College, Fellowship and Hashimoto's: An Update
Lately, life has been a whirlwind and I’ve been grasping for time to work on my personal writing. Between a super cool job and finishing my degree, I’ve found a lot to love about adult life and the direction I see myself going.
I wanted to write a quick post to update you all on where I’m at. I just graduated college (yay!) at the start of this month with a degree in Liberal Arts from The New School. I changed my major in my last year to incorporate more creative writing classes once I had finished my journalism requirements. The only way to get the credits for them was to change my major.
I didn’t want to take “journalism” off my degree, but after some deep thinking, I thought it would be more beneficial to add those classes to my roster. I had some really incredible teachers in my last semester and am confident my change of degree was worth it. With their influence, I’ve got some cool short stories I’m working on, so stay tuned.
I also accepted a fellowship position at Newsweek at the start of the summer and am working full time from Chicago. Writing for the entertainment beat is different from what I’m used to, but I really enjoy it. In my short time with the publication, I feel like my writing is growing, and I’m learning so much not only about how breaking news works, but about how I can tweak my style to be better received in a news environment. Even though I’m a remote writer, I feel very in touch with my team, which is a blessing. It’s opened my eyes to a new style and genre, and I’m excited to go to work every day, which is the best feeling.
In regards to health, as I previewed before, I’ve been dealing with a thyroid disorder. I was officially diagnosed with Hashimoto's disease, an autoimmune disease in which my body attacks and destroys my thyroid. I’m starting a T4 pill this week to try to reduce the size of my goiter (yes, my neck is huge, and I’m not crazy for thinking so!) It will take about a year for the size to return to normal and for the medicine to kick in. Unfortunately, I’ve been told so much of my thyroid has been destroyed, I will have to stay on top of the disease my whole life.
It will get easier to manage, but now, I have days I’m so tired I feel I may collapse even while just sitting and watching TV. I’m always cold, and I’ve been gaining weight, but these effects can be controlled with medication and supplements. I found out this week my body has completely run out of its iron supply, so that’s the first thing I’m working to rebuild. The constant blood tests are terrible (especially for someone as panicky as me,) but I’m feeling better about them knowing I’m getting the answers I have needed for years.
Hashimoto's is daunting, and I don’t have any idea what I’m doing. If you have it, or any thyroid conditions, and have tips on coping, I’d love to hear them. As I navigate this and learn my own techniques, I’ll be sure to share them here.
As odd as it sounds, this diagnosis feels like a blessing. I’ve had so many wacky symptoms throughout my life, and this seems to be the answer to all of them. I’m hoping with some extra care, the next year can make me a stronger and healthier person.
All around, these past months have been a learning experience and an opportunity for major personal growth. I’m proud to be taking advantage of it and giving each experience my all. I’ve been a bit absent from the blog and my social media pages, just with the craziness of all of my current experiences, and am excited to get back to my personal outlets. With the end of school, I’m inspired by the extra time I’ll have to really grow my own ideas. I’ll share them here as they come.
Also, I’m reopening the application for contributors! If you'd like to write for the site, please email firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line JCTB Pitch and send a writing sample along with your idea for a post. I can't wait to hear from you.
Talk to you soon,