (or sex) typically do not mean you’re actually attracted to the person you’re kissing in a sexual way. There are several ways they can be interpreted and those are primarily based on the person and their relationship to you.

KISSING

Kissing a member of the same sex whom you are close to in real life typically shows a part of them you are wanting to take on yourself. Either you admire an aspect of their personality or physical appearance and wish to take that trait on yourself. That trait is usually a major topic in the dream itself.

Kissing a member of the same sex whom you do not know in waking life typically is similar but it can also show a part of you that you are just now accepting. That trait or aspect to your being will be the main focus of your relationship to the woman/man in the dream.

Kissing a member of the opposite sex when you’re in a relationship (hetero standpoint)- This usually shows some trait in a person you wish your significant other would show. It could be as simple as you wanting him to shave a mustache or beard or wanting her to grow her hair longer, or it could be a personality trait. Once again, it’s based on what the main focus of the dream is- the first thing that attracts you to the person you’re kissing.

Kissing a member of the opposite sex when you’re single- this usually is showing you what you want in a partner.

 

SEX

Sex is usually considered a taboo topic in dreams. It can mean that you have gone too long and are needing the release, but sex in dreams usually means acceptance, passion, (even anger). It is a strong topic, strong feeling and usually is also signaling a release of some kind.

If you are having sex with a member of the same sex, it is showing you’re in full acceptance of your self- whatever trait shows strongest in the dream is the trait you hold that you are finally accepting. It’s very similar to kissing.

A popular subject is having sex with someone you absolutely dislike (or even hate) in waking life- in this case, it’s a release of anger towards the person and the passionate (negative) strong emotions you feel about the person. Sexual dreams are a release- they are releasing fear, anxiety, anger, hostility or other negatives- this is not saying you’re going to wake up and feel great about the person, just that you’re one step closer to healing.

Dreaming about having sex with an ex is another common dream that makes people second guess feelings for the person. In some cases, it can be memories or it could mean you’re still heavily attracted to the person but most of the time it’s releasing negative emotions surrounding the break up and releasing the attachment you have towards the person. It can show

*Even though this is written from a hetero perspective, it can also be true if you’re lesbian or gay- the same sex meanings will hold true since most of the time it’s like looking into the mirror of your true self*

Health · Uncategorized

Living with Hashimotos

Imagine the most exhausted you ever felt. Maybe you stayed up all night cramming for a test in college, or a state board test after finishing nursing/beauty/etc school. Now, imagine feeling that way despite sleeping for 10-12 hours a night. No matter what, you can’t shake the fatigue. Now you’re noticing bald spots forming and your hair is getting noticibly thinner. Suddenly, putting your hair up in a ponytail isn’t an option- a ponytail is the size of a normal person’s pigtail.You’re dealing with fatigue and hair thinning- now you’re emotions are falling apart. You keep feeling anger build up over nothing- now you’re crying because your dog barked wrong and you think he’s mad at you. You’re crying at the drop of a dime, your hair is falling out and you’re always tired. You think it must be that time of the month but just to be safe, you go to the doctor. They poke around and find a lump in your neck so they send you for a biopsy. The biopsy comes back negative for cancer, but an ultrasound shows it’s a cyst. You’re anxiety flares and you suddenly can’t sleep, you’re always cold and always shaky. You go for further tests only to find out it’s a large cyst inside your thyroid that is causing your thyroid to over produce TSH and it’s making you hyper- but at times it’s making you hypo. You set up your surgery to have the cyst removed and in that time are put on heart medication and two weeks before the surgery, you’re put on medication to kill your thyroid function- because having the surgery while hyper could throw you into a thyroid storm- where you go severely hyper and if it’s treated can lead to you dying.

By this time, you feel like a wreck, your life is a mess and you’re doing your best to hold everything together so it doesn’t cost you your job, family, life or anything else. You figure the surgery will fix everything.

You go in for the surgery and it’s an easy recovery and you’re quickly back at work. One day you wake up in a bad mood. After not shaking it, you just start crying for no reason then you’re shaky, hot, cold, hot, something sets you off so you start screaming and then fall into such a deep depression you start wondering if you should even be alive. That’s the point you decide to get help- they test your thyroid after finding out you have Hashimoto’s and thyroid surgery- sure enough, your TSH is off. They put you on medication and it works- you’re back to normal. That normal feels so good you forget everything else- until just a few months later, you’re right back to bad.

Keep going through that cycle- every few months, your thyroid is thrown off and they have to readjust your medication and that describes me for the past two years- just when I go back to normal, I get thrown off.

For me, it started with a positive pregnancy test. I set up the appointment to get my pregnancy confirmed with my OB and his nurse checked my neck. She found a lump so he sent me for a scan. The scan came back showing I had a nodule inside my thyroid so I had to have a biopsy- that came back inconclusive but the panic attack I had during the test (huge needle going at my neck) possibly changed his mind about redoing the test. I had to wait until the end of my pregnancy to be put on anything more than a heart medication to slow the palpatations down. In that time, my thyroid went from high to fine and back to hyper. I was dealing with severe (almost disabling) anxiety followed by severe depression swings. They held off on my surgery because I was breast feeding and they didn’t want to have to keep me from nursing for a little time. When my baby was around four months, we decided on the time of the surgery. I started a new job that had me working nine hour shifts and required one month notice for days I needed off. I naturally dried up working such long shifts (I was afraid of asking to pump but did manage to go home during some of my lunch breaks to nurse). One day, I got a reminder of an appointment with the man who was going to do my surgery so I figured I was going to get my appointment date and set up for surgery. When I was in the room during my appointment, the nurse came in and asked how I was feeling, then asked how I had been after my surgery. I told her I hadn’t had the surgery yet- I thought that appointment was to set up my surgery.

That day, I set up the surgery and a month later, I took a week off work to have it done. They put me on Levothyroxine 25mgs. At first, the 25 was fine but soon I went back to depression and anxiety swings. I ended up going to the ER, I was feeling so bad and they tested my thyroid- once again, I was hypo so they upped me to 50. I was fine for a bit, then one day at work, I was standing when I suddenly got really light headed. I tried to shake it off since I normally feel that way. My hearing faded- everything felt like it was distant, everything was getting dark and I developed tunnel vision. Suddenly, I felt a pain in the left side of my chest followed by my left arm going numb. I started feeling like someone set my left side on fire- it was so bad, I was sweating and in pain from the heat. My right side went cold- like, frozen cold. I was sweating profusely and so cold it was painful. By that time, I was slurring and had my husband come to pick me up. At the ER, they checked my heart rate for 10 seconds and told me it was an anxiety attack. They did check my thyroid levels, which once again, came back hypo. My thyroid was the only thing that came back bad and my doctor upped me to 75 (what I’ve been on for a year now)

I was told that episode sounded like a blood sugar seizure, and I’m no stranger to those symptoms when I need to eat but I know it wasn’t an anxiety attack. I was told that several months ago (and nearly a year after it happened and was dismissed by the ER staff, so they couldn’t test and confirm it)

It took them about 1-2 years to get my dose right for longer than 2-3 months, but lately my tests have been coming back in the normal range.

Hashimotos Thyroiditis is one of two autoimmune thyroid diseases, also the most common cause of Hypothyroid disease. Hypothyroidism is when your body produces too little of the thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH). It’s caused by an immune attack on your thyroid and the only way it will go away is either having your full thyroid (I only had half) removed or when it completely destroys your thyroid leaving it “nothing but a lump of scar tissue” (as per my thyroid surgeon).

It causes fatigue, depression (and anxiety- despite what some professionals say), it will cause fluxuations in your thyroid that go from hyper to hypo before you get stuck on hypo because it’s done so much damage, your thyroid can’t function properly. It causes hair loss, dry skin, constantly feeling cold, weight gain and difficulty losing weight. It also can throw people into early menopause. It can hurt fertility and unregulated, can cause thyroid issues if you’re pregnant.

It’s genetic, so if you have it (or any autoimmune disease) your kids are at higher risk of developing autoimmunity. It’s fairly commonly co-morbid with Celiac (you have over 50% likelihood of developing Celiac with Hashimotos and vice versa). It’s recommended to try the Autoimmune Paleo for 1-3 months, then add things back to see if any of those foods help or hurt- I haven’t tried that diet, but I have done elimination with gluten and dairy- both are problems for me personally so they’re both almost fully out of my diet (very low dairy and gluten free)

It can take you from healthy to severely sick until you get the diagnosis fairly quickly. My progression has been over the course of two years. My hair used to be normal but course. Now it dries like straw and if I move it, you can see my scalp. If I pull it back, it’s the same thickness as half a normal pigtail. I’m always tired. I have 2 kids, an Etsy shop (really, two shops) and a day job in retail- so some fatigue is normal, but there are times I’m useless after I get home from work. There are other times, I’m great but it’s taken them two years to get a dose high enough for me to function and I changed my diet. I’m currently eating gluten free, I’m weeding out dairy and am wanting to switch to a full Paleo diet since it’s recommended.

Health · Parenting

A few things 30 year old me wishes 22 year old newly pregnant me had known.

I have had a total of three pregnancies- my first ended at 28 weeks with a partial abruption and severe pre-eclampisa. She was only 1lb 11.5ozs and 13 inches long and spent a total of 8 1/2 months in NICU. She’s now a small but healthy 7 year old. My second was relatively uncomplicated but we lost her. She was born at 36 weeks due to me going into a painless labor and I wasn’t allowed by the doctors to go into labor. She died of a condition called Anencephaly (absence of the skull) and lived for 3 hours after birth.

My third was totally complication free and she was born at 37 weeks (once again, due to the complications of my oldest) and was 7lbs11ozs and 21 inches long- they told us she would have been a 9-10lb baby if she was born term.

I had each baby at 23, 25 and 27 years, I’m 30 now so I have spent almost my full adult life being called “mommy.”

I read all the books, blogs and joined all the support forums I could find. What to Expect was my bible through my first pregnancy and through her early years but nothing could prepare me for the almost 9 months of hell I was in for after having my baby.

When I was 22 and newly married, I found out I was pregnant. I was young, naive and even though I knew it was a huge sacrifice, I had a glorified image of pregnancy and motherhood. I knew it wouldn’t be a walk in the park and that I wouldn’t have near the freedom I had before but I still imagined taking the baby to baby and me classes, taking her out in cute little outfits with friends (since most of mine, at that time were also pregnant or new mommies) and late night cuddles. I thought of play dates and hanging out with friends would simply end up taking place at kid friendly places instead of bars. I had no idea what the dark side of pregnancy involved. I had heard of conditions like Pre-Eclampsia but the thought never crossed my mind that it could happen to me.

I was asked the question “What would 30 year old me go back and tell newly pregnant 22 year old me?” so here are a few pieces of advice I wish I had listened to or received when I was pregnant, especially when I was pregnant with my two older.

  1. Take folic acid- lots of it. I didn’t realize how important it really was. I did make sure my pre-natals had it, but that was it. After dealing with Pre-E and losing another baby to Anencephaly, I joined a support group for people who lost babies to the disorder and that was when I read about folic acid and how vital it is to healthy pregnancies. I also learned about the MTHFR and after asking for a simple blood test, I found out I had a more severe form of the lesser mutation- which means my body only processes about 7% of the folic acid I eat.
  2. Swelling all over to the point where you do not look human IS NOT NORMAL. Don’t call Labor and delivery, go in to the ER to get checked- especially if swelling in the hands and face comes with headache and lightheadedness or any other sign of high blood pressure. Pre-Eclampsia is serious, but can be managed if it’s caught early on.
  3. Lay off the baby books- especially if you have a preemie- seriously, cut it out. If your baby doesn’t develop by the books (either advanced or behind) they will stress you out more than help- it’s nice to know what “normal” development is, but if you start playing comparisons, it will make you lose your mind.
  4. Go ahead and complain about the morning sickness, crampy feelings, bloated feeling, headaches, mood swings, exhaustion and everything else- being pregnant sucks and it’s ok to not enjoy the symptoms- it’s the end result we all want.
  5. Do not freak out after being given the epidural. It doesn’t make all feeling go away- just the pain.
  6. Enjoy the last little bit of freedom- the sleepless nights do not last long (be a few months, they WILL sleep through the night) but that small window of time in between feels like an eternity- and there will be times you will wake up freaked out in the middle of the night because your baby sighed and you thought they were choking- that is normal.

As of right now, those first three pieces of advice are the most important things I wish I had known. I know I could never know, but I feel that if I had known to start taking folic acid before we started trying, our middle daughter would be here with us- about to turn 5.

After my kids were born, there are things I wish I had known.

1. My social life would die. I always had an active social life from college on out- but between location differences between my friends, weeding out the bad influences and age differences between our kids, I have lost touch with most of my old friends. Lack of time tends to get in the way of meeting new people in similar situations (although, working moms with working husbands and busy schedules may not be the types I’d want to meet when it comes to play dates and getting kids together). It’s not bad losing social life- If your old friends were bad influences (into drinking/drugs/etc) but it does rub off on your kids as they get older and have a lower interest in being around other kids.

2. Don’t let your kid sleep in your bed with you. Even just one night. Our 7 year old fell out of her big girl bed two times in one night when she was 3. We allowed her to sleep with us that night. She’s now 7 and we still can’t get her out of our bed (we could, but she actually panics at the thought of sleeping alone). We know she’s spoiled, but fear and anxiety is real and is a real problem when part of a child’s special needs is that they have trouble communicating with others.

3. Having special needs kids changes how you interact with all areas of your life. I’d love to take her to parties and to movies- and sometimes she does great. Other times, we will spend the full night in the bathroom with me trying to calm her down. We do not know how she will react to any given social interaction and sensory overload is a real problem. It has taken me 30 years to know and handle my own issues (loud noises- mainly, loud crowds, she has the same)

I recently read about one business starting a sensory sensitive day and I’m going to have to try taking her. I want to get her around more “normal” developing children, but other special needs kids tend to get on well with her- either way, she’s starting to take interest in socializing so we need to nurture it.

 

I may create a continuation of this post when I think of more. I know there are probably a lot of things that have slipped my mind. What are some things you wish you had known when you were newly pregnant?