The Truth About Chronic Illness in College

Note: This post has remained half written and saved as a draft for over a month and a half now. I’ll be honest, talking about my chronic illnesses is difficult. However, I feel that being honest and open about what I face every single day is important for you to hear as a reader. I also feel that if there is anyone out there who reads Dani Dearest and is also struggling from a chronic illness that this post will help you to know that you aren’t alone.

The truth about living with a chronic illness in college - from a real college student living with hashimotos and ehlers danlos syndrom (EDS).

As I write this post I am sitting in my bed with a heating pad on my back and a brace on my left wrist, having recently turned down going out dancing with some friends due to being too worn down from a day of sitting in an office and going out for dinner.

I will wake up tomorrow morning and feel exhausted, despite having gotten around 9 hours of sleep. I will eat a full breakfast to help maintain my blood sugar and then I will go to one meeting, three classes, and usually one or two more meetings after my classes. Then I will get home, take a nap, take some Advil, do some homework, edit a blog post, and do it all again.

That’s a good day. Other days aren’t nearly as productive and leave me in bed due to pain or fatigue the entire day.

I live with 2 chronic illnesses. Hashimotos Thyroiditis and Ehlers Danlos Syndrome. In short, my body is attacking itself and killing my immune system, and my joints are in constant pain and inflammation due to a connective tissue disorder.

I won’t sugar coat it – being “young” and living with a chronic illness is incredibly difficult. Here are some truths about living with a chronic illness in college, and what you can do to help if you have a friend going through the same thing. Read More!

College Advice Nobody Tells You

College advice nobody tells you - the true things you need to know as a college student, from a college student.

The summer before my first year at college, and all throughout my first year, I was obsessed with researching as much college advice as I could. Honestly, seeing other college bloggers give their advice and how this advice helped so many people is what inspired me to start up Dani Dearest. While most of the advice I discovered before starting college (use a planner, carry pepper spray, stay active, etc) was very true and incredibly helpful – I found that there was a lot of advice that I wasn’t told before starting college. A lot of lessons I had to learn myself, the hard way.

If I had known some of these things before starting college, I might have avoided some tough situations. I hope that reading and learning these helps you to get a head start and stay successful in your college career!

Here you go – my 8 pieces of college advice nobody tells you.

Productive Things to do Between College Classes

19 productive things to do between college classes - Step up your productivity and make the most of your break times!

No matter if you are a resident on your college campus or if you commute each day, all college students are left with the same struggle of figuring out what to do between college classes besides napping and watching Netflix.

These are often your most productive times of the day, but how do you take advantage of these small breaks?

Here are 19 productive things to do in between college classes: (more…)

6 Ways to Save Money in College + Why I Took Out Student Loans

Thank you Navient for sponsoring this post.   

How to save money in college! #ad

As a college senior (wow – still weird to say that!) life after graduation has been on my mind a lot lately.

My time has slowly been transitioning from focusing on homework and course requirements to boosting my resume and hunting for internships. Lately, every time I’m shopping for clothes the first thing in my mind is “can I wear this to work?” since I now work in a business-casual office setting, and less “can I wear this to the beach?”

One of the big things that I will have to deal with more after I graduate is my student loans.

While I worked really hard to get the majority of my college funded through scholarships, I did have to face the tough decision and end up taking out some student loans. Taking out these student loans allowed me to live on campus for my first 3 years of college, which opened an incredible amount of doors and really shaped my college experience.

For me, living on campus was a must. I had been designing my dream dorm room in my head since middle school, and the thought of going through college without dealing with the cliché roommate struggles and college experiences that living on campus provided was heartbreaking to me. So, while owing money is definitely not fun, deciding to take out my student loans was the best choice for me.

If I hadn’t taken out these loans, I would not be who I am today. I’ve shared with you previously about how I was struggling when I started college until I created my own place where I belonged – and that may not have happened if I hadn’t lived on campus.

On my first day of classes, my first year of college, I started this blog. I started it to share my life in college and to find a place to become creatively fulfilled while living on campus. Through this blog I discovered that I love social media marketing and I improved my writing – both of which have led to amazing opportunities including helping to guide my future career path toward social media marketing. I may have never known that I love social media marketing!

This blog has also become a great source of income for me, as my side hustle, and a significant amount of the money that I make through this blog (including through this sponsored post!) is going to go to helping me pay back my student loans. Talk about a full circle!

I know my passion, I’ve found my friends, I feel creatively fulfilled, I have a great internship, I’ll soon have an incredible degree, and I’m optimistic about my future, all because of the college experience I have had.

Are you working on saving money to pay off your student loans? Here’s what I’m doing right now to make it easier on myself post-graduation: