show me the way

I just got back from a bit of a whirlwind adventure to Radford/Christiansburg/Blacksburg/Durham/Raleigh, and none of it was what I expected. I had a doctor's appointment on Monday--a follow-up to being on Synthroid for two months. I think I've mentioned that I felt sure that my dose needed increasing, but, as it turned out, my blood work indicated that that's not the case. While it's good that my hormone levels are normal, I'm a little frustrated, because I don't feel like they're normal. I still don't have the amount of energy that I think I should have, and I still can't lose weight despite working out every day and having the smallest appetite I've ever had (though I'm pretty sure I have at least stopped gaining weight.) I'm just slightly confused, because my understanding was that the point of Synthroid is to get my metabolism (and everything else the thyroid controls, which is everything in the known universe) back to what it was before I ever got sick--in other words, that my endocrine system would function as it did when I had a properly functioning thyroid. But my endocrinologist seemed to be telling me that my metabolism (and stuff) is the same as that of the average person, even though it's a far cry from what mine was in my pre-Graves' disease days. So it seems that the version of "normal" I was waiting on wasn't really the goal after all. And I don't like that. I want to do a little research on this "average person normal" vs. "me normal" issue. It's confusing to me.

I was supposed to go see three amazing 80's rock bands (Def Leppard, Foreigner, and Styx!) in Raleigh on Tuesday with some of my Durham pals, but the show was postponed because of a terrible thunderstorm (the venue is outdoor.) It was a terrible disappointment. My parents are a little less than pleased that I'm making that trip again on Monday (the new concert date), but I've been looking forward to this show for months, so I'm going, irresponsible and expensive or not. It's going to be worth it... plus, it means I get to see Jess, Heather, and Sarah twice in a week, and that's definitely good for the soul. :)

I seem to be internally wrestling with a lot of things right now. For one thing, I made something, in my head, into a much bigger deal than it actually is. And I'm not sure why. I guess I was just excited about the prospect of something, well, exciting. And new. That I think I'm ready for. That I want. At least in theory. And the thing is, it's not even that the prospect isn't actually there, it's just that the feelings I thought I had about it... I really don't. I wanted to. I tried to. I convinced myself that I did. But I don't. And I don't know why. And now I'm just confused about the whole thing.

I'm also becoming really unsure about my future plans. I thought I had decided a long time ago that I wasn't going to go back to school at Radford. A few weeks ago, I started looking at Ph.D. and Psy. D. programs online, making lists of faculty members with research interests that match mine, and planning to apply to lots of programs with the hope of getting in somewhere for next fall. But in the past couple of weeks, I've begun to question this decision. And I'm not sure where this questioning is coming from. Is it God? Me? Fear? Other people's opinions? I can't figure it out. Part of my reasoning for deciding not to go back was that I want to start over. Not have to be faced with my past failures. But maybe that's too easy. Maybe I have to deal with the failure that I was. But didn't I already do that? Isn't that how I got here? Or am I just being a coward, trying to run away from my problems? my disease? my insufficiency? But I'm better now, so why revisit all of that? In the past few days, I've told a few people about this struggle, and I've gotten mixed responses. A new friend told me that I should be glad that I'm "already established" at Radford, because that's hard to do. I countered that being established is not necessarily good, because I'm established as a sick person, incapable of completing the task at hand. "But you're not sick or incapable anymore," he insisted. And he's right, but still, is that enough? Should I have to prove that I'm not that way anymore, when I could just go somewhere new where I never was that way? where I could be the real me from the start--excelling from the beginning rather than having to pull myself out of the shadows of Graves' disease? An old friend, on the other hand, suggested that leaving something undone (i.e. not going back to Radford) might be good for me--a new experience, since I'm not typically the sort of person who leaves things undone. I got to spend some time with some of the clinical girls on Sunday night, and it was really good. I do miss being there with them. But I'd be so behind that, academically speaking, I wouldn't exactly be part of the group anymore. But I wouldn't really be a part of the new class either. And wouldn't that be lonely? But again, is that reason enough not to do it, or am I taking the easy way out? Not that starting a doctoral program will be anything close to easy. If I can even get in. Which I might not. And that's terrifying... and maybe that's where this uncertainty started?

I don't know how this got so complicated. I need a BIG helping of discernment. Which reminds me of the song I most wanted to hear on Tuesday:

"Show me the way / show me the way / Take me tonight to the river, and wash my illusions away..." (styx)