Thursday, September 24, 2009

Ten Things

Per the Honest Scrap award, ten things:

1. I am absolutely petrified of the dentist, and have an appointment today. This is the first time I've ever gone to the dentist on my own volition: every previous time I'd just been forced by my mother. I'm petrified that he's going to give me horrible news, and have been brushing and flossing like a mad woman since I made the appointment a few weeks ago. I'm pretty sure something's wrong with at least one of my teeth.

2. I am 99.99% certain I have PCOS. When I was a junior in college, my mom sent me an email saying "now that your 21 I think you should know you might have this because I had this." I have a lot of the symptoms (stray hairs I need to pluck, wildly irregular cycle, obesity, occasional acne, and the fact that whenever I google weird things about my body to figure out if it's normal a PCOS forum always shows up). The most common ways to treat PCOS are diet and exercise and the pill. An enormous part of this whole weight loss thing is to get rid of my PCOS symptoms. I'd like to get on the pill, too, but for that I'd need to see a doctor, and well . . .

3. My deepest fear is that I'll get diagnosed with diabetes before I'm able to join the Foreign Service. Once I have it, that's it, there's no way I'd be let in because they need to clear you for worldwide availability. If I got diabetes my life's ambition would be dead in the water, and I wouldn't have the slightest idea what I wanted to do with my life. One of the craziest things about diabetes is that just through diet and exercise, people can improve their health enough that they don't need any medications and can get results in the normal range on the "do you have diabetes" tests. But even though they test as normal and really no longer have diabetes, they count as having diabetes. Which, to me, says "do everything you can to avoid being diagnosed." Right now, if I had diabetes, and I keep losing weight and self cure, as far as the world is concerned, I'm not a diabetic. If I go in and see a doctor, get diagnosed, and then cure myself through diet and exercise, I'll still be a diabetic and can't join the Foreign Service.

4. I don't really think I have diabetes just yet, though. I'm still quite young, and my father didn't get it until his 50s. When I take online tests they say it's possible I have prediabetes and that I'm at risk and should get tested. Still, getting the pill to help with PCOS is not worth the risk of ruining my dream.

5. The only places I've ever lived for any length of time are New York City, Chicago, DC and Paris. I hate crowds, and part of me hates cities. Sometimes I think I should pick up and move out to Montana.

6. I grew up in Manhattan and went to one of the top private schools in the country. Yes, sort of like Gossip Girl, only less salacious. No, not really like NYC Prep, those kids all went to crap schools like Birch Wathen Lolnex. Whenever I meet people from NYC who grew up in the private school circuit, my first impulse is still to judge them on where they went to school. I try not to, though.

7. I once earnestly tried to explain to my college friends that I wasn't rich by using the argument that my parents had sold our second country house to help pay college tuition for my brother and I. As someone who's now seen a bit more of the real world, I now at least partially recognize how ridiculously sheltered I was.

8. I'm still ridiculously sheltered, though. I have an entry level DC salary (read: low) and live in a one bedroom apartment in the heart of downtown DC in a nice doorman building. My parents pay the vast majority of my rent and for all of my clothes and shoes, as well as a few other expenses. If it were up to me I'd live some place cheaper since I don't think the place is worth the rent, but my mom's a bit psychotic about safety, and since my parents were the ones picking up most of the bills I couldn't really argue too hard against it. In spite of that, I'm pretty frugal about most things and place a high value on saving money.

9. My friends from New York are all brats like me. My friends from college are mostly upper middle class kids, many of them the children of professors. I only have one friend who's from a wildly different background and who didn't grow up with the expectation that "of course everyone goes to college." I somehow met him through a friend of a friend of a friend at some event in college, and we ended up somehow hitting it off. He told me he went to UIC, but it turns out he'd dropped out about six months before I met him. When he told me the truth a few months later, I didn't blame him for lying to me.

10. The best $900 I've ever spent was to pay his community college tuition. I finally convinced him to go back to school this semester, but then a series of events (some partially his fault, some not at all) depleted his savings. Convincing him to accept the money was among the hardest things I've ever done, but also the best. I still worry, sometimes, that the money will somehow end up coloring our friendship, but thus far that hasn't been the case. I teared up the first time he emailed me from his new college email address. I am so, so, incredibly proud of him for going back.


  1. Now my list looks like crap compared to yours you little brat! :-) Love ya Hadley!

  2. wow, its really nice to know more about you. looks like we might have a lot in common! I havn't been a rich brat all my life more like a lucky one... which turns into having it all... and being frugal is always the way to go. and you grew up in nyc! thats so cool! I wonder what it would be like growing up in the city.. and yes I would love to go live in some rural part of the world some day. I like my home and I like to be left alone most of the time...

  3. You know, as you're losing weight and learning the prices paid to get things done, you're learning a tool that'll last you the rest of your life and help you finish the maturation process and severe the umbilical cord as you're reaching the mid 20s. It's a hard thing, but taking care of your own health from teeth to weight to regular checkups and the flu, to paying your way and making decisions, realizing your own health concerns, accepting the confines of your own personal economy, all helps you to go from princess to queen. And everyone wants to be the queen--she makes all the rules!

  4. yup! old cloths are better than the new ones!

  5. Great post! I feel like I know so much more about you!!

  6. nice post. it takes a lot of courage sometimes to share things that arent strictly on our surfaces. bravo.

    and i'll try not to resent you for being loaded. lol

  7. Wow! Great, deep details about you, Hadley. Thanks so much for sharing!

  8. If you have any PCOS related questions, feel free to email me.
    I self diagnosed in my early 20s & had it confirmed later by my current Dr.
    I've stayed off the meds (except for a few months when TTC for child #2 & into the 1st trimester) but I do take Cinnamon which has the same effect (on me anyway) as Metformin.

    Best of luck with you dentist appt. I, too, despise the dentist.


    Oh! On the BB food - click 'nutrition' on the main page to see the foods you added for today & you'll also see edit buttons so you can change what you've already entered.

  9. It is amazing how much you can learn about a person in ten points. Thanks for sharing and being so honest.

  10. the 22 lbs goal is for my 22nd birthday :)

  11. Thank you for giving us a picture of where you have come from and where you'd like to be! What shines through for me is that you did grow up with some advantages to be sure, but you also grew up with loving parents who taught you to be compassionate and caring.

  12. I had someone once who talked me into continuing my college education. I had people along the way who got me into college and helped keep me in college. It wasn't that I was a bad student, I wasn't convinced of the need of college...but I'm glad they did as I used my education to become a writer and photographer.

    You did a good thing for that boy. Let me just thank you, for him. Thank you.