Damn Itchy

At a week before the end of my leave from work, I thought I’d gotten into a good groove of things. Mastitis was seemingly at bay, I was getting back into sprinting and some easy jogging, and we had several good days in a row.

Alas, it was not meant to last. I suddenly developed some hive-like rashes that itched like all hell. They started out small, and I’ve had hives before, so I was not too concerned. However, they quickly expanded, and exploded out of my stretch marks in numerous, patchy, bumps. It was the worst itch I’d ever had, and I didn’t want to use anything that would interfere with breastfeeding.

I Googled these horrible bumps and it sounded and looked (Google images, shudder) exactly like PUPPS, which strangely typically occurs in women pregnant with boys, entails pretty much the worst imaginable itch (a woman on a forum said she’d rather experience labor 5 times over than deal with this again), and is only resolved with time. Just my luck. Not pregnant anymore, and had a girl, and breaking out in this horror less than a week before returning to work. I emailed my doc and she didn’t think it was PUPPS but suggested cortisone and making sure to wipe it off before feeding, along with a low dose of Benadryl.

I’ve always been a little hesitant when it comes to using medications, probably owing partly to the fact I’ve never been seriously ill, but I’ve gotten so much worse after having a kid. It’s worrisome to put random shit on my skin when I know she’s going to eat right off of it. I caved one night and used cortisone, making sure to wipe it off thoroughly in the morning before Little V ate, but I wasn’t too keen on it, so I started googling “home remedies” and “natural” ways of dealing with horrible rashes.

This led me to sending poor husband on a hunt for Witch Hazel (easy to find) and pine tar soap, which I had never heard of, and which was not readily available at Wal-Mart or any nearby pharmacy. After making some calls and consulting the internet, we discovered GNC carries it (how fortunate that we live close to a GNC store!) I scrubbed with pine tar soap, which smells like campfire, and then slathered myself with tons of coconut oil and globs of aloe, which I had previously purchased for making homemade charcoal masks.

The combination of these substances helped somewhat, and I’m crossing my fingers it clears up sufficiently before I go back to work. Please oh please…

#TBT When I Got My $200 Wedding Dress From China

It’s wedding season and I love weddings, though I continue to be shocked at the rising cost of weddings. According to theKnot.com, the national average is $35,259 as of 2016. I always look back at our wedding fondly and am particularly pleased with the $200 custom tailored dress I ordered from Dressilyme.com. Say all you want about cheap Chinese crap, but this was the best decision ever, and I got a brand new, custom made, high-quality, wedding dress for less than $200:

I started off dress shopping with a really low budget, as I really was not keen on spending even close to $1,000 (approximately the average, according to Cosmo, or more like $1,500 according to the Knot). I looked for deals at David’s Bridal, but wasn’t wowed by anything. I browsed and tried on a couple of used dresses from Craigslist searches. However, even some of the used dresses were absurdly expensive in my opinion, in the $400-$600 range. Look, I get that you paid $2,000 for it, only wore it once, and think that $600 for your dream dress is a steal, but in the end, it’s still $600 for a used dress.

Rather displeased with my options, I took to the internet and took the plunge, despite some mixed reviews for Dressilyme.com. Most people had good experiences, though there were definitely several horror stories.

The process was easy: I browsed the stock photos on their website, picked a dress I liked, measured myself, sent them the measurements, and received exactly what I ordered by mail probably 6 weeks later. They basically replicated a designer dress to the T and charged a fraction of the price. The dress was folded into an absurdly small package and shipped to me in a nondescript box, but the wrinkles were easily taken care of with a steamer.

I did end up paying around $150 for alterations, but this was not due to any incompetence or lack of skill on their part; I decided I wanted the dress to be tighter, and additionally, had ordered the dress in too long a length because I did not know what height my heels would be. They did not skimp on material or attention to detail, and all five layers of the dress had to be hemmed, which obviously increased the cost of tailoring. Part of the tailoring cost also included having it bustled, which would be an additional cost whether I ordered my dress from China or not.

I did not have a boutique shopping experience, or get a champagne toast when I found “the one,” but for me, it brought me much more glee to employ the services of the internet to find the dress I wanted and have it travel to me from thousands of miles away without even coming close to breaking the bank. No one would know my dress was shipped from a factory in China, except that I enjoyed gloating about it.