Tuesday, July 19, 2011

self conscious

Usually, in the summer, I'm a vision of vintage madness. It seems the brighter, the splashier, the more flowers in op art patterns, the better. After collecting for a few years I've learned I'm attracted to Hawaiin bark cloth dresses from the 60s and I wear them with great enthusiasm. 

This summer though, I've reverted to black. Shapeless sundresses that hang from my shoulders. I have hangers of these boring, run-of-the-mill standards that have become my uniform. 

I realized today, it's because I'm not comfortable in my skin. The surgery threw me off. My body, that I generally know so well, is different. Aside from the carb-packing weight I gained post-transplant, I'm still swollen. My lowest incision, just above my pubic bone, is puffy and distended. Not in an unhealthy way, but it's apparent something went on there. Plus 3 weeks of no yoga and the subsequent tip toeing back to where I was is making me want to hide. 

Years ago, when I was anorexic, I did the same thing. As much as I could I faded into the background. 

Then today, as I was walking through the west village, I saw a dress on a mannequin in a store window. Sleeveless, A-line, carnation pink at the top with the brightest of magenta flowers extending up from raspberry at the bottom. I went in. It looked small but I tried it on anyway. 

It fit. It was me. The old over-the-top me. I bought it to wear to a wedding this weekend. And then went home, left my brown skirt and black tank on the bed, and put on a mustard and olive sun dress, sprinkles with white hibiscus blooms. 

I feel self-conscious. Not at all at ease. But it's time to be me again. 

1 comment:

  1. Hi,

    My brother gave me a kidney last June. It was my second kidney transplant. We spent much of the summer together since we were off of work and we thought we were back to normal. We went walking in the Georgia summer heat and thought we were doing fantastic (I was at least a little better, since I could hardly walk to the living room before).

    Looking back on it, we weren't even close to where we thought we were. It took him quite a while to get back where he was before and he was/is a runner and cyclist in great shape before (and after) surgery.

    You will look back in a year and probably think "Wow, what was I thinking judging myself and trying to do so much?!".

    By the way, you are awesome! What a fantastic, life changing thing you have done for your brother.

    Sarah in Atlanta