What “Being Fat” Has Taught Me

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Hello All!

I just celebrated a birthday (I’m keeping the number a secret – for now!) and I’ve been reflecting on the changes I’ve gone through in the last few years.

After a car accident two years ago, I injured my back and my ability to exercise got compromised. My weight went up, my size grew from a size 12 to a 14/16, and I realized that I had become fat.

At first, my size depressed me. I felt unsexy and undesirable. Not being able to go into just any store and find my size added to my funk.

I’m a strong believer that “everything happens for a reason,” and I’ve learned lessons and developed a stronger sense of compassion throughout this chapter in my life.

1. Size Doesn’t Equate Sexiness.

After I discovered blogging and found sites such as The Curvy Fashionista, Daily Venus Diva, and Tess Munster, there are a LOT of sexy, confident, and inspirational curvy women out there. They own their size and make it work. I’ve learned that it’s not my shell that’s sexy; it’s the way I own it! I wasted time during my smaller days obsessing over “needing to lose 10 lbs” versus living in the moment. I won’t obsess any more.

2. Fashion is Still Fun!

True, there are some retailers I can’t shop from now. However, I’ve discovered Forever 21 Plus, Deb, Asos Plus, Elloquii, H&M, and Zara. Thankfully, more retailers are getting on board and adding additional sizes with fashion-forward styles. I’m so glad I can still enjoy clothes!

Werk!

Werk!

3. Don’t Hide.

Fat people (especially women) have been conditioned to be ashamed of their bodies. We don’t want to draw attention, we hide in bulky clothes, and walk around as if apologetic for our size. I’ve learned that life does not stop because I’ve gained weight. I still have a voice and talent to contribute. If someone seems uncomfortable because I’m fat, that’s their issue. I can’t control that. However, I can control how I deal with my weight day to day.

4. Everyone Has Body Issues!

Recently, the Hubby and I went to a cookout that his work was hosting. The event took place by a beach, so naturally a number of people were swimming and sunning. What struck me was the number of body self loathing comments from these fit military people! These weren’t the “competitive” type of body comparison comments (I’m so fat – no, you’re not, I’m fat!), but a sincere wistfulness to look better. I realized we all have our body issues. Isn’t it a shame we can’t “just be”?

So, the takeaway for me is –

Sure, I would like to lose weight. My energy would be better, it’s easier on my back (which is doing much better!), and it’s good for my overall health. I believe that I will end up losing weight as I continue to get stronger. But, I’m not going to stop fully living my life or being happy because I’m fat.

And if I do go down in size, I’m not going to cringe at my pictures or “fat shame” myself. I am still ME!

I hope we all can embrace who we are for what we are!

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WHAT I’M WEARING:

Maxi Dress – FOREVER 21 PLUS

Necklace – H & M

Sandals – FOREVER 21

Bra – VICTORIA’S SECRET

Earrings – thrift shop find!

Love, laughter, and shoes –

xx Melanie!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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What is “Plus Size,” Anyway?

“She’s too small to be plus sized.”

I’ve read that response quite often whenever a designer or a magazine features a plus size model. Granted, some of these models are 5’10 and wear a size 12, which in the “real world,” would be considered “straight size.”

However, I just stumbled across a tweet from The Curvy Fashionista (@MarieDenee), where she posts a link from retailer Addition Elle, which asks,

“What is Plus Size?”

Addition Elle’s philosophy on the issue hits the nail on the head for me:

“Plus size” includes a range of shapes and sizes. Some women are short, some are tall, some have wide hips, some have straight hips, some have larger busts, some have smaller busts…but regardless of their features, they have one thing in common.

What is it? Well, that clothing in “traditional” sizes does not fit them, for whatever reason.”

Case in point: I have the WORST time buying shorts. They are usually too tight in the hip, or too loose in the waist. For some reason, I’m in a “no woman’s land” as a size 14.  I don’t want booty shorts or Daisy Dukes. I guess designers must think I want elasticized, pull on polyester shorts (BLEAH!). Apparently, a mid thigh, stylish denim pair in my size is just not possible.

Then I wonder:

But what about a woman who is a size medium on top (say, an 8 or 10), and is pear shaped (a size 12 or 14) on the bottom? Or someone who is a 12 on the bottom, and wears a 38 DD on top? According to the size charts, she’d be “plus size.”

It’s all a bit nuts. 

Men’s fashion is not complex. Pants are the waist size, shirts are the chest/neck measurement. If a guy is larger, he goes to the Big and Tall department.

Why can’t women’s fashion convert to such a system?

By the way, after a lot of searching, I DID finally find a pair of denim shorts! I found these from DEB.

Stylish, comfy, and fit great!

DEB Shops, you get the gold star.

FINALLY, shorts that FIT. Thanks, Deb Shops!

FINALLY, shorts that FIT. Thanks, Deb Shops!

I may be "plus size," but I have a great ass.

I may be “plus size,” but I have a great ass.

Got this tank from Deb, too. I'm showing my arms off, would you believe?

Got this tank from Deb, too. I’m showing my arms off, would you believe?

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Handmade glass ring from Venice!

Handmade glass ring from Venice!

Love me some gladiator sandals!

Love me some gladiator sandals!

I’d love to read your thoughts on what “plus size” is, or anything on your mind!

Love, laughter, and shoes!

xx