Don’t Feel Guilty to look after you!
My life over the past few years has felt quite stressful. My profession is health and fitness, but there were a couple of years where I felt that I was being overwhelmed with the world around me. I went through a stressful period which I wont get into on this occasion which greatly affected my health. The stress which I thought that I was controlling became overwhelming to my body and I was diagnosed with a condition called Graves Disease which is an autoimmune thyroid condition. Most of my family suffer from autoimmune conditions and I thought throughout life that I had stayed immune to it. Unfortunately, stress is a huge trigger, so regardless of eating well and exercising, having elevated stress levels constantly in that time put me over the edge.
The circumstances crept up over the course of about a year and to be honest, I didn’t realise the impact it had on me. I think back now to symptoms that I was having and knew I was going through stress, but as it slowly crept up, it didn’t have the same impact as one large stressful moment. My symptoms included weight loss. Not so bad now that I think about it…lol!! I was not putting on any weight despite having an enormous appetite. I was experiencing heart palpitations, my hair was falling out, I was exhausted and my brain was really foggy. Like I said, it crept up on me so I didn’t realise the full impact until later. A book I read recently by Doctor Libby Weaver called Rushing Women’s Syndrome put the whole experience into perspective for me. She referred to A Frog in Boiling Water. As you can imagine, if you put a frog into a pot of boiling water, it will jump out…. but if you put a frog into tepid water and slowly let it boil, it will stay in the pot until it boils and I think you know the rest of the story.
I remember going to the Endocronologist and on my first visit she asked if I had any symptoms. My TSH had stopped functioning (Thyroid stimulating hormone) and she was contemplating having to admit me to hospital to which I refused as an option. The next option was to try the medication to see if that made some changes. The medication that I was given, helped my thyroid, but I had to get blood test every 6 weeks as it affected my liver greatly. It was such a hard decision, get my thyroid better, or risk liver damage. By about 10 months on the medication, my liver function tests started to read badly so it was time to get off the medication. In this time though, I had done so much research into autoimmune conditions and my condition and to how I could prevent this from happening or recurring. A positive that the drugs did for me, was to actually show me how sick I was. I remember after a couple of weeks coming out of what felt like was a fog. I could actually remember things, my life wasn’t a blur. I didn’t feel like a walking zombie every day and I felt energetic and revitalised again.
The entire situation could not have occurred though I now believe if I had stayed more aware of what the stress was doing to my body.
Although something that I would never want to go through again, it has given me a new appreciation for life, for illness and ways to move forward from adversity. It took me a little bit of time, but I’m there now. I needed to share this for the stories that I want to share going forward as this has shaped my life to where I am now. This is why I want to share my experience and I hope that I can help some people through what they may be going through. There are aspects to life that all need to work well together in ourselves, or it doesn’t quite get there. There is Exercise, Nutrition, Mindset, Relaxation and recharge and gratitude. Our bodies, our minds and our souls need them all. We cannot have one without the other.
The important part is that whatever you do, you have to believe that you can do it. I hope that my experience will help or inspire you to do the same.
Today is Day 3. I have set a date for my goals to transpire of 20th August 2020 which Ill be sharing in later blogs the details. Happy Sunday! My offical day of relaxation.