Why I’ve been sick for​ the last 11 months

In September of last year, I got sick. I’ve been sick ever since. I went to the doctor twice [once at school and once at home], got prescribed antibiotics twice, took the full amount of antibiotics, and… never got better. I’ve been congested for ten months and this past week I finally got an appointment with the ear, nose, and throat doctor.

After explaining my lingering congestion and misery, a CT scan of my head, and a very confused doctor on how I could have been this sick for this long and how antibiotics have yet to help, we still aren’t 100% positive on what is the matter with me.

One thing I know for sure: I am CONGESTED. Between the four pairs of sinuses that I have in my head, one single sinus was not completely filled with crap. My doctor showed me my CT and compared it to my mom’s [we thought we were having the same sinus problems… we were wrong] and the two are polar opposites.

My doctor declared that he could not give me a full diagnosis until my head had cleared up which will have to wait until Thanksgiving. He did, however, note that I have a partially deviated septum, which may be the cause for my inability to breathe out of my nose, I am a potential candidate for a sinuplasty [something us chronic sinusitis patients are told works miracles], and I was then prescribed three weeks of antibiotics and one week of steroids.

He then told me that when I return in November that one of two things would happen: he would be able to correctly diagnose my problem[s] because the lack of fluid in my sinuses would allow him to properly see inside my head, or, that I would be getting that sinuplasty whether I liked it or not so he could then 100% see what’s wrong inside of my head.

Well, I’m only on the third day of antibiotics and steroids and I already feel hundreds of times better. While I can’t breathe out of my nose yet, I can exhale out of my nose ad not need to blow my nose, I can breathe a lot better in general, I haven’t blown my nose in two days, and I have not felt out of breathe [something that’s been happening since I was in Spain] since the appointment.

Moral of the story today folks: when you get sinus infections every year [sometimes multiple times a year] and the most recent one doesn’t seem to go away, even with the help of many antibiotics, maybe you should schedule an ENT appointment sooner rather than later so your doc can get to the bottom of the issue ASAP.

Will update around Thanksgiving

❤ Alicia ❤

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Quick College Update post

Hi everyone. So, a couple posts ago, I mentioned that I had absolutely zero clue where i wanted to transfer to next fall. Well this is still the case, but I have a little bit more figured out.

For starters, college. I have been looking into schools for about a month, picking ones with a variety of majors, extracurriculars and good financial aid packages. I had written a list of maybe 15 colleges down that had all of these. Upon further investigation, hearing from other students, etc, I have narrowed my list down to 7, and here’s why.

  1. DePaul University- Lincoln Park, Il: DePaul is a great school that is close to almost everything in Chicago. With a wide variety of extracurriculars. Sports, and majors, it’s basically perfect. The only con is that because of the proximity to my house, my parents are urging me to live at home while I attend. I get saving $15000 and potential loans in ideal, but at what cost?
  2. Ohio University- Athens, Ohio: This is newer on the list so I don’t have an insane amount of reasons why it’s there. The school is great, they have everything I need and more, plus  I Wouldn’t have to live at home…
  3. Xavier University- Cincinnati Ohio: Xavier is still high on my list because it was my second option for schooling the first time around. It’s a beautiful quaint campus with an impressive track record on all things academic. My only issue is it doesn’t have a huge variety of majors so if I want to switch (again) I may be out of luck.
  4. The University of Findlay- Findlay, Ohio: These last 4 are on the list because they have everything I need, some even more. I really want to attend one of the top 3, but if somehow that can’t happen, one of these four will be just as great.
  5. Otterbein University- Westerville, Ohio: These last 4 are on the list because they have everything I need, some even more. I really want to attend one of the top 3, but if somehow that can’t happen, one of these four will be just as great.
  6. Winona State University- Winona Minnesota: These last 4 are on the list because they have everything I need, some even more. I really want to attend one of the top 3, but if somehow that can’t happen, one of these four will be just as great.
  7. Clarke University- Dubuque Iowa: These last 4 are on the list because they have everything I need, some even more. I really want to attend one of the top 3, but if somehow that can’t happen, one of these four will be just as great.

I have asked my dad to let me visit Xavier and University of Ohio soon so that I Can gauge if I want/still want to attend either. I have visited DePaul, however I have not taken an official tour. I want to do and get a bit more information to make a truly educated decision.

Alicia

Mental Illness Awareness Week

Hi friends, this week was mental illness awareness week. Basically, having mental illnesses suck but we need to understand that 1 in 4 people struggle with them and that typically, these people can function in society just like people without.

I always struggled with my mental illnesses since I was in middle school. Now, I am finally coming to terms with them and myself. It’s very unfortunate that I had to struggle with mental illnesses alone for such a long time. I do not want any of you, or anyone ever to have to go through something like this alone.

Recently, I started following the instagram @wearyourlabel which is basically a clothing store that tells you it’s okay to not be okay. This instagram sells shirts with slogans such as “self care isn’t selfish,” “you are enough,” and “anxious but courageous.” I really like all of them and in order to prevent impulse buying each of them, I am holding off until I can narrow down until there is only one I am absolutely in love with.

After I started following wear your label, another instagram account @buddyproject. Intrigued as to what the ‘buddy project’ was all about, I followed them back and took a look at their website. Basically the buddy project is a project started by Gabby Frost. Gabby’s mission was to pair people as buddies while raising awareness for mental illnesses.

I really think that the buddy project is a great organization and kudos to Gabby for thinking about it. It’s very easy to sign up for a buddy. All you have to do is share you name, twitter handle, email, and share what a few interests are and bam! You’re signed up. I’m not sure how long it will take to get my buddy, but when I do find out, I’ll be sure to let you all know. I also recommend everyone suffering from mental illnesses or those wanting to be more aware of mental health in general, to take a look at either wear your label or buddy project.

Have a great weekend and Always Remember to be Aware of Mental Illnesses. I didn’t write 2 essays and three speeches about them in college for nothing

Alicia

Fall Mixtape

When I had one of my previous blogs, my friend and I decided to choose a summer song that was sort of our anthem for the summer. We used it in each of our youtube videos as background music and whenever it played on the radio, we were ecstatic. So, i have decided to make a fall playlist and why I chose each song. Also, this list is just such a jumble of random songs of many genres, they’re just songs I have been jamming to lately and want to share.

1: Closer- Chainsmokers ft. Halsey

Okay, so this is a jam and anyone who tells me otherwise is lying or needs their ears checked. This is a song that I dance around my house in my underwear to. Also, whenever this song comes on when I’m driving I turn the radio up super high and jam (mom if you’re reading this, I am still being safe even if I am using one of my arms to fist bump). I have listened to this song at least 100 times since they performed it on the MTV video awards in August. I also like it because I want a tattoo on my shoulder and they sing about one (lol).

2: My Body- Young the Giant

This is another jam of mine. I have sort of been a fan of this band for a couple of years but I recently started getting more into them and discovered this song, as well as many other amazing ones. This is another one of those jamming in your underwear songs.

3: Sit Still, Look Pretty- Daya

I’m all for independent women songs, especially in this era (all eras really) when it is instilled in women that they have to be at a man’s every beckon call. This is such a great song, mood uplifter, and empowering song to women everywhere. However, almost every song by Daya and Alessia Cara seem to have that effect. I’m also a fan because every time I have been in a car or it has come up on Spotify or whatever, every man always asks what HBIC means. It’s sort of funny because the notion a woman can be in charge leaves men and their masculinity in shambles.

4: That’s My Girl- Fifth Harmony

Another lady jam. Fifth Harmony has been quite the group of role models for young women everywhere who need to show anyone that they are independent and amazing and don’t need validation from anyone. This is their most recent single released off of their album and even though I wouldn’t consider myself a huge fan (harmonizer I think they call themselves), kudos to them for empowering women everywhere.

5: Make You Miss Me- Sam Hunt

Don’t judge me for liking Country music. My dad has literally lived on a farm and I was raised on it (the music not the farm). Also, I don’t care if you don’t appreciate my music taste. It’s a nice slow song that has a lot of meaning for him and is nice for car rides alone, aka me all the time because I have no friends (jk my drive to and from work but not jk about the no friends part)

6: Cancer- Twenty One Pilots

If any of you are/were My Chemical Romance fans, you may be familiar with the song Cancer. Twenty One Pilots recently covered it, and if I ever need a good cry or a moment to remember how fragile life is, I give it a listen. My grandma died of cancer in the fall and a playlist without a song dedicated to her, wouldn’t be complete.

7: 1997- Saint Motel

I love this song. I absolutely adore it. I am actually seeing them in concert in like 2 weeks and am PUMPED. Anyway, it’s an amazing song and I was also born in 1997 so bonus. It’s a bit of a slower song, not super slow, not super fast, but awesome nonetheless.

8: This Town- Niall Horan

Alrighty, I was (still am) always a HUGE One Direction fan, so last week Niall Horan shook my entire existence by releasing this song. I haven’t listened to it enough to memorize every word yet, but I am working on it. I miss the band, but I am super happy for each of the band members (except Zayn, RIP Zayn) that they are happy and living their lives during their break (?) or whatever they’re doing. No one really knows what is going on with that band anymore.

9: From the Ground Up- Dan and Shay

Another country song. Woot. This is such a cute song about family and love and other gross stuff. I have never aspired to have a family of my own but if I were to, I would want it to resemble the family that Dan and Shay sing about in the song.

10: Cool Girl: Tove Lo

I had planned on putting 13 songs on here but, as you can tell from my last 3 descriptions as to why they are featured on this playlist, they were lacking. It is almost 1 in the morning and I have to be up at 715. Hahahahahahahaha kill me. Anyway, this is a Cool Song (get it because the title is Cool Girl). Ok, enough exhaustion filled jokes. I really like this song and it is a jam and I go hard to it every time it comes on the radio, which of course, since all radio stations play the same 7 songs for weeks on end, has been a lot.

 

Well, if this gets good feedback, I might make one for each season. Please Note that Winter’s will mainly consist of Christmas Carols with #1 being Mariah Carey’s iconic ‘All I Want for Christmas is You”

Until next time,

Alicia

 

 

Addicted… to Social Media

Hello all. Today, I was browsing the snapchat discovery page and saw a girl gave up social media for a month and discussed her overall experience, pros, cons, etc. I have seen many people (not really.. Only about 5) give up social media and then write about their overall experience. What struck me in the article I read today, was that she discussed reasons why she went back on social media… No one, other than this one obviously, has discussed why they returned to social media, only the pros of giving it up. All of these people, including myself, did discuss why social media is controlling, frustrating,etc, but I realize I never mentioned, in depth, the reasons I didn’t bid adieu to social media forever. So, I figured I would give a few pros to social media, and revisit a few of the cons as well.

Pro #1: Keeping up to date on what your friends/family are doing.

I follow over 500 people on instagram, about 300 on twitter, have over 1000 facebook friends, and probably 150 or so snapchat amigos as well. Social media gives me the opportunity to keep track of what they’re doing with their lives. Obviously, I hear big events from people I am close with via text, phone call, or face to face encounter. However, random things, like cool concerts, adventures, and other random things that I may think are cool are not always brought up. While not everything I see or read on social media about people is life changing, I do like seeing when people I am close with, or even simple acquaintances are having a blast in their lives.

Con #1: Political Posts

These are the reasons I still don’t have the facebook app downloaded on my phone. POLITICAL POSTS. Yes, I post my own, almost everyone I know posts something political every once in awhile. A girl has blocked me for my liberal posts and when I see people who are so intolerant and unaware of the state of our country it makes me want to vomit. I totally understand that people have their own opinions, no matter how much sometimes they make me cringe, but being as ass to someone for their views isn’t something I’m too keen on. And when people have the audacity to bring their Donald Trump bullshit onto MY POST I draw the line right there and will drag them into the dark depths of republican hell… Hillary Clinton-ville.

Pro #2: Memes/filters/fun

You are lying to me if you say that putting on funny alien faces and having fireworks pop out of your face on snapchat isn’t funny. Despite the terrible Harambe incident, the memes are chuckle worthy. Whenever I go on social media I am bombarded with memes, stupid filters, and videos of funny people doing funny things. I could spend hours on vine looking at people talking about their croc tattoos, random dancing videos, and cats doing actions that hysterically correlate to songs. If I had to thank social media for one thing, it’s making me laugh until I am crying and my stomach hurts on a daily basis.

Con #2: Take up time when could do something productive

My favorite thing to do is going on twitter and seeing people tweeting about how much homework they have, or how many tests they have to study for. WHY ARE YOU TWEETING IT WHEN YOU COULD BE STUDYING? Maybe I should practice what I preach. Whenever I am trying to get out of doing work, I immediately grab my phone and press the twitter app. All of a sudden it is an hour later, and I have scrolled past countless tweets, videos, and photos and have yet to write that 5-page essay. Hmmmmm. It is nice to check a few times a day, but when there are more pressing issues, such as homework that can’t complete itself, social media can be quite the menace.

Pro #3: Being independent of your phone

My phone was always sort of a safety blanket for me. Any ‘awkward’ moment I found myself immersed in, I would immediately pick my phone up, like today when my avocados dropped out of my cart and I didn’t notice and had to wait for a lady to go “Miss, you dropped these!” from 50 feet away. I immediately thanked her and pulled my phone out, mindlessly scrolling through in order to forget the situation that had just occurred.

Whether I would be walking to class, waiting for our professor, standing in line at the grocery store, any moment of silence I would pull my phone out. I still do that, less frequently, though. I don’t know if I’ll ever be 100% independent from my phone and comfortable enough to not pull out my phone in any awkward moment of my life, but I am starting to be more independent from it, and I don’t need it attached at my hip every second of the day anymore, which is a start.

Con #3: Rude people

I know this is a bit more popular when you have quite an instagram following, but cyber bullying is a real thing, even if there are quite a few people who seem to think it isn’t a pressing topic. I have personal experience on this and I know many other people do as well. Rude people are everywhere and it’s a shame that people hide behind computer screens to show hatred. I know you can go on private and block people blah blah blah, but if people really want to talk shit, as unfortunate as this is,  they will find a way.

 

Ther you all have it. A social media review from both sides. Hope you all enjoyed this post and the fact that I’m getting back in the swing of things and posting more frequently.

Until next time

Alicia

October 1st

Happy Halloween! well not really, but it is October 1st, so it basically is the same thing. If Christmas gets the entire month of December and half the month of November (Also i have already seen Christmas decorations and it was only September so Christmas sort of gets the last third of the year), So, Happy Halloween!

That literally isn’t even what this post is about. October 1st is World Vegetarian Day, it was also VeganMania in Chicago, but I had to babysit for the entire duration of the event so I unfortunately couldn’t attend. I also missed a goat walk, so that was probably the worst part.

Anyway, I have decided to go back on my journey through veganism over the past year and see what I’ve learned and how I’ve changed.

I remember vividly, my first night of college, my roommate and I went to Chipotle. I ordered chicken on my burrito bowl and my roommate looked disgusted at me and said “Chicken? You know they kill them right?” And I sat there, unfazed, as I continued to spew my order to the guy behind the counter. And here I am, a year later, yelling at the man in the chicken commercial who brags that their chickens are organic and cage free.

While I mentioned in one of my most recent posts that I had been a bad vegan, I have been. This journey has been long, grueling, however rewarding. I have no shame that for my first 18 years of my life, I lived on mac and cheese, grilled cheese, chocolate milk and bacon! Then my roommate has me watch forks over knives, cowspiracy, and other random videos about animal abuse.

Then, I went full vegan. Something not many people do all at once. Most people I know go vegetarian first for a few years, and then if they’re feeling outrageous, they go vegan. I however, cut animal products cold turkey. It has been a struggle, a rewarding one but a struggle nonetheless. I really feel that I should have transitioned slower, and maybe I wouldn’t have ‘cheated.’ I didn’t, and am learning how difficult this is.

I understand that this isn’t cheating, technically, because I am the one who is doing this. I am in this by myself for myself and for the animals.

I have been trying my best to remember why it is that I started the transition to veganism. I am doing it for the animals. I am doing so that 100 less animals are killed every year, and that despite all of the animals killed and tortured, it won’t be because of me.

Today, a year later, here I am, struggling but doing very well at it. I wouldn’t consider myself full vegan because I have slipped up a few times, but I am trying. Today, I am 30 pounds lighter, happier, crying whenever I see farm animals that were saved, and yelling at every chicken commercial I see. I really needed to write this post, for myself, to show how far I’ve come, and to shoe how far I need to go. I am doing well, but still have a long way to go.

So, happy world vegetarian day. Go vegetarian. Then vegan!

Alicia

To my brother…

It’s 12:04 am. I retreated to my bed over an hour ago, after receiving this news. I’m laying in bed, thinking of you. I won’t be getting to sleep anytime soon, no matter how long I count sheep or how long I paint pictures of us on my ceiling. I just stare at the ceiling, thinking of you.

It’s funny, isn’t it? How we think we know so much, but in reality we know so little? For my entire 19 years in this planet, It’s been my sister and I, well at least since she was born. I never knew you existed until today. Intriguing, right? I always thought the whole long lost sibling concept kept its place in the box of the television, but here I am, finding out after 19 years of life, I’ve had this older brother all along, and had no idea.

Everyone else knew. Well, not everyone. However, almost all of the adults I spend ample time with knew, yet somehow my sister and I were kept in this bubble of unknowingness for so long.

We sat there, my sister and I, mouths agape, as my our mom told us about you. Our half-brother, who grew up less than 45 minutes from where we live, and somehow we had no idea you existed.

12:09 now. I’m numb, still cozy in bed, still thinking about you. You know I exist, you’ve seen pictures of me. What do you think of me? Did you want two sisters? I always wanted an older brother. I nagged constantly to my mom that I wished I had been born second and that I had an older brother. And I do.

My Our mom showed me your instagram today. You look almost identical to my uncle, Jim, so I know we’re related. You’re my brother. I have a brother. Sorry if I keep saying that. Truth is, the facts haven’t sunk in yet.

As many times as scroll through your pictures, trying to absorb as much as I can through those square photos of your friends, family and 2 cats, I can’t wrap my head around it. How did I not know? How did I not know I had a brother? I have a brother.

12:12 and I’m upright, still trying to process how this happened. How you exist. How I never knew. How everyone kept this a secret from my sister and I for so long. Neither of us can. How did you never come up in conversation? How did your name never slip out?

I want to cry, buy why? What’s the point? I have a brother, and I didn’t know. I think it’s because I always wanted one. I always wanted a brother to look up to, to show me the ropes, to make sure no one picked on me, make sure mom and dad never gave me too hard of a time.

You were 11 when I was born. You had no idea I existed then. That my mom existed. You lived less than 40 minutes away from me but we had no idea. Crazy.

My mom told my sister and I about 6 hours ago now. We were in the living room, I was checking twitter and my sister was eating. She said she had something to tell us that she didn’t know how to say.

Immediately thinking the worst, I assumed someone had died. But really, someone was born, not really but born into my world, anyway.

There isn’t much to say about you. I don’t know you… I may never. I know nothing about you, but you’re my brother.

You were born on June 22nd, 1986 at 2:13 am. Your name is Evan. You have 2 cats. You live in Los Angeles. And I hope you want to meet me. I really do. Because you have two younger sisters that want to meet their big brother.

I love you already, even if you don’t know it yet.
Alicia

good-night-apocalypse

P.S. Sorry I haven’t posted in a while, with finals and getting home a few days ago and then this news I haven’t had much time to do anything.