One step forward, two steps back…

This weekend I attended a friend’s wedding, and got the chance to wear the dress I previously posted about.  You might recall that I wrote about how the persuasive sales lady encouraged me to wear a dress in a smaller size than I am used to. I mused how I probably wear clothes that are too big, and how I need to be aware of my body size and not be afraid to wear the ‘right’ size.

Well, the dress did indeed make me feel like a princess. However, it was very tight across my abdomen. It didn’t pull, but I found myself incredibly self-conscious of if anyone could see the outline of my ileostomy. I kept dashing to the ladies room to empty my appliance. Admittedly, this could have been caused by any number of things. Do you ever feel like your body changes from day to day? Maybe the day I bought this was one of those “skinny” days where everything looks good, and the day of the wedding was one of those “bloated” days where everything feels a bit off.

Even so, I think I learned a few lessons from this. Yes, it is important to not be afraid of wearing properly fitting clothes! But, it is also important to feel comfortable in the outfit. And in my case, that means not worrying that people can or cannot see the appliance. I just cannot relax if I am worried about it. Is it too much to ask to look good AND feel good (physically and mentally that is)? All part of the continuing clothing hunt…


3 responses to “One step forward, two steps back…

  1. Hey! Glad to hear you got to wear your dress, although I’m sorry you were so worried about your bag. I find that my self-consciousness about my body and bag vary, although it was much worse in the first three months or so after my operation. But then I had “slim” and “fat” days before my stoma. 🙂

    Did you wear an ostomy band underneath your dress? As I’m sure I’ve said before, I feel so much better when I’ve got one of these on, just because it smooths everything out, making the outline of my bag less visible to me (and, unless I don’t empty for ages, invisible to everyone else, who aren’t looking for it!).

    I empty regularly, especially when I’m out and about, and I get anxious when I know that I can’t, although that’s more because I don’t want to get a leak, rather than the fact that anyone will notice the bag.

    I hope you get another chance to wear your dress again soon; maybe wearing a loose cardigan on top would help you to feel less exposed? Also, I don’t know about you, but I tend to feel self-conscious at weddings regardless of what I’m wearing, so maybe it’d also help to wear it at a more private event (e.g. a dinner?)?

    Hope you’re well anyway, and good luck with your continued hunt… you’re not alone!


    • Hi! Thank you for the comment and sorry I didn’t respond sooner. I sure did sound grumpy in my post, didn’t I? I was not wearing an ostomy band (that’s something I haven’t tried yet), and maybe doing that would have helped. Also, I like the idea to wear the dress again, but perhaps with a loose cardigan or some sort.

      I think you are right that I was feeling a bit more self-conscious since it was a wedding. Why is that?

      Thank you for the positive, supportive thoughts! I’m still proud of myself for getting out of my comfort zone.


  2. Right or wrong, I just feel like people are more judgmental at weddings, especially if I’m seeing relatives that I haven’t seen in a while and if it’s particularly formal. It’s nothing serious, just makes me feel a tad more self-conscious. It was particularly bad this year because I knew that everyone knew I had been ill (made more evident by the fact that my hair was in a right state – loads fell out about two/three months after my surgery).

    Thank you for posting and being honest – it’s so reassuring to know that I’m not the only one thinking these things (and searching for the perfect dress)!


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