As a hypothyroid patient, I was cleared by my endocrinologist to be fit to work. I have to be diligent with my diet and fitness routine, which are totally up to me. I also have to manage stress so I can cope and reduce the symptoms of my condition.
I am sad and exasperated when managers do not realize that hypothyroidism does not make me incapable of handling work. Also, my responsibilities as a hypothyroid patient should not be seen as a hindrance. For instance, I am often required to eat with other staff and managers. I think this is unfair. The decision to eat with the team must also be left to me, and my choice to eat alone is due to the fact that I have a special diet. I cannot eat with other people because I do feel envious of their food. I cannot afford to cheat on my diet and I must focus on my fitness goals.
I am also disappointed when people make fun of my diet and my budget. I have to save money because maintenance medication and blood tests are expensive. I cannot keep up with everyone else just because I am mindful of my expenses. To require that from me is plain mean.
Working with hypothyroidism is possible. It just takes a LOT of compassion and understanding. I also hope that companies will educate their staff about it so there will be less bullying and alienation.
I also hope that as I continue along my journey as an employee and job seeker, I will be able to represent my hypothyroidism well. Rather than seeing it as a limitation, I view it as a discipline. My dieting, exercise regimen, and stress management are all key factors in becoming a balanced worker. I am sure employers will value my condition if seen from that perspective.