disaster, relief

Foreshadowing of the disaster: I drove back here to Radford on Sunday afternoon. It had been warm when I left, but it was cold and rainy and gross when I got here. Not having hot flashes anymore these days, I was very cold and decided to change clothes. I really wanted to put on my favorite jeans, which are all faded and about five years old, and have holes in them, but are wonderfully broken in and comfy and somehow have always managed to fit me. So I got them out of my bag, pulled them on, and found, to my horror, that the button was gone. Apparently, the last time I wore them, a couple of days before, the button came off at some point, because they were too small, but I refused to accept this and wore them anyway. It was tragic. I looked around for a sewing kit, which I have never used but am pretty sure I have somewhere, so that I could sew on a button, which I'm not sure I know how to do...but I found nothing of the sort. I was very sad and began to mourn the loss of my favorite jeans.

The disaster: Out of spite, I decided that I wouldn't change clothes after all. Then I remembered something that I had said I must do immediately upon arriving at the apartment: try on my bridesmaid dress. So...I did. I tried just stepping into it from the back as I have done every other time I've tried it on, and it was much tighter, such that I was afraid I couldn't even pull it up over my hips. So I tried not to panic and just put it on over my head instead, causing me, of course, to get makeup all over the inside of it. It was too tight before I even zipped it up. It was almost as if the lining was going to rip to shreds if I even took one normally-sized step. I tried to zip it up, and literally couldn't do it. I thought I was going to break the zipper off if I forced it anymore. Now seemed like a good time to panic. I started crying (because that was obviously going to help, right?) and called my mom, verbalizing this shocking and awful truth: My bridesmaid dress is too small. She was stunned, as was I, though neither of us should have been, but, being a mother and all, she told me what to do: call Jessica's mom and ask if she can hook me up with a good alterations person in Radford who can, perhaps, fix my dress this week. Ok... I can do that, I thought, but meanwhile, I will continue to freak out. I took off the dress and pretty much threw it across the room, put my clothes back on (my favorite jeans would've been especially comforting at this point,) and looked in my phone for the Kincaids' number, which, of course, wasn't there. I recently got a new phone and apparently didn't put their number in it for some very stupid reason. So I called Jessica to ask her for her home number, and she didn't answer. So I looked up Lindsey's (Jessica's sister) number, which, even more absurdly, was not in my phone anymore either. I needed Facebook. But my internet hasn't been working for months at the apartment, and my roomate was in the process of moving to her new single apartment around the corner, and her computer is password-protected. So I ran outside in the rain to go to her new apartment and ask her for the password. (I could've just called her, but I wasn't thinking very clearly at this point.) As soon as I got out to the parking lot, Joe had pulled in. I was expecting him, and he was right on time, but I had been hoping he would be a little late, such that I could perhaps stop freaking out before his arrival. I was glad to see a friendly face, but sorry that he had to enter my already-stressful world at this particularly disastrous moment, though, really, he has witnessed enough Sara freak-outs that I suppose he's used to it by now. So anyway, Ashley gave me her password, and I looked up Jessica and Lindsey, neither of whom had their home number of their profiles, and Lindsey didn't have her cell phone listed either. After some other failed attempts at roundaboutly finding the number, I realized I could call Amanda, who could give me Lindsey's number, and I could then call Lindsey, who could give me her home number. Luckily, this plan worked beautifully, as Lindsey was at home, and simply handed the phone to her mom. I was hoping, of course, that she would tell me something to the effect of "Oh yes, one of my best friends does alterations, so if you tell her I sent you, she'll do it in an hour." I did not get this positive of a response, but she did tell me a place downtown that she had used for alterations, directed me as to how to get there, and suggested that rather than calling, I show up, dress in hand, preferably crying. No problem, I thought. When I called my mom back to update her, she had an additional idea: I was going to the doctor Monday morning to get blood taken, but, since I've gained 15 pounds and am obviously hypothyroid now, maybe I can convince my endocrinologist to give me Syntroid now instead of waiting for my next appointment, which is, appropriately, two days after the wedding. Then, perhaps, I could at least not gain a terribly large amount of weight in addition to the dreadful 15 pounds I've already put on. Good idea, Mom. It being Sunday night and all, it was now time, simply, to wait.

The interim: Admirably, Joe tried with great perseverance to convince me that I needed to just relax because there was nothing I could do, but, of course, I continued, though more moderately, to freak out. I should have known this was going to happen... I should have taken my dress home so I could've figured this out sooner...Why do I have to be fat NOW? Of all the times in my whole life up to this point, now is the MOST inconvenient time for me to be fat....God wants me to be in Katie's wedding, right? So they have to be able to fix my dress, right? Etc. Finally, I went to bed, managed not to have nightmares about the dress attacking me, and got up, ready for my fateful day. I journeyed to the doctor's office, realizing, as I drove, that my heart was beating fast (which it shouldn't do anymore, since I'm now off my heart meds totally, no longer in need of them what with my under-active thyroid). I knew my heart was just doing this because of nervousness, but I feared that when I got there, they'd take my pulse, see that it was too high, and decide that I must not be hypothyroid yet and can therefore certainly not start taking Synthroid. Luckily, though surprisingly, they didn't take my pulse at all...or my blood pressure...or even my weight. It was strange. The nurse taking my blood asked me if I'd gained weight (as if he couldn't tell), and when I said how much, he seemed unconcerned, and told me that I could stand to gain the weight, and that I look better. (I assure you that this is not the case.) This seemed a bad sign. I went on to explain to him that my weight is a problem because of this whole dress issue. With gross inaccuracy, he referred to the dress issue as a "minor detail," but did, fortunately, let me go talk to the doctor about the possibility of getting on Synthroid sooner rather than later. This marked my first ever entrance into a doctor's actual office, and it made me quite nervous. However, it went as well as I could have expected, even though I didn't cry, which, sadly, I can rarely do on command. He informed me that my blood results would be back the following day, and that if they confirmed that I need Synthroid (which, presumably, they would), then he could call it in and I could immediately start taking it. Perfect. I felt better already. With my new sense of hope and restored belief that there is, in fact, a God, I went straight to the dress shop, dress in hand, though positive I couldn't cry, as I was, at this point, smiling. As it turns out, this place doesn't do alterations anymore, but they told me a place, also in downtown Radford, who does, and directed me there. I took my dress there, explained my circumstances, and the woman very nicely told me that the seamstress wasn't in today, but would come in first thing tomorrow (Tuesday), and would look at my dress and let me know what could be done. I was more than happy to leave the wretched (once beloved) garment there. My work for the day was done, and things, though still uncertain, were looking up. The rest of the day was spent with little to no (ok...little) freaking out, and provided a much-needed opportunity for reflection with one of my favorite fellow psychology majors, which is always nice. The doctor had told me that physical activity, at this point, has the potential of being beneficial (whereas before, I was basically going to gain a lot of weight regardless of what I tried to do to stop it), and, incidentally, Joe and I took a long and delightful walk at the park. Having just finished my heart medicine, I was amazed at how far I could walk, even sans medication, without getting winded and feeling my heart pounding out of my chest. It was fairly exciting, really, and I kept using it to remind myself, I am getting better. I am getting better. I may be fat, and that may suck a lot, but I am getting better. The words of the great poet, Billy Joel, began to run through my head repeatedly: "Keep things in perspective: this is my true objective."

The relief: Yesterday morning I awoke with anxious anticipation of the two phone calls that I would be receiving (from the doctor and the seamstress.) Though it took a bit longer than I would have liked, I finally got a call from the nurse (Mr. "minor detail" himself) who said, simply "Hi, Sara! The doctor just called in the medicine to your pharmacy!" to which I, very unprofessionally and childishly, responded, "Yay!" I would have hugged him if this conversation had happened in person. I was so excited. I drove straight to CVS, got my medicine, frolicked outside like a child with a bag of candy, and decided that I would just call the dress shop. The seamstress hadn't looked at my dress yet, but did it right then, and I went in to try it on for her. She said she could definitely fix it, and that while I'd have to pay an extra $10 rush fee (truly the epitome of the phrase "a small price to pay"), she could easily have it finished for me on Friday, the day before I leave for the beach. I think I probably skipped down the sidewalk and to my car, at which point I called all involved parties to tell them the good news. I was ecstatic...I don't even know how to describe it. All is right with the world. And everything I was worried about before all this happened doesn't matter anymore. Maybe I will look fat in my swimsuit at the beach, maybe I will look fat in all Katie's wedding pictures, but I'm going to the beach to hang out with old friends who I love dearly, and one of my best friends is getting married, and I get to be in her wedding...and my dress fits. :) God is good. Life is beautiful.

The celebration: Dallas had invited me to a show in Pulaski last night, and I had previously been torn about going, because I wanted to see him, but was in such a foul mood about all this that I thought it might be better if I didn't go and irritate him and not have fun anyway. Needless to say, this was no longer an issue, so I went. It was a rocking good time, and a fantastic way to end my already wonderful-beyond-words day. He genuinely shared my joy, despite its minuscule nature in comparison with his current situation. We had some terrific and much-needed discussion at Waffle House (what better place for discussion is there?) which I will probably reflect more on later. But it was great. I have done nothing to deserve a friend like him. He listens to me, understands me, makes me feel good about myself, loves me. He's the best. That is.... after my new favorite doctor and my new favorite seamstress. So, maybe, the third best. ;)

One more thing: I'm wearing my favorite jeans...fastened with a safety pin. :)