Blogs » My life with lymphedema » Had To Say It

Had To Say It

  • Two blogs in a week!  I can't stop......


    In my most recent blog, I shared about the feelings of self I've experienced when it comes to being noticed by the opposite sex.  Yikes - will he see the lymphedema??  Yikes.  One of the comments made me think long and hard.

    When getting dressed this morning, I began to think how  I put a lot into getting ready! First and foremost is the hour on the flexitouch.  It's not primping, but it is part of my routine.  Between the shower, body creams, face cream, eye cream, concealer (if I really need it - one of those 2am and I'm still up events), perfume, jewelry, hair (and I have a lot of it), making sure the mani/pedi still look cute  - wait.... clothing, well I want to go back to bed. Lol. Being a woman is wonderful, lots of fun and work.

    Back in January, I told my January date that I wasn't a "girly girl", you know prissy and high maintenance. What I really meant was that -
    *I allow my lymphedema to control a lot of what I do.  I rarely wear skirts (even long ones), I never wear shoes because my foot is always puffy on the top.  You're a leg man, but I can't share these legs with you the way I think you must mean you want them - like Claudia Schiffer legs, Jennifer Lopez legs, - anybody but me legs. I just can't, can't, can't. I don't like the summer because I can't be your prize on the beach with a skimpy bathing suit. I can't lay out in the sun with you because I just can't. I'm different and I need you to appreciate that. I can't shop at regular stores and I'm definitely not a size 6 in anything.

    But saying that I'm not a "girly girl" felt easier.

    What I did was sell myself short and a couple of months of anger, pain and disappointment.  I just want to be "normal", but I'm not "normal". 

    Building that solid foundation of who you are takes time. And sometimes pieces get chipped away. Tough times come and can rock you so hard that you stumble and fall and it takes you a while to get back up.  Sometimes, you get distracted and walk away.  Sometimes, you fix the piece that is chipped away with a better piece, but how would you have known unless the piece (the hurt) had happened. It's all part of life, but you cannot let anyone dictate how you feel or how you respond to a situation.  Now I use the term respond because we have to think how we are going to act when something happens. If you don't think, you'll react and the outcome may end up ugly.

    For many of us, lymphedema is a change of life so you've had to relearn and tweak and are still tweaking you. For some of us, lymphedema has been our "ahah" moment. For all of us, lymphedema is what we have, not who we are.

    Easy for me, huh. Though I have lymphedema throughout my body, I'm pretty even throughout. Yet,. I go through the "it fits in one leg and not the other! What am I going to wear?" Ugg, more than I like.  But,  no one is perfect.  Eveyone has a longing and craves something - from the skinniest person to the wealthiest person, we all crave.  A lot of times those that have what we don't have lash out because they want what we have and making us feel bad is the only way they know how to speak.  Does that make sense? 

    In terms of dating and life, it doesn't mean you need to blurt it out and let the opposite sex know everything.  It doesn't mean you sit home thinking of how someone else is living.You just can't lose self because the one that has to appreciate you the most is you.  And mean what you say - it will makes the ride a lot smoother.

  • donna brown
    donna brown Michele that is an inspiring message. I am already married and don't have to think of the dating end of lymphedema. I congratulate you for having such self esteem and realizing that you have lymphedema and not let lymphedema own you. Live life to the...  more
    June 30, 2011 - Report
  • Michele E.
    Michele E. Thanks Donna. I appreciate the comment and continue to pray that this helps people. Ugg, it's tough not only having lymphedema and 35 and single - but you can't stop there! Ya know. There's so much to life and we can't just stop! I asled one member...  more
    June 30, 2011 - 1 likes this - Report