Victim or Victor? The Choice is YOURS!
A little over a year ago, I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s hypothyroidism. It seems weird to think that 30 years of my body doing strange things were easily answered in a simple blood test from Quest Diagnostics. Hypothyroidism is becoming very common in women my age, however, a proper diagnosis of hypothyroidism can take 20-30 years. Hypothyroidism mimics many other auto-immune conditions, including rheumatoid arthritis, menopause, acid reflux, and ADHD. Even the best-trained doctors may miss all the signs of the disease only treating the obvious symptoms they see. My doctors missed it, even when I had a cyst on my thyroid eight years ago. My endocrinologist saw the cyst and told me “We can wait for this to become cancer, or we can take it out now.” I opted to have that half of my thyroid removed, and follow-up blood tests showed my thyroid was “normal.” Had she done the thyroid antibodies tests, she likely would have seen that my thyroid was attacking itself back then. I continued to suffer from weird cramps in my feet, joint pain, brain fog, and other symptoms that I wrote off as menopause, arthritis, and old age when it was probably my thyroid this whole time. Many of these symptoms can be alleviated with changes in diet and lifestyle.
When challenges like these affect people, people often become either “a victim” or “a victor.” How they think about what they have makes all the difference.
“Victims” would look at the above scenario with Hashimoto’s, and think:
“My mother had an auto-immune disease, I got this from her. It’s her fault.”
“Those stupid doctors didn’t test me for everything they should have. It’s their fault I’m sick. I should sue them for malpractice.”
“How come I get hypothyroidism and other people don’t? It’s not fair.”
“It’s always something. Now I’ll never be able to (insert dream/life goal here).”
“I wonder what I did to deserve this?”
Contrast this with how a “Victor” would think about getting Hashimoto’s:
“My tests show I have Hashimoto’s. What do I need to learn about Hashimoto’s in order to get well again?”
“Who is the best doctor for this condition?”
“Wow, this explains a lot about what has been going on with my body all these years. What life changes do I have to make in order to feel better?”
“It appears hypothyroidism is hereditary, and I’ll bet my mother had struggles with her thyroid. What can I do differently to live a satisfying life?”
“Since hypothyroidism is so frequently misdiagnosed, what can I do to help my family and friends be aware that they may have thyroid issues?”
Notice the tone between these two perspectives is very, very different.
Victims blame everyone else for their troubles and avoid action.
Victors take in the information and find ways to not only help themselves but others too.
Victims believe that everything is someone else’s fault. Victims believe they are the way they are because of their parents, their siblings, their abuse, their neglect, their trauma, their tragedies, and the diseases they’ve been exposed to. Victims are easy to spot because nothing is ever their fault. They blame the way they are on everyone else. The best victims “expect” things because the world “owes” them for the injustices they’ve suffered.
Victors on the other hand, believe that their parents, their siblings, their abuse, their neglect, their trauma, their tragedies, and their diseases happened to them, but they do not allow those things to control them or define who they are. Victors acknowledge what happened in their past, and begin taking 100% responsibility for how they respond to those things. Victors use their challenges to build them up and make them stronger, instead of using their past as an excuse for their failings. They embrace their parents, their siblings, their abuse, their neglect, their trauma, their tragedies, and their diseases, and use the lessons they learned from their experiences to create a much more rewarding reality for themselves.