Enter the maternity belt. You know those spots in teen magazines where readers write in with their most horrifyingly embarrassing moments in order to be rated as most cringe worthy? Well, the moment I purchased a flipping maternity belt from a maternity store TWELVE years after giving birth to support a hernia and had to explain to the sales lady that "the baby" was 144 months old and standing next to me wearing bright orange nail polish and shiny lip gloss . . . that was my second most embarrassing moment story. The first was when I had to return the belt, 'cause I'm too damn skinny for the smallest size they make and plus I felt absolutely ridiculous wearing a maternity belt for an incision that happened TWELVE years ago. The moment was my most embarrassing, because the store would not just take the return, I was forced to go through this long list of questions and provide my address.
Sales Lady, "And were you dissatisfied with the garment?"
Me, "I'm just too skinny for it and since I had my c-section years ago, I found it didn't work well for me."
Sales Lady, "Okay." (I could practically read her mind though and I'm pretty sure by "Okay" she meant, "Oh, here we go, we've got one of these wacko 'pretending to be pregnant' mental cases in here and she's bragging about being thin in front of women in their third trimester. Talk about insensitive.")
By the end of the humiliation session, I just blurted out the address not registering why they'd need it. Well, the reason arrived in my mail a few weeks later. They wanted to market baby formula to me!
|Are you kidding me?|
So, A) I do not have a baby. Sigh. I should have never gone in that maternity store. B) They need to do better research on me. Formula is not Paleo, people. LOL!
After the maternity belt, there was the infamous Spanx. Just awful. I mean, seriously, are we sure those things weren't invented during the Dark Ages and brought here in a secret time machine by some sort of sadistic man that thinks all ladies should be punished for their curves (or lack thereof, Spanx are equal opportunity in making skinny chicks miserable too)? And the butt shaper part . . . what exactly was it shaping my butt into? So, yeah, as you know, the Spanx also did not work for me.
After that I tried wrapping an Ace bandage tightly around the area. Um, that was highly inconvenient. If you've ever had or seen a C-section scar, you know . . . the area that needed wrappin' is looow. I stayed hopeful for quite a few days, but the dumb bandage kept riding up. Potty break? More like four hour unwrapping & rewrapping session. I didn't want to have surgery, but it was like preparing a body for mummification. Or at least preparing my body's pelvis for mummification.
I had gotten desperate again. Here's where my husband came to the rescue. We are lucky enough to live near some of the best medical centers around, so he made me an appointment with a hernia specialist at John Hopkins. He felt it was time for a second opinion (and I can't say I blame the guy, Ace bandages aren't exactly mood enhancing on date night).
A few weeks ago I had an abdominal CT scan followed immediately by an appointment with the specialist. It turns out I have a small cyst that formed around a surgical suture. Sometimes they form right away, sometimes they form years after surgery. They are usually harmless, but can sometimes irritate nearby nerves. The doctor himself had one over his belly button and understood the pain it was giving me. He said we could do surgery if it was very uncomfortable, but it was not necessary. These little cysts are an immune response. I know all you AIers can relate, I said, "Well, my body likes to get crazy with the immune responses, so let me just avoid another surgery. Thanks for the info doc."
And guess what? It isn't bothering me as much. I'm not afraid anymore that I have a hernia that could get much worse at any minute. I am looking forward to pulling together a good exercise routine now, because I'm not worried I'll further injure the area. When the pain flares up, I know what is happening and I can just tell myself, "Keep calm. There is NO need to rush out and buy Spanx. It's just a little immune response, gettin' on your last nerve." And really that is basically the whole Autoimmune mantra, right? 😉