2017 was quite a year. This reflection isn’t going to be a short one. It’s going to be a look into life behind the scenes! And no worries, there are some photos. Looking back it’s hard to believe that this is only a 2017 reflection. All of this happened in 365 days! So let’s dive right in to the good, the bad, and everything in between of 2017.
January was a rough month for me. On a medical side I was running an elevated temperature between 99.8 and 101.5 Fahrenheit from the second of January to the end of February. I was overall feeling very bleh, and my health wasn’t great. I hadn’t been attending school since the start of November, and my paperwork had finally gone through for what my county calls Home and Hospital. This allowed me to be able to do my work from home with a tutor, and catch up on everything I had missed!
January’s most popular blog post was My Holiday Wellness Haul.
February was a bit of a rough month, but also a game changer for me. I started the long process of getting off a medication that had horrific side effects. I experienced Dystonia for the first time, and boy that was scary. This month I made my final college visit – an accepted students day at the university I currently attend! My mom, my sister, and I also took a road trip over Presidents’ Day weekend, and we picked up Peggy. It’s mind-blowing to me to look back and think we’ve only been together for less than a year. I spent our first week barely sleeping, and from then on all of my energy that wasn’t spent on appointments or school was spent on her.
February’s most popular blog post was Questions You Need to Ask on Your Next College Visit.
I don’t remember much from March. It was spent working with Peggy and getting to know her. She challenged my endurance, and my tolerance for walking and moving around. I did get to meet my friend Remedy for the first time in real life, and that was really fun!
March’s most popular blog post was World, Meet Peggy.
April was another month of schoolwork and dog training. I got to spend some time outside before it got too hot out, got the rest of my college decisions, and I committed to my college!
April’s most popular blog post was How I Got Myself on a Schedule & You Can Too.
May brought around the 4 year anniversary of my first concussion, which marks the start of most of my health issues. In May I finished high school, went to prom, and met up with my friend Sadie and her service dog. I also joined Twitter!
May’s most popular blog post was 10 Things Not to Do When You See a Service Dog.
In June I got my diploma! I did a lot of relaxing and planning for my graduation party. It was fun to bask in the glory of being finished with high school! At the end of the month I had college orientation. I met some awesome people, including one of my now best friends!
June’s most popular blog post was Disney Travels Part One: Flying with POTS and Magic Kingdom.
In July I dog sat for a week, which was an… interesting experience.
I had my graduation party in the beginning of the month, and it was so much fun!
The morning of the party my mom went to pick up an order of fried chicken she had placed. When she arrived they said that there had been a fire, and that it would be a couple of hours before the order was ready. They hadn’t called to tell us that this had happened, so obviously the customer service leaves something to be desired. My mom thought on her feet, went to Sam’s Club (a wholesale grocer), and purchased every single rotisserie chicken available. Meanwhile, she had looped us in on the predicament, and my father had gone out to pick up some pulled pork. He told the pork guy the chicken situation, and the pork guy gave us some extra pork, unaware that my mother had just bought every rotisserie chicken in Sam’s Club. I don’t even know how many chickens we started with, but I know we managed to eat most of them. Despite this, at the end of the night my dad and brother found themselves with 16 leftover chickens to pick. They were up until 2 am! Needless to say, we got pretty creative with how to incorporate chicken into meals.
I also attended my second DysConf, where I got to spend time with old friends and make new ones! I started my dorm shopping, and put the finishing touches on my shopping lists.
July’s most popular blog post was What I Brought to College Orientation + 5 Must-Have’s.
Remember that medication I said I started to get off of in February? I finally took my last dose in August. This was one of my biggest accomplishments of the year! After a couple of weeks we were able to determine that I wasn’t getting the intended benefits of the medication, but had been dealing with its nasty side effects for nearly two years. Good riddance! Oh yeah, and I moved in to college!
August’s most popular blog post was Chronic Conqueror: Jessie McElwee.
September was a month of adjusting to my new schedule and going to school. After all, I hadn’t been to in person classes since October 2016! It was a time of doing work and making new friends, as well as watching myself and making sure I didn’t push past my limits. It was unseasonably cool though, which really helped my symptoms. I assume this made the process a lot easier!
September’s most popular blog post was How to Beat the Heat: My Hydration Regimen.
In October I faced off with my first round of midterms, which were not stressful in the slightest and I found myself well prepared. I did a lot of medical testing out-of-state, which was tiring, but I was able to work with my professors to keep up in my classes. My friend Sophie came to visit one Saturday, and we had a fun time exploring campus. It was pretty warm for late October, and we took full advantage deciding to do a photo shoot! The results were pretty spectacular.
October’s most popular blog post was Everything I Brought to College to Manage My Chronic Illnesses.
This November I had hoped would be much unlike last November, where I had been knocked down by relentless migraines day after day for the majority of the month. Unfortunately, this was not the case. It wasn’t easy, but I had awesome neighbors who brought me food when I could manage to eat but couldn’t leave my room. Every moment I was able I was working on my courses, trying my best to stay on top of things. Here’s to hoping next November is better.
November’s most popular blog post was 5 Essential Apps for the First Month of College.
I had been hoping to do Blogmas this December, but wasn’t able to tackle it as I had wanted to. Ultimately I decided not to add anything else to my plate. Maybe I’ll give it a go in 2018!
December brought finals, which were much less stressful than I had anticipated. I must be doing something right! My finals went well, and I finished my semester with a 4.0! I couldn’t believe it, but my prioritizing and determination paid off. I also was introduced to the screening room in our library, where I went with some friends to watch Christmas movies during study breaks as the semester wound down. The Polar Express is a lot darker than I remembered! After finals, I came home and rested to finish out the year. The exhaustion hit me hard, but that’s what breaks are for. I had a nice holiday, and have enjoyed spending time with my family.
December’s most popular blog post was 10 Things Not to Say to a Service Dog Handler.
And that’s my 2017 reflection!
I know this is a bit later than usual for reflection posts, but it took me a while to actually go back through the entirety of my year! I debated not posting this, but decided I still wanted to share it with you all. Thank you for following along with me!