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I Really Just Need to Talk About my PCOS and Mental Illness

I've said it many times, and I'll say it again - PCOS is a silent killer. Before my official diagnosis, I was dealing with a hurricane of symptoms that hit me like a ton of bricks. I gained 75 pounds in ONE YEAR. Chin hair appeared out of literally nowhere. My cycle stopped completely and my periods stopped coming.

I actually thought I was pregnant. Not even kidding. I was always on a perfectly, on-the-dot 28-day cycle, so when that stopped, I was like, "Yeeep. Definitely preggo." I tested so many times .. peed on SO MANY damn sticks .. all negative. I was so confused. I finally went to my doctor and tested there .. another negative. They called me in for an ultrasound a few days later. The ultrasound technician didn't say much, except that I was definitely not pregnant and that I had some cysts. OK, cool. I thought nothing of it. She even held the little microphone thing up to my ovaries to make sure there was good air flow. There was. That was pretty awesome, actually. Technology, amirite?

It wasn't until a few months later that my doctor told me I have PCOS. She said it like it was no big deal. Meanwhile, I instantly broke down in tears. My mother was in the room with me and didn't even know what to say. I'm not sure if my doctor was just trying to calm me down or what, but she gave me some drug to bring on my period and put me on a birth control pill. I didn't realize it at the time .. but that diagnosis and those pills helped me combat a lot of other issues I was dealing with at the time .. and I'm thankful for that.

I Quit My Corporate Job (& Started a Business With NO CAPITAL)!

Anyone who knows me is probably thinking, "GIRL! This ain't news!" But I wanted to come on and tell you guys all about my post-college journey, because it's had a lot of ups and downs, and it honestly seems to be never-ending (and there's nothing wrong with that, OK?!).

PCOS: A Day in the Life

Beep beep beep.

It’s 8 a.m. My alarm is screaming in my ear from my phone that lay restlessly on the nightstand beside me. I’m tired. I decide to hit the snooze button. Just five more minutes ..

Four presses of the snooze button later, I decide that I need to get up. After all, my business needs me. I endlessly work to pry my own eyes open, while a full email inbox impatiently waits for me to check it out. Finally, my eyes are open. Still, I’m tired. Exhausted, actually. The fatigue is overwhelming. My mind is awake at this point, but my body is fighting for a chance to put off tackling the day. I sit up and swivel my body, and as my feet meet the carpet beside my bed, pain overtakes me. My back is sore and my feet sting. But I power through.

Letter to Myself 10 Years Ago: Vol. II

Dear Holly,

Wow! You're 16 years old now. You celebrated your Sweet 16 seven months ago and, a few weeks after that, you had your first drunken experience. It was an experience so bad that you puked everywhere at the party, blacked out completely, broke a glass shower door and subsequently got grounded for two weeks. You don't want to drink now; the mere thought of anything with alcohol in it makes you queasy. Don't worry about that. Once you turn 21, you'll drink more than ever before. Let's not get too into that (yet).

I'm Not Skinny and That's Fine, OK?

I'm going to go ahead and say it, I'm not skinny and, odds are, I probably never will be. Even a my thinnest weight, which was about 45 pounds ago, I was still a "bigger girl." I most definitely blame it on quite a few factors: my unyielding love for carbs, my Mexicana genes, and my dreaded PCOS.

I want to take you all on a little journey. Let's call it .. "Holly's Shitty Weight Journey."

Romper: Charlotte Rousse | Shoes: Payless

True Life: I Fell In Love on Tinder

Tinder. Who out there has a Tinder account? I signed up for Tinder in July of 2016. I was actually still dating my ex when I signed up for it; I had no intentions of meeting anyone, though. I was hanging out with my best friend at a flag football game, and she was swiping through her app. I was intrigued about just being able to see new people, all who appeared to be so different, so I thought I'd jump on the Tinder train an see all the different people and kill some boredom in the process.

When I downloaded the app, I was fully aware that my relationship with my ex was absolutely failing, but, like I said, I had no intentions of ever actually using Tinder to meet anyone. I really didn't even want to talk to anyone; the thought of just reading bios and swiping was what convinced me to download it. Little did I know, though, that five months after downloading the app and barely even using it, I'd meet someone that I'd quickly fall totally head-over-heels for.

Right after our New Year's kiss.

A Chapter has Ended, but the Book Goes On

Wow. It's been more than a year since I've been here.

I'm excited to announce that after the expiration of my domain name, I was able to successfully renew it last week, and I'm back, baby!

I really think I need to talk about why I've been gone for such a long time, what has changed, and what remains the same. I'm going to just say it; I'm no longer engaged and I'm no longer a future stepmother.

Stepmother Insecurity Pt. 1: Being a Stepmom With PCOS

Being a stepmom can be so difficult, especially for women like myself. I grew up never wanting kids; I hated them. Even now, I find myself frustrated when they cry and they just annoy me. I was such a party girl and a piece of that person is still very much inside of me. So, when the man I was in love with told me that his ex was pregnant, I was ready to drop the entire relationship and get out!

To be perfectly honest, I really was in denial about the whole thing. I mean, there was no way that life would really do that to me, right? Wrong.

I really love him and I loved him then, so I kept thinking that a love so strong wouldn't be possible with a child, thus increasing my denial that I'd actually have a stepchild in my life.

I honestly thought my life was over when she was born (you can read about my transition into stepmotherhood here).

The thing is, my life didn't end. A new chapter had simply begun.

I stopped partying 24/7. I started to learn to control my anger and anxiety and seemingly consistent mood swings. I began to feel love for this child. It was a love I hadn't felt before. A love that made me feel like I wanted to protect her from all of the bad things in this world. I still want to protect her, and I tell her all the time that I am here for her, always.

Life on Long Island: My Drunken Karaoke Experience

Drunken karaoke is probably one of the best things on this entire planet. Living in the quiet suburbs of Long Island, sometimes I just need to get out and get rowdy. I used to do this on the regular, but I'd stopped going out after my PCOS diagnosis and subsequent weight gain. Since I'm on this journey of self-acceptance and self-love, I said to myself "F&ck it, I'm dolling myself up, going out and getting drunk."

I have no shame in my bathroom picture game.Shirt: Fashion to Figure | Leggings: Kohl's | Shoes: Payless

This night was actually monumental in more ways than one. For the first time in a long time, I felt so good, and it wasn't just because of those delicious blue tropical Long Island iced teas that I'd be drinking all night. I felt confident. My hair was done, my makeup was done and I wore heels! Granted, my feet were killing me the next day, but beauty is pain, amirite?

Falling In Love With Your Bad Self ❤️

Listen, people. I’m not going to go ahead and tell you I’m totally loving myself and perfectly confident and my life is perfect, because that’s not really the case. I still have so many insecurities and, many times, I’m uncertain about a lot of things. But, I’d say probably a couple of weeks ago, I had one of those epiphany-type things and was like, “Whelp, I’m ready to love myself because I’m really sick of feeling like shit all the time.”

I was diagnosed with PCOS last year and, one year before that, I started to show all of those annoying symptoms. I gained weight. My hormones went all out-of-whack. The hairs under my chin started showing themselves a little more than usual. And, before you knew it, I’d stopped caring about myself (which was something I seriously, seriously did back in 2012 and 2013, when I had just turned 21). I actually loved myself, like, SO MUCH, despite going through a bunch of crap with my ex at the time, who took pride in putting me down and making me feel bad.

After a lot of thinking time, reading some self-help books and indulging in numerous self-love blogs , I recently decided that it’s time to stop “waiting on my weight” (and all the other crap that’s been putting me down) and take control of my feelings.

I can’t give you a step-by-step guide to falling in love with yourself, but I can tell you some of things I’ve felt over the past few days. The easiest way to love your life is by loving yourself first. And so, in honor of International Women’s Day, I want to tell you why you should love the beautiful, amazing woman that you are!