As we prepared for his employment change I was fighting an upper respiratory infection and found a bump on my neck. I sensed that I needed to tell my primary care physician about it and get an ultrasound test done of my thyroid area.
The night before the ultrasound I attended a women’s event at Mount Hope Christian Center. I prayed, “God, you know what’s going on. Please speak to me.” As I made my way to the altar, a woman placed her hand on my neck and prayed for me. She then moved her hand down to my lower abdomen and continued praying.
After the ultrasound I heard from my physician’s secretary who said, “It looks like an enlarged left side of the thyroid. We need to get you in to see an Endocrinologist. I’ll make a call to schedule an appointment for you.” A couple minutes later the assistant called back and said, “I’ve never been able to get someone in so quickly. There’s an appointment for 2 o’clock this afternoon. I highly recommend you take it.”
That afternoon I saw an Endocrinologist at Lahey Clinic, who reviewed the ultrasound results with me. After further testing, it was determined that surgery was the next step, which had the potential to damage my vocal cords.
When I got back the full pathology report, the growth was not cancerous. However, it did report that I have an autoimmune disease known as Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis. According to the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologist, Hashimoto’s thyroiditis is a condition where the body’s immune cells produce antibodies which can damage thyroid cells and cause hypothyroidism when not enough thyroid hormone is being produced. This is the most common thyroid disease in the United States and is seven times more common in women than men.
I was thankful to be cancer-free and have my vocal cords unharmed, but I wondered what was next. Studies have shown that women who have thyroid problems may have trouble conceiving and throughout pregnancy and postpartum. I began questioning, “God, do you intend for me to have children?”
While the thyroid regulates the metabolism, our God is our true regulator. Over one year ago, I had a bump on my neck. A couple months ago, I had a bump on my lower abdomen. Now, I have a healthy baby girl who was born appropriately on Labor Day!
All Things Work Together
During the time of my thyroid journey, I was working for a health and lifestyle TV show in Boston. The segment aired on Better Living with Liz Walker and showed my diagnosis, treatment and acceptance of the condition I now have. I have also shared my story through I am Second, the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologist’s Empower Magazine, and other mediums.
Romans 8:28 says all things – the good, the bad, and the ugly – work together for good. If it were not for the pain and suffering I endured, I would not have a new voice to raise thyroid and autoimmune disease awareness. Furthermore, I do not take for granted the precious gift of our new baby daughter.
How have you seen God turn something around for good in your life? What scripture verse(s) did you cling to during that season of trial and questioning God?
*Image courtesy of Kookkai_nak /FreeDigitalPhotos.net