Saturday, November 11, 2017

NaNoWriMo Weekly Update 2

It's Saturday and that can mean only one thing. It's time for my weekly update on NaNoWriMo 2017.

NaNoWriMo Week 2

I wish I could say that I've been hitting my target and goals each day, but that would be lying. Unfortunately, this week I have been dealing with a family emergency that's been more important, but I haven't been able to write as much. I should have known that it would happen, but it's life and there's not a lot I can do about that.

For my story, I have had to change some things around, which is not helping me progress. At the end of the day, the word count doesn't matter. Yes, it's been a disappointing week filled with a bit of despair, but I refuse to give up. I refuse to let setbacks define me and the writing goals I set for the purpose of doing NaNoWriMo in the first place. I do have a lot of work ahead of me for the rest of the month and I believe I can still win this (by reaching or exceeding 50,000 words). Anything is possible if I just believe.


Saturday, November 4, 2017

NaNoWriMo 2017 Weekly Update 1

I'm going to be doing weekly updates on how NaNoWriMo is going every Saturday.

NaNoWriMo Week 1

NaNoWriMo kicked off on Wednesday, so as of this writing, I have just finished day four. In case anyone doesn't know, I am not writing a novel per se. I am writing my long qt book.

Day 1 - I actually got off to a good start. I wrote 2,289 words. Remember, the goal is write at least 1,667 words a day. It was great to go over when I wasn't expecting to.

Day 2 - Not as great as the first day, so I only wrote 993 words. I kept getting distracted and trust me, distractions happen more than you think. It brought my total to 3,282 words.

Day 3 - I was able to have a productive day and wrote 1,917 words, bringing my total to 5,199. It puts me over what I needed. If I would have written exactly 1,667 words up to this point, it would have been at 5,001 words.

Day 4 - Today didn't exactly go as planned, but that's okay. I still got some writing done and wrote 1,003 words. It brings me to my overall total of 6,202, which is below what I needed.

Thoughts on Week 1
I made some progress, but have faced a few challenges. My initial goal of doing NaNoWriMo was to get back into the habit of writing every day, as well as finally finishing writing my long qt book. The problem is I don't know if it's possible to write a minimum 50,000 word book on the topic, but I will be trying my hardest. If I'm able to finish writing the book in under 30 days and it happens to be under the 50,000 word count, I'm thinking about starting a novel after that because it would still be writing something to contribute to NaNoWriMo. I do have a lot of work ahead of me going into next week.


Wednesday, October 25, 2017

NaNoWriMo Official

It's official! I will be participating in NaNoWriMo for the first time this year! In case anyone doesn't know, it stands for National Novel Writing Month. During the month of November, you are challenged to write a novel of at least 50,000 words. That comes to writing 1,667 words each day in the month.

I am not writing a novel, however. I am taking the month to write My Journey with Long QT book, so it will be a nonfiction novel. While I have written some parts of it already, I will be finally finishing the first draft.

I am excited to be partaking in NaNoWriMo. I will be posting weekly updates here on this blog.


Friday, October 20, 2017

Day on Writing #WhyIWrite

Writing is my passion. Writing is my talent. I can express myself better in writing than talking or saying something. I write because it's a joy; it gives me this sense of happiness that I can't find anywhere else.

Happy Reading and Keep on Writing!


Monday, September 11, 2017

Never Forget

At 14 and a freshman in high school, I learned that evil was real, that it existed in the world. What I never understood then and in the 16 years since is how people can have so much hate for one country that they're willing to lose their lives along with thousands of innocent lives lost that day.

I will always remember 9/11 as if it happened yesterday, but there's one memory that stands out above them all. As horrible as the terrorist attacks were, it brought the nation, my country, together. United we stood back then and I hope one day, united we will stand again.

Today I remember all those lives lost in New York, D.C., and PA in my thoughts and prayers. Let us never forget.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

The Third Seizure Part 2 and Diagnosis #Meg's Long QT Journey

I ended the last post stating that long qt syndrome was a possible diagnosis. Here's the rest of how that became official.

Getting a second opinion meant going through another round of tests for both cardiology and neurology. On one side, my cardiologist needed to make sure it was long qt and not anything else heart related. At the same time, my neurologist still had to rule out epilepsy and anything else brain related. Most of the tests were what I had before: EKGs, echo cardiogram, EEG, a sleep deprived EEG, stress test, and an hour long MRI of my brain. Not that it matters (and this won't be in the published book form of my story), I had the MRI on my 14th birthday. The results pointed to the long qt and proved that I didn't have epilepsy.

That would've been great, if only my doctors could agree on a diagnosis. My cardiologist wanted to diagnose me with long qt, but he couldn't until my neurologist ruled out anything brain related. Even though I was cleared from having epilepsy, my neurologist wasn't satisfied and wasn't going to be satisfied until she could come up with some way to diagnose me with it. No lie, it's what she actually told us. All of the tests were done in March and April. May came around and we were still waiting on an official diagnosis. On May 14, my neurologist wanted to do another test: a 24 hour in-hospital EEG. That was my first ever night I spent in the hospital - hooked up with wires connected to my head with a monitor watching my every move at the bottom of the bed. It would've been okay if I had actually needed it done. It was all worth it because when I got discharged the following evening, I had what I needed: answers.

May 15, 2001 was the day I officially got diagnosed with Long QT Syndrome. It was, once again, a bittersweet moment. I was relieved that I finally had an answer after a two year battle that included having three seizures and what seemed like, endless tests. However, it became real. I was beginning to understand what it meant and how it was going to affect the rest of my life, as I was only 14. I was supposed to be looking forward to graduating eighth grade in June and starting high school in a few short months. Instead, I had to accept the fact that I had a heart condition and would have to take medication for the rest of my life despite that I looked and felt perfectly normal.

Coming up next: what exactly is Long QT Syndrome?


Saturday, March 25, 2017

The Third Seizure Part 1 #Meg's Long QT Journey

I've decided to divide this in two parts. This first part will cover my third seizure and what led to a possible diagnosis. The second part will be the follow up testing and getting answers to a two year battle.

Once again, things went back to normal, well kind of back to normal, for a few months. Anxiety attacks were becoming the norm, however. My third seizure happened on February 23, 2001, a mere seven months after my last one. I was still 13. This is the seizure I remember the least about. My mom and I were at a local pizza store, waiting for our dinner to get done on a Friday night. It was always busy on those nights so we were just standing there, for how long, I cannot remember. I had glanced at the clock and that undescribable feeling came over me. I simply told my mom I wasn't feeling good. I know she asked for one of the workers to help me to the sitting/dining room since the actual seizure hadn't started yet. That's all I remember until I got to the hospital. They did manage to get me there and sit down, but I wasn't acting right and stood up right before the convulsing started. By the time the medics got there, the seizure had stopped, but I was stiff on the left side. The medics attempted and succeeded in walking me to the ambulance and put me on the stretcher, even though I had been dragging my left leg. The medic tried to administer oxygen, but I fought it and wanted nothing to do with it. Since I was still out of it, I was taken to the local hospital as supposed to the children's hospital due to the fact that the other one was closer. Once at the ER, I was placed into a wheelchair and admitted right away. On the way back to the room, I was able to answer basic questions and only got one wrong - questions like where was I, my name, the year, date, etc and at one point I was crying hysterically. I was transferred to the bed and that's when I started to become more aware. I remember resisting a bit when the nurse was trying to put a gown on. Once that was done, I was given oxygen and that's when I started to feel normal. Before the medic left, he stopped in to check on me and it took me a few seconds to realize who he was. I was monitored for a couple hours. My parents were given the option to have me admitted for observation overnight or get discharged. I was discharged with orders to follow up with my doctors.

I believe we first met with my pediatrician. As we were getting frustrated from not getting answers, we made the choice to get a second opinion at a better hospital, the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. I saw a neurologist first and then the cardiologist. At the first appointment with my new cardiologist, I had an EKG done and based on that and my other records, he gave us a possible answer: long qt syndrome. It was a bittersweet moment. I felt relieved we were finally getting somewhere, but on the other hand, I was scared, based on that I had never heard of the condition before. Looking back, I don't think I really listened as my doctor went on to explain what it was. It may not have been final, but I was just glad that we had something to go with, a piece to a puzzle that had been missing for two years.

I'm going to end this post here as I don't want it to get really long. The second part will be up soon.