~*~ Mail Bag ~*~

I know, I know, I haven’t posted in ages! My bad. Mea culpa, mea culpa. I’ve been going through a tough time lately, just having a hard time sticking to being healthy. Sure I’m trying, but only half-assed, you know what I mean. So I’ve been having myself a little pity party lately, falling into that stupid cycle again of feeling bad, eating more, feeling worse, eating more, feeling even worse..... and so forth. But something made me realize what I had fallen back into. I opened up my email this morning and got a really delightful message. Shelley wrote me a great honest story about an experience she had while clothes shopping. Just reading her story today was enough to snap me out it. Anyway, I thought I’d share her story and my response with you all. As I explained to Shelley, I really don’t think you all realize the impact you have on me too!


I know you haven’t updated the blog since January so I don't even know if you will even read this, but I feel like I want to email you and tell you my story and profess my love for your blog.

I stumbled upon your blog about 4 or 5 months ago at like 11 at night and I ended up reading the whole thing, in its entirety, start to finish and was up for a long time reading every post while my boyfriend lay in bed. I was smiling, agreeing, laughing, and crying. I couldn't stop! I haven’t read anything like your blog, ever. I have browsed many a book by overweight women and find myself not able to really relate to them because for some reason or another I don’t feel like its very real, but your blog is the most real thing I can imagine. Thank you so much for writing from a legit perspective.

I am 23 years old, 5'4 and about 250 pounds. I have almost always been kind of heavy, and it is no doubt in my mind that I suffer from some sort of Compulsive Overeating disorder. I love to eat! I ritualize it and honor food. Either way, I am a lucky girl because I have a great boyfriend who isn’t one of those creepy BBW admirers and is really supportive and understanding and truly likes a bigger lady. ANYHOW, that wasn’t the point of my letter; I wanted to share with you my eye opening moment when I realized that I could do something with what I have always thought of as my fat, shapeless body.

I have always been super self conscious about my clothes. I can never find anything that fits so I resort to black band t-shirts and jeans and flip flops pretty much all the time. I know, that I look terrible, but I feel like its okay to do in t-shirts and that wearing black will somehow slim me down. So, one day I stumbled upon Torrid in the mall, I am sure you know what Torrid is, and if not, boy are you in for a pleasant surprise. Well, it’s a modern plus size clothing store that isn’t too tacky but can be a little lame at times. So, I went inside and was blown away by the amount of cute clothing in bigger sizes so I started picking up things to try on. I was in my usual attire and the girls at the desk were those super proud fat girls with a lot of sass who are exponentially cooler than I am. I went into the dressing room and came out in a little outfit I picked out that look okay. The girl was waiting outside the dressing room for me and as I looked in the mirror I sighed and said "nothing fits!" The girl just gave me a blank stare and said "I think it looks pretty good" to which I gave the standard response "it makes me look fat". The girls at the counter kind of looked back as they heard my declaration and the girl standing there said "well, you ARE fat." I was so confused. Did she really just say that? Is she fucking crazy? She's much bigger than me, why is she insulting me? "What???" I said. "You ARE fat. I know, it’s hard to hear, but someone had to tell me too." At this point I had no idea what to do, I was frozen with humiliation. "You're a big girl, and that’s okay, don’t be scared of it, that won’t do you any good. You have to embrace it and learn to dress accordingly. Those jeans you were wearing when you came in, what size are they?" she asked. I told her they were an 18 and she shook her head. "You are trying on size 18 jeans but they don’t fit you. You aren't a size 18, you are a 20, is it that hard to admit that? Holding on to that size 18 in your head doesn’t make you any skinnier, neither does that disgusting t-shirt that is way too small. No one can see the labels on your clothes, so even though in your head you are wearing an XL shirt and 18 jeans and you feel a few pounds lighter, to them you are just a fat girl in clothes that don’t fit. Try on a bigger shirt and a pair of 20s" Reluctantly and still a little shell shocked I let her show me to the bigger jeans and some daring tops that I would have never picked out for myself. To my surprise, when I put on the jeans they fit like a glove, perfect around my waist, I didn't have to suck my stomach in all the way to get them on and they didn’t tuck my fat in and cut off my circulation, I was impressed and the shirt showed a lot of cleavage but surprisingly, took the attention off my stomach and damn, I must say, I looked good. I came out and the girls at the desk clapped. They threw me in a pair of kitten heels to elongate my body and a new bra and sent me packing. I felt rejuvenated, just as I did after reading your blog.

Thanks for everything you said on there. It helped me find comfort in myself.

Shelley M.

Hi Shelley,

Yes it has been so long since I've posted on my blog. I guess you can say I've been in a bit of a slump. I lost 70 pounds over the course of about a year and a half and now I'm stuck in some holding pattern, my weight not budging. And this has gotten me down.

Thank you for emailing me. Your honest story about the clothes was great. And I know about Torrid - LOVE it! The whole thing about realizing - yes, I am fat - can be painful. But I find now when I look in the mirror after picking out some outfit that might not be the most flattering, and I say to myself, "OMG, I look fat!" Then I pause, look again, and say, "well, you are fat, get over it." It definitely takes a healthy dose of acceptance of our current fat bodies, before we can muster up the gusto to try to lose weight. It's kind of an oxymoron. You have to hate your fat enough to do something about it, but at the same time you have to love yourself enough to want to do it. It's tricky and complicated.

I just wanted to thank you again for your email. I've been stuck in this rut, and I must say your email made me smile and shook me out of my funk a bit. I am fat, so what? I don't like being fat, so I'll do something about. I just have to keep chanting this mantra. I think I've been stuck feeling sorry for my fat body lately, letting myself slip back into that "I'm fat, woe is me, now give me something to eat" mentality. Thanks for giving me a little jolt!

I think what people don't realize is that it's comments and emails like yours that totally help motivate me. I get a lot of thank yous from people saying how much I've helped them stay motivated, but really it works both ways! Thanks for sharing your story! We all need to find a way to feel comfortable in our own skins. Only then can we truly be ourselves!

Thanks again!

AKA karaokekitty @ 101 Reasons I Hate Being Fat

Read the last Mail Bag post


Herbalife Las Vegas said...

Its been a while, glad to see you back blogging.

Emmett said...

I miss your blog. Glad to see you back.

elife said...

Good to have you back. And I loved Shelley's email!

Autumnseer said...

Well said. There is a lot to be said for self acceptance on this journey. Good to see you back!

Deven said...

Great to hear from you. And shelley's email was great!

Melissa said...

I tried leaving a comment earlier, but I don't think it went thru. I really liked your post, and wanted to say that we all deal body issues. I love the idea of supporting one another. I personally love author Linda Bacon of "Health at Every Size," for helping me to finally appreciate my body, understand why I weigh what I do, and start enjoying food again.

Joshua Meyer said...

Cheers to a good blog. I will add this to my daily read.

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superbecca said...

welcome back! I'm with Shelley, for a long time I've been a size 24 and I know that I can put myself in clothes that make me feel dumpy or in clothes that make me feel good.

Tonya said...

Thanks for sharing that letter! I have been in the same slump lately. I'm morbidly obese and short, I have a husband who loves me and is very supportive, but sometimes i want to smack him when he says im not fat! coming to the understanding that i'm fat has taken me 30 years! thanks for the pep!

Robyn - Chique*Plus said...

Shelley hit it right on the head - it is so important to wear clothes that FIT and don't look sloppy!

It's a classic (and easy) mistake to make when most stores are selling cheap, tent-like clothes for plus sizes.

It was such a problem that I opened my own online store - and we try to carry clothes that are well made and cut exclusively for plus sizes.

Even if you don't need anything right now, take a peek and see the variety we have available!

Casual, work, or dressy, there is no need to wear things that don't fit any more! There are designers that understand plus sizes and cut the patterns accordingly.

Try Missphit for tops, Svoboda for jeans, and Kiyonna for dresses. C.enne.V has a super wrap top, and It Figures for swimwear is awesome!

It's a wake-up call for us plus girls when we realize two things: 1. that we truly wear plus sizes, and 2. that we can be both fat and FIT. But that's another post, right?

Tanya said...

What is this store and why don't we have one here?

I'm with you. I lost 28 lbs... and then put 6 back on. I think/hope I've found some motivation... very recently so I'm only back down 2 of what I gained.

Jules said...

THANK you for posting this. I also read your entire blog in one sitting a couple of weeks ago, and it really resonated with me and gave me strength.

Jennifer said...

I think that some people just need a little motivation to help them stick to their weight loss journey. We all know it's not easy.
You should check out the WeightMirror application for the iPhone. It is really easy to use. Just take a picture of yourself and the application will instantly show what you can look like up to 50 Lbs lighter.
It is fantastic and I recommend it to everyone!

brookesballbuster said...

This is what I love about the blogging community, all the support! Just keep blogging and we will all be here for you!

Unknown said...

Hi there,
I just started my own weight loss blog and was looking for others for inspiration - and here I am!
Glad to see you're back posting - you've done so great!!! Please keep it up - I'm looking forward to following your progress.

DearSuzieGirl said...

Man, I am so there.
I just finally after YEARS of being a chunk, decided to really conquer my fat. I am gonna win this time. I KNOW IT. I can feel it.

Blogs lik eyour inspire me. I am documenting my own journey on my blog.

I am so glad that I am not alone :)

Lyn said...

I loved that story! Thanks for sharing it. Glad to see you back :)

Emily said...

Oh I thought this blog was finito! I found it after your last post and just LOVED your reasons, all of them. I relate a lot to them and it's good to have the pure unadulterated truth out there. Anyhoo, this is a great motivating post so thank you to you and Shelley and please keep coming back and posting :)

Michelle Cox said...

I'm giving away a 3-month membership to Weight Watchers meetings or online: http://www.fromthemom.com/?p=574

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bbubblyb said...

I loved Shelly's email (brought tears to my eyes) and your reply. I remember finding your blog about 9 months ago and doing just what Shelley did staying up all night to read it all. I haven't come by in ages and isn't it weird that I would come by today when I see you have a new post after this one. The connection here is amazing. Hope to see more posts from you now. You're an amazing writer not to mention you have so much to say.

diet pills said...

Well come back. I missed you and your posts so much. Hope you will continue posting. waiting for next update.

BCP said...

I don't think that I could have said it any better myself. Thank you for your efforts. Your posts help me.

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jyotipriya said...

I loved that story! Thanks for sharing it :) all the best :)

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