The past two days have started out normally. I get up and go about my business as usual. Everything is going fine until suddenly, in early afternoon, it hits: extreme tiredness. I feel like I need to go take a nap, only I’m at work and so this isn’t a possibility. I struggle to hold my eyes open as I teach my last two classes of the day, hoping that my students won’t notice that, to me, they are beginning to appear dream-like as the lines between wakefulness and sleep start to blur.
The symptoms of hyperthyroidism and the radioiodine treatment have changed considerably in the last two weeks. My neck doesn’t hurt like it did a week ago. Earlier in the week there was still some dull pain, but it became mild enough to easily ignore. Occasionally, my chest will hurt, but the severe and persistent pains I had felt before treatment are now all but a memory—one I’m happy to forget. Gone with it is the dizziness I had once experienced on a constant basis, and then as an occasional “Woa! I think I need to sit down” feeling that followed it.
But the tiredness, it may be here to stay—at least for now. As the radioactive iodine continues to destroy thyroid cells, the levels of thyroid hormone in my body will continue to drop. By the time I hit bottom, hopefully, my four week check-up with the endocrinologist will have come as well. Then I’ll be prescribed medication for what will then most likely be a hypothyroid state, and my energy levels should increase again.
Until then, I may need to find a way to sneak in a mid-day nap.