***Images from torrid.com****
I really like fashion. A lot. Growing up, I loved following the latest trends. I’ve decided that having a hysterectomy is not going to mean that I lose my sense of fashion. This is hard. Quite frankly, it kind of sucks. I gained 15 pounds in 10 days from “water retention and inflammation”. (Great! Now my ‘moldy old cake’ is waterlogged…confused? Read my former post for an explanation).
I probably should have explained sooner that I am under the influence of a lot of Benadryl® due to hives…which we assume are from the antibiotics (round 4 in two weeks), and I may be a bit abrupt, ADD, lacking a filter, etc.
Anyways, yesterday James took me for a leisurely stroll through the area mall so that we could get ideas of what I can wear after surgery. I know that I will be bloated even more than now, and I will be sedated and sleepy; but I still want to at least look like I tried to look presentable. I unashamedly admit today that I have quite a bit of pride about this.
When I started to feel good about my body again after the auto accident, I transitioned into clothes that were more form-fitting. In his typical gentle way, James challenged me to also mix in some “baggier, boxy” clothes; never once in a tyrannical way but in a friendly, “have you considered trying this?” way.
I like it. The shirts are comfy, yet they don’t hang on me like a shapeless tent.
This whole experience has been so humbling.
I am so bloated…only over my uterus, so I look about 3-4 months pregnant. But I’m not.
We walked into a new, hip, store for larger sizes, “Torrid”. (***All images are from their website, torrid.com, except my “Lightplay 5″***)
The sales associate was so genuinely helpful and kind. She showed me the Fall Fashion Trends, including the highwaisted, harem pants, baggy graphic tanks, flowing swing sweaters, and of course; scarves. She pointed out some adorable, loose knit dresses which would effectively help cover my swelling.
I almost cried in the store. Her help was so heartfelt and genuine and her thoughtfulness spoke volumes.
James reminded me (for maybe the 100th time) that he.loves.me. It doesn’t depend on my swollen abdomen, or flat abdomen, or anything else.
He loves me because I am me.
I’m trying to take ownership of the reality that who I am doesn’t change when the way that I look changes.
So, today, world, I want to say that I am Gracie K. Harold. I have a swollen belly, but I am not pregnant…even though I may look like I am. I will do my best to rest and recover before and after surgery. I have a beautiful gift to take care of…my body. It’s lumpy and swollen right now, but it’s protecting and cushioning my soul and my heart. My heart is a rather tender thing in this moment…so please be kind and see me as I am.
I am a child of my Abba. I am loved. I am a wife. I have a mother heart. I am a sister, a daughter, an aunt, and a friend. I love passionately, and protect my loved ones fiercely, but with mercy.
World, please be gentle with me.
Women, my sisters…please. See past my size. See my heart. I will do the same.
PS, Feel free to see more of my ideas on my “Pinterest” board, “Hysterectomy Fashion and tips”. If you would like to join my board, email your email address or Pinterest username to email@example.com and I’ll invite you to join! (Happy pinning!)