Being Diagnosed with Hypothyroidism

Hi. It's August 25th 2019. I know, I haven't been here in a while but here I am, fashionably late. I was diagnosed with Hypothyroidism with Hashimoto's Disease (the autoimmune kind, shit.) in early June 2019. I always presumed something was off for the past year or so anyways.

I gained 46lbs total from June 16th 2016 to my peak weight (167.5/169 with clothes on) which was June 26th 2019 (2 months ago).

The first time I noticed there was a drastic weight gain was in August 2017. The past few years I noticed gradual weight gain and everybody, including myself, blamed it on age & the

"stress from college"

First of all, I'm straight edge (no alcohol or drugs) and have been ever since I can remember. Those things are typically what people infer when they say "college". I also don't eat too bad to have gained that much weight as a teenager, early twenties person. Fast forward a bit to January 2018, around the time that I met my long term boyfriend and absolute KING. I was now 135 lbs. This number struck me because forever I've lingered in the 115/117/120 range which fit my body correctly and looked normal, considering I'm 5'1. So this day in January, I recall complaining borderline crying to my terribly dismissive doctor about my weight/ symptoms. My symptoms to be clear, were: fatigue, weight gain, sluggishness, brain fog, always dizzy, anxiety, the list goes on. I recall googling beforehand about thyroid problems. I mentioned it to him, he dismissed me and like a fucking zombie replies softly

"I don't think you have that, but we'll get the bloodwork anyways"

So I get the bloodwork back, it's relatively normal, but slightly elevated TSH, which could mean underactive thyroid, which means hypothyroidism. He said my numbers aren't bad enough to diagnose me/ give me medicine. I also read a lot about how it's quite difficult to get correct medicine for thyroid problems so I wasn't suprised. He told me to forget about it. Here I am, a year & 6 months later, 34 lbs heavier than when I got the initial bloodwork in January of 2018. My TSH in June 2019 ended up being 5, which is more elevated, still not terrible, but enough to treat thank god. My thyroid antibodies were around 622, which is pretty high insinuating Hashimoto's Disease. Perfect, I love this for me. Absolutely awesome. Take note, this man is giving me absolutely zero insight or help whatsoever, so I became avid with googling and researching, which of course doesn't help my health anxiety already being prevalent in my life. I legitimately had to delete Reddit because I was infiltrating their Hypothyroidism subreddit, and probably torturing other worried thyroid patients. Great. (You're almost up to date with my current situation, bear with me). So, for the past 2 months I've been on Levothyroxine 25mg which is the standard dosing for ANY patient with hypothyroidism. Even 80 year olds with thyroid cancer. That's interesting to me.

I understand there should be a basis of dosages to begin your medication journey but there is still something off about putting every single patient in the same box, medicinally.

In my next blog post, I'm going to be discussing my thoughts on the lack of involvement that doctors have, when telling millions of people a year that they have a lifelong disease.

Emilina

SUCCESS IS A CHOICE

Success is a choice.

Happiness is also a choice.

You define your own individual success, and how to get there is your responsibility.

Success is a choice BECAUSE you define your own success.

You can choose to be happy in good and bad situations. Even if the day or your situation is unbearable you can still try your best to see the brightest in the situation. As you all know, time is medicine. However, you shouldn't solely rely on time if you have happiness as a priority. There are things you can actively do to try to see the brightest in bad situations. The act of trying to be optimistic is a first progressive step. You can begin to alter your mindset to be happy with smaller things. You don't need a corvette, or a rolex to be happy. Stop and smell the roses and realize that life is so incomprehensible, and short to be upset and bothered. Train yourself and think of others. Think of other peoples situations. People can be happy with nothing. People can be happy with their families. Or, people can be happy with no family, and just materialistic goods. Everybody is different. I would stop comparing your happiness and success to others'. That is the first step that can aid you to happiness. Develop a clear idea as to what makes you feel content, complete, clear, and happy. Then figure out how to achieve/ get there. Use this as an individual experience and journey.

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

Hey people of the interweb! Welcome to March 4th 2019! I was talking to one of my best friends Madison Dorn regarding Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, and it came to me to write this article. OCD is extremely common, especially in people with high IQ's. It creates severe hyperawareness of the self. You can have physical compulsions, or entirely mental compulsions. I have almost entirely mental compulsions. I first developed having severe panic attacks in the spring semester of junior year of college in 2018. It was right when I met my boyfriend, potential soulmate. I am not sure what the correlation is, but I always think about IF there's a correlation. I would shake, have 0 appetite, chest pains, stomach pains, be sweating for no reasons, feeling completley out of my own body, and not be able to go to class. I would have racing and unwanted thoughts of irrational fears. I would often say "I feel like I'm dreaming", when I was entirely awake. It is also a cycle. One day or week I would be stuck in this cycle of circling "scary thoughts", then the next day I could totally return back to normal. It was scaring me and making it worse because I felt like I was losing my sense of identity. Literally makes me uneasy writing this, but I want to help anyone suffering that I can.

I learned that the #1 key to helping ease racing/unwanted thoughts, is NEUTRALITY. Telling yourself that these bad thoughts are neutral, or even good, is a great first step. What really helps, is BELIEVING they are not bad. Your thoughts do not matter, believe it or not. They are thoughts. There is zero impact on the outside world. Everyone still thinks of you as the same person that you were before these thoughts. You are here and you are alive! Take the chance to relax and allow yourself to calm yourself from these taxing thoughts. Naturally and homeopathically is best! It all comes from your thought process and how your brain is wired. These unwanted thoughts are better obviously when you are not thinking about them. But lets try to train ourselves to think of them, and not get upset. Not allow them to control you. That's one of the first steps to fighting, being brave, and overcoming OCD naturally.

Exposure therapy is also very effective in helping OCD. Think of things that scare you, logical or not. Say it's a place. If you're scared of your thoughts about a traumatizing place, drive by that fucking place. Look at it. Okay, what happened? You saw the building and you are alive and here. Try that type of thing with anything you are afraid of.

Sure, pills can ease these in a sedating manner, but do you really want to lose your thoughts and feelings? Your thoughts and feelings make you a human being, which is beautiful! Life is so beautiful and we all want to enjoy it. Having a healthy daily thought process is imperative for a happy life.

Products That Help Anxiety

Hey it's January 29th 2019. It's the beginning of the last semester of senior year of college. Pretty crazy that we'll never be a student ever again, but it's okay because there is a new chapter opening up. The chapter of 0 sleep, 0 normal food habits, 0 money, but remarkable memories is coming to an end. A new one for us is beginning. There are a lot of transitional phases everyone goes through but exiting college is a significant one that can cause anxiety. My website and words are coming from someone who suffered/ suffers severe anxiety/ panic attacks. None of anything I'm writing is run by anyone, there are no ads, or anything, just the thoughts from your fellow anxious mess! ;)

THE KEY TO HELPING YOURSELF IS LETTING YOURSELF BE HELPED. ALLOW YOURSELF TO HELP. THINK AND BELIEVE: "I WANT TO HELP MYSELF". NOT "THIS WILL NOT WORK. I NEED MEDICINE." BE VULNERABLE AND STRONG FOR THE BETTER OF YOUR HEALTH.

Some products and things I use daily to help me relax and keep me grounded range from Spotify playlists, to essential oils to ginger tea.

SPOTIFY PLAYLISTS: This is probably my most important one for you. Whenever I would be in the midst of severe panic attacks/ anxiety attacks, I would be quivering, weak, 0 appetite, dizzy, chest pains etc. All you can do is lay down and beat past it. I would put my headphones on and maybe even my eye mask, a heating pad, and every blanket on me even if I wasn't cold. The weight of something else helps ground you and makes your brain focus on feeling. Focusing on feeling is extremely key to feeling grounded and present. Notice your hands, fingers, feet etc.

The most successful Spotify playlist that has helped me significantly is "Deep Sleep". It's a collection of gorgeous calming piano based, environmental sounds. I can send you a link if you message me on Instagram. I listen to it whenever I can't sleep at night, or even during the day if I'm having an anxiety/ panic attack.

I've also started listening to "ASMR Binaural Noises". This playlist is more of beautiful calming white noises.

ESSENTIAL OILS AND SPRAYS:

I was pretty skeptical at first of all of these seeming mild solutions to anxiety. I was like, how could this possibly work. It's not neccesarily the product, but the concept of the product and the tangibility of it in your hand. These products are something to physically keep you busy, as well as they're intended to help relax you. Looking at and smelling essential oils gives your brain something to do which by default begins to decrease nervousness/ anxiety. Breathe deeply. Believe that the aroma relaxes you. It's kind of like the juul vape. People use the juul to relax. It's not neccesarily the content and ingredients in the vape. It's the social concept of what you're holding in your hand. You're holding a very social trend in your hand that helps you feel grounded with a sense of routine.

LAVENDER

Lavender can nourish skin due to antioxidants, can somewhat control acne, reduces stress and anxiety, and induces sleep etc. You can get lavender essential oils at Whole Foods, Wegman's, Amazon etc. Each essential oil could come in packs of multiple for around 15$ or 1 for 6$. You can also get a Mario Badescu lavender facial spray for around 7$ at Urban Outfitters, Anthrpologie etc. I use this everyday.

PEPPERMINT

Peppermint can relieve gas/ bloating, may relieve your tension headeaches/ migraines, may relieve clogged sinuses, and may even improve energy! It's a much stronger scent than lavender. I use this oil if I'm in more physical pain. You can put these on your wrists, or even just smell them. You can get this for 6$ at Whole Foods.

TEA TREE OIL

Kills bacteria, great for applying directly onto scars, acne, any type of minor skin ailments. Soothes skin inflammation. Ideal natural hand sanitzer. Very strong scent. I put this on any type of rash, pimple, or bump. 6$ at Whole Foods.

EUCALYPTUS

Breathing, purifying, clearing. Can help clogged nose. Clearing chest, and even bug repellent. 6$ at Whole Foods.

Existentialist Philosophy- Albert Camus

Hi! It's January 27th. In school I'm studying existentialism and philosophy on a deeper level which brings me a constant state of awareness. Currently I've been learning about existentialist philsophers such as Kierkegaard, Chestov, and Jaspers. Existentialists find no meaning in existence, and then attempt to find some sort of transcendence in this very meaninglessness life. Most existentialist philosophers dive into how life is meaningless, but they sort of try to escape from it. What captivated me is the French novelist, playwright, and philsopher named Albert Camus (1913-1960). He explores how an ethical system can be developed without meaning or any type of God. The main premise of Camus' beliefs is that we should accept the meaninglessness in order to live a fulfilling life. That suffering and worry is pointless. Accept the universe, do not turn it away. He provided a representation of the myth of Sisyphus. According to this Greek myth, Sisyphus was punished for eternity to roll a rock up a mountain only to have it roll back down to the bottom when he reaches the top. Camus claims that Sisyphus represents the ultimate ideal absurd hero. His punishment represents human condition, in a sense that he was struggling without hope of success. “So long as he accepts that there is nothing more to life than this absurd struggle, then he can find happiness in it," states Camus.

When I began this reading, I was shocked because I've been thinking about the meaning of life for the past year and have been struggling with severe anxiety regarding that. This reading was assigned as homework and I was shocked that it was on alignment with exactly what I've been feeling and talking about. I agree with Albert Camus' views in every aspect. I believe we should learn to accept the absurd world as it is because it is too complex to fully understand. Human beings love instant fixes, understanding things, and affirmation. We need to learn to be/feel okay with what we have, and to stop trying to understand and control things that are infathomable. Inner peace is not infathomable. Higher figures can make a lot of sense to you on a surface level. Blaming your life problems onto God, and saying "God has a plan for me", is faulty. Life happens day by day. Thinking there's a set plan for your future is where a lot of anxiety stems from. Putting your energy, and blaming your human mistakes/life problems into a God is inefficient. It's just pushing back reality farther into your brain, and clouding it even more. It is you who has the power to make a difference. You are that God you pray to, think/dream of. I believe it is inside each and every human being to find the answers to all of our anxiety, worry, inner traumas etc. Gods and higher figures help aid the process of healing, relief, and trauma. It is an easy quick fix. But over the course of your life, you will realize it is inside YOU, and you will feel enlightened.

Anxiety and OCD

I have a lot of anxiety! Hey! I am extremely hyperaware of every possible thing. My mind is typically racing at all times with unwanted thoughts too! Fun stuff. I also recently have been diving into depersonalization and derealization. I think all of this is because our society is very hyperaware of mental health now. I understand how this has positive effects on awareness of mental illness and the logistics of it. But in reality, I think ignorance is bliss. I truthfully had a lot less anxiety when I didn't know about anxiety, ocd, or depersonalization etc. The fact that they're classified as disorders is really scary to me. The fact that you should be on medication for some things like this is horrifying to me, especially as someone who is sober and avoids the doctor. I'm trying extremely hard to get out of this homeopathically and naturally. I've never been to a therapist, or ever been on antidepressants. I'm trying my hardest to get over this without anything like that. I also think music and pop culture is what's idolizing and romanticizing mental illness. Nothing is cool about being mentally ill, like at all. I just truly think everything is up to you in your mind. I'm trying as hard as I can to stay grounded and present. I truly think when I'm older and out of college that my life could relax a bit, and minimize anxiety. I feel like our parents don't know anything about anxiety at all which is and isn't comforting. I also think this is all timing. It is literally my last year of schooling, essentially last year of "being young". It's also January and there is almost nothing to do and no one to see. That's absolutely terrifying! I genuinely believe once I am busy and out of school my mind will clear and feel more at peace. In future posts I'm going to discuss what products and things I use to help me relax!

xxx

My Sobriety

Hi! It is January 17th. I start my spring semester of senior year of college in a few days. This will be my last semester of school for the rest of my life, how terrifying! It's alright it will work out. In this post I wanted to discuss my sobriety. In high school I used to be a regular party girl, whatever you wanna call it. Parties and drinking/ smoking in Pennsylvania was extremely popular and normal. You weren't normal if you didn't drink or smoke, like most places. It was normal to drink/smoke before ANYTHING. Concerts, the movies, sports games, fairs, the beach etc. I started off drinking like normal. I always wondered why we were all drinking and everything though. I truly had no idea why everyone drank and smoked to have fun. I to this day feel the exact same from when I first thought that when I was 15. Maybe one day that thought will change, I don't know. In high school I would pretend to sip the drink. Or I would walk around with someone's empty beer can to seem normal. I still am guilty of that to this day at bars. I now am 21 years old, I don't drink or smoke. I use drinks for props in photoshoots. I try to drink and order drinks at bars but I typically never drink them or try a sip and instantly put it down. I truly don't know. I always had fun when I was sober and I still do! I don't know if my sobriety was ever a factor in causing my anxiety. I also don't know if my anxiety played a factor in my sobriety. I think it all plays off each other. Weed and alcohol started to make me absolutely terrified and just have general anxiety attacks. I've only attempted to drink in college 3 times and it was "Spring Fest" or Homecoming. I would get increasingly scared, and not feel relaxed whatsoever. I don't know if this will ever change but I hope it does because I've wanted to go out and enjoy a regular night at a club or bar drinking. Drinking and drugs are just truly and genuinely not in my daily routine or natural flow of life whatsoever. I never ever took drugs. I was drugged with a very small amount of ketamine (possibly was molly) when I was a junior in high school. I definitely had eye-opening panic attacks for an entire week. It was absolutely terrifying. From then I never had any type of drug in my system. I also tried a small amount of adderall once before SATS but does that really count come on. I did smoke weed for a short amount of time but it began to terrify me and give me panic attacks as well. None of this stuff ever sat right with me. I suppose my body is healthy being sober but I feel like my mental health is generally not so much. I feel like I'm constantly worried about having anxiety. My fears are feeling anxious. How silly is that!

xxx

Early Life Background Information

Hey. It's January 11th 2019. I wanted to first dive into speaking about my early life background information that could help you better understand me, Emily Filippo. My brother who is 3 years younger than me was diagnosed with Leukemia in 2009 when he was 8. I was 11. We had to essentially live in CHOP (Children's Hospital of Pennsylvania). My mom would typically sleep there every night for months with him. I continued to go to middle school. It never really hit me until my later years. Until I look back and notice it could be the reason for a lot of my behaviors or personality traits to this day. For example, my biggest fears involve throwing up or vomiting. I have not thrown up in 8 years when I was 13 for whatever reasond. I was absolutely terrified when that happened that I made sure it would never happen again. I live my life avoiding anything that could ever lead me to vomiting or getting sick in general. I will drink so many emergency packets to not get sick, or Vitamin C. Or I will never get in the car with someone that I know would drive poorly to make me nauseous. Or a huge thing is I won't drink alcohol which I will discuss on the next post!

xxx