When I saw No. 5 for my (hopefully just) quarterly appointment last week, I lamented, again, about my tremendous increase in mass, despite my tremendous decrease in white blood cells. I first complained about the increasing snugness of my clothes a few weeks after chemo ended, at which point No. 5 explained that she was not surprised as the chemo does have some negative impact on one’s metabolism.
At this most recent examination, however, she provided some additional color: No. 5 explained that the gargantuan numbers of useless lymphocytes had been draining my body of so many calories. This made sense to me as no matter how much I seemed to eat (or drink) I managed to have the same amount of gravitational pull upon my body. In fact, there seemed to be no correlation whatsoever between amount ingested and scale read-out.
Although all of this made sense to me, I was wondering if there might be something else, or at least something additional, at work. When I complained to Melissa, again, about all of this she noted that I had also been complaining of being cold somewhat frequently. I am not one generally to have issues with the cold, and especially with a couple of all-year radials hugging my torso I seem to be otherwise fairly-well insulated. Thus, Melissa wondered, perhaps my thyroid was not functioning properly.
I pause here to state what is probably obvious: Most people – most rational people – would hear this and think, “Oh no. Now this? I just got done with fighting my bone marrow and now I have an issue with my thyroid? What, pray tell, have I done to deserve all of this???” Yet, I am not most people nor all that rational, particularly these days. Consequently, when I heard Melissa speculate that I might be suffering from hypothyroidism, I was downright ecstatic. “This is great!!!” I thought. “I can just take some pills – why not add to my already extensive list? – and get rid of this weight without even trying. Happy day!”
So when I saw No. 5 last week, I mentioned to the P.A. this latest cause of celebration. “Hmmm,” she mused. “I am not familiar with thyroid issues as a result of your chemo, but we can check it out. We may have to draw more blood, however.” No problem, I assured her. Having my blood taken is one of my best skills these days. Then, luck be a lady, the phlembotomist told the P.A. that they had enough already and no need to prick me again. I was living right.
Today, we were able to look up the results of my thyroid test. It was early, and since my entire life is now on my phone – whose isn’t? – I just opened the app and found the latest lab results. Melissa, who was trying to get out the door to see her paying patients, was immediately accosted by me: “Melissa, look at the thyroid test results – what does this mean?!?” Melissa studied the results for a couple of moments. “I’m sorry to tell you,” she began, “but you are perfectly healthy. Your thyroid is fine.”
Can’t a guy catch a break?