Tag Archive | artist

Back Attack

I want to share something with the Hive.  It’s something that affects me almost daily at this point, it’s something that I’m scared will flare up around my wedding this coming March, something that could affect my ability to move and walk.

It’s my about my back.  I have chronic back problems.  And in March of 2011, I had back surgery.  Yes, at age 27 I was in surgery for my back.  To put this in perspective, Grandma Sword said a few of her friends had gone through similar surgeries, so yea, not something too common in my peer group.  I was rushed into surgery a mere 18 hours after meeting with my surgeon and hearing that I had a fully herniated disc.  Originally, I tried physical therapy when the pain first started but after an MRI it was clear that I needed surgery.  I ended up having a relatively new procedure called endoscopic microdiscectomy surgery and my recovery was fast.

A few months later the medical bills started rolling in, and to this day I’m unsure what was worse, the most intense physical pain I’ve ever felt in my life or the staggering amount of emotional distress I endured while dealing with my insurance company and the hospitals.

Mom Sword took care of me for a full week post-surgery. We co-existed in my studio condo better than we ever thought possible and it’s created amazing memories for us. My Mom is the best!!

If my surgery story were a fairy tale it would go something like this: Once upon a time a relatively active artist who experienced minor back pain on occasion lived a very happy albeit dramatic life.  One day she was in rehearsal for a show and something just didn’t feel right.  A few days later the artist couldn’t get out of bed.  That night her Scottish Knight in shining armor drove her to the emergency room.  After four hours she finally received pain meds only to vomit them up, and eventually begged to be admitted.  Twelve grueling hours AFTER THAT she received some magical medicine in her back that got rid of the pain but caused her to lose all feeling in her left leg.

The artist stayed home from work to rest, got an MRI, and met with a back wizard a few days later who told her that if she didn’t get the disc debris off of her nerve, she would eventually lose all ability to control her leg AND possibly go on to lose control of her vaginal and rectal muscles.  Once those were gone, the wizard told her, there would be no way to get them back.  The artist was rushed into surgery with the Scottish Knight by her side the whole time.  Her back wizard was a special wizard and had learned a very fancy technique in Germany where he used something the size of a pen to go in through her side as opposed to the more invasive route of going through her back tissue.  Because of his special powers, the artist was able to recover in a few weeks as opposed to a few months.

My fake “back brace” baby bump.

While her back felt better for the time being, the artist had to spend a lot of time in therapy to re-gain the use of her left leg.  She was one of the lucky ones because she got almost all the feeling back in her left leg except for two toes that are still partly numb.  The wizard told her to never run again and to focus on core strengthening and Pilates.  The artist didn’t care all that much for running or working out in the first place, so she was OK with this.  And for a year she felt pretty good… that is until she started working out again more frequently right around the time that she got engaged.

Honestly, I have no idea how this fairy tale will end.  Right now, I occasionally feel this really sharp pain in my back.  The nerve isn’t being damaged anymore, but two of my discs rubbing together and sometimes it’s so bad I can’t get out of bed.  I might have an artificial disc put in at some point, or I might have to get my two discs fused together, and more than likely, I will have more herniated discs in the future.  I know many people suffer from bulging or herniated discs or other back pain, and more often than not they just want to help, but it’s so annoying to hear that my back would be fine IF ONLY I lowered my stress level and used more ice packs.  My surgeon says it’s mostly a case of genetics, so it’s very likely that I’ll have a relationship with him for the rest of my life.

How does all this pertain to my wedding?  Well remember my post on irrational fears?  My very REAL fear is that I’ll have some back pain around the week of my wedding.  I just had a really bad week with my back, almost passing out from the pain as I walked to the bathroom in the middle of the night to go pee.  I have no idea what happened but sometimes things shift around in there and it causes such pain that I cannot move, let alone walk.  Working out for me is mostly non-existent because even Pilates sometimes causes discomfort the next day.  The issue is how do I strengthen my core when movement is what causes the problems?!?!  Right now I’m focusing on using my resistance bands to tone my arms (you know how I feel about my arms), walking a lot, and eating healthier.  While there’s not much calorie-burning going on, it’s a start.

And I don’t just have fears about the wedding.  I have fears about carrying a child someday, convinced I’ll be on bed rest the entire time because my back won’t be able to take the extra weight.  I’m scared that this back issue will be an ever-present drain on my relationship with Mr. Sword (even though he’s been amazing), as well as a drain on our funds.

I know this sounds a bit like a “poor Miss Sword sob story,” so I want to recognize that I realize lots of people suffer from chronic issues.  I have friends who struggle every minute of every day dealing with Crohn’s disease, and I have a really good friend who has the heart of a 50-year-old (which causes her a lot of problems obviously), and she’s the same age as me.  How is that fair?  It’s not, but that’s life, and while it may be tough, I have no plans to mope about or slow down!  IT’S THE YEAR OF MY WEDDING!  🙂

And I promise my next post will be 100% more uplifting!  It includes a little girl and trying on dresses.  Not much cuter than that!

Does anyone else have a physical aliment that gets in the way of life at times?  Are you worried about it affecting your wedding too?

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The hair and makeup vendor that called

I have good news!  The hair and makeup artist I contacted after being disappointed by inflexible vendors was a success! After decided that I was getting bad vibes from all the email connections I had made, I did a Google search (I heart Google) for other hair and makeup artists in Minnesota.  A few new names came up and this one woman had me smitten by her fantastic website.  When I found her “About Me” section, I was even more impressed by her openness and passion for her art.  Naturally, I started to look at pricing, and it was so easy to find, upfront, and reasonable that I clicked on the “contact” page to send her my information.

I received a very prompt reply with 24 hours and it was just what I was looking for!  She said she would be FLEXIBLE with my timeline, she said she didn’t have any steadfast rules about when the hair and makeup trial had to take place, she said she could travel to my wedding location, and finally, she said she’d call me soon to touch base.

Now I figured this was just a pleasantry because who has the time for all that?  So I emailed her back, explaining my wedding theme A Highland Fairy Tale, which tends to lead into me talking about how Mr. Sword is Scottish and I’m a Princess, and suddenly I’m certain I sound like a ditzy fool, and convince myself that this artist is going to think I’m too annoying or too silly to work with, but I hit “send” anyway.  Cut to the following day and I get a call from a MN number.  I instantly think of my potential vendor who had said she’d call and so I answer it.  WHOO-HOO, it’s her!

She was nice and bubbly, and literally on her way to a be a MOH in a wedding later that weekend!

She said that sometimes emails seem so formal and she wanted to touch base over the phone because it’s more personal. She said a hair and makeup trial around Christmas should be fine and that she would also try and fit me in for a quick style on the day of my shower in October!  (I had suggested we meet in October so that we could talk in person, discuss my options for hair extensions– which I’m very nervous about, and so that I could book her officially.)

Everyone’s advice was spot on!  Thank you Hive!  You really can wait for an awesome vendor that will work WITH you.  I will keep everyone posted on how things go in October, and once I’ve signed her as a vendor for the Big Day, I’ll pass on her information for all you Minnesota brides to enjoy as well!

SOOO, I guess this story is To Be Continued…

Did you wait to find a particular vendor that would be flexible with you?  Did you have any of your vendors make a point to call you?

I feel like I’m being punished for having an early 2013 wedding

I have to gripe about something real quick.  It’s just a stupid little email from a potential hair and makeup artist, but it seriously annoyed the crap out of me and I find myself thinking about it more than I should be.  This one vendor says she can’t do my hair and makeup trial before the start of the new year.  She specifically said she cannot be flexible in booking my consultation.  Really?  Granted, she is being nice enough to offer to book me before the 1st of the year (even though it’s a huge exception), but she it appears that she is flat-out refusing to do my hair and makeup trial before the  normal 5-6 weeks before the wedding.  I mean, what if I was a January bride like Lyre or Gloves?  Would she make an exception then or are winter brides forced to have their trial mere days before their wedding?

This vendor’s email was just so annoying!  She said things like, “I understand you’re out-of-state,” but clearly she doesn’t understand.  Christmas is going to be my time in Minnesota to get shit done, and flying back and forth in Jan. and Feb. is something I’m trying to limit because of weather and other wedding related tasks that will have to wait until then.  I’ve talked about it before but being in a LDR with my wedding means I my schedule might be a bit different from other brides.  For example, I have a bridal shower coming up in MN in October, yes that’s a tad on the early side, but it’s the best month for my North Dakota family to get to Minnesota to help host it.  Then I have my Hen Do (bachelorette party) in November, pretty early again, but that’s when Mr. Sword’s AMAZING friends are flying him back to Glasgow for his Stag Do and I wanted to do mine the same weekend so I could host all of my out-of-town girls at our apt.  My Chicago shower will be in February to round out the festivities.

Plus, I’m nervous about using extensions for the first time, and I’d really like to have time (like more than a few weeks) to change my plans if I don’t like the way they turn out, but if I’m only in town for that trial and then the wedding, how would I have a second go at it?

I understand I’m booking things a bit ahead of the curve, but it helps me to stay calm (and Lord knows my friends and family prefer me to stay calm!!), and the comical thing is I am still in the researching part of the process, but this artist doesn’t seem to have any desire to try to convince me that she’ll be a great vendor, so I’m going to keep moving.  Unfortunately, the other company I was seriously considering has similar timelines and strict rules about when the trial should take place as well, and since my event is so far in the future they wouldn’t even quote me a price!  Although maybe that’s normal in the hair/makeup biz.

After hearing Mrs.Coyote’s hair and makeup nightmare, I’m even more certain that I want to go with someone I like and trust.  I’ve sent out another inquiry so I will keep you all posted on how that goes.  Clearly I’m in the thick of wedding planning because my panties got in a twist over one small email, but as someone who’s had years of bad skin, my wedding day makeup is very important to me.

I always pay for professional makeup when possible, like when I get my theatre headshots taken:

Sorry for the rant hive but thanks for listening, I feel so much better!  Anyone else struggling with booking things in the early part of the year?

My Bee Dream has come true!

Hi Hive!!  I am so ecstatic and grateful, (and to be honest), a little shocked to bee here right now!  When I first read my acceptance email I most definitely tripped over my own feet as I bounded into the bathroom to shout to Mr. Sword that my dream had COME TRUE!  As a self-proclaimed princess and an artist I’m always daydreaming about something, and becoming a Weddingbee blogger has been a dream of mine ever since I got engaged.

And now here I am, Miss Sword!  Mr. Sword and I are SO excited to share our wedding journey with the rest of the Hive!  But first, who are The Swords?

 This is what we’d like to think we look like all the time:
Super chic, chill, and Hollywood.
But this is who we really are:
Big dorks who love to laugh and most definitely live up to the “opposites attract” theory!
As an actor I tend to be a bit on the emotional side and I have a flair for the dramatic.  (Seriously though I’m that adult who openly sobs at Disney movies in public, yep awkward.)  I enjoy being the center of attention, but am ridiculously dedicated to all of my wonderful family and friends.

personal photo

Mr. Sword on the other hand is a shy guy who loves a good lie in (that’s Scottish for sleeping in) and a good whiskey!  Oh, did I mention he’s Scottish?  As in, Mr. Sword is from a small town outside of Glasgow, Scotland and is living here on a work visa.  He’s got it all too, the accent, the pale skin, AND the ability to stay skinny while eating nothing but meat and potatoes and zero veggies!

personal photo

But why the Sword icon?
Well, I have to say I was bummed when the fairy tale generation icons kept dwindling away, for a while I had my eyes set on Coach, but once the lovely Miss Coach  joined the Hive, it was clear that wasn’t meant to be! Mr. Sword assured me there would be another moniker just right for me in the event that I was accepted.  Soon, as far as I could tell, Sword was the only icon left, but I just wasn’t into it.  I thought it was much too masculine for this girly-girl, but Mr. Sword changed my mind in a hot second.  He said, But it’s the “claymore!”  What is a claymore, you ask?  Great question.

image via Wikipedia

A claymore is a double-edged or two-handed Scottish broadsword.  The claymore was used frequently throughout Medieval times but it’s become a running joke in my family that we NEED to have a claymore at our wedding.  Or all the boys seem to think so anyway!  So here I am, instead of the Princess and the Pea, I’m the *Princess and the Sword.
*Years ago I took a stage combat course while getting my degree so being that I’ve “handled” a sword myself, maybe this icon is more fitting than I originally thought!
I’m super pumped to begin this journey with you all! Thanks for having me Hive!
yours,
(for the very first time)
Miss Sword