Surprisingly, swallowing Radioactive Material actually gets easier the more you do it.
I have willingly, on purpose, swallowed radioactive material three times.
Two minimal doses to do a thyroid uptake scan and then 10.7 mci with the intent to kill of my thyroid.
Which by the way was ....was...was....hmmmm. I can't describe that "little" adventure without the cap lock, lots of swearing and a few threats. Graves disease is so much fun, so much fun, (sing it with me!)
The deciding factor in the assassination of my thyroid was the cardiac side effects. They were increasing. I wanted to be there for my little family. I didn't want to leave my hubby with a 5 year old and a new baby. So I decided to do the RAI also known as I-131, after Hansolo was done breastfeeding June 2008.
I swallowed 10.7 mci of radiation. They had to bring it into the room in a heavy lead container. Then they walk you to the exit and send you on your way.
I spend 4 days in the back of my pick-up talking with my family via 2-way radios. We couldn't afford a motel room to isolate me and I had to be in strict isolation. I wanted to be close to my family so I choose to spend that time in my truck.
Its a strange feeling to know that for 4 days I would be alone without human contact and in fact I was a danger to everyone else due to being radioactive.
It was two weeks before I could sleep in the same bed as my husband. That was very hard. That is the longest stretch I have ever gone without getting my 6+ hugs and 25+ touches daily.
Kids soak up radiation like sponges so it was 2 weeks before they could sit on my lap or next to me, or get a hug. That is really hard to explain to a two year old who wants mama to hold her.
That was the easy part.
The hard part of living in my body as my thyroid levels fell from hyper-as-hell to hypo-hell.
With in two months I was psychotic. Literally psychotic. What a mess that was. To try to function through that hypo-hell with a body fighting and a brain rebelling and the doctor telling me....."its not thyroid related."
ARE YOU KIDDING ME??!! I WASN'T LIKE THIS PRIOR TO THE RAI!!!
It would be the end of September before my endocrinologist felt my labs were low enough to show that we were successful in killing/damaging my thyroid enough.
All totaled I spent 4 months in hypo-hell.
The end results....a dead or damaged thyroid, and the cardiac side effects gone.
Other casualties in the nuking were my taste buds.
A week after the RAI my tongue felt funny, then my taste went bye-bye. Its never came back.
It was 3 1/2 years before I started to feel like me again. And that only happened because I just decided one day to make how I was feeling my new base line.
So now I think I am supposed to feel like crap 80% of the time.
It makes functioning and living like this easier.
End result....I hate thyroid issues even more.
...and when people irk me I can honestly tell them..."Back off! I swallow radiation like baby aspirin, I'm not someone you can push over!"