5 Things My Husband Doesn’t Know About Me

Yesterday Robert grilled some hot dogs for lunch, and he actually asked me if I wanted mustard on mine. Gross! How did he not know I am not a fan of condiments, particularly bright yellow mustard? It got me thinking about how funny it is when you learn new things about someone you know really well. I really racked my brain to think of a few other things he might not know about me, and here is a short list:

  1. When I was a preteen I had a bright blue bellbottom tracksuit. No, bell bottoms were not in style or cool in the 90s, but I loved the comfort and style of this getup, and it would be a miracle if I dodged getting pictures in this, because it was seriously my favorite thing ever at the time. This is to date my worst fashion faux pas, and I’m certain I’ll never be worse off than I was back then.
  2. I. Will. Not. Try. Cottage. Cheese. I’m sorry, but the texture freaks me out so much that I cannot bring myself to try a bite. Why are there lumps in it? Is it more like cheese or yogurt? I’ll try pretty much anything, but cottage cheese is a no-go. I’m borderline scared of it. cheese.png
  3. I won the school science fair twice — once in elementary school, and then in the bigger pool of competition in high school. The first was testing out properties of bubble gum which were, in hindsight, not all very scientific, and the second was an experiment with photosynthesis. I don’t even remember what all the findings looked like, but I still have a medal from it.
  4. Ryan Seacrest was my first celebrity crush. I thought he was charming and funny on American Idol, my favorite show at the time, and thankfully this was before social media so I didn’t have to be a Ryan stan defending him against Internet trolls.
  5. I was a weird little kid. I’ve always loved the English language, but I also have made up words since I could talk. A name for something I love? Teedlehopper. That little dip that’s right below your nose and above your lips? Well, I’m glad you asked, that’s a Parison!

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Now I’ll have to post this and wait to hear back from Robert if he knew any of this, or if I’m correct in thinking we’ve never discussed any of it before. I honestly can’t think of anything else he doesn’t already know, particularly about me now, but I’m sure there will be plenty more mustard moments in the rest of our lifetime together. ❤

Busy Bee

Ahhh guys, I have an exciting announcement I will be making next week!

There are two projects I’ve been working on, and I will be writing about the second project incredibly soon. I have put a lot of thought and work into it, and I really can’t wait to share.

I feel bad that I’ve neglected this blog a little lately, I’ve just been so darn busy and only have so much arm strength to push forward. My POTS symptoms have gone haywire lately too, so I’ve needed a lot more rest and recovery time for everything. Thank you for still visiting Single in The Suburbs, and I will update you all SOON! ❤

What To Do When You Get Diagnosed With A Chronic Illness

Getting sick with a chronic condition is life-changing and confusing. I have become a bit of a pro when it comes to being sick, so here are a few tips on what to do if you or someone you love ever get diagnosed with a chronic illness:

  1. First and foremost, do not panic. Take a second to breathe, and realize that just because you now have a name to label your symptoms doesn’t mean it’s going to get worse here on out. If anything it actually gets much better since you are able to explain why certain things happen to your body and how to treat them.
  2. Realize that it’s normal and okay to cry. Doctors have seen it all, and if they’re good at their profession they will be sympathetic towards your feelings (And if they’re not, it’s definitely not you — it’s them).
  3. Do not go on Google! I cannot stress how important it is to process everything before reading dozens of articles and Facebook forums about your illness. Whether it’s an absolutely extreme version of your illness or a post venting about how difficult life becomes with this condition, there isn’t a lot that will help you out that very same day. Give yourself a little time and ask your doctor questions, rather than relying on WebMD to give you a cure. I found that negativity can really have a direct effect on your health and healing, which is why I try to keep things as stress-free as humanly possible.Screen Shot 2017-03-20 at 1.54.29 PM.png
  4. On a related note, make sure to find out how to contact your doctor in case you need to reach someone with a question about symptoms you might be having. Most doctors who deal with people with chronic conditions have a way of reaching them, whether it’s a nurse hotline or an email address. I have a neurologist who offers an in-home service where I can email him with questions or prescription refill requests, and he replies within a day. It’s been a really valuable resource and I tend to stick with the doctors who really care about their patients.
  5. If a little bit of time goes by and you’re still afraid to research what you have, ask a family member or friend to do some research for you — then leave out the really unhelpful negative information. I’ve found a lot of people with chronic conditions can be incredibly pessimistic and bitter — and they have every right to be! But the more you can try to keep your spirits high and look towards your bright future, the better off you will be. I very firmly believe in the power of positive thinking, and although that may not be able to heal your body, it can at least keep your mind in a healthy state.
  6. If you do have a hard time staying positive about life, though, there is absolutely no shame in seeing a therapist or counselor to vent your frustrations to. Never feel bad about needing extra help. It doesn’t mean you aren’t strong — sometimes I think being able to ask for help is the hardest thing a person can do, but it can be life-changing.
  7. Lastly, be open with friends and family about what you need. It can be difficult for loved ones to know how to react or behave when someone close to them gets sick, but that doesn’t mean they don’t want to be there for you. Giving people a very concrete thing they could do to help — such as talking on the phone for fifteen minutes a day or making a meal for you and your family — is actually really helpful.
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I never in a million years thought I would ever need a wheelchair at 22 years old, but by the time I traveled to take this picture I was able to make light of a difficult situation.

I know how scary and life-changing getting a chronic illness is. I remember getting diagnosed with POTS like it was yesterday. Collecting a few other “syndromes” and conditions along the way hasn’t been easy, but I’ve at least had enough experience to stay a little calmer when I learn something new about my health. Finding five things you are thankful for despite being sick is something I try to do on my most difficult days. I am thankful for my family (This includes Macy!), Robert, my best friends, the sunshine, and chocolate. That was a really easy list, and I grouped a bunch of people together. Despite not having the life I had dreamed of for most of my childhood, I still have some pretty incredible blessings.

Fifteen Fun Facts

Our little Single in The Suburbs family has grown quite a bit lately, so I thought I would do a fun little list to help introduce myself to all of our new readers (Thank you, Kalika, for inspiring me to narrow my number down to 15!).

Without further ado, here are 15 fun facts about me:

  1. I love all things Thomas Rhett. I love his music, his Instagram feed, and his relationship with his life Lauren. I think they’re adorable and despite it being hard to judge from social media, I do think they seem like really genuine people.
  2. Writing is literally one of my favorite activities. Sometimes I would rather write than go out with friends on the weekend (But I’ll usually take someone up on an offer to hang out if I’m free).
  3. Every time I cash a check I go shopping to find someone I love a little present. Giving gifts is probably my biggest love language, which can be tough since I don’t have a “real job.”
  4. Sometimes I play a game with myself to see how many grumpy-looking strangers I can get to smile back at me.
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    This is what I think I look like…

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    This is probably closer to reality.
  5. Valentine’s Day is my favorite holiday. Actually, it’s probably even my favorite day of the year despite hating the cold weather February brings. I’ve always loved it, even when I was super-single, because I feel like it’s a day you can kind of go crazy in writing cards and giving gifts — my two favorite things. Oh, and it’s a good excuse to eat a ton of chocolate — not that I need a specific day to tell me to do so.
  6. If I could be friends with any celebrity I would hands-down choose Selena Gomez. I think she’s beautiful, talented, and a great role model even with the mistakes she’s made… And I feel like we have a lot in common — especially now that she’s been diagnosed with a chronic illness as well.
  7. I don’t feel comfortable eating things when I know they’ve been genetically modified. Sadly I think the majority of packaged things you’d get at the grocery store — and even fruits and veggies — are GMOs, but I am hoping we’ll eventually follow  Europe’s lead and ban them. It just doesn’t seem healthy, and ever since I got sick without knowing why I wonder what in the environment could have caused my sudden illness.
  8. I don’t like cats, and they don’t like me. Just because I’m not a fan, though (Would you like things that scratch and bite you nonstop?!), doesn’t mean I don’t want the best for them. Growing up we rescued 2 cats from the street, and I think every animal deserves a loving home.

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  9. I get really embarrassed when I have to order things at restaurants or Starbucks because I hate being high maintenance, but I developed several allergies as an adult — apparently that’s a typical thing for POTS. Who would have known?!
  10. That being said, my order at Starbucks is a grande salted caramel hot chocolate made with soy milk and with half the amount of syrup. And if they ask, I can’t say no to whipped cream!
  11. This shouldn’t be a big surprise to anyone, but I absolutely love letter writing. I keep all the cards and letters friends give me, and still have every love note I’ve been written. Along with gift giving, I show my love for others through words on paper.

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  12. The thing that impresses me most about people is the ability to be kind to others — especially when it’s a really hard thing to do.
  13. I do most of my shopping online because I often get too tired to go to a bunch of stores at the mall. I just signed up for Ipsy, and am stoked to get my first box next month. I’ll be writing a review on it later, but if you want to join me feel free to sign up under my account. My next venture is going for the Fab Fit Fun box, but I don’t want to splurge that much on myself all at once. Subscription boxes are just so darn fun since you are essentially paying other people to buy you a present!
  14. If I could be good at one thing I would choose being musically gifted. I would love to have a great singing voice, as singing is one of my favorite things to do! Sadly I don’t have that gift, so unless we’re crazy-close you’ll probably never hear me sing.
  15. Instagram is my favorite social media site. I love that you can share your life with strangers and that you can share a story with a fun photo. I’ve actually made a few friends on the site who have been a huge support system for me, too, which is awesome!