Size Matters

It isn’t what you’re thinking. Admit it. It did cross your mind, didn’t it?  Size has always been a part of my life.  Three years ago, I was almost 300 pounds.  At 5’0”, I was the definition of morbidly obese.  I remember seeing those words for the first time when I was 38 years old.  I knew I was fat but those two words hit me hard.  It would be another twenty years before I would reach my top weight and change my life.

I grew up thinking fat was “who” I was.  My grandmother told me I was fat all the time.  My pediatrician mentioned it at every visit.  Kids teased me at church and school as well as in public.   Gluttony and sloth are two of the seven deadly sins.  I already knew God didn’t like me much and having two of seven of the biggest sins didn’t help me feel more loved by my creator.

My therapist once asked me to do a collage of my biggest fears.  In the center, I placed a picture of a woman who was obviously over 400 pounds.  Close to that was a picture of an old woman in a wheel chair and another of a woman in a hospital bed.  My mother died because of her obesity and other lifestyle choices.  I knew that was to be my fate.  When my yearly physical showed pre diabetes, high blood pressure, and a fatty liver, I knew it was my death sentence.  Every diet plan created had failed for me.

My caring friends and family assured me that my size didn’t matter to them.  They loved me just as I was.  I know they were being kind and I believe they did love and care about me.  However, tough love and honesty are often the most loving thing you can do for someone.  My size was killing me physically and emotionally.  I couldn’t look in a mirror without seeing a disgusting fat body.  I felt trapped inside a mountain of fat.  I was sure I was going to die of a heart attack at any time.

I decided I had to change.   I found an online support system and told everyone in my life what I needed. I started to lose weight and my body started changing. It has been a very slow process. After a year, my doctor took me off some of the medication.  My blood sugars and cholesterol are perfect without it.  I now take Karate and can keep up with those much younger than I am.  I am eating a healthier diet although ice cream outings with friends are allowed occasionally.

I went shopping for clothes recently after my friend threaten to burn my fat clothes.  For the first time in 35 years, I am a size 16.  I look in the mirror and I don’t know this person.  I want to get to know her better. I am not the same person I was at 300 pounds.  For me, size does matter.

read to be read at yeahwrite.me

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70 responses

  1. I am so happy that you made such a great life change. My husband and I are eating better too, healthy organic stuff I used to turn my nose up at. My husband is classified as obese and so it was important that we both changed our eating habits and that I offer as much support as I could. He has lost 30 lbs in six months and I am very proud of him.

    Thanks for sharing! 🙂

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    1. That is great. It is really helpful to have support at home and from friends.

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  2. Thank you for sharing your story. So often people worry about hurting someone’s feelings, when all that is wanted is honesty. It is possible to love someone to death when that love keeps you from telling the truth they need to hear.

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      1. Your welcome! 🙂

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  3. That was a pretty sweet and inspiring story…thanks for sharing. 🙂

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  4. You go, girl! Good job!

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  5. Your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, and now your ability to glorify God has increased mightily.

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  6. As a nurse, I’m happy to hear that you are managing your blood sugar and cholesterol with medication – that’s important! Good for you for loving yourself. Ice cream will always be allowed….in moderation.

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    1. Thanks..I WAS managing them with meds but don’t need them anylonger. All are in normal range without meds since weight loss. 🙂 My daughter is nurse and is happy as well.

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  7. What an inspiring story, Cathy! Thank you for sharing it. Such a true testament to the ability to DO IT despite the (perceived) odds. Well done!

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    1. Thanks. I am not ready for the marathon yet but you never know. 🙂

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  8. Good work — losing weight is not easy and it takes a real commitment to self to do it. I hope that you continue to Karate chop your way to all of your goals!

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  9. Size may not matter but health does. Good for you for caring enough about yourself to take care of yourself.

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  10. Congratulations on your weight loss! I absolutely loved reading your story and admire your bravery for sharing it.

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    1. Thanks Kendra

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  11. Congratulations Cathy! I did not recognize the woman in the red dress. I am so glad to hear you are being a healthier you. Thanks for sharing your journey with us 🙂 May you find everything good in life!!

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    1. Thanks so much

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  12. Oh my goodness, what a journey. I am so glad you are here to tell your story. And I love that you included you do karate. I love the thought of you doing some karate chops! It’s more than just losing weight, right, but it’s also about the weight. I love how you made this personal story something I really cared about. YOu go girl!

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    1. Thanks OutlawMama I love Karate because it gives me a sense of accomplishment and lets me know I can do anything!

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  13. There is NOTHING that can stop the Cathy I know when she sets her mind to something! 🙂 So proud of you!

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  14. Thanks Jan. Once I learned to ask for help and not tackle the world alone, it got easier. 🙂

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  15. What an accomplishment!

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  16. Awesome!

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  17. Good for you! Weight loss is hard and I admire your gumption.

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  18. i completely and totally know what you’re saying and can relate. thanks for sharing your story and being an inspiration!

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  19. Good for you, Cathy. I admire your determination. Losing weight is so ridiculously difficult, but so worth that effort. Diet is everything, quality of life follows. I’m very happy for you, truly inspiring.

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  20. Thank you for sharing your inspiring story, FANTASTIC job! I hope you’re now enjoying a much happier & healthier you! 🙂

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    1. I know I am healthier and know that I still have a long way to go. Thanks so much

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  21. My sister (aka evil sib) used to cram a bottle in my niece’s mouth every time she cried. My niece was addicted to food before she was eight months old. Probably before she was four months old. We have this picture of her side by side with my newborn daughter. My four month old niece dwarfs the new baby, and not in a good way, in that picture.

    She was 150 pounds at 8 years old.

    And she turned it around. With help and loving support from my Mom, she turned it around. Let me be clear. This is a beautiful little girl. She was beautiful at 150 pounds. She is beautiful at 100 pounds. I sent her a butterfly kit for her 9th birthday to symbolize my amazement. She will be beautiful when she weighs 75 pounds within the year. Her beauty has not changed as her health has improved. But her courage? Yeah, that’s grown in to replace the weight.

    I. Am. So. Proud. Of. Her.

    As you should be proud of yourself.

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    1. I love that statement. Courage has grown in to replace the weight. So glad she has had the support and love no matter her weight! She is an amazing young woman…!

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  22. As someone who never really was “overweight” or wouldn’t have been had I not thought I wanted to be a jockey or a ballerina, the whole weight thing was the elephant in the room. While I know that in the eyes of everyone else, I was slim or even emaciated, I never saw that in a mirror. It took as much energy and effort to stop thinking like that as it takes to lose the excess and start knowing the new shape. Kudos to you for that, and for realizing that sometimes, the best thing to respond with is honesty.

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  23. Are you acquainted with Karen Anderson’s blog? If not, you should definitely check her out http://www.kclanderson.com/

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    1. Thanks so much. I will check it out.

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  24. Kuddos to you for sharing this story. You’re life change is an inspiration.

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  25. Congratulations Cathy on a wonderful outcome to all your hard work and perseverence. Well done!

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    1. Thank you Elizabeth

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  26. Weight loss is such an intense journey, because food is so much part of our lives and eating itself is such a social thing. Great story, well told. Erin

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  27. Your thoughts are always so inspiring! 🙂 Food is such a part of every day and weight and body image has such a strong hold on our world! Amazing story!

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    1. Thank you so much

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  28. Cathy! This is a wonderful post. Congratulations on your success, Beautiful!
    My sister has struggled with her weight all her life. She has tried every diet out there. Nothing has worked. She is now over 300 lbs at 5’4. I was bulimic for many years…an over eater who got rid of the food instead of gaining a ton of weight. It’s such a struggle. I still don’t totally have a healthy relationship with food, but I’m working on it and probably will be for the rest of my life. I agree with you, “Size does matter.”

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    1. Thanks Joy. I always get so much from your comments..and your blogs!

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      1. Thank you! The feeling is mutual. I am trying to get better at commenting! 😉

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  29. You go Girl! That is hard, relentless work. You CAN do anything!

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  30. Congratulations and great job!

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  31. Wow! Congratulations and thank you for the inspiration! Who we are on the outside and the inside doesn’t always match up. We have to get comfortable in our skin, especially when our skin changes, and this takes time. Be gentle!

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  32. Amazing! That is wonderful. Great story!

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    1. Thanks Michelle

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  33. That is so wonderful. Truly a gift to yourself. Cheers to good health — and new clothes!

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  34. Your story is so powerful, Cathy; your courage and strength admirable. As someone who suffered from eating disorders from a ridiculously young age, I agree that size is deeply connected to our identities. Our personal struggles may have been different, but there is much common ground. When I was recovering from anorexia, before lapsing into bulimia, people often expressed disappointment that I was gaining, reaching a sustainable weight. Only when I realized that my body did not belong to other people, that I was still myself regardless of size, was I able to recover.

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    1. Thanks Lisa. I have struggled with claiming ownership of my body. Thanks for reminding me about that.

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  35. I know this has been a life struggle. Proud of you girl.

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  36. You really are amazing, and I sincerely hope that you know that.
    I am so happy for you.
    Oh, and thanks for sharing this wonderfully written post! 🙂

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  37. I am very happy for you and inspired by your story. It is such a fine line, knowing how to talk about a loved one’s weight (or whether to talk about it at all). If you see they are hurting, you want to help them, but I’m not sure if that is even possible. I continue to struggle with my weight and the only thing that has every worked for me is what I do for myself. No one else has ever made a positive impact by telling me what I needed to do. In fact, it almost always made me feel worse (and eat more). I’m glad you have found the right solution for you!

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    1. You are right. When I started this journey I asked people in my life to NOT give me advice. I wanted their support and understanding. Telling me that fruit and veggies are a better choice than twinkies isn’t helpful. I was fat not stupid. And it did make me feel worse because I saw myself as they I thought they saw me, a failure.
      Thank you for sharing.

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  38. Good for you! You should be very proud of yourself!

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  39. Yes, I thought about it for a minute. Anyway, BZ – that’s navy speak for Well Done!.

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    1. I had to ask what BZ stood for. LOL Thanks

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  40. You are amazing! Thank you so much for sharing your story. I have several people in my life who I wish would take your lead.

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  41. Wow! So inspirational! Thank you for sharing!

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  42. Sometimes tough love is the best kind of love you can give a person. It sounds like you turned something that was a negative in your life, into something emensly positive.

    Proud of you!

    Michael A. Walker
    Defying Procrastination

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  43. Your story is motivating me to bite the bullet. I lost over 100lbs before my 30th birthday. Then my two pregnancies did a number on me and now I’ve got to lose quite a bit again–almost 50lbs. It’s hard to get myself psyched up to do it again–it’s hard work. But this post is truly inspirational.

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    1. It is a lifelong issue for most. But you know the work required and you know you can do. Just don’t be too hard on yourself…and ask for support. Thanks for commenting.

      Like

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