The final stage is about to begin

I titled this blog Beating Thyroid Cancer, and so far I am crushing it. I’m not actually doing anything, but I’ve been feeling great, so it’s not doing anything to me. And if any of that nasty stuff is even left inside of me, it’s about to get obliterated. Ablated, to use the proper term.

I feel like it’s the bottom of the ninth inning, and I’ve just got to get through one last bit of business before this game is over. And the business shouldn’t even a big deal. Should be routine. Like a six-run lead with Mariano Rivera on the mound.

Here’s the situation: Tomorrow I will go to the hospital to get my tracer dose of RAI. I’m told it’s so small that I won’t feel anything and I won’t be a danger to anyone else, so I can continue to be around people like normal. Just in case, I’m getting my quarantine room all ready.

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So long Dr. W

Just got out of my last appointment (hopefully) with Dr. W. He said my incision looks pretty good, and there’s nothing I need to do to it with creams or anything. It’s a little redish, but he said that’ll go away. I also asked him about how much thyroid was left in there, so I could get an idea of what radiation dosage to expect next week. He said none. The tracer dose on Monday and scan on Tuesday will let us know for sure, but I’m optimistic that I won’t need much of a dose, so it’ll be out of my system quickly.

I’m writing this post on my new iPad, which will be my best friend during my RAI quarantine.

The driving dilemma

I’ve been feeling pretty good so far (now on Day 9 without my hormones) so I’ve been doing everything as I would normally. Business as usual. However, the more I read on the message boards, I’ve become convinced that I should not be driving, so I won’t.

Fact is: I am hypothyroid, even I don’t feel hypothyroid. Stuff is happening to me that I’m not even aware of. One of those things is that my reaction time is slowing down. At least, that’s what I read. Seems fine to me. But I have read enough stories on the thyroid cancer message board of people who also felt perfectly normal, then one day they were driving and realized that there was this strange gap between the moment they recognized the red light and the moment their foot hit the brake.

I’d rather that not be me, thank you very much, so I’m putting away the keys.

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LID, Day 8: Picture of my lunch

One of my little quirks is I get particularly pleased with myself when I can create something at home that looks restaurant-worthy. I always joke to my wife: “I need to take a picture of my lunch today.” Today is one of those days.

For starters, we’re having the LID pizza tonight, so I wanted to save all my four servings of grains so I could have a reasonable amount of pizza. I’m not sure how many servings one piece of pizza is, but wanted to be safe. I’ve already figured out breakfast with no meat or grains (egg white omelette and fruit), and the pizza tonight is veggie, so I had to have a lunch no grains, although I could have meat. Can’t do a sandwich without grains, so I made this grilled chicken salad. The salad had lettuce, tomato, cucumber, avocado, mushrooms and the really good vinaigrette from the LID cookbook. Since it is just a salad, and I’m a real man, I of course had to make it huge. There’s a bowl of watermelon on the side (nice color addition, huh) and a glass of iced tea. That’s a whole chicken breast in there, and it weighed just under my alloted 5 ounces.

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LID: Day 6, this is a lot of work

Got through the first weekend of the LID, and so far I have to say it’s going pretty well. I haven’t felt hungry or deprived or like I’m eating things that don’t taste good. It’s just … a … lot … of … work. I don’t know how you could do this if you had a job. I know you are supposed to prepare a lot of stuff in advance in freeze it, but that takes time, too.

I’ve got to give my wife a shout-out here. I really could not be doing this without her. At the moment neither one of us is working, so it seems like we spend all day prepping, baking, loading the dishwasher, emptying it, etc. Most days we cook or bake just one new thing, so it’s manageable, but today was a little crazy.

First thing was to bake some more bread. We have borrowed a bread-maker, but the bread comes out better when we use a different recipe. This morning she made the dough, kneaded it, then let it sit for an hour or so, then split it between two pans, then let it sit some more, then put it in the oven. But, oops, she forgot to change the temperature of the oven like the recipe says, so the bread was ruined. Then we made meatballs and burger patties out of the big batch of ground turkey we bought on Wednesday. Then we made pasta sauce. Then we made vinaigrette. The latter two don’t take very long, but still, you go through a lot of dishes that require cleaning. Then, we made the bread again. (Check here to see what I ate today, out of all that.)

That’s a full day. Ran the dishwasher three times and still have dishes left in the sink for tomorrow.

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Quest for treats

I’ve made it a mission of mine to create my own junk food on this diet. I can’t have processed foods and I can’t have milk chocolate, and I can only have a little bit of grains (more on that in a minute), so I’ve been experimenting with what I can do combining fruits and semi-sweet chocolate chips.

If you are going on this diet, you must find a store that carries Enjoy Life chocolate chips. They have no dairy. No nuts. No soy. No nothing. Just…

Evaporated Cane Juice, Chocolate Liquor, Non-Dairy Cocoa Butter

But they are good. If you don’t mind semi-sweet chocolate these are great. You can just grab handfuls of them and eat them, or mix them into anything. Yesterday my first attempt was at a chocolate-strawberry smoothie. I used hemp milk, some ice, strawberries and the chocolate chips. It didn’t turn out that great because the chips were too small to really get blended. Then I melted the chips, but I couldn’t really pour hot melted chocolate into the smoothie and expect it to mix. Then I just dipped the strawberries right in it. Bingo!

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LID-lifter: The diet is underway

I’ve finished Day 1 of the low-iodine diet, and I survived. Wasn’t even that terrible. Sure, there’s a lot of labor involved and it’s a little pricey to get all this natural food but I think it’ll be OK.

I was planning to put all of what I ate in the blog, as a service to other thyroid cancer patients, but I decided instead to just keep it all on a separate page: Jeff’s LID log. Catchy name, huh? It’s linked at the right, so you can always come back and find it.

Meanwhile, I’ll keep the blog focused on some general LID-related issues, as well as how I’m doing sans-hormones.

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