About Me

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Concord, California, United States
I am a sometimes-writer, everyday mama, creative failure and experimental cook. I am interested in living a beautiful life, spending time with my family and making things that I can feel proud of. When I'm by myself I'm usually outside. Don't bother calling because chances are that I didn't bring my cell phone because I couldn't find it. If you see me walking, it's because I lost my keys and if you see me with only one child... I'm probably in big trouble.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Hashimotos Disease Really Sucks

For years I have had my hashimotos disease under control.

I was diagnosed with hashimotos the first year that we moved to Philadelphia.  It was a seriously tough year for me.  I was pretty overwhelmed by the city and petrified of driving in it (and we lived in center city).  The girls were still tiny and in order to go anywhere I needed to put them in the stroller and walk.  But I had become depressed and exhausted. My weight shot up and even walking  6 blocks to the park with the girls was completely exhausting.  I didn't have any friends to help pick my spirits up and that paired with fatigue and a tendency to eat emotionally caused terrible weight gain.

At some point I began working really hard to lose weight.  We got a treadmill and I started to make some big changes in my diet.  It was around this time that I went vegan for the first time.   After a few months of working very hard I decided to weigh myself.  I was shocked and horrified when I got on the scale and it said that I weighed 242 pounds.  I was at my mother's house (I didn't own my own scale at that time) and I fell apart.  My mom urged me to contact my doctor.  I had been using a natural doctor who had diagnosed me with mild hypothyroidism and had treated me with thyroid boosting supplements, rather than medication.  At that point we believed that we could turn my thyroid function around by giving it a little help, but it didn't work.

When I went into my doctor's office I put my head and in my hands and exploded into a giant, fat, depressed storm of tears.  I felt hopeless.  I felt 100% out of control of my body.  I felt scared and resigned to the fact that I could not change and my healthy efforts were in vain.  My doctor was certain that it was my thyroid and tests confirmed that I had developed an autoimmune disorder called Hashimotos Disease.

I began a fairly high dosage of medication.  And though I should be using a vegan, gluten free diet, I have never been able to entirely commit to it.

For the past 4 years my medication has helped me.  As soon as I began taking it my energy level returned to  normal, I stopped feeling depressed and within a year I was back down to a normal weight.     And the only time I remember how terrible I felt before I was diagnosed with Hashimotos is when I forget to take it for a series of days.

But lately, something isn't working for me.  I have started experiencing new symptoms of hashimotos that I didn't previously have.  First, my periods, which have always been relatively light, started coming very heavily.  And the breast tenderness that people all get right before their period was as bad as it was during pregnancy and lasts THE WHOLE MONTH!!!!!  And now, I am losing wild amounts of hair.  I can't even touch my hair without strands of it falling out.  I am losing handfuls of it every day.  I am also feeling fatigued.

At first I thought that I was having a hormone imbalance, but my good friend Amber also suffers from hashimotos and is quite a bit more knowledgeable than I am (I stopped learning about it when my medication worked for me), told me that my symptoms are all associated with hashimotos.  I haven't had my blood work checked since we moved to California and my old doctor has continued to refill my prescription  So, it's time for me to see someone new.  I am going to make an appointment with a  specialist in San Francisco this week.  Hopefully they can help me get to the bottom of this problem.

Also, I am going to make the switch to a vegan, gluten free diet.  I drag my heals on this.  Though I do love lots of vegan food and even like to cook it.  I don't want to eat it all of the time.  And I especially don't want to be gluten free.  I know that I have to and that the foods that I eat are likely causing inflammation that is exasperating my hashimotos disease.  I don't know why I can't seem to get my head in the game for this change.  I just have to do it.

And that's what is happening with me these days.  In other news, my workouts get harder and harder.  I'm still at the gym 6 days a week.  Each day I work out anywhere from 60 minutes (always straight cardio on these short days) to 2 1/2 hours.  One day I was even there for 3 hours (but I don't think that I'll ever do that again. lol).  I have also been working for my dad, proofreading and editing the documents for his consulting business.  Between my time at the gym, my room parent duties and my new job, I haven't had much time to blog.  I'm going to make a big effort to make it happen more though.

I hope that everyone is well!


  1. Oh Anna! I am sorry to hear about your new symptoms. Keep working hard and don't let this get you down though! I look forward to hearing what the new specialist has to say. let me know how it goes!

  2. Vegan AND gluten free? Christmas dinner could be a challenge...

    Speaking of which, Matthew is thinking of a course-based meal (we did it before and had lots of fun with it), and so far he wants to make a corn chowder, which is gluten free but certainly not vegan.


  3. ...and my previous comment was totally self absorbed. Sorry! What we eat isn't even important, as long as we're all together!

  4. I was diagnosed with hypothyroid when we were trying to get pregnant for Zack. I feel lucky because I've been stable for probably the last 9-10 years. Sam was diagnosed with it when he was in 2nd or 3rd grade. I had to push for them to test for it becasue it's so rare in children. The last year and a half has been HELL with him. We cannot seem to get it regulated. He has to go on for blood tests almost monthly and we're constantly changing his dose trying to get it reulated. I feel so bad for him. (Charity)

  5. Oh Charity! I'm so sorry to hear that. How did you know that he had it?