Oh, the shame: take two

I attempted to write this post a couple weeks ago but I started crying too hard to finish.  Let’s see if I can make it through this time.

It’s a bride’s worse nightmare.  It really, truly is.  And no, I’m not just being dramatic.  It is not a broken nail or even I torn hem.  Three weeks ago I was stricken with shingles.

Now I am assuming you have access to Google or some other search engine you can use to find out all you need to know about shingles.  But to sum up, after I had chicken pox back in the day, the virus stayed behind and hibernated in my system.  Until 3 1/2 weeks ago when it woke up and ravaged the nerve which wrapped around the right side of my upper rib cage.  This resulted in terrible deep tissue pain and a horrible blistering rash from my spine all the way around to the middle of my chest.  It really was terrible and I would not recommend it.

Now for part two of my bridal nightmare.  I don’t think I ever mentioned it here before but I have a muscle deficiency in my esophagus called achalasia.  This means I can’t swallow well at all but in truth, that is not the worse part.  Every once-in-a-while, usually when I am tired and stressed, the muscles seize up into this bone-crushing pain; kind of like a charlie horse only it can last for hours.  I call them spasms and the only way to relieve the pain is to swallow something which forces the muscles to open up and relax, even if only for a moment.  Water can work but for long spasms, that much liquid can make you feel really sick.  What really works the best is ice cream.  It is easily accessible (when you are in that much pain, cooking is the last thing you want to do) and the texture and chill is perfect.

I’ve been battling this since I was 14.  Using food as a drug has never been a foreign concept to me.  No wonder dieting has always been a frustrating and vicious cycle.

Anyway, back to the the shingles, the nerve which was affected by the virus could not have been in a worse position.  It sent me into spasms for days (and I mean days!) at a time.  The pain was crippling.  All I could do was eat and try to force myself to sleep as much as possible.

I am planning on getting married in October, the day I want to look better than I ever have in my life, and I am literally stuck on the couch eating.  I seriously felt shattered inside.

And to be honest, even as my skin is healing and I am starting to get my body back, I still do.  I thought I was fat 60 lbs ago back in high school.  Now, the 3 months I had to prepare for my big day has turned to 2 and I have made no steps towards the beautiful self I want to be.

I bought a dress that I fell in love with months ago and it just arrived.  I took some pictures so my mom could see how it looked on me and… I didn’t like what I saw.  I can zip it up but that doesn’t mean my body does it justice.  Where is the beautiful bride I want to be?  Is it even possible to find her in time?  Is it worth trying or will I be disappointed no matter what?  Has my chance been taken from me so easily?  Why?  Why now?  Why am I always stopped by this pain?!

At least I made it further without crying this time.

I don’t even know where I am going with this one.  I’m just voicing my pain and frustration.  My shame.

Before I go I should mention the other inspiration for the title of this post.  All of the fixation on the women’s looks in this summers Olympics was truly awful.  Gabby Douglas didn’t do her hair to people’s satisfaction; Holly Mangold, Jessica Ennis and Liesel Jones, among others, were considered too fat… scrutiny of male bodies seemed to be missing, of course.

What about focusing on the important things?  Their incredible accomplishments?  The fact that I am marrying someone wonderful?  Why is this so hard?

Oh, the shame.


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