187.5. And that wasn’t even close to being my top weight. My trip to Florida had trimmed it some. I don’t know how much because, before that, I avoided the scales. I hadn’t been to the doctor for a LONG time. Part of my reluctance was because I would have to weigh. In public. Well, not really in public but Someone Else would see the truth about my body. Should I hazard a guess at my max? Well, let’s see. If I was at 187.5 after several days of what was, for me, intense activity and not a lot of access to food—I would guess around 195. The way it would naturally fluctuate, I wouldn’t be surprised if it hadn’t hit 200 once or twice.
I’d barely gotten home and unpacked when I had to pack it all up again. DD and merm were publicly saying their vows. The plan was to have an informal wedding in Central Park and I was to be there. I would be the only member of DD’s family to make it. There was no way I would miss it.
DD kept me up on all the plans. Reserving a specific park area had to be done in advance and they thought their first choice was in the bag. Someone with priority came along and they were bumped. They started looking around again and settled on another site. This time, it was truly reserved.
When my plane landed and I’d collected my luggage, DD and merm were there to meet me in a rental car. I wasn’t the only guest coming in by plane so, since neither one owned a car, the next best thing was to rent one to pick arrivals up one by one or two by two—whatever the case might be.
Almost everyone had come a few days before the wedding. There were people everywhere. I was the only one occupying the guest bedroom at the apartment and that made me feel quite special. Others were sleeping on futons wherever they could find space. Some friends of DD and merm were out of town and had given a key to them so DD’s future in-laws could stay in their apartment. The logistics of finding places for everyone were staggering and I was glad I wasn’t the one handling it.
DD had told me to bring warm weather clothes so I hadn’t packed a jacket. It turned out to be cool-to-cold and rainy. I borrowed merm’s jacket for the sightseeing a group of us were going to do but it wouldn’t be appropriate for the wedding. After all, I was the mother of the bride. The fact that merm’s jacket fit me was a humbling experience in itself. I had to roll up the sleeves but I pretty much filled it out, otherwise.
There was a fairly large group for the tour and it was something else keeping everyone together. Since I was the senior member, the others kept an eye on me. It would be bad for something to happen to the bride’s mother. No way could we all go in taxis so I got my introduction to the subway. I’d heard all sorts of terrible stories about the horrors of the subway system. I was prepared to hate it. I didn’t. True, there were times when we were packed in like sardines but it was still bearable.
Both DD and merm had things to do to make the preparations for the wedding—the little nit-picky last minute details. They had agreed to meet us at Ground Zero. The others plus merm would go their way while DD and I went shopping for a suitable jacket for me to wear to the wedding.
We went to Macy’s. I’d never been in such a huge store. Riding the escalator reminded me that DD used to hate them. When she was younger, we would hunt an elevator to keep from having to go on the frightening moving stairs. Now, she was a poised adult and had no problem. We rode them up and up until the rubber and metal ones turned into the original wooden ones. Searching through all the departments, I found nothing to cover my queen-sized body.
There were several other stores we tried with no success. I was ready to call it a day and go back to the apartment when she suggested one other place. Daffy’s. It sounded like a store that sold ducks or something. I had to have something to wear so I agreed to look.
Browsing through the racks of clothes, I came upon a likely candidate. Then I noticed that one of the sleeves was almost ripped out of the armhole. Well, that was that. We’d struck out again.
DD didn’t want to give up just yet. That was when the pain started. It began in my chest and shoulders then radiated up my neck and into my jaws. I was breathing as deeply as I could and praying that I wouldn’t have to spend my daughter’s wedding day in the hospital.
The pain was getting worse…