Sunday, December 3, 2017
I've been wanting to do NaNoWriMo for a couple years now, so I finally decided to do it this year for the first time. I thought I would have the time to get it done this year. But I didn't know what I had in store not long after it began. I'm become so used to things not working out for me and unfortunately, completing NaNoWriMo was no exception.
It got off to a great start for about a week and half. I was reaching the average word count each day of 1,667 words and if I didn't, I would catch up the next day or so. It looked promising until my mom got hit with a flare up of sciatica, which she is still dealing with now. It started out okay until it got progressively worse after about a week after the initial start-up. It became where she was able to get around okay, followed by not being able to walk at all (and we're still working on that). What it meant for me was that I gained more responsibilities than ever, with taking care of her, the house, doing NaNoWriMo, trying to get ready for a craft fair for this month, and trying to take care of myself. It left me feeling more tired than ever and there were days where I didn't have a moment to spare. The thing about sciatica is that you just don't know when a flare-up will occur and I had no idea that we would still be dealing with all of this as of this writing. She went to urgent care the first day, where she was prescribed a muscle relaxer and motrin. The following week, we ended up at the ER due to the excruciating pain while we were attempting to get her to an orthopedist appointment, but she was given a lot of medicine and got sent home with oxycodone, Tylenol, and more motrin . It was approaching Thanksgiving and it appeared to be getting somewhat better, but that would be short lived. It still really wasn't getting better and she started getting hallucinations from the narcotic. A couple days ago, we took her to an orthopedist with much pain at that. He only told us to keep giving the Tylenol and motrin; he didn't want to really prescribe anything stronger because he didn't want anything to mess with her heart problems. It hasn't helped much and now we're stuck at the same place.
When she started getting worse, I started having trouble keeping up with NaNoWriMo. While selfishly I want to blame my mom for having it happen when I was trying to focus on myself for a change, I don't blame her because it was out of her, as well as my, control.
I'm pretty sure by now you know what I'm about to say. I did not complete the 50,000 word count, but I did manage to write 41,210 words during November (I did write a bit more, but I wasn't able to get them in time, but it still wouldn't have surpassed 50,000).
My goal wasn't necessarily to reach the 50,000 word count. My main goal was to get myself back in the habit of writing every day. I did accomplish that by managing to write most days out of the month. Based on what I was dealing with, I am proud of myself for reaching that far and I'm proud that I went after a goal. While I do wish I could have reached the 50,000 word count goal, I reached other goals that made it worth it.
I am planning on doing NaNoWriMo again next year and hopefully it will turn out better.
Sunday, November 26, 2017
NaNoWriMo Update Week 4
Okay, so I goofed and apparently didn't realize that this would be my second to last update instead of the last like I said last week.
I thought that it would get easier this week, but I still was dealing with challenges. I will be talking all about that next week during the final and overall update.
While the week didn't exactly pan out the way I thought it would, I made some steady progress over the last couple of days. I'm still not certain if I'm going to reach 50,000 words in time, but I am doing and trying my best. Right now, I'm around 34k words.
NaNoWriMo officially ends on Thursday, but my final and overall update will be up next weekend.
Sunday, November 19, 2017
NaNoWriMo Week 3 Update
1. I'm still running behind the word count quota. Right now, I'm around 20 or 21,000 words out of 50,000.
2. I've made a lot of progress over the past couple days.
3. There's a week and a half left.
4. My final and overall update will be posted next Saturday. I'll be writing about the last days, in addition to my overall outlook, of NaNoWriMo.
Happy Reading and Keep on Writing!
Saturday, November 11, 2017
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 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
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
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
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
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
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.
Wednesday, March 15, 2017
Friday, March 10, 2017
When I was 14, I was diagnosed with Long QT Syndrome and this is my story. In a later post, I will elaborate on what my heart condition actually is.
Every story has a beginning. It all started on March 10, 1999. It was a Wednesday and I was in school. Not long before lunch, I was in the language arts class and we were conjugating verbs. Everything was normal until my vision started to get blurry. No big deal as I thought maybe dust or something got on my glasses. It only got worse, though, and I started to worry. Do I say something to the teacher or the kid next to me? The answer would be no only because it felt like I couldn't talk. I probably did feel lightheaded or dizzy, but I can't really remember. The next thing I remember is coming to on a stretcher as the medics were carrying me to the ambulance - I came to on a flight of stairs and knew where I was and everything like that except for what happened. At worst, I thought I had passed out. As you have probably guessed, I was taken to the local children's hospital. The ride was quiet as I didn't know what had happened - my mom was in the back with me which brought me some comfort. Once at the hospital, I got admitted to the ER right away and an IV was started just as a precaution. What followed was several hours of laying there and eventually I went for a CT scan of my head and despite it being loud, I fell asleep. Soon after, I got discharged with no real answers. I was told I had an innocent heart murmur which was nothing to worry about (unrelated to the seizure) and to follow up with cardiology and neurology. I don't remember when I found out that I had a seizure, but I'm guessing it was some time when was I in the ER.
Over the next couple of weeks, I was evaluated by both a cardiologist and a neurologist. I underwent a battery of tests including the following: EKG, EEG, stress test, and an echo cardiogram. After all was said and done, we still didn't know what caused the seizure. It wasn't epilepsy or some other brain issue and no heart problems came up either. This kind of started a back and forth thing between both doctors as when nothing was found cardiology wise, we were told it had to be brain related, and vice-versa.
I was 11 at the time, but turned 12 amidst when I was getting the tests done. Since no explanation was given, my life slowly returned to normal. It was a little scary knowing I had had a seizure, but I ended up thinking that it was just something that would only happen once and that I never would have another seizure. And if I didn't have another one, it was okay that we didn't have an answer. Unfortunately, I would be wrong. But that's for my next post.
Thursday, March 9, 2017
I had a post scheduled for today, but unfortunately I encountered some technical difficulties. It will be posted at a later date in April.
Reminder: Tomorrow I am starting my long qt series, which is going to be called Meg's Long QT Journey. I have been working on a book about my experiences. I'm going to be sharing some parts. It's going to be sort of a rough draft and some parts of the series will be in no particular order. As of right now, I don't know how many parts there are going to be. I'm not trying to make long posts, although some might be. Please join me in my journey.
Wednesday, March 8, 2017
Find a classic:
Find a book with a key on it:
Find something on your bookshelf that's not a book: Not applicable
Find the oldest book on your shelf:
Find a book with a girl on the cover:
Find a book that has an animal in it:
Find a book with a male protagonist:
Find a book with only words on it:
Find a book with illustrations in it: Since this is on my kindle app, I don't know what books have illustrations in it until I read it, so I can't answer this.
Find a book with gold lettering:
Find a diary (true or fictional):
Find a book written by someone with a common name (like Smith):
Find a book that has a closeup of something on it:
Find a book on your shelf that takes place in the earliest time period: This takes place from 1625-1628.
Find a hardcover book without a jacket: Not applicable
Find a teal/turquoise colored book:
Find a book with stars on it:
Find a non-YA book:
There you go.
Happy Reading and Keep on Writing!
Sunday, March 5, 2017
Author you’ve read the most books from: Ann M Martin, when I was a kid, I enjoyed The Baby-sitter's Club series and the Baby-Sitters Little Sister series.
Best Sequel Ever: 204 Rosewood Lane by Debbie Macomber; My favorite character in the whole series (Cedar Cove) is Olivia, but I had really wanted to read Grace's story.
Currently Reading: Gone With the Wind by Margaret Mitchell and A Sister's Promise by Karen Lenfestey
Drink of Choice While Reading: I don't have a particular drink while reading, but my favorite drink is water.
E-reader or Physical Book? Physical, although I prefer an e-reader for travelling/vacation or long bus rides.
Fictional Character You Probably Would Have Actually Dated In High School: Maybe Four from Divergent
Glad You Gave This Book A Chance: Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher
Hidden Gem Book: White Oleander by Janet Fitch
Important Moment in your Reading Life: Probably when I had to read Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone for school. It wouldn't have been something that I would have chosen to read, but it started my love for Harry Potter.
Just Finished: Only Time Will Tell by Jeffrey Archer
Kinds of Books You Won’t Read: I pretty much read anything, but I don't read a lot of graphic novels/manga or erotica.
Longest Book You’ve Read: Les Miserables
Major book hangover because of: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows
Number of Bookcases You Own: 3
One Book You Have Read Multiple Times: The Fault in Our Stars
Preferred Place To Read: anywhere; I love to read when I'm at the beach during the summer
Quote that inspires you: I have a lot, but I'm going to go with this one - "It's much better to do good in a way that no one knows anything about it." - Anna Karenina
Reading Regret: not reading Anne of Green Gables; I had gotten it as a gift, but couldn't get into it and I never went back.
Series You Started And Need To Finish (all books are out in series): Divergent (I have to read Insurgent and Allegiant, as well as Four) and The Hunger Games (I have to read Mockingjay).
Three of your All-Time Favorite Books: To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee; The Outsiders by S. E. Hinton; and The Five People You Meet in Heaven by Mitch Albom
Unapologetic Fangirl For: Harry Potter - even though Harry is my favorite character, my other fave character is Ginny Weasley because she reminds me of myself.
Very Excited For This Release More Than All The Other: Right now, it's If Not For You by Debbie Macomber.
Worst Bookish Habits: Not so much for reading, it would be not writing a review right after I finish reading a book. I do book reviews on my other blog, Writer's Crossings, but they take me awhile to write up as I want to convey my thoughts just right.
X Marks The Spot: Start at the top left of your shelf and pick the 27th book: The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd
Your latest book purchase: Like by Bart Hopkins
ZZZ-snatcher book (last book that kept you up WAY late): So hard, but basically any book that I'm enjoying while I'm reading it at that moment.
Happy Reading and Keep on Writing!
Wednesday, February 22, 2017
This is my second post in my getting to know me series. There will be five installments.
What's on My Bucket List?/Bucket List Ideas
1. Swim with dolphins
2. Hold/cuddle a koala bear
3. Visit Australia
4. Visit all 50 states in the US. (I've been to 13)
5. Say no without feeling guilty.
6. Climb a mountain.
7. Learn to play the guitar.
8. Visit the UK/Europe. (My top places are England, Ireland, Scotland, France, and Italy)
9. Learn to ski.
10. Get married.
11. Be a mom.
12. See a Broadway show.
13. Climb a lighthouse(s).
14. Write a book(s). (which I'm working on now)
15. Write a play.
16. Ride in a helicopter.
17. Horseback Riding.
18. Go on a cruise.
19. Learn to swim.
20. Learn to drive.
21. Go to a Celtic Thunder and Maroon 5 concert. (Insert favorite band or groups).
22. Zip lining.
23. Participate in a 5K. (preferably an inflatable obstacle one) [Note: Due to my heart condition, I wouldn't be able to run the whole time, but no one says you can't walk and just have fun]
24. Visit Mall of America.
25. Road trip across the US.
26. Hot air balloon ride.
27. Own my own home.
28. Be a spectator at the Olympics.
29. Go to a Notre Dame football game.
30. Go to the Ellen DeGeneres show. (Insert a taping of your favorite show) (sadly this might not happen as there have been rumors that this is her last season)
This is only a partial list of what I want to accomplish or hope to accomplish.
What are some of the things on your bucket list?
Thursday, February 16, 2017
This is just a getting to know me tag for my first post in this series.
Are you named after anyone? No.
When was the last time you cried? A couple days ago.
Do you have kids? No.
If you were another person, would you be a friend of yourself? Sure.
Do you use sarcasm a lot? Not me lol
What’s the first thing you notice about people? Eyes
What is your eye color? Brown
Scary movie or happy endings? Happy endings
Favorite smells? Cookies baking in the oven
What’s the furthest you’ve ever been from home? Wyoming
Do you have any special talents? Writing
Where were you born? Pennsylvania
What are your hobbies? Knitting/crocheting, acting, reading
Do you have any pets? No
Do you have any siblings? One older brother
What do you want to be when you grow up? Writer
Who was your first best friend? Salina or Natalia
How tall are you? 5'2"
Funniest moment throughout School? Idk
How many countries have you visited? One - Canada
What was your favorite/worst subject in High School? Fave - English; Worst - Math and Science
What is your Favorite drink? Animal? Perfume? Water; Dolphin and koala bear; don't wear perfume
What would you (or have you) name your children? Joshua David for a boy and Emily for a girl
What Sports do you play/Have you played? None. I'm not athletically talented.
Who are some of your favorite YouTubers? Don't really have a favorite
How many Girlfriends/Boyfriends have you had? This is personal
Favorite memory from childhood? Down the shore vacations
How would you describe your fashion sense? Average
What phone do you have? (iOS v Android?) Neither
Tell us one of your bad habits! Getting frustrated easily if I can't get something - I'm kind of a perfectionist
There you go. My next post in my Getting to Know Me series will be up in a couple days since I didn't post last week.