December 6, 2018

Ahh it's the most wonderful time of the year.

It can also be the most stressful and physically demanding time of the year.

Every single Christmas, since developing POTS, I pushed myself to keep up with all of the previous Christmas traditions I loved and enjoyed. As a result, every single year it took me around a month to recover from the holiday season.

Christmas became something I had to push through instead of something to enjoy.

Last year, as December approached, my stress levels began to rise. Shopping for gifts, going to holiday parties, and staying awake and upright all day on Christmas day were all th...

November 7, 2018

I receive most of my oils as gifts (birthdays, Christmas, etc.) from family members and friends. Not a single holiday goes by where I don't receive multiple new oils as gifts. I am lucky enough that all the oils pictured above didn't bring me to bankruptcy because of the generous gifts I have received from loved ones. However, I also spend almost all of my disposable income on health-related products, like essential oils. Health is my number one priority when it comes to spending my money.

I was at the POTS Treatment Center in Dallas, Texas when a patient's mom told me about essential oils. Well, I had hea...

September 5, 2018

September is here, and for many people this means it's back-to-school time! This time of year can be bittersweet for those with chronic illness. Many of us have had to withdrawal from school at one point or another because our illness made it impossible. If you've had to do this at any point and time, but are choosing to return back to school now, you might be facing some reluctance. You might fear you will have to withdrawal again, you may doubt your ability to attend school after time away, or you might not feel ready. Whatever your situation may be, it's okay. Your feelings are valid. I, too, had to ta...

August 15, 2018

If you've been following me on Instagram for the past year, you'll know that I've been trying everything under the sun to get my skin under control. I deal with acne, keratosis pilaris, atrophic scars from EDS, hyperpigmentation, mild localized psoriasis, and specific cystic acne scars on my shoulders, arms, and back. I developed cystic acne on my face, shoulders, arms, chest, and back when I developed a thyroid tumor. The scars this acne left behind prompted me to wear shirts with long sleeves (baggy t-shirts or cardigans) for two years. I was so insecure that I'd go out in a light beachy kimono/cardigan...

August 8, 2018

There’s not a week that goes by where I don’t see two completely contradicting health theories. I’ll read an article titled “Is red wine causing cancer?” just to immediately find an article talking about how the antioxidants in red wine help prevent cancer. 

We live in a world with endless access to information and not a clue what to do with it all. It’s overwhelming to the average person, but to the chronically ill, it can be panic-inducing.

The ability to critically analyze health claims is an essential skill to have when you’re chronically ill and especially desperate to fall into the traps of pricey “fi...

July 25, 2018

My family and I love to travel. When I was a kid, we'd go on a "big trip" every 2nd year, and a "small trip" every year. In the past couple of years, my Mom's been to multiple continents, while my younger brother has lived out of a van in New Zealand and went backpacking across Peru. I, on the other hand, became terrified of travelling when I developed POTS in January 2014. Just the thought of being in a foreign country, without the security of medical insurance, doctors who know my conditions, and barometric pressure I'm used to was enough to make me panic. POTS turned me into a 21-year-old woman who, af...

June 20, 2018

Heat intolerance is one of the few POTS symptoms I’ve had for as long as I can remember. I went to a Catholic private school for all of elementary and high school which involved wearing a uniform. In high school I remember being so uncomfortable with my white polo shirt and kilt in the winter because I thought it was too hot. My friends complained of our school being too cold and opted to wear the black uniform jacket and tights instead of the knee-high socks I wore instead. By the end of every single school day, I had a headache and was sweating. My mom would pick up my brothers and I and I would sit in...

June 7, 2018

When I first got sick, my daily symptoms were a living hell. Throw in doctors who think you’re crazy because they can’t find anything wrong with you and you soon realize that rock bottom has a basement. Surviving the initial shock and trauma of developing POTS takes everything out of you. You’re at your weakest moment but have to muster up the strength to fight to be heard, fight to be believed, and fight to get treatment. It's infuriating, it's frustrating, and it's just not fair.

It’s pretty bad that experiencing trauma at the hands of doctors who vow to “do no harm” has become some sort o...

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