Have it surgically removed, radioactive iodine, or meds for life!
Rubes was 10 months old when I was diagnosed with Graves’ Disease. Graves’ Disease is an autoimmune condition, which means the body's immune system mistakes healthy cells for foreign invaders and attacks them. It causes the thyroid gland to produce too much thyroid hormone, which is called hyperthyroidism.
It is relatively easy to treat.
But, if left untreated, it can have serious consequences.
This all came to the fore after visiting my GP, because I was a little worried about some of the things that I was feeling and experiencing. They could have been expected but I wasn’t sure, being a first time mummy. It included the following symptoms: Significant weight loss (could be related to breast feeding, anxiety and not making time to eat). Increased sweating (could be related to breast feeding). Irregular heartbeat (could be related to feeling anxious). Anxiety (being a first time mummy). Loss in libido (being a mummy, working and exceedingly tired),. No periods (breast feeding).
My doctor said I should go and get some bloods taken. This resulted in him saying I needed to see a specialist immediately, as the results were worrying to him.
Off I went to see the specialist. He said
‘Well, your results indicate that you have Graves and, with the results as they are, you need to start on medication immediately. We will have you on a plan for a few years and see how you respond. In the meantime, if you are still breast feeding you will need to stop and start the medication today’.
All I could ask was,
‘What are you saying? I can no longer breastfeed my baby?’
Not, what does this actually mean? Or, what are the long-term implications? No more breastfeeding!! Heartbroken.
Rubes had only ever had my milk. And, although she was used to taking a bottle in day-care, the bottle was my milk, and in the morning and evenings she was still breastfeeding… I couldn’t believe what I was hearing.
I know breastfeeding for a lot of women can be difficult, but I was very blessed and fortunate to be able to breastfeed and just loved every moment of it. Even when Rubes disfigured one of my nipples with her teeth. But, that is a whole other story. So, with the information I just got from the doctor and taking it all at face value, not looking into alternative solutions or even asking further questions, that night I started taking the medication.
Moving forward 2.5 years,
I was told I was in remission and could come off the meds.
Moving forward another 3 years,
similar symptoms came back. Off I went to the doctors, bloods taken and, back to the specialist. He said:
now that it has come back, you have 3 options:
- You can have your thyroid surgically removed;
- Radioactive Iodine;
- or meds for life.
Surely not? He said to go away and have a think. Next time I came back we could talk through my decision.
- Surgical removal – which means still on medication for the rest of my life to account for not having a thyroid
- Radioactive Iodine – which means I cannot cuddle or be close to anyone for that period. If that is the risk for others, what would it do to me?
- Medication– which means medication FOR LIFE!
I walked away in disbelief. If I don’t do what he says I could end up - worst case - with bulging eyes, a swollen goitre, or heart failure.
Could EFT help?
Then it came to me. Emotional Freedom Techniques/EFT or tapping. Knowing that EFT Tapping can be used for so many things, why not try it on this? I have used it for so many other areas in my life, and I reckoned there could be some unresolved issues causing this diagnosis.
Whilst gathering my thoughts and working out a plan, I took the medication again for a little bit, but after a short while decided to not take it. Knowing the success I had had with other significant areas in my life using EFT Tapping, my gut feeling was that this would work for me. And I was prepared to take the chance. That was my decision. I am not advocating stopping medication without a great deal of thought. I would advocate instead to partner with your doctor, whilst taking a holistic approach to healing.
So, I started tapping.
I initially tapped on feeling angry, sad and shocked the first time I was diagnosed with Graves.
I tapped on being sad about stopping breastfeeding.
I tapped on being angry that I did something wrong to have gotten Graves.
I tapped on being angry about having to work when I had a baby. Part of me wanted to stay at home and be a stay-at-home mummy; the other part was happy to work.
I tapped and tapped.
I went back to past memories linked to some of my negative beliefs about myself. Through tapping on other areas in my life, which were probably all intertwined, the end result was hearing the specialist say:
you no longer need to take the medication and I don’t need to see you anymore.
Joy to the world!
I am now very happily not taking medication, and continue on my healing journey in other areas of my life…
Our emotions, beliefs and feelings can and do impact our health and can cause illness. Why not explore ways of dealing with your emotions to help minimise the risk of getting an illness.
Using EFT/Tapping could add a new approach to the health issues you encounter, and ultimately enhance your life.
Katie is an Accredited EFT Practitioner. She specialises in working with Anxiety, Motivational Issues, and Self Esteem.