Nice to Meet You

My name is Emily Star. I’m a freelance writer and editor with a Master’s degree in English literature. I’m a bit of a jill-of-all-trades – I teach English, write, run my own shop on Etsy, and have recently decided to go back to school for a degree in dietetics. The choice to go back to school was made for several reasons, one of which is that you really cannot get a full-time teaching job at the college level unless you’re a masochist.  But why dietetics?

Well, I’ve lived for the last decade in a body that is riddled with health issues, from asthma to autoimmune. I sometimes feel like I’m living in a daily war, fighting every single day to make my body do things that “normal” people take for granted. And yet those “normal” people often judge me, thinking I’m lazy or milking it and that I don’t really have half the problems I say I do.


from “Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis,” by Izabella Wentz CC BY taken from my photo stock

If they only knew. A friend of my brother’s recently was diagnosed with ulcerative colitis, and he had a huge attack while over our house. He knew I would understand how he was feeling, so he stopped to talk to me – and the words he chose to express himself were:

“I fucking hate my body.”

I wanted to cry, because I have had that thought so many times. I don’t want to be a doctor. I already spent a very long time in school, and plus, I hate needles and blood. But I do want to understand how my body works, and what I can do to show it some love, treat it well, and give it what it needs. Because spending my days hating my body – essentially hating myself – really isn’t getting me anywhere. And if I can channel that into a career where I can help other people, like my brother’s friend, not hate themselves too? Well, that’s just frosting on the cake (the gluten-free cake, because I have celiac disease). I already have a blog where I talk about yarny, crafty things, but what I want to do here is share what I’m learning in school, as a student member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, and as a patient myself.  Someday I’d like to run my own business helping people who have been newly diagnosed with overwhelming diseases, but for now it’s enough for me figure out how to help myself and maybe help some people through this blog, too.  But a caveat: please don’t take my sharing what I’m learning as real medical advice, because I’m just a student! Take it as incentive to learn yourselves, too, and definitely as your doctors or find a reputable registered dietitian you can double check with too.

What about you? How do you feel about your body? Do you feel like learning more about it would help you? What would you like to learn more about? Let me know in the comments and I’ll see what I can find out!

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