Buzzes and Crashes. Happy Weekend!

November 2, 2012  —  Written by Julia Marcum 

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What a 24 hours it has been!  Yesterday, after a month of multiple blood tests, and hitting our 2-year mark for infertility, I met with my doctor to go over all of my labs.  The problem jumped off the paper and I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism.  It explains more than just our inability to give Greta a little brother or sister, but it also justifies my lack of appetite, constant tiredness (and here, I was blaming that on chasing a two year old all this time) and difficulty losing weight–even while exercising 6 days a week and eating clean.  I should note here that I am not saying I need to lose weight, but Chris and I were recently a part of an 8-week health challenge and while I made drastic changes that fit the parameters of the competition (no sugar, no eating after 8, drinking lots and lots of water, and exercising 6 days a week), the scale barely budged on my end. It was peculiar! The good news is, we have answers and there’s medication.  I started drug-therapy today, and let me tell you, my head is awake!  This morning I was seriously buzzed and the only way I could make my brain stop spinning was to move.  I took down all of our decorations outside and throughout the house and started cleaning. I played with Greta–on the floor.  I just wanted to keep moving.  Now, I seemed to have hit a brick wall.  I can barely move or keep my eyes open.  But over the next few months, my doses will gradually increase every two weeks until the crash is gone and I am back to feeling “myself” all day.  The funny thing is, I don’t know if I remember what that feels like.

So this weekend, more buzzes and spurts of high activity are on the agenda, and probably a few more crashes too.  Hopefully during the active times we can finish up yard work before the cold sets in for good and I can finish up the paintings I have been working on.  Yes!  More art is being added to the shop.

Happy Weekend, Friends.  What are you up to?  And if anyone out there has hypothyroidism, too.  I’d love to hear about your experiences. I’m new to the club.

Cutest puppy crashing on the couch found here. Original source is unknown.

What do you think?

  1. Kellie says:

    Did you really notice a difference immediately with Armour? Would you mind sharing about your dosage?

    • Julia says:

      Hi Kellie. I am now up to taking 135 mg. They started me at 15 and I worked my way up to 90 mg. Then, eventually 120mg at the beginning of my pregnancy and by the end I was at 135mg. I noticed a difference right away on Armour, but when I cut Gluten out of my diet along with taking Armour–that’s when I had the most energy, I’d say.

      • Kellie says:

        I cannot thank you enough for the speedy reply and your willingness to share. :)

        I read the comments again and noticed you mentioned that you had low progesterone. Have you shared anything on your blog about getting this balanced? I just read that it can be difficult to know if the thyroid or other hormones are too blame because the symptoms are so similar.

  2. I have been seeing Connie at Dr. Lundell’s office in Spanish Fork. She has been a dream! The number is (801) 400-3048. I hope this helps!! Good luck.


  3. Jessie McKinley says:

    Hey Julia, do you mind sharing which doctor you go see? I’m still having troubles and am thinking it might be smart to get a second opinion…Thanks girl!

  4. So glad to hear you are on the mend! My friend was just diagnosed with the same thing and is taking several meds for it. Can’t be fun! Hopefully both of us get pregnant soon and can be preggo buddies. :) Love you, girl!

  5. Aubrie says:

    Thank you :) I’m SO glad you went and saw them. I remember feeling such relief to finally have some answers that made sense. The adjustment period can take a month or so, but I felt like a whole new person once I got used to it. I’m so excited for you, and I’m seriously so happy that my little recommendation helped. I’ll keep my fingers crossed for you guys!! :) and I’ll keep you posted on us…

  6. autumn @ says:

    I have hypothyroidism. Its hard work to lose the weight. I got pregnant twice with my tsh being 4.5. My ob didn’t treat me until the middle of my second pregnancy. They were shocked that i didn’t have any problems getting pregnant. But i am a walking medical mystery. :)

  7. Amy @ Five Kinds of Happy says:

    My mum had the exact same thing before I was born – after about 7 years of not getting pregnant she was put on drugs, conceived straight away, and then miraculously after 2 pregnancies the condition was gone and she was back to normal (and even popped out an extra kid unplanned ;) ) . Best wishes for you and yours!

  8. Jessica Gehman says:

    I am sure it is a relief for both of you to know that there is something :diagnosable: and treatable that is causing so many of your concerns. Best wishes as you move forward as a family and I hope you continue to enjoy the energy levels you did today!

  9. Thanks so much Ari. We’re shooting to out-kid the Duggars. Hahaha (jokes!)

  10. I haven’t done acupuncture, but I do dabble in other natural remedies including foot zoning and chiropractics. I wouldn’t dismiss acupuncture at all. Thanks so much for the suggestion and for checking in on us. :)

  11. My doctor did say if I got pregnant I would most likely miscarry before my thyroid was taken care of so I bet you are right. I am glad you, too, got a diagnosis and are hopefully on your way to normal life again. It would be interesting to compare medications. I’m on Armour Thyroid, which from what little I have read in forums seems to be one people like and ask their doctor for.

  12. Aubrie!!! AAhhhhhhh!!! I am so happy for you!! Congratulations. You know, I finally went to Dr. Lundell (per your recommendation) and I just love the whole office. I have seen Connie a few times and just love her. They were the ones that finally had answers for me (I have low progesterone, too) and I am so grateful that you lead me in the right direction. Seriously. You were inspired. Thank you a million times over and I couldn’t be happier about your new addition on the way.

  13. So positive! :) Hang in there! Looks like we’re in good company.

  14. Ohhh!! They are testing me for Hashimoto’s too. My doctor said I’ll have to be on medication for the rest of my life regardless, but it is good to know if it is due to an autoimmune or not. Thanks for the link to that forum, too! I am trying to take in as much information as possible.

  15. Great advice. I love my doctor (I have been searching and searching for 2 years for a good one) and she is monitoring me very closely. But I need to get in tune with myself, too. Now that I know something is wrong–I won’t brush off the feelings anymore. Thanks for sharing YOUR story and I’ll be sure to give everyone updates every now and then.

  16. Aww thank you so much. And best of luck to you two. Good health is such a blessing.

  17. Carly Cleghorn says:

    And thank you for sharing! Obviously, many folks have a similar story, and it’s therapeutic for everyone.

  18. Carly Cleghorn says:

    Congratulations on your diagnosis! Knowledge will change your life.

    My lover has low testosterone, and a full array of weird adrenal hormones. Doctors don’t know what it is, so they’re treating the low testosterone, but the shots are impacting his long-term fertility. Being sick should never hit a family in that way. So congratulations! What a treat to not even realize you weren’t quite feeling like yourself, and then to get yourself back.

    Rock on, girl! I’m so happy for your family.

  19. Ali says:

    I was diagnosed with Grave’s Disease a few years ago and after over a year of unsuccessful attempts to bring my levels back to normal with different doses of thyroid-suppressants, I decided to do radioactive iodine therapy. Basically, I took a pill that gradually killed my thyroid and I am now hypothyroid and have been on synthroid the past 6 months. I can completely sympathize with how you’ve been feeling lately. Having been both hyper- and hypo- thyroid, I am still amazed at how much of an impact your thyroid can have on your well-being and what crazy symptoms it can cause! Once your dosage gets straightened out, you’ll be surprised at how much better you’ll feel. My advice is just to be patient with the process and not be afraid to speak up to your doctor if you don’t feel right. Stabilizing your hormone levels is a huge part of managing the disease but everyone is different so don’t forget to pay attention to what your body is telling you. Thanks for sharing this and keep us posted on how your treatment goes!

  20. Jessica Engelhard says:

    I am also Hypothyroid, but I have the autoimmune type, Hashimoto’s, my body is slowly killing my thyroid gland so I get bursts of hyper symptoms, then really bad crashes. Make sure your doctors are checking your Free T4 and Free T3 levels everytime, especially on Armour or Cytomel or any pill that contains the T3 hormone. When you are taking the meds with the T3 hormone the TSH test alone is not enough, T3 will falsely lower the TSH leaving you with nagging symptoms. Anyone who is hypothyroid and still has any symptoms while on replacement hormones is NOT being treated correctly. There is a forum on that has some extremely knowledgeable people when it comes to being treated correctly with hypothyroidism. Good luck on your journey, it will be a frustrating one. I’ve been dealing with this for 2 years now and am still trying to find my ideal levels. Feel free to contact me if you have any questions, or just need some support :-)

  21. Karlenn Smith says:

    Oh yesss, I am part of the hypothyroidism club. I was diagnosed six years ago. Medication really helps a ton. It was so strange, the things that were happening to me. My weight totally ballooned, my hair was falling out, I had this enormous goiter under my chin…I couldn’t stay warm, no matter what I did… When I started my meds, I immediately lost 15 pounds, which was fantastic. The goiter went away. And the hair stopped falling out so badly. It still is difficult for me to lose weight, though, dang it. But I do try. And the problem with always being cold – still there. But it could be worse, right?

  22. Aubrie says:

    I’m happy that you got some answers. I was diagnosed with hypothyroid and low progesterone last spring, and I can’t tell you the difference it’s made getting that straightened out. We had been trying for over a year and a half to make our duo a trio with no luck. But… :) that isn’t the case anymore, we’ll be adding a little girl to the group next spring. I hope you start feeling better and have good Luke as well!

  23. Jessie McKinley says:

    Thanks so much for sharing Julia! I was diagnosed with this SAME thing last year and it has definitely been a whirlwind these last few months. I was seeing a counselor for what I thought was depression, and she suggested I get my thyroid checked. I was bad at taking my medicine though (for whatever reason…) but the last three months I’ve been faithful. I’m taking Levothyroxin and unfortunately haven’t really noticed any difference. BUT my doctors have said it takes at least 3 months for your body to get back to “normal.” I had a miscarriage in August and I really think it was due largely to my wacky thyroid. So i’m hopeful!! Hang in there girl! (Ps. I’m interested to know the difference between my medication and yours since I’ve never really had any side effects…)

  24. Michelle says:

    Yay for some answers!
    I did want to ask if you have considered acupuncture? I’ve heard it can be very helpful with hyperthyroidism, and while I haven’t experienced its benefits in that sense I have had amazing results with daily migraines, SEVERE eczema, and back pain! All gone!
    I know it’s not for everyone, but it may be worth a go if you aren’t crazy about your meds (or maybe in conjunction?).
    Either way, best of luck! I love checking in daily on what you all are up to!

  25. Abby K. says:

    I’m so happy for you to have gotten some answers, Julia…I hope you are feeling better everyday and are on your way to your baby dreams coming true again in no time!

  26. “Numb” is the perfect word Misty. Yes! I believe it is thyroid related. At least my doctor said it is. They believe I developed hypothyroidism post-partum and perhaps as long as Greta has been born because my TSH levels were pretty high. Right now I am on Armour Thyroid…but I’ll have to do a little check-in in a couple months when I catch on to this new life. Thank you for sharing your story, I believe there is strength in numbers.

  27. Kristi, it wouldn’t hurt to go get tested for sure. I believe mine started up post-partum as well, but has gone untreated and undetected for quite some time because my thyroid levels were very high (which translates to an uber sluggish thyroid, aka hypothyroidism). Right now, I am not feeling very well, obviously, but man–I am so glad I have answers and can’t wait to get my medicine dosage on par for my needs. Good luck to you!

  28. KristiMY says:

    I don’t think I’ve ever posted on your blog before. I love it! (I’ve been following for a few months now). I am so happy that you posted this. My husband keeps telling me to go to a Dr. because I’m constantly tired, forgetful (today I forgot my daughter’s name for a few seconds. What?!), I can’t loose the extra 15 lbs. I have left from my baby belly (my daughter is 18 months) even though I’m never really hungry and I eat pretty healthy, and I keep having a gagging feeling which is really weird. Maybe I don’t have what you have but it doesn’t hurt to check. Good luck with everything!!!

  29. Misty Castleton says:

    I have been on medication for 5 years and still not sure if I am myself. Or like you, Julia, maybe I just have forgotten what that feels like. I would love some tips and tricks if you are sharing Christina. Julia, It is interesting that you mentioned “I don’t feel excited about things–almost like my mind and feelings are supressed.” I thought that was just me, but maybe it is very likely thyroid related. Sometimes I feel like my emotions are numb. I would love to hear what medicine you are taking and any changes you notice as the time goes on. Any advice/tips/tricks shared would be greatly appreciated. It is a constant everchanging battle unfortunately. I am extremely surprised that the doctors waited this long to check your thyroid. On my last pregnancy my doctor said it is routine now to check thyroids at the beginning and throughout pregnancies for him as they can change, even people who have had no issues before. I wish you the best of luck!

  30. Ari says:

    I’m sorry you haven’t been feeling well. I’m so glad they found out what was wrong so you can now treat it!! You and Chris are amazing people and parents and you should have at least 10 more cute kids!! Haha. Good luck with everything! ;)

  31. Emily Bufler says:

    YAY!! xoxo I was going to type more… but sometimes there are no words.

  32. What a hope-inducing story. Thanks so much for sharing that with me and congratulations!!!

  33. Thanks Meags. I love you! You are such a great support to me.

  34. Thanks so much Freya. Yes, I have dreams of frolicking around for the holidays with more energy than anybody. I plan on being that person and I can’t wait.

  35. I honestly never thought about hypothyroidism before my blood work came back and previous doctors haven’t tested for it because I don’t carry extra weight, but now it makes a lot of sense. In addition to the infertility, I am tired a lot, but even more so–I don’t feel excited about things–almost like my mind and feelings are supressed. Also, my hair has been falling out and my skin is drier and paler than normal–all signs of hypothyroidism.

  36. Just curious why you don’t take medicine?? I’d love to hear your energy tips too!

  37. Wow! Here’s hoping I start doing “great” with medication, too. They have been through so much!

  38. Janice Harrell says:

    My father was diagnosed with hyperthyroidism (and Grave’s Disease) after entering the military back in the 70s. Part of his treatment involved killing off some of his thyroid glands and now he’s hypothyroidism. My mother (and maternal grandmother) were both diagnosed with hyperparathyroidism, and in my mother’s case, they actually removed part of her thyroid since they believed one of her parathyroids had gotten attached. So, she’s now also hypothyroid. They’re both doing great with the medication, no issues other than seeing an Endocrinologist regularly to monitor dosage levels.

  39. Christina O says:

    Oh Julia, I’m so sorry about your diagnosis. Though it is so good to know what the problem is. I have had the disease for at least 5 years. We started trying to conceive our first over 4 years ago. No bueno. BUT, I am not a meds person, so your results will probably be very different. Most of my family also has the disease, so I do have some experience.

    I have over the years discovered some VERY simple changes that help greatly with some of the symptoms like lack of energy and weird weight issues. If you are interested at all, just send me an email!
    Take care, have a good weekend and keep us posted!

  40. Kelly Anne says:

    Good luck! My Mother in Law and her mom both have this and have told me how hard it can be. So glad you found it out early though, the medicine will certainly help. You’re a skinny mini though, but I know weight gain is common, so what other signs did you notice now that you know? Sometimes I wonder if I have it (i’ve always been overweight ugh) because I’m *always* tired, even after sleeping. I recently did a health challenge similar to yours, but only for 3 weeks, and I lost virtually nothing. So frustrating!

  41. freya says:

    i’m sooo happy for you julia! knowledge truly is power! now on to making some progress in the baby sibling department! :) having energy again came at the perfect time with the holidays coming up too! woo!

  42. meaganbriggs3 says:

    You are so amazing, Jules. I love it when you reach out to your readers and share personal things about you. It is amazing the strength we can get from each other! I know it has been a great strength for me. Happy you are getting your energy back!! Which amazes me even more that you have been doing all that you have been with very little energy!!

  43. Iomay says:

    I actually have had hypothyroidism since my early 20’s (I’m 28 now) and had great difficulty becoming pregnant with our first child. I was on medication but remembering to take it daily was something I just couldn’t do (for whatever reason). After taking the meds. regularly I was able to get pregnant with our first child and am now expecting our 2nd in April I’m hoping taking the prescribed medication will be the only next step you need too! Good luck and remember you are not alone!!

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We believe we should all love where we live.

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