Blog · odyssey

I Was Born With Cataracts

When I was about 4 or 5 years old I found out I had cataracts. I was going into Kindergarten and needed to schedule a doctors appointment. Now I don’t particularly remember all of this, so I am kind of speaking from what I was told by my parents. Apparently when I was getting my eyes checked, the doctor noticed something strange when she shined the light in my right eye. So I had to schedule an actual eye exam to figure out what was up. I don’t exactly remember the moment of finding out, nor did I really understand what was going on at the time. I never noticed anything was wrong with my eyesight because I thought I could see the same way as everyone else.

It is pretty rare to be born with cataracts so I always struggled with my eye doctor growing up. I loved them, but my situation was very hard to understand. I was born with congenital cataracts. A congenital cataract is a clouding of the lens of the eye that is present at birth. Did I mention I have more than one in my right eye? Yeah. I don’t have the greatest vision. I grew up having to go to the eye doctor twice a year to make sure my cataracts weren’t affecting my good eye (my left eye). Anything you could possibly have done to your eye I probably had. I basically grew at the eye doctors.

School was probably my biggest challenge having cataracts. I always failed my eye exams at school and the nurse never understood why. It blew her mind that I could be wearing glasses/contacts and still fail the eye exam. In class, I always needed to sit in the front of the class just so I could see the board. Though we usually sat in alphabetical order which meant I was always in the front row, so I can’t really complain.

The one thing I hated the most about my cataracts were probably the fact that I had glasses. I always loved the way glasses looked on other people, but not myself. I never got teased or anything for wearing glasses, but I couldn’t help but feel self conscience. I even do still to this day. I actually wouldn’t wear glasses until about 3rd grade. I hated them so much that I begged my parents for contacts when I hit 7th grade. This was around the time that I started experimenting with makeup. I never did anything crazy, but me learning to put makeup on and learning to put contacts in really didn’t mix. It’s part of the reason I actually don’t wear makeup. I was constantly getting eyeshadow or eyeliner in my contacts. I give everyone props that wears makeup and contacts.

Now heres the weird thing about wear glasses or contacts…they don’t actually correct my cataracts. I only wear glasses/contacts to keep my good eye from getting worse. Can you see how frustrating it is to have to wear glasses that don’t even help you see in both eyes? Yeah. I know. My whole life I never let it get to me too much, because I am so use to it that I forget sometimes there’s even something wrong with my vision, even though I am fairly blind in one eye.

I kind of wish people knew more about cataracts for the simple fact I am constantly being asked for my glasses to ‘see how blind’ I am. My eyesight isn’t something you can just compare to anyone else’s and I am not saying my eyesight is even the worst. Some people can’t see at all and I am grateful for the vision that I do have, but having people try my glasses on all the time and telling me ‘your vision isn’t that bad’ is kind of annoying. You don’t know my vision and I don’t know yours.

I am far from an expert when it comes to congenital cataracts. I feel like I am learning something new every time I get my yearly check ups. For awhile I always talked about getting eye surgery in hopes of correcting my vision. My eye doctor never seemed like it would be a good idea but I never lost hope. Recently I started going to a new eye doctor who seemed like she knew more about my cataracts. I spoke with her about surgery and was told that it probably wouldn’t correct my vision due to the fact that my cataracts are very deep in my eye, plus I am at a high risk for glaucoma (a condition of increased pressure within the eyeball, causing gradual loss of sight). I’m not gonna lie, it sucked to hear that there is nothing i can do, but that’s not why I am writing this. I am not writing this for sympathy or anything like that, but rather to inform (from the little knowledge that I know about my cataracts) or inspire. While everything I told you really sucks, it can always be worse. This is something I have lived with my whole life. It has been a long 22 years, but honestly it doesn’t really phase me. I get to see the world in a way no one else can. It’s something that makes me unique from everyone else. I don’t think I’d be me without it.

Embrace your imperfections.

 

For more articles visit my Odyssey profile: https://www.theodysseyonline.com/@sbicchetti

Blog · Music · odyssey

Music You Need In Your Life

I am such a music nerd it’s not even funny. I literally search for new music every single week. I always want to find the best of the best whether it’s top artists or artists you never even heard of. One thing I love doing is hearing what other people enjoy listening to, in hopes to give me new music to listen to. While I have my current favorites and all-time favorites, these are a few songs that I feel need more attention at the moment. Before you see the artist and decide to skip, why not give it a listen to? You might be surprised!

1. Versace On The Floor – Bruno Mars

Bruno Mars finally came out with a new album and I couldn’t be happier. This song is definitely one of my favorites to sing in the shower. His voice is always amazing but this song really shows his talent. If you haven’t already heard this on the radio, then you are missing out.

2. Champagne and Pools – Hoodie Allen ft. Blackbear & KYLE


Hoodie Allen is so talented and I wish more people listened to his music. I have never heard of KYLE, but Blackbear is another underrated artist that deserves so much more attention. All of their styles coming together is the perfect mix for anyone to like.

3. Make Me (Cry) – Noah Cyrus ft. Labrinth

DOESN’T SHE SOUND LIKE MILEY?! The second I heard this song I fell in love with it. It has a very unique style and I am obsessed. I’m surprised I haven’t broken the replay button yet.

4. Make Love – Chris Brown


I’ve always been a fan of Chris Brown’s music. After his song ‘Back To Sleep’ I thought for sure I’d never love another song as much as I loved that one, but this song proved me wrong. I absolutely love the background music and obviously his amazing vocals. If Chris Brown isn’t really your thing, I still highly recommend giving this song a listen to.

5. Body Moves – DNCE

I MISS THE JONAS BROTHERS. Thankfully Nick and Joe Jonas still make music. While Nick will always be my favorite, this song is SO GOOD. This is one of my more upbeat favorite shower songs. Be careful though. Too much jamming in the shower could be dangerous!

6. Heaven – Troye Sivan ft. Betty Who

I’ve followed Troye Sivan for awhile now and he always seems to amaze me. Even if his music isn’t quite your taste, PLEASE WATCH THE MUSIC VIDEO. Most of his music videos are very emotional and powerful, but this might have topped his past ones. With everything that is going on in the world, this song and video is what we all needed. Great job, Troye.

7. Guys My Age – Hey Violet


I don’t know about you, but this song is way too relatable. Just about all of my exes come to mind when I listen to this and it has such a good vibe. We need more girl groups like this!

8. Livin’ On Love – AJR


Remember that overplayed but catchy asf song called I’m Ready? Ya know, the one with Spongebob in it? THIS IS THEM. I love every single song they come out with and even though ‘I’m Ready’ went viral, they need more attention. These are three very talented brothers and I look forward to each song release.

9. Sit Still, Look Pretty – Daya


I couldn’t relate to a song more than I do to this. I wasn’t feeling it the first few times I heard it, but the lyrics really started to grow on me. I think they are actually very powerful and I wish it was more recognized for that rather than just being another catchy song.

10. In The Name Of Love – Martin Garrix & Bebe Rexha


My all time favorite car ride song. I couldn’t even begin to explain why I am so obsessed with this song, but I am. You have definitely heard this on the radio, but for some reason will never feel overplayed to me.

11. Bad Things – Machine Gun Kelly & Camila Cabello


I’m not gonna lie, I actually hated this song at first. But after the third time, I was hooked. I really hope they do more music together because this is the collaboration I needed.

12. Rumours – Gnash ft. Mark Johns


This is my Sunday afternoon song. I listen to this when I am doing last minute homework on Sundays. It’s honestly quite soothing and relaxes all of my stress away.

13. Gingerbread Man – Melanie Martinez


I know what you are thinking, this sounds creepy. BUT IT’S SO GOOD. I promise, give this song a chance. It’s so catchy and the lyrics are quite clever. Actually, all of her songs are quite clever. If you enjoy this song, I recommend her Crybaby album!

14. Ruin – Shawn Mendes


Shawn Mendes is such an amazing artist and just about every song he has ever come out with has been a favorite of mine. This is my favorite of his newer music. It’s a tad different from his other songs and I love it. Shawn always write such sweet but also emotional songs, but don’t we need some of that in our playlist?

15. Cruel – Snakehips ft. Zayn

I know…RIP 1D, but Zayn is doing quite well on his own. I’m actually a huge fan of his solo album. This song might not actually be a part of that album, but you have to admit it’s still good. Try and listen to this without dancing. You can’t? I KNOW. Thank you, Zayn, for not leaving the music business.

If you are currently reading this, please comment with some of your favorite songs! I love hearing new song suggestions. Music is something that everyone loves and asking someone their favorite song can actually teach you a lot about a person. I don’t know what life would be like without music.

Blog · odyssey

A Letter to All the Boys I’ve Loved

Dear the first,

You have taught me so much over the years. You’ve watched me grow. You’ve encouraged me to do what I want and become what I want. I always feel loved and I will forever be thankful of that. I feel like I can always be myself and I know no man will ever care about me more than you do. I love you, Dad.

Dear the second,

Where do I begin? You taught me that I can’t fix everything, but that’s okay. You taught me that I deserve so much more than what I have. You taught me that I will always have a place in life, even if I thought otherwise. I know if I ever needed to that I could go to you. We had our ups and definitely our downs. I can’t say you are perfect in the slightest though. I never knew someone could care so much about me while also caring so less about me. I do believe in second chances, but I am not a believer in third times the charm. You may have hurt me the most, but you left one of the biggest impacts on my life and I can’t help but thank you for that.

Dear the third,

You are seriously the best. The fact that you’ve stuck around this long is actually surprising. Never in a million years would I think that we’d be this close still. You literally saw me at my best and worst. I hope you know how grateful I am for all the memories we have shared and that I am always up for the next adventure. I know I suck at staying in touch but I’m glad that no matter how much time has past that we can still pick right back up at where we left off. We may fight until the end of time, but hey, I never had a brother and aren’t siblings suppose to fight this much? We may be miles apart at times, but never forget I am always here!

Dear the fourth,

You made me strong. I thought I deserved nothing better than what you had to offer. I put up with so much that I eventually became brainwashed. I was slowly becoming someone I was not. I cried. Boy, did I cry a lot, but I am strong. You gave me so much strength that I didn’t know I had. I know now that I deserve so much more than what I was putting up with. Without you I wouldn’t know my self worth. Thank you for being a jerk. It showed me that I could handle anything.

Sincerely,

Steph

These four short letters aren’t just four individual people, but a combination of a few. While some of us have encountered not-so-great people in our lives, I do believe there is always a bright side to everything. I am thankful for all the wonderful and horrible people I have met in my life. Without them I wouldn’t be who I am today.

I was inspired by a YouTube video I watched by Alexa Losey. If you want to check out her video:

Blog · Movies/TV Shows · odyssey

College As Told By The Outsiders

The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton has always been my favorite novel. It has so many inspiring quotes that I think we can all relate to in some way. These are just a few of my favorite quotes that I think can relate to college students:

1. “It’s okay… We aren’t in the same class. Just don’t forget that some of us watch the sunset too.” (p. 46)

In college, you make a lot of new friends with various different majors. Having different majors with your friends mean you aren’t always going to take the same classes and it almost feels like forever until you see them again.

2. “We’re all cried out now. We’re getting’ used to the idea. We’re gonna be okay now.” (p. 75)

College can get very overwhelming. Such a new environment and huge work load that we aren’t use to. Sometimes you just gotta let it out, but you adjust. You will get use to the amount of work. I have and I can definitely say I am okay. It was a hard transition at first but after multiple breakdowns, you become stronger. You learn how to manage time and stress altogether.

3. “I had taken the long way around, but I was finally home. To stay.” (p. 66)

I can definitely say college is my home. You meet people you love, you’re still being fed, you have an awesome roommate, and you’re learning about your passions. What more could you possibly want?

4. “Things are rough all over.” (p. 118)

Yes, they are. College is rough. Pulling all-nighters and skipping meals just to get work done. We’ve all been there.

 

Read my full Odyssey article here!

Blog · odyssey

Constant Struggles Only Art Majors Will Understand

1. Constantly defending your major

 

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I could go on a full rant about how important Art majors are. Without art, you’d literally have nothing to look at, nothing to wear, etc. I shouldn’t have to go into full detail to get my point across.

2. Completing a project that you actually like for once only to find out during critique that everyone’s looks so much better

 

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There’s nothing worse than feeling super confident about your work until you compare to everyone else’s during critique.

3. Constantly being asked dumb questions like “So can you draw me?”

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No Becky. Just because I am an art major, doesn’t mean I can just sit down and draw you. Stop asking me to just draw everything that comes to your mind. I’M MORE THAN A DRAWER

4. Trying to explain your art piece to a non-art student…

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Telling someone that your piece isn’t a particular object and it going completely over their head. IT’S SUPPOSE TO BE ABSTRACT PEOPLE.

5. Ruining just about all of your clothes from paint, glue, plaster, etc.

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Unfortunately we have to accept the fact that we will never have nice clothes.

6. 3 HOUR CRITIQUES.

 

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I can’t stress how tiring this actually is…

7. Spending more money on art supplies than you do on your textbooks for other classes

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Well, there goes $200 on just paint alone.

 

Read my full Odyssey article here!!!!

Blog · odyssey

Things Every Sagittarius Understands

1. Never understanding how or why people get bored all the time

As a Sagittarius, you are almost always doing something. You will find joy in the smallest ways. I guess you can say we are easily entertained. I will never fully understand being ‘bored.’ I will almost always find a way to make fun out of everything.

2. Emotions? What’s that?

When you are a Sagittarius you are usually a very optimistic person. We are always finding the bright side of things. This is so helpful for when things don’t always work out the way we wished they would. Though it does have it’s downsides like not knowing how to handle emotions when it comes to others or maybe even themselves. Your best friend got broken up with? Uhm…i’m sorry? Should I crack a joke? Is this when I’m suppose to show affection and hug you? WHAT ARE EMOTIONS?! I really only know happiness!!!

3. You can be brutally honest

We aren’t afraid to put people in their place, if need be of course. If we come across toxic people in our lives, we won’t hesitate to get rid of them. We won’t settle for that negativity in our lives. Like I said, we are very optimistic people. On the downside to this, we might come off ruder than we actually intend to be. We don’t mean to be harsh, I promise!

4. Humor for days

Humor is a big part of our lives. We are full of good humor and lots of jokes. This one also ties in with our optimism. We try to lighten the mood with our humor, even if it doesn’t need to be. We aren’t afraid of making a fool of ourselves if it gets everyone laughing. We crave that joy in life.

Read my full Odyssey article here!

Blog · Favorites · Movies/TV Shows · odyssey

Senioritis As Told By ‘New Girl’

Well, it’s happening. Senioritis is finally hitting me. I knew it would happen, but I was really hoping to avoid it. Here are some of the struggles of senioritis as told by New Girl:

1. Alarms are the devil

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Getting out of bed becomes so hard when you think about all the work you have to do in your classes and after classes. The thought of all the stress you will have to face later makes you lose all motivation. You may even need to set 10 alarms in the morning in hopes that it’ll annoy you enough to get out of bed.

2. Sleep takes over

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Sometimes you become so stressed out that you physically cant keep up with your work and sleep starts to take over. Personally, I think this can be hardest because once you sleep your stress away, then it becomes a very unhealthy habit to the point where you are forgetting assignments or even classes.

3. You learn to do everything last minute

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Procrastination is probably something most people can relate to on a daily basis but it definitely takes affect with senioritis. We know we gotta graduate by doing the work, so we just end up doing it later than we should. I mean hey, at least it gets done, right?

4. C’s get degrees

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At this point, you don’t care if it’s an A or a B. As long as you get that passing grade then you receive your diploma. Problem solved.

5. Notes? What notes?

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I know for me I take my best notes at the beginning of the year in hopes that I will stay organized and on top of everything. Once the midpoint hits, I become stressed and tired and slowly stop taking notes. Your notes start becoming messy and just full of doodles.

Read my full Odyssey article here!
Blog · odyssey

Reasons You And Your BFF Need A TV Show

Most of us have thought at some point if you and your best friend had a TV show that it would be the best thing since sliced bread. Here are a few reasons you and your BFF should have a television show together:

1. You guys are hilarious!

No ones funnier than you and your best friend. Heck, those nights you stay up until 3 AM just goofing off and laughing at one another nonstop are the best. No one could possibly have a funnier show than the both of you.

2. You both have ‘That One Ex’

This could be it’s own show alone. Between the on and off again relationship or that one guy that wants you both, it’s just so much drama and who doesn’t love to watch drama?

3. Your snapchat story says it all

Your snapchat story is usually the longest when you are with your BFF. You like to show off all the cool, fun things you guys are doing together and it would make it that much easier if you had your own show.

4. You are already comfortable with one another

You wouldn’t have to worry about acting like you like one another since you already do.

5. You are the perfect team

You work well together already. You finish one another’s sentences and you know what one another likes.

6. You already make videos together

From the second you guys became best friends, you’ve already been working on your tv show. From random snapchats to youtube videos you upload together, you both already work well with a camera in front of you. Why not take the next step and start your show together!

Read my full Odyssey article here!

Blog · Favorites · Food · odyssey

Reasons Food is Better Than People

1. Food will never give you the eye roll

No matter how annoying or ridiculous it is, food has your back. They understand.

2. Food won’t judge you for sitting around and binging Netflix all day

Wanna binge watch Supernatural? Better grab a snack! You can’t go through 11 seasons of a show without grabbing a bag of chips or popcorn. You need food that you can pick on when you are binging on Netflix. Forget Netflix and chill. Netflix and food is where it’s at.

3. Food is there for you when you go through a breakup

Got broken up with? Better eat lots of ice cream! I know from personal experience that if it wasn’t for food, I wouldn’t have gotten through it. No better comfort than food.

4. Food celebrates your accomplishments

Just graduated? Better get a cake! Just won that baseball game? Better take you out for ice cream! Just turned 18? Better take you out to eat! Food is always up to celebrate. I know there was many times i got stuck going to boring parties, but food is always invited! Hang with food and you wont be bored.

5. Food doesn’t want you to go to the gym, either

Don’t wanna go? Thats okay! Food is down to chill. You may feel guilty at first, but you’ll quickly get over it. Trust me, food is more fun than the gym. Besides, your body is the trophy for all the food you eat.

 

READ MY FULL ODYSSEY POST HERE.

Blog · odyssey

Learn to Love Yourself

1. Forgive Yourself

Stop blaming yourself. Everything happens for a reason. Don’t blame yourself for being a certain way or acting a certain way. We are all different and that’s what makes us unique. Being different is far from being a bad thing. It’s in the past and we know we can’t change what’s happened, so embrace it! Everything is learning experience and a part of growing up.

2. Be Positive

You will only feel the way you let yourself feel. Positive thoughts can lead to a positive outlook on life. Sometimes it helps by thinking of one positive thing about yourself a day. Maybe you liked the way something looks that day or maybe it’s even how you handled a certain situation. Either way, it becomes that much easier to embrace your true self.

3. Be Mindful

Know what you are thinking, feeling, and wanting. Live life the way you want to.

 

Read my full Odyssey article here!