Thyroid Ablation Aftermath
When All I Want To Do Is Sing
Okay, so on July 13, I had a Thyroid Ablation. The procedure itself was easy. All I had to do was swallow a capsule that contained radioactive iodine. No big deal. The time leading up to the procedure, and the aftermath however, has been a bit rough.
I am not one to complain. My daily routine has not changed whatsoever…well other than getting out of bed is an act of congress lately. Carrying around a letter alerting officials that I am not a dirty bomb was a bit amusing, sure. Prior to the procedure, I was informed of a special diet. Now, being a level 3 CKD patient with type one diabetes and high blood pressure, I already am on a pretty strict diet. Oh, did I mention I really do not eat meat also? Anyways, so they told me I had to cut out all dairy, (that was easy, I do not really do dairy anyway) all bread, (again VERY easy, I do not like bread) anything with a certain red dye, (easy I do not do preprocessed GMO grossness) any sea salt, (are you kidding me? I do not use salt but SEA SALT? Okay fine, so no sea salt) sea food, (um…my one source of animal protein is now gone) and last but certainly no least, soy. Yes, soy. The one thing that is in virtually EVERYTHING. Soybean oil is soy. Read anything you have in your pantry, go ahead, I will wait. I can guarantee you one of these is probably on the list. Mind you there were also many other things I could not have, but I decided I would only list the main ones here. You could have egg whites. I do not like eggs. My brain congers up dead baby chickens and well…It freaks me out! Nonetheless, I struggled and had egg white omelets with peppers and onions. Thankfully I could have Matzos. I was living on Matzos with grape jelly. I use non dairy creamer in my coffee, so that was safe too, as was my seltzer. Oh my water…..I had to stop drinking my spring water and switch to…distilled. LOL Thankfully I usually put a lemon in my water so it masked the taste.
This diet did a number on my digestion. I shall save you the details. Needless to say, I did not leave home for a while. Any time I did met with uncomfortable results. It seems the medicine I was on for Graves, which I had to stop for the procedure, and then of course permanently thereafter, was also a medicine that caused constipation. Who knew? Not me, not even after 3 years of taking it. I guess eating healthy had it’s perks in that respect. Sadly, however, stopping that medicine, combined with the diet to end all diets, my digestive tract was a volcano. A very, very, angry volcano. Your welcome, I am sure you wanted to know!
When the doctor gave me the capsule, he began to explain my post procedure orders. No lemon at first. But then drink a lot. As much as I could stand. Now with gastroperesis (very early stages) this is a task. I can only consume so much before I feel like a balloon. Nonetheless, I did. I drank. I sort of had to, I had an insatiable thirst. My blood sugars remained normal thankfully, throughout this all. That is until day 4 post procedure. Now I do not mind eating off of plastic utensils, washing my laundry separate, flushing the toilet twice and all the other quirks that go along with being radioactive. I do, however, hate that I was unable to hug or kiss my family. I had to sleep alone. (That always feels SO strange to me) I digress, I am straying from topic, so day four post procedure, my daughter had to have the second in a series of vaccines. I am not one to miss her appointments. Especially not sequential vaccines. Although she is a trooper and will take a shot, they do hurt her and I am not a fan of my daughter having pain. Within as much, we headed to her appointment. Now why, for the love of God, this pediatrician opted to have ONE solitary waiting room for both healthy and sick kids is BEYOND me. Perhaps it is a form of job security. Who knows, for whatever reason it is, it makes me dread going. We sat alone as far behind everyone as we could. And waited. And waited…..and waited. I am not sure why they gave us a 10 AM appointment as we weren’t even called back until almost 11! All the while this child, well, I assume she was a child, (I reiterate, we were at a pediatrician) but she had a tattoo on her back and looked like a young adult, was obviously EXTREMELY ill. I began to shift in my seat. I knew my immune system was already compromised courtesy of that lovely radioactive capsule. Then there was also my poor child, sitting next to me, who seems to catch any bug around. By the time we finally managed to get the heck out of there and get to the car, we were virtually bathing in our Purell. I even sanitized my face. (I was never close to any child so I posed zero radioactive contamination dangers to those in the waiting room)Within 4 days, I was sick. When I say sick, I mean, sick. I had not had a cold, or whatever this was, this bad, ever. Nonetheless, my responsibilities do not care how sick I am. There is no one else here to do reviews for me, homeschool my daughter, cook, clean, illustrate books, format books, and do all the commercial marketing. So, I had to carry on like I was perfectly healthy.
Flash forward to today. In three days it will have been a month since I swallowed that radioactive capsule. Right now my voice sounds like I am either the worlds worst transgender nightmare or I have swallowed a knife. Talking hurts. Laughing hurts. Crying, oh my gosh does that hurt. Remember, I have neuropathy and fibromyalgia and am on zero pain medications. I never even had so much as an aspirin when I had my daughter. My pain tolerance is pretty good. So when I say it hurts, I mean it.
I never received any information about post ablation vocal issues. I have googled it and have read a few things here and there, Nothing definitive. Now, I am no professional singer. I do however sing, a lot. Correction, I did. I cannot now. I certainly hope this is temporary because not being able to sing is quite depressing. It is funny, as an artist with neuropathy, retinopathy, glaucoma and fibromyalgia you would think the fact I am losing sight and use of my hands would depress me. They do not. Yet losing my voice has. Quite strange, even to me. Perhaps it is because growing up, singing is what we did. Nana, my maternal grandmother, who helped raise me, sang, non-stop, and she always had me sing. Nana was the one who taught me vocal control. I grew up watching The Sweet Adelines, as many family members were members there of, and my mother’s brother was a famous quartet member. Not to mention my incredibly talented brother who sang for a living for many years. So, singing was the norm. I raised my daughter this way. Not being able to sing is really depressing. It could always be worse and honestly I absolutely realize how trivial it is. I am grateful to be alive. I know there is always a reason for everything and one day I will see the reason behind this. For now however, I miss singing.
My voice was not great, but it was mine. Here, have a listen. This is old and poor sound quality! Again, I am no singer, but I sing.