Friday, 13 May 2011

What I'd tell my younger self part 2

I wrote the 1st instalment of my ‘What I’d tell younger self’ back in February. I thought that today I would finally complete it. The inspiration behind this comes after finding a picture of my lovely Nan and me together at a party a few years ago. When I look at this picture I want to shake the girl staring back at me; and pre warn her of the dangers she might face if she continues to lead her life the way she is. I look healthy, confident and happy in my opinion; and although I’m still happy my confidence and health is not quite so A OKAY. If my advice can help or forewarn any of my younger readers, then I will be pleased. If you are not into philosophical, reflective writing then press the ‘x’ button and come back in a few days, when the beauty reviews will resume. Let’s get started!

Treat your body like your best friend

As you all know I have been unwell of late, I haven’t disclosed what was wrong with me until now. I was prescribed the pill Marvelon, to regulate my menstrual cycle.  I had only been taking this pill for 3 days when I began to develop a headache.

This wasn’t the type of headache you experience every now and then; it was constant and would not let go. Paracetamol didn’t touch it, and I began to get really concerned. I went to doctors on day 5, and was told that this was common, and to keep it up and all side effects would cease as my body became accustomed to the drug. Now for some reason we all have tremendous respect for doctors, and feel rude questioning them. It took me another 10 days to return. My headache had never relented, and I was beginning to develop a severe aching neck and upper back. Not only that but I could hear my own pulse in my ears.

By this time I was exhausted, and extremely alarmed. When I returned to the doctors I was again told that there was nothing to be concerned about; but to stop taking the Marvalon. Two days later, I felt unable to take care of myself, and requested my mum to come and get me so I could be looked after at home. I gradually began to go downhill and felt like a zombie.

On the same night I finally gave up and demanded someone take this seriously, so we went to the emergency department. When I got there, the doctor looked in my eyes, both previous doctors, and optician had done the same things in the previous days. He again said there was nothing to worry about, and that it was a migraine, bought about by anxiety. I was prescribed codeine and sent home.

The next day I was back at the doctors with uncontrollable vomiting. I can honestly say that I never knew what poorly was until that day! Again I was sent home with some anti-nausea tablets. Finally on the Monday, I went into my mum’s room crying, begging her to get someone to help me. We returned to the doctors, where my life saver looked into my eyes, and saw what everyone else had missed, papilledema. This is when the optic nerve located at the back of the eye is swollen.

He immediately admitted that this was serious, and sent me for an emergency CT scan, he has since admitted that he suspected I had a brain tumour, the scariest thing I’ve ever heard! That day was the worst of my life, tests and scans, and finally a diagnosis. They told me I had a condition called IIH (idiopathic intracranial hypertension) bought about by the pill. This basically means that my body had begun producing too much spinal fluid; which is dispersed to the brain, causing swelling to my optic nerves, which leads to vision loss. I had to have an immediate lumbar puncture which was not pleasant and was ambulanced to the RVI in Newcastle for specialist treatment. I have been home since March 23rd and am gradually improving. My eyesight is also improving, and I have been on a serious diet; losing two stone since March.  What I want to say is, don’t convince yourself that being on the chubby side is fine, and that you’re happy just the way you are; because it’s not about appearance. It’s about your health! I was a size 16, and in the UK that’s common. This has been the kick I needed to change my lifestyle for good! No more sweet tooth; no amount of treats are worth losing your health. This condition is very rare affecting 1 in 100,000 people, but still needs to be advertised. They need to put this risk in the Pill leaflet! Anyway my point after my ramble is: LOOK AFTER YOURSELF! Eat well, and don’t be silly like me.

Stand up for yourself

I sometimes struggle to let people know when they are upsetting me. I find it difficult to be brutal, and don’t enjoy confrontation. The worst kind of confrontation is with those you live with; because you can’t hide! People using your things without asking, taking your kindness for granted, and ignoring your requests can make your life unbearable, and letting them know can be incredibly challenging. My advice would be stand up for you, tell them that it’s not acceptable. Don’t trust just anyone with your things, as many people do not have the same respect boundaries as you may have. Don’t be a door mat, or keep it all bottled up inside, help the other person by telling them what they’re doing; it might do them good!

Don’t give all of yourself to a boy

I have been on and off with the same boy since I was 16, I fell in love with him right away. First of all he was so handsome, and kind, and made me feel at ease, and like I could share anything with him. We spent all our spare time together, and became immersed in the relationship as you often do when you’re young. I definitely put greater importance on our relationship than my friendships, and became that flaky girl we all love to hate ha-ha! I was incredible sociable when I met him, and slowly that began to disappear. As you get older, people go through different relationships, and the same often happens, making it impossible to keep in touch with everyone. I wish that I had tried harder, and not lost touch with so many of my friends. Andy has been an incredibly important part of my life for 5 years now and we still rely heavily on each other. Now I never told any of you this at the time; but in September we moved in together; and things didn’t go well. It was too soon, and neither of us was ready, so he left. I then moved in with a friend. I think that we are going to try again in the near future, as we both love each other tremendously and don’t want to be without one another. Sometimes you just can’t move on, and you have to accept something is keeping you there. I think it’s his smile ha-ha!
Jealousy is a waste of energy

Being jealous as a young adult is inevitable. It may be because of a friend’s bag, or a dress, or another girl. I can remember feeling paranoid whenever Andy went out, in fear that he would meet someone else. What a waste of time! If a boy wants to be with you, he will be. He won’t cheat on you, and will have enough respect for you to behave when out with friends. It’s important to let your boyfriend go out, as we all need some space! Don’t waste your energy worrying that he will cheat on you, because no matter how much you worry, if he wants to, he will. The same goes for friends, don’t feel jealous of materialistic things, think about how great she looks, be happy for her, and remember that your friends because you trust, and love each other, not because of what crap is in your wardrobe! Competing with friends is not worth the time or the energy!

I hope you enjoyed this, I feel like maybe I have opened up maybe a bit too much? Anyway, I think you deserve to know a little bit about my life, and who is important to me.


  1. this as now scared me! I took marcilon due to it being a strong pill to help my acne. I get headaches from all pills and the ones I'm on now (they stopped making that on), i think have made my skin and spots soo bad! Was it the pill that caused it all?

    I hope you continue to get better and jealous of your reflective writing, im trying to do it now for uni.

  2. Awww Ellena don't be scared! it's incredibly rare, however i would advise you come off it, they do no good what so ever! plus there are plenty of other methods to use for all the benefits they may provide! I'm at Uni too! What are you studying? x

  3. oh my god, I hope your recovery gets speedy, that sounds awful, especially the doctors! that disgust me, I had a similar experience, although not quite as bad, I was getting sick with swollen glands every two weeks a few yeasrs ago and I had so many blood tests yet nobody knew what was happening. Somehow I got referred to my ma's gynecologist who then discovered I had polycystic ovarian syndrome ,which wasn't actually relevant to me getting sick (still a medical mystery) but I got put on pills and thank god they discovered it because untreated PCOS could eventually lead to all kind of problems like infertility. Anyway I'm glad you finally got your problem discovered. And your thing about jealousy, that's def a hard problem for me to overcome it but i definitely want to! xx

  4. This was a lovely post, it really taught me a lot, I hope everything works out. :) I hope you're feeling better Lucy!

  5. i'm now on gedarel, im going to see how it goes with my spots for my next round then maybe just come of it all together. I went to the doctors to talk about others and none are suitable for me!

    I'm at Leeds met doing Events Management, far too much reflection work at uni! xx

  6. Wow! I cant tell you how much this post touched me! you have been through so much at such a young age, its scary that doctors can brush you off when there is actually something seriously wrong! Im so glad that you posted this as Im sure your advice will be so helpful for lots of young women! I also need to be less of a doormat at times "/ I hope you continue to get better and things work out with you and your man :)
    <3 Nat xxx

  7. This is the first ever blog post that has ever truely touched me. You have been through so much and it all sounds so scary! I am definitely trying to start eating better for my health, thank you for the extra encouragement! Good luck with everything - your health and you man! With every bad thing, two good things come along, so i hope you have an amazing future :)


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