The Day My Heart Broke (Literally)

“I’d be careful if I were you, you are walking on a dangerous path” my boss says.

I sit stunned. I stay quiet.

It’s been a hard year, for everyone, I get it. People are tired of hearing this, but it has been especially brutal for healthcare workers like me. Being asked to do 4 different jobs at a time- my normal job, plus 3 COVID jobs- it’s been dragging me down.

Over the last few weeks, I developed chest pain. I had a feeling something wasn’t right (besides my lady problems) these past few months, but when these chest pains right around my heart began- I knew I couldn’t stay quiet much longer.

I set up an appointment with my boss.

I tell her I’m overwhelmed. She asks my solution. I ask if we can rearrange/reassign some of my responsibilities to individuals who don’t have as much.

Then she says it.

“I’d be careful if I were you, you are walking on a dangerous path. Comparing yourself to others. Saying you have more to do than them. We all have a lot to do because of COVID. Your other coworkers have done this before, complaining about having more work than others, and I’ve watched their mental health go bad”.

I’m stunned. Doesn’t she understand that is exactly why I’m here? My mental health (and physical health) has already been impacted.

“Just breathe” she says.

I walk to the bathroom. Cry my eyes out. I don’t believe it. Two years ago I applied to over 600 jobs. All for this. I never expected to be treated like this.

Amongst this I manage to text “Prince Player”. I can see he is trying to care, but, it feels off. Not genuine.

That night my chest hurts again. Bad. I grip it. And lean on my couch. I have to go to my doctor. Something isn’t right. But where do I have time? I have a full clinic the next day. I pray to God for a way. The next morning I wake up, the nurse from the clinic I was assigned to calls early and says clinic is cancelled for the day. This never happens and I thank God. I call my doctor’s office and they get me in right away.

I wait in the exam room for the doctor. I go during lunch so it’s rather busy, I wait 25 minutes which is unusual. All throughout, I’m nervous. I’m hoping doctor will tell me it’s allergies or something- but, I just know it won’t be. I never had a pain like this.

“Shaz what happened?” doctor comes in looking concerned.

“I uh. I’ve been having chest pains. Around my heart” I say looking down.

Doctor nods still looking concerned. “Let me take your blood pressure and pulse” he says.

“Blood pressure normal. Shaz…your pulse is extremely high” he says. I nod.

He pats my back looking sad. “We have to do an EKG.” My eyes widen.

“It will help us see what’s happening. I’ll be right back. In the meantime, you need to display this part of your chest and this part of your chest so we can put the EKG stickers” he says pointing.

Oh great. Wrong day to wear the lace bra.

He comes in a few minutes later. He sticks on the EKG stickers and waits for the results. He shakes his head, “Shaz, your heart rate is very high…”

I chuckle lightly. “I’ll live right?”

Every time I see him, I always think I have something I don’t and he laughs saying- “You’ll live”.

This time was different, he stayed quiet.

“Um doctor?”

He looks away “I don’t know. I’ll be right back”.

My jaw drops.

He comes back with a print out of my EKG. He sits down and goes over it with me. “Shaz. You have an irregular heartbeat. It’s dangerous. What’s wrong? Are you stressed too much?”

I tear up. Boss. Job. “Prince Player”. Lady problems. Mom. Dad. Brother. Dog.

I nod my head.

“You are very healthy. You are in good shape, good BMI, you exercise, you don’t smoke or do drugs. You are not someone that should be having this problem. So we have to find out why. I’m going to send you downstairs to the urgent care, they will do a blood test so we can rule out any heart enzyme issues or infections that can be causing this. Depending on what those say, we will proceed with more tests.

For now, you know this is serious. I am prescribing a medication for you to take everyday for the next 3 months to help stabilize your heart rate and chest pains”.

I stare at him. I feel like I’m going to pass out.

Doctor stops talking. “Are you ok?” he asks. I nod.

He pats my back again. “Start the medication tonight. I will call you tomorrow to check on you”.

I get dressed and walk into the urgent care. They have a wait too. Now might be a good time to text “Prince Player” my usual hello text.

Finally it’s my turn. The urgent care doesn’t have baby needles and I got rolling veins and I wasn’t super happy about the blood draw. It is what it is.

I drive to the pharmacy to pick up my new meds. They say it will take them half an hour to fill. Now would be a good time to call my parents.

I sit in the parking lot. I close my eyes. Tears running down my cheeks.

Will I be like my friend’s mom who passed away suddenly from heart attack in her 40s? Will I be like my dad who had a stroke without even knowing? Will I be like-

My mom’s blowing up my phone. I can’t deal with anything right now. It’s time to call them and them.

I call my dad first. “Hey Shaz! You are early today!” he says.

“Uh yea, my clinic was cancelled” I say.

“You should have told me. Stock prices were good today. Would have had you buy one if I knew you were free” I smile lightly. My dad has been teaching me about stocks and it’s making us bond.

“I uh. Had to go to the doctor dad…” I say.

“The doctor? Why?”

I sit for a minute.

“Oh hello baby. You are a good girl. Very good girl. I am talking to your sister” I hear my dog panting through the phone and my dad playing with her. I want to laugh, but I can’t. “Go ahead Shaz. Why’d you go to the doctor?”

My eyes well up. “I’ve been having chest pains dad.”

“Oh…” he says. “Ok and? What did the doctor say?” my dad is surprisingly calm about this.

I tell him the whole story.

“Hm. Well let’s wait until all the results come back right. We can’t worry ourselves more that we already are about this. And for the love of God Shaz, will you take it easy on yourself and RELAX this weekend?”

I smile. “Yea dad”.

“Drive carefully. Text me when you get home”

I hang up. Time for my mother.

Oh she isn’t having it. “You had this for weeks and you didn’t tell us??”

Well then, she and my dad must have switched places. She is usually the calm one and he usually panics.

“Shaz. You wanna come home? Take FMLA leave and come home” she says.

I roll my eyes. “Tell this to my boss”. She sighs. “It’s not funny Shaz. It’s serious”.

Yea I know. I go and pick up my meds.

“Is this your first time taking this medication?” the pharmacist asks.

I nod. “Ok. Take this once a day, same time every day. You may have side effects like dizziness, but do not stop taking them” she says.

I drive home. This sucks.

When I get home all my friends I updated about this are blowing up my phone. I have to nap, I only slept 3 hours the night before due to my chest pain.

As I am closing my eyes, I see a text come in from Prince Player. I just know it isn’t good.

Don’t do it.

Don’t do it.

Don’t do it.

I grab my phone. Oh my lord it is a long message…

My iWatch notifies me my heart rate is too high. I shouldn’t.

I skim the text.

“Second thoughts”

“I wasn’t looking to get back with you I just…”

“I don’t know what to do”

Oh no. Over the last month I really tried to show him how much he means to me and how I wasn’t giving up…but if he is, what was the point? Part of loving him, is letting him go if he wants to be gone.

I text back. I tell him I’m good whichever way he goes.

I can’t compete with his other priorities in his life anymore. I tried.

My heart can’t do it anymore 😦

He doesn’t respond. In the evening I watch Shark Tank and go to bed.

I have a dream that one of “Prince Players” exes is texting him. And when it comes to choosing between us, he chooses her. And then he calls me. I am hearing it ringing and ringing and ringing…

When I wake up and realize it was just a dream and in my real waking life my doctor is calling me.

“Hello?” I say half asleep.

“Shaz. It’s doctor. Your blood results came back. They are good. No enzymes or infections” he says.

Well hey that is great.

“Obviously. We need to figure out what’s going on. Rule out other stuff before we conclude that it’s stress. In the meantime take your medication, I will see you in one week to rerun the EKG and order some more tests. No stress, please” he says.

I sigh.

“How are you feeling on the medication? Any side effects?” he asks.

“No I’m just really tired” I say.

“That will happen unfortunately. Since the medication slows down your heart rate, it happens. I will keep checking in”.

When we hang up, I think about the dream I just had. I remember telling “Prince Player” about one of my other anxiety dreams a few months ago and he said something cute like, “well thank goodness dreams don’t come true” then.

I go back to sleep. The next time I wake up is when my brother calls.

“How’s your heart?” he asks sadly.

Sigh. Didn’t he hear. My heart is broken.

to be continued

xoxo. S.

P.S- If you haven’t watched the new documentary “Dancing With the Devil” by my favorite artist, I highly recommend ❤

Lady Problems

continued from How Will I Know

One of the first traumatic experiences in my life was getting my period. You know those rare stories you hear about girls that have awful cramps and vomiting at the “time of the month”? Nice to meet you, I am Shaz and I am one of them.

Since I was 10 years old, I’d miss two days of school a month because of this thing. Weddings, birthday parties, family events, awards ceremonies also. It was awful. I remember one time I heard my aunts say “lord please don’t let Shaz be on her period this day!”

I feel bad for my mom, dad, and brother who had to support me during these times. Whether it was listening to the awful howling of me in pain, leaving work and having to pick me up from school early, or running to the store to get me more pads because my heavy bleeding made me go through all the ones we had.

It was rough. “I feel bad for you…not us” my mom said before my procedure. “All that pain you went through and are going through now, it’s not about us at all”.

When I was 18 and in college, my parents finally agreed to put me on birth control pills. Of all the things they were liberal about, they were conservative when it came to reproductive health. The adjustment took a year and it was rough, but after that first year- I was vomit free. And I only got periods 4 times a year!! HALLELUJAH. I still got mild cramps, but they were rarely severe or included vomiting and plus I didn’t get many periods. No more missing school, work, or special events. It was awesome.

Everything was going great until what happened last year. Last year, my pills totally started to fail. Not only when it came to period symptoms, but period timing. I thought cramps were bad, well I guess I didn’t realize there was something worse- 6 week long periods!!!

You know what happens next. This happened a few times, I found out I have PCOS and Endometriosis that contributed to all these symptoms, I had a breakup and had a cyst that ruptured, we tried another pill that worked miraculously for almost a year and that also became ineffective and my wonderful specialist Dr. Davis finally convinced me to get the IUD.

So that brings us to about two weeks ago:

Two weeks ago it’s the day before my IUD procedure (yes I’m calling it procedure because due to my two conditions it was high risk for me). I have gone another weekend with Prince Player not texting or calling. We were supposed to talk a few days before my procedure so we can decide when he can visit. Obviously, it wouldn’t be good for him to come while I am recovering. So no calls no texts.

Until the day before. Player says he is stressed, but wants to be here for me during this time. This is incredibly sweet and so unlike him. I love it…

On the afternoon of, he texts me right before. He reminds me I got this and says he wishes he could be there for me to take care of me. It’s really sweet.

When I get to Dr. Davis’s office, I sit in the procedure room. This is very different that the exam room. They play nice pop music and stuff and the lighting is different. I just need to get this over it, why is Dr. Davis taking so long?

After 12 minutes, Dr. Davis enters.

“Oh good. Let’s do this Dr. Davis. You’re gonna make this as painless as possible for me right?”

Dr. Davis looks me dead in the eye. “Let me get Nurse Karina for you so you can squeeze her hand”.

He leaves to grab her.

WHAT THE EF. THAT IS NOT A GOOD SIGN!!! Plus I cannot stand Nurse Karina!!!

Karina and Dr. Davis walk in. Ugh.

“Shaz. You know Nurse Karina. She is tough and you are tough so this will go good”

Jesus. Mary. And Joseph.

“K Karina. Let’s do this” I say holding out my hand. She smiles under her mask and holds my hand with both of her gloved hands.

“Cough Shaz” Dr. Davis says.

“Cough? Ok” I do a light cough. And I feel that piece of whatever it is pop right inside me!!!

“OH MY GOD” I say through clenched teeth and squeezing the hell out of Karina’s hand.

“Just breathe honey” Karina says.

I hold my stomach. I can’t feel the lower half of my body.

“You did great” Dr. Davis says smiling after the procedure. “Thank you Karina” he says.

Karina leaves. I get up slowly.

I look at him with tearful eyes.

“It will be ok Shaz. Hopefully this will help” Dr. Davis said.

“I am about to start throwing up right now” I say.

“Let me leave. I will be back in 5 minutes to check on you. I’ll send Karina too” Dr. Davis says.

I take off my mask and puke a little in the trashcan. Thank god I’m vaccinated. I wouldn’t have felt comfortable doing this if I wasn’t.

I lay back down on the procedure table. I text Prince Player.

He texts back right away. He is so sweet.

Karina walks in when I’m taking a drowsy selfie for Prince Player.

“Here is some water for you” she says smiling.

“Karina, listen that ain’t gonna help. I will throw up more. I don’t feel good” I say.

“Do you have a low pain tolerance?” she asks.


“I have more pain tolerance than the average woman. But I have Endo and PCOS that gives me a lot of pain” I say for the 100th time. She reminds me of the nurses in school who didn’t believe me when I was complaining of menstrual cramps.

She nods “Drink the water though”.

Ok yea whatever.

She leaves and I try my best to get up.

Oh my Jesus this hurts like hell. I clutch the exam room table and lean on it like I’m doing a plank standing.

Dr. Davis walks in.

“Good you’re standing” Dr. Davis says.

I stare at him with my mask dangling down the side of my ear. I prop it back on.

“Don’t you see what I just did?” I ask.

I point to my vomit.

He nods. “Feel better?”

He got me there. “A little bit…” I say. “Hey do you have drugs?”

“If you’d like I can give you some narcotics” he says.

“You should” I say.

“Ok but it would knock you out…” he says.

“Fine then don’t” I say.

Dr. Davis laughs. “You’ll be sore for just a bit. Take 3 ibuprofen every 6 hours” he says.

Oh lovely. My last dose was only 1.5 hours prior, so I have 5.5 hours to go.

“In the meantime walk around a bit, it may help” Dr. Davis says leaving.

Oh my Jesus. What is wrong with people.

I walk around a bit and drink the water Karina gave me.

I vomit 5 times. I walk to the nurse’s station.

“Karina can you get the doctor please?” I ask.

“He is doing a exam for another patient” I say.

“Ok please tell him I threw up 5 times” I say.

Karina looks in shock (she should have listened to me) and nods.

Dr. Davis walks back in.

“So how do you feel now?”

“I’ll admit I feel a teensy bit better after vomiting all that out. But I can’t feel the lower half of my body. It hurts so bad. I think I will call my Uber soon, I have to lay down”.

Dr. Davis nods. “Ok. I told you about your recovery. Now about sex. You may start having sex within 24 hours”.

I smirk. “Believe me. That will not be happening”

“Next week though maybe” Dr. Davis says.

I raise an eyebrow. Well then.

“You know how to reach me. Call me if anything happens. I need to see you soon to check that it’s in place and do an ultrasound. You can schedule that appointment when you’re feeling better” Dr. Davis says.

I nod. My Uber arrives.

I planned my outfit so well. I kept my dress on the entire time, and I didn’t put my leggings back on because the lower half of my body hurt too much. I had tall boots on too so I wasn’t too cold in the 30 degree Chicago weather that day.

The Uber ride is so uncomfortable with the tremendous pain. I want to puke again. I pray in my head to help me hold it until I get home. Somehow I make it through the 18 minutes. For once I am happy it is not a chatty driver. It is a driver going at good speed to get me home, not evening knowing my situation which I thank god for.

When I get home I realized I see I soaked my giant maxi pad. I feel like I just birthed a baby.

I throw up twice again.

I change into a new maxi pad and a nightie. Again the nightie will ensure my body is not crushed.

I just want to go to sleep but I’m hungry. I order what my parents used to get me when I had bad cramps and vomiting. Chicken McNuggets with honey, fries, and Apple juice. After eating that I feel so much better.

Thank goodness for Uber and Uber Eats honestly. If this was the olden days, I would have needed a lot of friends to support me through this time.

After eating I sleep. I feel crampy again when I wake up, and again have soaked my maxi pad. Good news is it is time to take my second dose of meds. I do so and sit down on a step stool for a while, sitting in that position makes me hurt less. Throughout the night and days in recovery I do it when I feel crampy. My friends who have had babies tell them I’m reminding them of postpartum.

Prince Player is amazing, checking on me through the night and next few days. I send him selfies and my progress, he tells me I’m cute and is just so supportive. He is finally there for me when I need him the most.

It’s hard when he vanishes. Or when he says he will call or text but doesn’t. But I try not to get anxious about it. I know anxiety will slow down my recovery time, and I know where my player sits in my heart. If I don’t have one in his, that is just a problem for another day.

Right now, I’m getting through my lady problems. It’s been about a week and a half since the procedure now and I’m feeling a lot better. I think as the doctor said, this will help a lot and I can catch a break real soon.

xoxo. S.

Memories (Part 2)

“Look on the bright side Shaz. It’s now a year since we’ve been on the frontlines of a major pandemic!” Maria says.

I smile. “Yea. That is awesome for sure. I’m so proud of us girl”

She laughs. “Shaz…I’ve been meaning to ask you something… are you sick again?”

I face her. “Why do you ask that?”

“You look a little pale. Your hand is cold. You keep holding your back…”

“Yep” I say.

“Oh no. How long with the bleeding now?”

“Like…3 weeks” I say.


“I know. What bothered me is this lower back pain. I never really had it before” I say.

“Oh my god! Remember that’s what Kim had and it turned out she was pregnant?” she asks referring to our other coworker.

I laugh and massage my back. “Yea but it’s not that. I took a test and it was negative”

Maria shakes her head. “All your scares Shaz. It’s always right after these boys take off”

“I know right. PCOS sucks. I can’t tell if I’m having a period, spotting, withdrawal bleeding, a cramp, or whatever so I never know what’s going on”.

Maria sighs. “Have you told your OB?”

I nod. “I got an appointment with him later this week.”

“I’ll pray for you my friend. Everything will be okay” she says squeezing my hand.

We get back to work.

The next few days I am tired. I hope the doctor can figure out what’s going on. This is just too much to handle.

The day finally comes and my favorite nurse is on duty. She does my ultrasound and says everything looks as it usually does, nothing new. So that maybe we should do a different one, one that will look more closely at my “lady problems” as Prince Player calls them. But that she has to consult with the doctor first.

A few minutes she and the doctor comes in.

“What is happening Shaz?” the doctor asks.

“You tell me” I say.

“Well. We’re gonna do this other ultrasound that will take a closer look. Fair warning it’s a little uncomfortable. You may feel lightheaded. Cramping. And may bleed a little more. Stephanie, get her a pad just in case please” he says motioning to the nurse.

My jaw drops. He nods. “It’s just another precaution we have to take. We need to rule out things so we can figure out what’s happening.”

I sigh “Alright” I say. Dr. Davis has been amazing. Never in a million years would I imagined I’d agree to a male OB, but after my cyst ruptured and he took good care of me- he is the only one I will see!

“So how is everything?” Dr. Davis asks as he prepares.

“Fine” I say shrugging.

“Yea, you still with the partner?” my eyes widen.

Oh my god he is asking about Prince Player. I keep forgetting about Prince Player not because I don’t miss him but this is just how I cope with heartache. So it takes me a moment to remember who he is talking about.

“Um no” I say.

“Yea I remember he was a new partner. Or rather you hadn’t seen him in a few years, and then you did?”

Oh my goddd.

“Yea. We’re not together anymore” I say.

Dr. Davis nods. He doesn’t squeeze answers out of me and that I like.

And then the ultrasound begins. Good grief. I am positive this is what labor feels like.

I have tears rolling down my cheeks.

“A little cramping, almost done Shaz”


“And done. Stephanie let her get dressed and send her to the consultation room please” Dr. Davis says.

I get up from the exam table. “Umm..”

“Are you ok? Dizzy?” Stephanie asks.

“Yea..” I say.

“Ok sit for a moment. Take it slowly once I go. Yell if you need something, I’ll be waiting outside.”

I nod.

When I’m dressed Nurse Stephanie takes me into Dr. Davis’s office which is not an exam room. I’ve never been in one of these.

“What’s happening? Am I dieing?” I ask.

Dr. Davis laughs. “No, have a seat” he says gesturing to one of the two chairs in front of him.

“Well what is it? Am I pregnant?” I ask. Dr. Davis knows as much as I would love to have a baby, I don’t want one right now. Especially after the way “Prince Player” ended things.

Dr. Davis laughs again, “No. There was no baby in the ultrasound”.

I sigh. “Phew that is really good”.

Dr. Davis nods. “I wanted to talk to you because that second ultrasound was normal. There were no polyps or anything that indicated anything beyond what you’ve had all these years which is PCOS. So now the question is. How do we stop this bleeding”

“Yep” I say.

“At this point we have explored almost every oral contraceptive out there. It doesn’t seem like your body is responding to those well. Even the last one we put you one, worked for a solid 9 months- and then just stopped”.

I nod.

“So it is time we consider the alternatives I’ve told you about Shaz” Dr. Davis says.

“Oh my god no not the IUD” I say.

“That is one. We could also put you on the shot. But the shot you have to come in every 3 months, and you will experience breakthrough bleeding for the first couple of months. At this point- we aren’t comfortable putting you on that with the amount of blood you are already losing”.

I nod. “With the IUD, wouldn’t I get a period every single month?” With the pills I’ve been on the last few years, I only got a period once every season.

Dr. Davis nods. “Yes but they will subside after some time. Plus as it stands right now. You are actually bleeding more days than you are not”.

“That’s very true” I say.

“It’s not a decision you need to make today Shaz. You are also welcome to just stop taking the pills you are on now and see if things naturally get better. But it would mean you are not protected…”

I hug my purse. “Oh yea we don’t need to worry about that. I won’t be having sex any time soon” I say remembering my poor heart and Prince Player.

Dr. Davis looks at me “But, I know long term- you might want to be”.

I shut my eyes. He is a good doctor.

I nod. “Let’s do the IUD. If I stop the pill I’ll get horrible cramps and heavy bleeding, that’s what happened in the past. If I stay on it nothing will change and I’ll keep getting these prolonged bleeds. The shot we ruled out. You’ve been telling me about the IUD for a year now so let’s go with that. It’s worked for patients you treated with my condition right?”

Dr. Davis nods “Yes it absolutely has. But remember, not every body is the same. We won’t know what happens until we try. I wish I had a solid answer for you.

I nod. “How bad will this hurt?”

“It’ll be similar to the ultrasound we just did. But, you’re tough” Dr. Davis says.

Yes thank you 17 years of horrible menstrual cramps.

I laugh, “Ok but that pain I just had in there was awful!”

Dr. Davis nods. “If you’d like Shaz, we can pre-medicate you”

I nod fast, “Yes, do that”

Dr. Davis laughs and makes notes. “Ok, got it”.

“Recovery time?”

Dr. Davis shrugs. “Some women are able to drive back to work and go about their normal duties. Some woman need recovery time for a day or a couple of days due to cramping”.

My jaw drops. “Ok soooo. That’s gonna be me! Which means I need to come here on one of the two days I’m allowed to work remote. But you are only here once a week on alternating days, so that may be hard….”

Dr. Davis smiles and nods “Let’s look at my schedule. We could always try another provider”

I shake my head, “I only trust you”.

Dr. Davis laughs, “Ok. You have clinic every other day right, leaving the day after each available? I think I have an opening a week and a half from now”.

It works with my schedule and we confirm.

I drive home still in pain. When I come for the procedure in a week and a half, I’m definitely going to Uber.

I take the rest of the day easy.

I think about Prince Player.

I remember him so well when people bring him up. I wish we could be together. I wish I knew what he was up to. Haven’t heard from him in three months.

Little did I know, it wouldn’t be too long.

continued in How Will I Know

xoxo. S.

If you can top this terrible week, we need to start a support group

Warning: This post is for mature audiences. It discusses serious relationships and health issues. If you have any type of judgement, please, find another blog post to read. I am choosing to share this because one time a reader said “I like how you help women feel like they are not alone” and I stand by it.  

It was a long three weeks. Waking up from naps and good night’s sleep were hard. The moment my eyes opened, I would stare at the empty space next to me. I thought about the body that used to lay there. On one particular day, I woke up crying, and cried for 15 minutes. Thank goodness I hadn’t done my makeup for work yet- otherwise I would have been late.

It was getting unbearable. I needed to talk to him. I wanted to know why he left, why he started pursuing other options if he really did have “so much going on in his life”. I couldn’t stop thinking about it, I needed an answer.

So last weekend, I text him.

“We should talk” I say.

He reads it immediately. But takes a while to respond. I expected that.

“What’s up?” he asks.

I take a deep breath. “I respect you breaking up with me and not leading me on. I respect your kind words when you broke up with me. But I do not respect you not being honest about why you left, and I am torn.”

“I’m sorry Shaz” he responds.

My eyes widen. “So you did lie?” I ask.

“Can’t say I did” he says.

“Help me understand. One evening, you tell me that you are breaking up with me because you have a lot on going on- and the next morning, I see you pursuing other girls” I say.

I wait. In deep anxiety. Finally I have called him out, and I need to know what he will say.

“I do have a lot going on in my life, and I don’t spend a lot of time pursuing other people” he says.

Deep breath.

“Then why do it?” I ask.

And then he says what makes my entire world shatter. Something I never expected from him.

“Guys still have needs I guess” he says.



It starts.

“Are you serious?” I ask.

“…” is his response.

“Was I not meeting your *needs*?” I ask.

“I didn’t think it would be fair to you” he said.

Converting a relationship into a hook up only thing?

Yea no. Of course it wouldn’t be.

“You know, I wish you just told me that” I said.

“I mean would you?” he asks.

I’m confused. “Would I what? Just hook up?” I ask.

“Yea” he says.

“You do realize that’s how it began right. That’s what I wanted. You were the one that started spending the night. And texting me. And taking me out. And calling me your girlfriend. And I began to like you the way you liked me” I said.

“Well would you do it now?” he asks.

I couldn’t believe what I agreed to do next. It was against everything I stood for. But I was trying to prove something to him. I was trying to prove to him that I can be just as emotionless as him.

And instead.

I let him win again. I prove him right. I couldn’t handle it.

He stays a mere 10 minutes.

After he leaves I feel sick to my stomach. He looked so good. He took the break up so well. Went to the gym and everything. I decide I will do the same. I go to the gym and do a very rigorous work out.

I decide I’ll buy healthy groceries too. On the way to the grocery store I feel a bad stomach ache. Like I’m going to vomit. I make a crucial driving mistake. My heart races when I get into the parking lot of the grocery store. I quickly grab my groceries and drive carefully home.

At home, I make myself something to eat thinking it will calm me down. But only a few minutes later, I am hurled over the bathroom toilet. Puking. I can also feel myself bleeding.

My dad calls.

“Are you sick?” he asks.

“I think so. My stomach hurts and I’m puking” I say.

My dad talks me through it and asks me to go to the ER. “Omg no” I say.

“Well have about if we ask your brother to come over? I think you are having anxiety. If you can’t talk to your mom or I- talk to him” he says.

“No” I say.

My dad talks me through it. I don’t listen to him on going to the ER or urgent care. We agree I will go to bed (it’s 9:00) and I’ll call my doctor in the morning.

I wake up at 5:00 in the morning. Still it pain, still bleeding, still vomiting.

I wait the few hours for my doctor’s office to open. And call the specialist, the one that works with the PCOS.

“Hi there…I am experiencing severe abdominal pain and I really really need to come in” I say to the nurse.

I hate these nurses. “Okay that would be your primary care doctor. Not us, your gynecologist”.

“No listen to me. This started after I had relations yesterday. It is severe pelvic pain” I say trying not to cry even more.

“Oh…ok. In that case. We have a 3:00 available” mean nurse says.

“Thank you” I say in a *glad you finally listened* tone.

I drive to work crying. When I get in I tell the associates I’ll be leaving early. I tell my boss too. And then I tell my fellow co-worker.

“Omg Shaz, do you need to talk?” she asks.

“Maybe later” I say.

I do my work and finally the time comes.

I wait in the doctor’s office and am roomed rather quickly. And doctor comes in rather quickly. He is not my usual OB/Gyne. But he was, a godsend.

“Tell me what happened” he says.

I tell him everything. And he listens. As a person, not as a doctor.

“Has this happened before?” he asks.

I nod. “It has but…it would go away within like an hour. It would also be mild. This is severe and going on for a day” I say crying.

He hands me a Kleenex, “I am sorry you are so sad. And I am sorry you are in pain” he says with genuine care in his eyes.

“Let’s do a pelvic ultrasound” he says.

Oh shit that uncomfortable thing. “I’d hate to that and not find anything. We’ve done it before and it hasn’t showed anything” I say.

“I’d hate to not to do it and you have something” he says.


So I go into the uncomfortable room. Undress. And the kind radiologist does it.

She says the same thing “tell me what happened”. I tell her too and she is understanding.

“We will make this as comfortable as possible for you. My job isn’t to hurt to you” she says.

And my god, she does make it comfortable. It only pinched a little.

“I hope you feel better” she says when we finish.

I smile.

I go back in to my room and wait for the doctor.

He comes back and sits down. I take a deep breath.

“You have some cysts. About 5 of them. And it looks like one of them ruptured…” he says.

My eyes well up. “Did it happen because of what I did with my former partner” I ask.

He passes me the Kleenex again. “Most likely. It could have also been that exercise you did too. You said you went to spin class?”

I nod.

“It could have been either. Don’t blame yourself. Women with PCOS get cysts” he says kindly.

I sigh. It’s almost like a sign from God I should never see “him” again. Like a punishment. Like-

“I want you to get some bed rest. Stay hydrated, get in as much electrolytes as you can. 3 Advils every 6 hours and stay away from carbs until the cysts go away which is 7-10 days” doctor says.

I nod. He explains we will be changing my PCOS treatment as well as it appears the treatment I was on was causing bad side effects. We discuss options and I choose one that I feel will be best.

“Anything else I can answer for you?” doctor asks.

I shake my head. “I hope you feel better” he says smiling.

I thank him and get on my way. This time when I drive, I thank God for good doctors and good healthcare. There are some things I am thankful for.

I call my parents when I get home. They are very caring. I order Red Lobster from Uber eats as shrimp is okay for me to eat. It’s comforting, but doesn’t take the pain away. I wonder if I should call a sick day then, or wait until morning. I decide morning. There may be a chance I can go into work.

But I get up at 5 again in pain. I decide not. I wait two hours and text my boss. She tells me to feel better.

My first sick day. 10 months without a sick day and here I am. I rest, I read, I shower, and I pray. I drink plenty of soup and drink lots of Gatorade. I finish crying whatever tears I had left of my situation.

I come back to work the next day in full swing. No tears. Pain yes, but I keep taking Advil.

I’m really lucky to have co-workers that care and parents that care as they kept me going. Friends and former partner- disappointing. But I know one day, I will find a good community and partner again.

Until then.

❤ S

On Highs and Lows: In Sickness and Relationships (Part 2)

continued from On Highs and Lows: In Sickness and Relationships

“We have the results from your bloodwork and it is showing you have PCOS. We are sending a new prescription to your pharmacy. Please pick it up and start it ASAP. We want to see you in three months to see if your hormone levels have improved”. 

I hang up and cry my eyes out. On my 26th birthday.


What will my chances of having a kid look like now? How much more weight will I gain and how much more ugly will I feel? This explains why I gained weight despite working out everyday and eating well. This explains the never ending periods.

I call my mother.

She sighs. “I knew it. Don’t worry Shaz, we will conquer this. Sometimes, it can go away” she says.

She tells my dad and he grabs the phone. “Happy birthday. Don’t worry honey. You will beat it. Hey at least we know now. You could have gone forever without knowing”.

I sigh.

I tell my boyfriend. He has no idea what it is nor the time to understand.

I get on my flight and can’t rest thinking what my future with this condition will look like. I think of stories I heard of women with PCOS. Infertility. Diabetes. Cancer. Are all conditions some of them got.

My parents hug me when I get home. They explain to my brother as he watched me be ill over the past few months but like everyone else- didn’t know why. He pats my shoulder.

We cut my birthday cake and celebrate what was my most successful year of life. All of  us hide the negative news we got that day.

A few days later, I come back to Chicago. I celebrate a warm, cozy and fun New Year’s with my boyfriend. It was so good I really did think this year would be good.

But the next week, when we go out and he doesn’t want to discuss my diagnosis- or really anything about my life, I question it.

I start the treatment and it has me feeling all kinds of sick. Makes me feel like an insomniac and drowsy at work- friends offer to drive me home because it’s that bad. In the midst of that, I get the lovely break up text from “him”.

The first week, I feel numb. I pray my heart out for peace.

Last week, I felt hopeful. I finally took the Christmas tree down and threw his things away.

This week. This week I am feeling up and down. Like I want to believe everything that happened this year God made happen for a reason. I pray for the strength and courage to put this behind me.

I remind myself not to blame myself. That what “he” did tells me nothing about me, and everything about him.

Just like the last break up. I move a little slower in the morning, walk in a few minutes later to work, and play country music non-stop.

This too shall pass.

xoxo. S.

On Highs and Lows: In Sickness and Relationships

I stare at my phone.

“Hey Shaz, I think we should break up. I have a lot going on in my life right now and I just can’t give you the kind of attention that you deserve. I think you are a great person who deserves everything in the world.”

A break up over text? Cute.

How did this happen.

We were doing so well. 10 months of dating. 10 years of knowing each other. And it ended. Just like that.

I text back but he doesn’t respond. Doesn’t even want to discuss.

I find out from social media the next day he is already pursuing other options. Well, so much for “a lot going on” in his life huh.

I stare at the ceiling.

I reflect on the last few months of my life.

Almost a year ago, I moved back to my hometown and started my big girl job. I met him only two weeks later. We were inseparable from the day of our first date. The first month we were together, we hung out every single day. The next month as he shifted his career and began to get busy and I started traveling a lot for work, we wrote each other love letters.

Our dates were fun. The movie we went to see. The concert we went to see. The fesitval we went to. The restaurants we went to. Going downtown for one of my friend’s housewarming party and introducing him to all my friends.

I was gaining weight rapidly. Although he didn’t notice, I did. I put on almost 15 pounds in just a few months. “What are you talking about sweetheart?” he always said when I complained about this significant change.

“Ooo maybe it’s because we are in a relationship! Couples gain weight in relationships!” he said rushing over to my scale.

“Look babe! I gained 4 pounds!” he said trying to make me feel better.

I laughed sadly. 15 pounds is not something I ever gained in a matter of few months. I exercise every single day and I eat right.

During that, I had a period that lasted 1 MONTH. It was during then our troubles began. I felt anemic and weak and emotional- he didn’t know what to do.

“Go see a doctor!” he said.

With my work and travel schedule it was hard, I found a lady doctor that sees patients on Saturdays. She did a scan and exam that found no abnormalities. “Probably endometriosis” she says. “Your cramps lead me to believe that. There’s no treamtnet for that though, except a few birth control options. Think about the one you feel is best for you”.

I sit puzzled. “Ok but what about my weight gain and irregular period? What caused that?”

“I don’t know. You’ll have to ask your primary care doctor about that” she says.

I go home and tell him the news. He claims he will read about the condition, but never does. My parents are out of the country, and two weeks after that was a big event in my family. So I wait three weeks to tell them.

And they are not happy. “Get a second opinion Shaz. Ask around, ask people you know, ask people you work with- you work in a community health center! Ask them is they know someone that specializes in women’s health” my dad says.

I roll my eyes. It is so hard to find a provider and one that matches your schedule. But he keeps asking me every day when I call home, so finally- I share with my closest co-workers, and one of them recommends me the lady doctor she and her daughter have been going to for many years. I call them and make an appointment for a month later. With my travel schedule and work schedule, that is when I felt I had time.

“Jeez. It’s a month from now?” my dad asks.

“Yep” I say. I feel bad but I feel bad taking off work.


I get a period that last 6 WEEKS.

I call the new lady doctor’s office.

“Hi there. You know how I said I can only come in a month from now?  Ok well. I am having an emergency. I’ll take your next appointment” I say in panic.

“Ok, how about Thursday at noon?” the receptionist asks.

“Sure” I say. I look at my calendar, only three days away.

I march into my boss’s office.

“I need sick leave next Thursday. Kelly will see my patients” I say.

“Ok” she says without even giving it a second thought.

I nod. I check with Kelly too if it’s ok, “Of course. Priorities Shaz. Go find out what’s wrong”.

While I wait for the lady doctor’s appointment, I make an emergency appointment with my primary care doctor who always does same day appointments for patients who need it.

“I don’t know what to do. I should have came sooner but I took the work of what this specialist I said saw about my conditions just being endometriosis-” I begin telling him.

“Ok first of all. I am almost positive this is a hormone imbalance. We have to do a laprascopy to diagnose endometriosis. Second of all, we need to stop this bleeding. You are already anemic and this bleeding for 6 weeks- I am very concerned for you” he writes me a prescription for a medicine to stop the bleeding and tells me to let him know what the lady doctor says. I nod.

I start the medication and boyfriend is comforting, making sure I take the medicine with food and what not. But the medication makes things worse. It makes the bleeding even heavier and painful!

Finally, I have the appointment with the lady doctor. Just a week before my birthday.

I wait almost an hour to see her.

Finally she comes in. She looks at my chart. Looks concerned.

“How much weight did you gain exactly?”

“15 pounds” I say.

“Have you ever been tested for hormone imbalance? Polycysitc Ovarian Syndrome? (PCOS)?” I shake my head.

“Let’s test for that. In the meantime, stay away from gluten and dairy. Because of you do have it those foods can trigger it” I nod.

The medical assistant comes and draws 5 VIALS of blood while I am already losing blood. I skip lunch because I did not estimate this much wait for the doctor and thus didn’t request this many hours of sick time.

So I go to work feeling faint and hungry. I finish our year end report.

I go home and tell boyfriend. He doesn’t know what to say.

The week goes by and we go to celebrate my birthday early as I’m travelling the day of my actual birthday. It doesn’t go that well. The next day, on my actual birthday, I am running my errands before my flight when I get a phone call.

The words out of the woman’s mouth make me want to pass out in the Kohl’s fitting room I’m standing in.

continued in On Highs and Lows: In Sickness and Relationships (Part 2)

No Booze, No Painkillers

“My… liver? I ask in shock.

My doctor nods. “Yes. It’s not too bad right now. But don’t do anything that will increase your levels. No painkillers, no alcohol, no unhealthy foods”.

I close my eyes. Life can be unfair sometimes. Most of my graduate school friends are walking high in energy, ready to graduate. I am sluggish, my body hurts. Now I know why.

“Why is it that something new is wrong with me every time I come in here? First the vitamin deficiencies and now my liver?” I ask.

“That’s how most autoimmune disorders work Shaz, symptoms go and symptoms come” she says sympathetically. “But the good thing is, we can treat the symptoms. You had a vitamin B-12 and vitamin d deficiency, and we fixed both of those!”

I sigh.

“So remember. No alcohol, no painkillers, and implement a good diet! I need to see you back here in a month to re-check your levels” she says.

I go home and tell the news to my Mom and Dad. They don’t worry too much, which is comforting.

But when I leave the day before school ends, my dad pulls me in a hug. “Don’t worry about your liver. It will be all okay. If you need extra money to buy healthier foods, I’ll send you some. Come back soon so we can re-check the levels and see if you are healthy again”.


I go to school the next day. I see my friends. They talk about going out, I say I can come, but I can’t drink. I explain why.

“Wow what unfair bullshit. This girl is the one that has a drink once a season, and something’s wrong with her liver???” my very outspoken friend Linette says.

We all laugh.

My friend Susan gives me a ride home. She just lost someone and we were talking about it. When I leave I give her a hug and say “If you need anything, and I mean anything, I am here for you. I can bake cookies or bring you alcohol!” I say.

“Only if you can have some!” she says.

And it makes me laugh. Because. Here’s the thing. My friends are standing with me in solidarity.

Through the last semester of graduate school, through the period of writing our thesis, through this intense time of endless job applications and interviews- I’m not going through it alone. We all have our problems, and we help each other out. Not like where I went to college.

When one of my pediatrician friends Yassin asked me to dinner this week, I told him I couldn’t because I wasn’t feeling well. He asked me what was wrong. I told him the same old fatigue.

“I think you have Anemia!” Yassin says. “I’m convinced I have Celiac” I say.

“What did your doctor say?” he asks. “Pernicious anemia” I say rolling my eyes.

He laughs. “You need to trust us!”

“If I felt better I would!” I say laughing.

ed3173ce0b11d961a740a8ba633b0eb3Welp. So that’s that. Another day in the life of Shaz. Along with this, school has really picked up. I am taking a few hard classes, working on my thesis, and applying for jobs. Regardless, I’m not afraid. I’ve come a long way. And there is no stopping now!

xoxo. S.

I’m Good :)

I can’t believe it’s been almost a year since my last year of college begin. Aside from working, taking 5 classes, and studying for the GRE- it was a really memorable time. In love and friends.

I still remember what “Prince Player” said during our first fiasco this year. “This is so small! There are more important things than our relationship!” I was sad that day. I didn’t know what he meant. To me, people and the relationships I have with them are everything.

But on Tuesday, as I sat in the doctor’s office, I knew. That player was right. There were more important things!

Such as being 22, young, and happy, and finding a lump right before you’re about to move to a new city and accomplish the dream you worked so hard for.

I breathe in and out. I think about the day before. On Monday, my dad took me to my favorite restaurant. He doesn’t really like the place, but I do. When we were done, he put his arm around me and smiled, “Are you happy?” he asked. I sigh. “Of course Daddy”. My whole family knew I was anxious and tired of being sick, they were doing small things to cheer me up.

My mom told me everyone was praying for me.

“You told grandma and all my aunts?” I ask.

“Well gosh Shahz. I had to let it out. It’s hard for me too you know” she says.

I squeeze her hand. “I know, how did they take it?”

She shakes her head. “Not good. You know, they were all excited for you. And then this. We’re all disappointed”.

I hug her. “It’s all going to be okay, mama”.


I’m nervous Tuesday. All the classical music playing in the office is not calming at all. I start praying again. I tell God that if I’m okay, I’ll take better care of myself. I’ll stop doing things I don’t want for people. I won’t push myself beyond my limit. I’ll stop staying up for guys that don’t want me the way I want them. I won’t-


I stop praying.

Dr. Hart, the radiologist has arrived. I breathe.

“So yes. The lump is still there, I could feel it. But I don’t see anything on the ultrasound. Your platelets were high as Dr. Clark said, so maybe your body was just fighting off an infection. It is fading. I don’t see any cause to take it out. Just keep an eye on it and keep taking ibuprofen three times a day”.

I’m so happy I could cry. Bless. Bless. Bless.

The nurse fills out the paperwork.

“You’re leaving for Boston Monday right?” she asks.

I smile and nod.

“Good luck! We’ll be rooting for you!” she says.

I smile even bigger and thank her. I am so blessed.

I find my mom and tell her the good news. She smiles bigger than I do. “Let’s go buy some things for you to take to Boston!”

“Can I have like 5? I have a few calls to make…” I say.

She gives me a look. I smile at her. “Ah” she says winking.

After calling my dad and brother, I call Mr. Photography dude. “I’m good” I say.

“Oh thank god. Yasmeen and I were worried sick during the training!” he says.

I laugh. So I call Yasmeen next. “I’m good” I say again.

“I am so so happy for you love! Thank goodness” she says.

I smile. And then I call my mentor. He recently got his MPH and knows how important it is to me.

“Yes!!! Thank goodness! See, I told you that you had nothing to worry about!”

I smile and go find me mom.

“Now you gotta call my family and dad’s family” she says.

Oh goodness. She calls her mom (my grandma) first and hands the phone to me.

“Oh my gosh Shahz! You gave us all a scare didn’t you?” she asks.

I laugh. “Grandma. I told you not to worry about me!”

“How am I supposed to not worry about you? You were my first granddaughter! My baby! I love you, Shahz”.

Aw. I speak with my aunt (from dad’s side) next. She has a history of this issue and knows the pain.

“Thank god Shahz. Now that that’s over. Try to de-stress and relax now. Please” she says.

FullSizeRender(3)I promise her I will. And then I promise myself.

I shop a little and go to dance class.

When I get home, I think a lot about the promise I made to God. About being better to myself. I’m going to do it this year for sure.

Any self-care tips? Comment below!

Thanks to all of my readers for being supportive this past week. The e-mails I got from you, comments you left me, all of it, kept me going. I truly believe all our positive thoughts is what helped me feel better! I love you all, with all my heart. Boston here we go!

xoxo. S.

The Chapters of My Book

“Dad says you have to get something surgically removed?”

My eyes widen. My brother knows now??

So it’s been a crazy few weeks. When I went in for my physical last week, the Vitamin B-12 and D deficiency was not the only thing that was found. I had a lump. In the best part of my body. I didn’t say anything because Dr. Clarke said it’s fine and nothing to worry about.

But it still kept hurting. Really badly. Like the day before yesterday, my parents were gone all day, and it was just me and my dog. I was sleeping all day because that’s the only thing that keeps the pain away. I woke up to find her, laying on my chest, on top of the lump, right where it hurts. And she looked at me with sad eyes. Like she knew. Something that should not be there, was there.

First, I called Yasmeen. Yasmeen’s mom is a nurse. They said I have to go back to the doctor, even if I already saw her last week and she said it was nothing. So, I called the doctor’s office immediately. They said they would be able to see me the next day (yesterday).

“Back so soon huh Miss Shaz?” Dr. Clarke says smiling.

“Yes Dr. Clarke. I think the lump got bigger” I say.

“Now Shaz. I told you it is possible that may happen. You are going through a lot in your life right now. You are about to move to a whole new city and about to start grad school. That could be causing your hormones to go up an down. Causing this lump. But if you think it has changed, I’d be happy to take a look” she says.

I try not to roll my eyes. “Yes, please”.

She pokes around. “Okay so yes you are right. It is definitely different than what I felt last week”. She takes out a little book that has notes and a ruler attached to it. She does a measurement. “Yup. I would think that is cystic. I’m going to need for you to go get an ultrasound. If it is problematic, you will need to get it out. Now that’s going to be very uncomfortable. And then you will need 4-6 weeks recovery time”.

What? What the fuck? How could she say that all like it’s no big deal???

I try not to cry. “I’m leaving for grad school is a week and a half.”

“Right. I’ll get Stacey to schedule an appointment with the hospital for you” Dr. Clarke says and leaves.

My jaw drops. What? What happened to “you’re moving and starting grad school? it’s probably just hormones?”

I breathe in and out. I hear Nurse Stacey calling different hospitals and spelling my last name. She comes in a few minutes later. “The soonest I could get you in was next Tuesday. Make sure when you go, you bring someone with you” she says.

“Okay” I say sighing.

I go back to the car where my mom is waiting. I start crying.

“Oh my god what? What is it? Shaz?”

I tell her everything.

“God help us” she says. “How will you go to Boston now?”

“I don’t know” I say sadly.

When we arrive my dad is in his office, finishing up some work.

“Go” my mom says.

I shake my head. As strong as my dad is, he can’t take news like this. He will act like he can, and then he’ll get sad and keep it all bottled up in side.

“Shaz has the lump a size of a marble. It grew from last week. She needs an ultrasound, the soonest they could get was next week. She has to get it taken out if it’s bad. They will do it right then and there. She will need 4-6 weeks recovery time.”

Yes. Thank you mom.

My dad stays quiet. “Are you serious? They couldn’t get her in sooner? Do they know she is leaving in a week and a half?”

We all stay quiet. And my dog comes and stand next to me. I pet her.

“Yes they do. I don’t know how she can go to Boston if they have to do the procedure” my mom says.

“Oh she won’t be going” my dad says shaking his head.

“What are you talking about? She has to! She has orientation and school” my mom says.

“I think her health is much more important than orientation and school. They will understand a medical emergency” my dad says.

I stand in shock. “Or. Maybe. It’s nothing. And they won’t even have to take it out!” I say piping up.

They stay quiet. So I go outside to get some fresh air. How did this happen to me? Bad things aren’t supposed to happen to good people. Did I mention I have severe anxiety and ADHD?

I hear them talking inside.

“Maybe she shouldn’t go to her dance class today. She should take some rest” my mom says.

“Let her dance! She needs to relax after getting news like this” my dad says.

I laugh to myself. My parents are cute.

“Shaz…” I hear my dad calling from inside. Oh god. I know that tone. He wants to talk about something.

“Oh. There you are. I was looking for you” he says with a cigar in his hand. He stands next to me near the lake.

“Don’t be scared. These things happen” he says.

I hide behind him. Crying is a major sign of weakness in his side of the family.

“I just can’t believe it’s happening now” I sniffle.

life-is-like-a-bookHe laughs. “Welcome to life. The chapters in your book, are not always going to go the way you want them too.” You know I had a lump too right? It was right as I was coming to America. I had two small children. I was the CEO of a company. I had to have it surgically removed. I hurt for 6 weeks, and I survived” he says.

I cry some more. “I’m not as strong as you” I say.

He puts his arm around me. “No. You are stronger”.

“Think about the good things. You don’t have anyone to take care of. And we have good insurance. So if something happens, you can stay with us and we will watch you until you feel better. And our insurance will take care of the procedure. There are many people that don’t even have those luxuries” he says. He’s right.

“I requested next week off. I was requesting off anyway to spend time with you before you go. So if you need anything, I’ll be there” he says.

Well that’s nice. He hasn’t really been able to be there when I had serious health issues in the past.

“And if not. We can watch movies all week!” he says. I laugh.

He goes back inside and I call Yasmeen.

Wallah. This is terrible. We’ll be praying for you” she says.

“If they put a knife or needle in my boob, I ain’t going to school” I say staring out into the lake.

“Oh my god! Stop! Don’t say that. Just hope that it’s good. You had lumps before right?”

“Yea but the doctor would immediately say it’s fine. This is the first time she needs an ultrasound!” I say.

“Okay..well what about cysts? You’ve had a cyst before right? And it went away on it’s own?”

I think back. “Yes. Yes I did. But that one was fine. It wasn’t as uncomfortable as this one” I say.

“Okay. Well 80% of lumps are nothing anyway” she says.

I laugh. She’s right. I go to my dance class. My upper body hurts so much more than usual. I pass out as soon as I get home.

The call from my brother awakes me. “Dad says you have to get something surgically removed?”

“Yes uh well hi to you too” I say. Then I sigh. My brother was always the weaker one of in these situations. He just bought his own place and got a new job. I don’t want to upset him.

“Look it’s fine. It’s most likely nothing. But if it is, they have to take it out” I say.

He seams sad. “I see. Well either way. I know this lump or whatever is pretty uncomfortable for you and mom and dad aren’t coming to help you move in. But I can fly in if you need me” he says. That’s nice of him. I tell him he should. And I go back to sleep.

This morning, I wake up well rested. But aching. I get a phone call from Mr. Photography dude.

“What’s wrong with you?” he asks.

I rub my eyes. “Nothing” I say.

“You know all about the drama with the new executive board right?” he asks.

“Yep” I say.

“Well Yasmeen says I shouldn’t stress you out with it because you have a lot of serious things going on. What does she know that I don’t?”

I feel like he’ll find out anyway. So I tell him.

“Holy shit” he says.

I take out my iPad and look at my snapchat to distract myself. I haven’t been on it lately because of everything going on. I see one of player’s stories. “When you leave yo girl’s house” the caption reads with a 5am filter.

“Oh my god! You’re not gonna believe what player just posted!” I say changing the subject.

“Oh my god Shaz. Stop. He’s probably just messing around. FOCUS. Focus on your issue!” he says.

“Right” I say putting my iPad down.

“When did you meet him anyway?” Mr. Photography dude asks me.

“The first week of school” I say.

He laughs. “I rest my case. You’ll meet someone new the first week in Boston!” he says.

“I might not even be there for the first week” I say.

“No don’t say that!” he says. “Remember what you wrote on your blog last week? About being resilient? Be resilient, woman!”

He’s right. It’s time to be the strongest I have ever been. In this chapter of my book.

xoxo. S.


National Girlfriend’s Day-Let’s Talk About Cholesterol 

It’s been another busy week of house hunting and planning for back to school stuff. I was planning on posting every day, but my temporary apartment’s wifi stopped working after I wrote the last daily prompt! It’s still down and I’ve been trying to keep up by using up all my cell phone data 😉 So please excuse any typos in this post! 🙂

Anyways, did you know August 1st was National Girlfriend’s Day? This week, I found out about a campaign by Oscar Health Insurance to talk about how you can stay healthy with the help and support of your friends!

 Last year, I found out I had cholesterol during my annual blood work during spring break.

I panicked. How could it be?? I was only 20, how did I already have cholesterol?? I thought back to my eating habits from January-April.

And then I figured it out. That was the time that I was in love with “Heart” (also heartbroken by him), taking my hardest class yet (Chemistry), and getting over my family’s relocation to Colorado. When I was stressing over “Heart” after a long day, I would have a Ben and Jerry’s. When I was so busy studying for Chemistry, I would order a lot of delivery. And when I was missing my family- I would lay in bed and do nothing.

All of that eating and non-active ness really added up! My doctor told me to start a low carb/low fat diet and that she would re-evaluate my cholesterol. Meh. I was less than excited but it’s what had to be done.

4 months later, when I went back to get my cholesterol checked- I got a call from my doctor a few hours later and I could hear the happiness in her voice, “Outstanding news! Your cholesterol has dropped down by a lot! You no longer have cholesterol!!” I was soooo happy. The first people I told were my friends because they really helped me! And here is how:

1.) They taught me about this thing called almond butter- Behold. Instead of reaching for that Ben and Jerry’s at night, I would grab some apples and almond butter! This filled me up better and I actually emotionally felt better after I ate it! 🙂

2.) They would order panini’s and grilled chicken sandwiches at dinner- For dinner we always stop by at this place in the student center that sells burgers, chicken sandwhiches, chicken tenders, tarot tots, waffle fries- you name it. Everything there was fried and that’s what I was ordering everyday.   The only thing that wasn’t fried were their panini’s and grilled chicken sandwhiches. I started ordering those and again, I could feel my body feeling better. Of course, my friends would not turn down fries or the cookies they had at the payment counter so they still ate that. But still, sitting right next to those would be a cup of grapes, pineapple slices or some other fruit so I would opt for those 🙂

3.) I started going to the gym three times a week- My immediate friends didn’t always come with me because we all had different schedules, but I did make lots of other friends in my spinning class or while doing whatever work out I was doing.

4.) They would respond to my snapchats- This is a really simple thing, but it means a lot to me. One time I sent a snapchat with a photo of a cookie saying “I’m gonna do it :0”. And one of my friends snap chatted back saying “Don’t”. And I said “You don’t understand I miss “Heart” so much”. And she responded, “He’s a jerk. Go eat a carrot or something ;)” I put that cookie down immediately.

And that was that 🙂 Check out the info pamphlet provided by Oscar Insurance to see how you can keep yourself and your friends healthy! And if you’re in the area and want to learn more about them, be sure to check out their health insurance plans in New Jersey and New York. Stay healthy friends!

xoxo. S.