How to Survive Going to the Emergency Room Alone

When I was young I never imagined adulthood would mean I would start a life across the country in a city where I had no support system. Yet that's exactly what it's been like so far. Part of growing up means learning how to take care yourself, whether that means you make your own doctor's appointments or attend those appointments alone.

As someone who has spent the last six years apart from my mom, starting when I went to college away from home, I've learned how to cope with emergencies without the help from family members. And trust me, dealing with paperwork and catching the correct bus line is hard when you're writhing in pain and wishing you could just curl up in bed and not deal with any of it.

Dealing with being sick doesn't have to feel like a chore just because you don't have family or friends to lean on, even if that means you have to go to the emergency room. While I can't promise the wait will be short or that the doctor's will be courteous, I can help make the overall experience a little more bearable if you have to face the situation without a plus one. With minimal preparation beforehand, you should be able to survive a solo trip to the emergency room without feeling any worse than when you arrived.

Bring a charger. 
Emergency rooms may as well be synonymous with long waiting periods, cause you never know how it's gonna be until you get there. And since most likely it's an emergency, there's no option to turn around and go grab that charger you forgot. Do yourself a monumental favor and bring a charger for any electronic you may be carrying.

Don't forget your laptop. 
Sure, you can now watch Netflix on your phone, but you may want to save your phone battery for actual phone calls. If you can manage to bring your laptop along the time will pass by so much faster. Plus, most hospitals are now offering free WiFi, which is a total lifesaver when you wanna block out everything that's going on around you.

Remember your headphones. 
Just because you have the option to watch your favorite sitcom in the ER doesn't mean everyone else wants to. Be courteous and grab a pair of headphones to go along with whatever you're streaming. This will also make it easier to Facetime with any friends or family that want an update.

Pack snacks. 
The past few times I visited the emergency room there was no cafeteria nearby, which meant I was left waiting for hours without anything to eat. If possible, stop by a store and quickly grab some snacks you can eat while waiting to be treated.

Prepare for the cold temperatures. 
I'm not sure why but hospitals are always so cold. Avoid having to curl up with your hospital gown and remember to bring a cardigan, regardless of how hot it is outside.

Be sure to grab all necessary documents. 
Nothing makes visiting a doctor harder than not having all your insurance or allergy information. To make things easier keep all of this in one folder that you can easily grab when an emergency comes up. At the very least you wont be scrambling looking for your insurance card while feeling like you rather lie down and stay down.

How do you manage coping with sickness on your own? Leave your tips and stories in the comments below!

20 Small Signs Your Relationship Is Getting Serious

Dating lately for me has been kind of overwhelming. Every time I meet a guy the same thought crosses my mind, "He might be the future father of my kids, he might be a guy I yell 'fuck you' to across a street in a couple of weeks." Fifty-fifty chance.

Navigating the dating scene in my twenties has been a bit odd, because it seems as if I'm walking a thin line between wanting to show my interest without looking like I'm desperate for love. And as a self proclaimed crazy girl, it's kind of hard to find a guy who's okay with my nonstop texts, voice that always sounds like I'm screaming and picky eating habits. But sometimes the universe rewards you by leading you to someone who is just as picky, and that my friends is a nightmare when trying to decide on a place to eat. But I digress.

How do you know if you're simply seeing each other or dating? With dating meaning so many different things to so many different people, how is one to weigh the relationship without officially defining it? Well friends, there's some clues you can look out for. So let's all channel our inner Olivia Benson and start solving the mystery of whether our relationship is getting serious or not.

1. You can sit in the same room and completely ignore each other.
But not in a weird way! Think of it as you scrolling through your Instagram feed in bed while he scrolls through Reddit on the couch.

2. Getting ready together.
So long are the days where he can't see you until your hair is done and your liner is winged. Now you fight over counter space and which of you takes longer.

3. Your deodorant is their deodorant, and vice versa.
When you're dealing with a humid summer like I am, sometimes you're okay with smelling like mountain rain and he won't mind the scent of cucumber melon.

4. Sharing of the Netflix password.
This is so much more than being too cheap to pay ten dollars a month. We're all human, which means we're lazy. Which means that his Netflix password is most likely very similar to the Facebook, Gmail, Snapchat passwords. I told you I was a self proclaimed crazy girl.

5. Not having sex isn't a big deal.
When you first start dating, sex is sort of implied when you come over, at least a little bit. But once things are getting a bit serious, sometimes all the both of you want are to get bloated together and binge watch trash TV.

6. Everything doesn't have to be a date.
Somewhere along the way you two stop going on dates and just start spending time together.

7. You're each other's automatic plus one.
Don't have plans Sunday afternoon? Think again, he didn't ask but he and all his friends are expecting to see you.

8. They buy the snacks you like when grocery shopping.
Forget guys who buy you dinner, look for a guy who remembers which Tostitos bag you prefer and grabs one when shopping for his usual groceries.

9. Stores your clothes in a specific place.
If your bag, dress, tshirt is always put in the same spot, you're in! You're basically two weeks away from having a designated drawer.

10. Doesn't freak out when you leave a toothbrush.
I once accidentally left my toothbrush on a guy's sink one morning when getting ready, to which his reply was, "you're forgetting this." We're not on speaking terms anymore.

11. You no longer worry about how you look in the morning.
Gone are the days of waking up before each other to brush your hair and teeth. Love me in my frizzy glory or get out!

12. Their doorman starts to know you.
Once the security guard let's you in no questions asked, you know it's getting serious.

13. Follow along with your work/friend drama.
Do they know any of the people who you're referring to? Probably not. But that won't stop them from asking how they are and if anything has happened since you last mentioned it.

14. You both delete your dating apps.
Things like Tinder and OkCupid mean you're still open to the possibility of finding someone, so deleting the apps can be a pretty big step.

15. They know your favorite item on the menu.
If you can go to a number of restaurants and not have to tell them what you want, hold onto them and never let them go!

16. Care for your pet without being asked.
Pets in your twenties are like kids in your thirties. Your phone is full of photos of them and you cant stop talking about what they did. If your partner makes the initiative to feed them or pull out their favorite toy, then you know they wouldn't mind sharing the responsibility of caring for them as much as you do.

17. You each have a designated side of the bed.
Sure, his bed is his bed, but if he knows you prefer the right as well as the more firm pillow, you're more than just casually seeing each other.

18. Watches a show only you love.
My ex boyfriend couldn't be paid enough money to sit down and watch the Real Housewives with me. This new guy I'm seeing hasn't missed an episode. So yeah, you can say things are getting pretty serious.

19. You can double text and not be called a stalker.
Call me crazy but if you feel smothered because I'm blowing up your phone with two whole texts, that's a sign that I need to get the hell away from you.

20. Isn't embarrassed by your social media habits.
Anyone who isn't embarrassed by you standing up to photograph your food or using the puppy filter in public is someone who plans to stick by your side through all your weird habits that make being in public with you sometimes kind of hard.

So tell me, what's something you look out for to know if your relationship is getting serious?

8 Reasons Your Coworkers Dont Like You

Nothing prepares you for working your first office job, nothing. Certainly not anything I encountered during my four years in college got me ready to spend the better part of my days working an office job that has nothing to do with my career plans. But hey, I'm a twenty something earning a masters degree, my job isn't supposed to be relevant, it just needs to pay the bills.

Before applying to my first post grad job I watched a lot of The Office, and okay, I also watched a lot while in the office of my new post grad job. The Office thankfully gave me a real representation of how basic our everyday lives can be, I mean, Pretzel Day can only fall on one day a year after all. Thankfully I went into my new job fully aware of all the things that would drive my coworkers crazy, unfortunately not everyone has a Netflix account and a few hours to kill each night.

Related Post: 10 Ways Working Full Time Changes Your Life

So I'm here to tell you all the things that I, along with my coworkers, cant stand dealing with when a new person is hired. Or even an old veteran who doesn't give a crap about you and your rules. Let's begin...

Poor email etiquette.
If you think your personal email gets flooded with useless information, then you haven't yet been given access to your work Outlook account. And yeah, you're gonna have to put up with Outlook most likely. Unless every person CCed absolutely needs to read that email, rethink the people you consider including in your conversation. Seriously though, stop including me.

Making our public space private.
Personal phone conversations sometimes can't be avoided in the workplace. I get it, we spend 8 hours a day in the office, when else are we supposed to schedule our appointments and yell at Comcast. The thing is, there are private areas around the office. The break room is not one of them. And don't get me started on people who love using the speakerphone feature. Please, take your private conversations somewhere private, unless you're cool with all of us hearing how your boyfriend has been a total dick the past few days.

Not using your indoor voice.
Okay, as a fellow loud talker I can sympathize, but I'm just here to warn you. People on the other end can here us, without us having to raise our voice or stress every word coming out of our mouth. If you work in a small shared space I recommend just staying conscious of how loud you are. While I'm not saying whisper 24/7, definitely avoid making angry calls to customer service while at work or shouting across the work area to get someones attention. I know it sounds ridiculous but trust me, it happens.

Related Post: The Best 5 Websites to Find Your Next Job Now

Pay attention to what you eat.
Remember your college days when you would camp out at the library for hours, stressed over finals and really trying to learn the information after a semester of scrolling through Instagram? Then all of a sudden, CRUNCH. Someone at the next table was munching on a bag of Doritos. The sound of someone else eating something loudly or uncomfortably fragrant is just as annoying in adulthood, except this time you cant tell them to go away because you're supposed to get along.

Being unreliable.
While this is definitely seen more in staff members who have been around a while, earning a reputation of being late or out of office often is a surefire way to lead people to dislike you. If you work in teams or in an environment where your absence causes a disruption, think again before hitting snooze one more time or calling out of work without proper cause.

Marking everything urgent.
As someone who wears headphones 24/7 at work, nothing is more startling that having the chorus of my favorite song interrupted by a loud ringing sound. Just like CCing, not every email is worth marking important. Limit these emails for when it's something that actually needs immediate attention.

Dressing inappropriately.
I get it, figuring out what to wear to a new job is hard, which is why you get a pass for the first week. After that first week you should be able to figure out what those around you are wearing though. Showing up too work looking too casual will make others takes you less seriously, and unfortunately will probably, definitely, lead to people talking about you. Don't overdress though, if your office is more casual don't feel the constant need to show up in a suit.

Related Post: What to Wear on Casual Friday (With 7 Outfit Examples)

Taking up people's time.
Do you remember being in class and seeing that student raise their hand just as class was about to be over? Never mind that they had an entire class period to ask questions during, they waited until the last possible minute. Don't be that person at work, please, don't. Asking questions are fine, but if you wait until the last possible minute when just about everyone has checked out, that's an easy way to make your coworkers not be able to stand you. Either ask while everyone is engaged or ask the presenter directly after wards.

Are you guilty of any of these office crimes? What's something you can't stand that your coworkers do? Let us know in the comments below!

Finally Getting the Sign I Needed

Do you know when you haven't done something for so long that you forget how to get started? As if your body has forgotten the movements associated with the activity? Like standing up after sitting through a long flight, your bones and muscles don't fully cooperate with what they're being told to do. That's a bit of what writing this post feels like. I have the words in my head, but somehow I cant push the message down to my fingertips and onto the keyboard. But I'm going to try, because the universe finally gave me the sign I've been looking for for the past four months.

I started 2016 strong, in some ways more than others. Apart from being dumped on New Year's Day my writing was finally catching stride. I was publishing regularly and my actual website was gaining regular readers. My daily page views were increasing and the ideas were coming to me on the bus, at work and sometimes even in my sleep. Then one day I just stopped.

Writing, more specifically blogging, is this thing I picked up on a whim. Throwing some thoughts on a web page always came easy to me, especially when I received feedback that someone out there had been helped. The thing is, I've spent six years studying psychology in the hopes of becoming a counselor, which is why sometimes it's hard to devote countless hours to writing and editing. It's not that I don't have the time, instead it's wondering if I chose the wrong thing, the wrong major, the wrong career. If I do so well with blogging, why again am I busting my ass to earn a masters in counseling?

Anyways, this is the dilemma that's kept me from publishing anything I wrote over the last four months. My Twitter account is dry and my Bloglovin feed has hundreds of amazing posts I need to catch up on. When I'm not writing I tend to pull away from everything that reminds me of it, which means ignoring my favorite blogs and staying off Pinterest. Never Instagram though, I'm committed for life there.

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Over the past three months I started dating a guy, traveled to Texas, stopped dating a guy, celebrated my birthday and began seeing someone new who strangely is interested in all parts of my life, including my blog. For someone who keeps my writing separate from my real life, meaning I don't talk about it with friends, it's strange to have a stranger be so encouraging about something I'm so passionate yet private about.

And that's where it all started. I decided I needed a sign, something from the universe to let me know that I wasn't wasting my time writing into the late hours of the night. I've been waiting for something that seemed concrete, an obvious sign that would be impossible to ignore. And this morning, I got it!

Early this morning my phone buzzed and alerted me I had an email. On my commute to work I noticed the title of the email, "I'm not your target audience, so sorry if this is weird?" Unsure if this was spam or possibly worse I decided I would open it at work and let my work computer get a virus.

Upon opening the email I realized it wasn't spam, and it wasn't someone trying to hack my computer. My sign had finally arrived in the form of an email from a boy I had never heard of.

You guys, when I tell you that reading this email made me cry like a child, I'm not exaggerating. While I won't get into the full details I'll give you a general gist. Basically, this email was from a young guy who had noticed my blog had come to a halt in the past few months. He disclosed to me what he had been dealing with lately, including the death of someone close to him and a personal injury.

In the email he shared that he read my blog because he not only did he enjoy what I had shared but believed the person close to him who passed away would have liked it too. If that isn't the sweetest thing ever then I don't know what is.

The boy reads my blog to help cope with his loss and because he thinks the girl he lost would have liked it too! You guys, this is some Nicholas Sparks shit that I was not ready for at 10am. But most of all, it was my sign. Which leads me here, right now, writing this post.

I've done a lot of thinking about this boy and my blog and what I want this all to lead to. I've read hundreds of blogs and follow countless bloggers online. The thing is, there's no one out there that fully gives me what I've been looking for, which is that feeling you get when you call a friend and just listen to them rant about their day and maybe somewhere in their long winded story you both learn a lesson. Sometimes you don't, sometimes you keep making the same mistake over and over until one of you threatens to not listen anymore cause you're over talking about the same issue.

So I've figured it out ya'll, I'm gonna finally let my blog fully reflect my life. I don't plan to do a single thing differently except run back here after a long day of working full time and being single at 24 and spill to you guys all the things that annoyed me, made me happy, made me cry, and made me thankful to be a twenty something living in my dream city. I may not have fashion advice or the time to travel constantly, but I do have an ability to make the most dull weekends turn into an adventure my friends cant wait to hear the details to.

Thank you to the boy who gave me the sign I've been waiting for and for those of you that stick around every time I have an existential crisis and run away from my blog screaming.