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  • Writer's pictureErin Spineto

A New Mode

Now that I am back at work, and, really, back among the living, I get asked a lot how I am doing. I think I have fielded that question at least twenty times in the last few weeks since school started.

I usually answer that I am feeling ok. Not really normal, but, maybe, a new normal? That's the thing I am most recently learning;. I thought this new disease was an easy fix, just take some meds and I am back to normal, problem solved and, really, over with. But we are so bad at mimicking with meds what the body does so naturally.

Stress goes up and your body matches it with increased thyroid levels. So I am always having to change my dose to match my activity level and stress level so that I don't get too far behind on the fatigue. And it sneaks up on me sometimes. I am learning to recognize my stress levels and trying to be proactive with dose changes. The diabetes has taught me a lot when it comes to that, but, of course, when I change my thyroid levels, it changes all of the protocols I have developed to manage the diabetes so it's like I am no longer solving equations in one or two variables, but now have four- or five-dimensional problems.

With all that, if I can manage a "just ok" I think I am doing pretty damn well. It has, overall, dulled my personality, though. I have become the things I hate far too much: jittery and on edge. I lost the part that I loved so much about myself, that zip and spunk, willing to take on any challenge and always looking for an adventure.

And when it gets all out of whack, it inhibits my sense of clarity and judgment and I sometimes do things I normally would not because it has temporarily warped my sense of reality. I am trying not to act on those whims but sometimes I let it slip.

I am, also, working against a whole new set of fears that my body will fail again. I had to learn, in the worst of it, not to push my body because it would mean a week or two of recovery, a really bad, tortuous recovery, so I am trying to unlearn that self-preservation mode and re-enter into the push-myself-as hard-as-I-can mode. Tough switch, since I don't know where those new boundaries lie. I dont want to overshoot them, but I do want to get very close to the edge asap. I think I might have to fall over the edge a few times to really find it.

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