Being married is a very important part of my bucket list and it will be fulfilled on July 6th.
So far, I have said “Yes” to my dress, it is gorgeous but I will keep the details a surprise until I make my debut. I tried on a total of six dresses in the Physical Therapy room of the hospital because it was big enough for my large array of people who wanted to accompany me to pick out my dress. With me I had: my mom, a family friend Cheryl, the two workers from David’s Bridal, my future mother-in-law Irina, and none other than Olympic Gold Swimmer Summer Sanders. A few of my nurses wandered in when they had time, such as Robyn and Katya, and even my Dr. Sonali watched me find my dream dress. The room was full of excitement beaming from everyone. It is not every day that one tries on wedding dresses in a pediatric hospital. When I tried on my last dress (which I chose for last because I thought it would be my favorite) I just knew it was “the one”. Once you find that dress, you do not want to try on any other dresses because you already know that you have found the dress you have been waiting for. I was even able to try on the six dresses with no oxygen, which really tired me out, but I felt accomplished to become detached from tubes for a while.
For my wedding we also have the cake under way, which I designed to be beachy- that is all the details that I will give out. The flowers have also been picked out, but I have not seen them as I have not left the hospital since I arrived a week ago. I did give my mom an idea of what I want for the flowers, but It will be a surprise for even me. We have decided on the catering, which will be some really tasty Mexican food. We have also made some centerpieces which look fantastic to me, a lot of the decorations are going to be home made because in my opinion they end up looking better than store bought decorations, and are more unique as well as less expensive. Yay for a little hard work!
A few hours after I had chosen my dream dress, David’s Bridal staff came back with a seamstress (someone who does alterations) to make my dress fit me like I had imagined it to. Considering that I am much bigger on the top than on the bottom, it is because I have gigantic swimmer shoulders and a teeny tiny, almost non-existent womanly waist. They also made it so that the top was more of a sweetheart neckline and that I had more of what I called a “booty pop”. I also got to try some headbands because I am not going to be wearing a veil, that is just not my style. I will be trying on some more at my second fitting tomorrow. Everything is moving so fast, I am impressed. It shows that all these people truly care about me and want to get my dream wedding done with such a short time limit of three weeks.
My friend Meagan came and visited me again, just as she had the night before and we really got to bond some more, and we decided that on Friday and Saturday we (along with Susette) will figure out what songs are going to be played on my wedding night, other than the piano that my talented cousin Kristen will be performing for my ceremony.
I also found out that my swim team is having a little get together honoring me on June 28th, which is the day after I get out of the hospital. I am staying in the hospital until Thursday the 27th, and the bonfire get together was scheduled around when I could get out of the hospital, so I am very thankful for all of the people who are supporting me and loving me, and also comforting me through this adventure.
Remember, just because I am dying, doesn’t mean that I cannot live my life out to the fullest every day. I think of all the good things in life, I think of how much I love my parents, my teammates, my friends, my animals (mostly Panda), my grandparents, my other family, my teammates, my nurses and my doctors. I also think about how all of the people who I suggested above truly care about me and love me. It always fills my heart with joy when people say that they want to visit me in the hospital, especially since I am not offering out invitations to come out or asking anyone to come, it is more of just an open invitation that anyone at any time can come visit me from anywhere. I have gotten some beautiful flowers from my friend and ex-classmate Kristin Dong gave me the most beautiful flowers that I have ever seen from Vera Wang. (I did not even know that Vera Wang made flowers! Classy!) I also have various other flowers given from friends of family and the baby sitting coop from back in the day. I have been given a blanket from my future mother-in-law as well, and it is extremely soft. I received a cat hanging on a balloon stating “It’s a Boy!” because in the hospital they did not sell any balloons stating “Congrats on Getting Engaged!” which I thought it was so funny. The cat stuffed animal was chosen because it looks like my baby Panda, and I miss him so much. This was from the Melgoza family. I also have another stuffed animal from someone who’s name escapes me, but it is a cute chocolate lab.
Even though I am dying, I am not sitting in a cave being depressed. I am doing as many things as I can do from the hospital and being peppy and trying to talk to everyone and strike up nice conversations, because you never know if you might brighten up someone’s day. I live every day like it is my last, because last is right around the corner for me, but I stay positive, always. =]