I had my thyroidectomy in 2000 because I could not stabilize with PTU. It was the best decision I ever made, every day after the surgery I noticed something new and different (good different) and thought, “Wow, THAT is hormone controlled too!”
My surgeon left a thin slice of thyroid covering each parathyroid to minimize disturbances there. The parathyroid controls calcium distribution in the body, and the first night I woke up with bad muscle spasms in my back, but the muscles relaxed with constant massage. I recommend having someone on hand in case you need this service! After the operation I also noticed my voice went down about half an octave (but no sore throat or anything), slowly it moved back to its original range, and after a year or two I was back to singing in the church choir.
As to medication, at first I had a bit of trouble remembering to take my meds, I think in part because I was resistant to the whole “medicine-for-life” concept. I notice when I miss a dose 2-3 days running and it really sucks because it takes 2 weeks to a month to get back on track - so be consistent!!!
Even when hyperthyroid I had weight issues (go figure, the one symptom I wish I had I didn't get), and immediately after the surgery I gained about 5 pounds, but when I concentrate on eating right and exercising I am back to my original weight.
As to the eye issue, it really seems to exist seperately from the thyroid stuff. I've noticed that stress will sometimes make my eyes bulge more, but sometimes they get better or worse without any stimulus I can make out. I love the idea of smiling more to crinkle your eyes and make them smaller! Right now I work in an elementary school and kids' candid questions have forced me to come to terms with having bulging eyes. Although I still get a faint twinge of feeling abnormal whenever its brought up, I've learned to maximize the situation by scaring kids by making my eyes bulge out even more.