And I can’t help loving myself…

Let’s start the year with my annual reminder, shall we? As we head into peak ‘new year, new you’ territory let me assure you that weight loss is not self care or improvement. Decreasing your size will not decrease your problems. Changing your diet will not change your life. You do not have to atone for any Xmas indulgence. Punishing yourself with a diet that won’t work anyway will achieve nothing. Even if you don’t believe that diet culture is harmful to you, believe me when I say it is damaging to the fat people in your life. Every time you talk in disgusted tones about how fat you are you tell us what you really think of our bodies. Trust me, we’re sick of hearing it. This is my body and it is good enough exactly as it is. I am fat and attractive and happy. Whether you agree with me or not doesn’t matter. I’m so much more than flesh & skin anyway. It’s sad & frustrating that people still need to be reminded of this.

Snapshots of a fat body

Love your curves & all your edges…

January has been a bit of a fail on the outfit post front. I wasn’t out all that much & I had no photographer when I was. I aim to do better this month. Starting right now.

I wore this outfit to lunch with my bestie a couple of weeks ago, but didn’t get any good pics. I really did like it & recycled the look for a film with my Sis. 


This swing skirt is too big now as the combination of going vegan & taking metaformin has caused me to inadvertently lose some weight. It still looks cute if I pin it a little & I think I’ll try getting it taken in. Anyway, the print is fresh & with a simple vest it shows of my ins & outs nicely. 


Skirt – Lindy Bop

Cardi – Primark

Brooch – Posie Grenadine (Etsy)

I stuck my favourite brooch on for a touch of sass & was good to go. We had a quick, but yummers lunch at Tortilla. Great option for vegans, big thumbs up. 

We saw Split, which could have been a fairly entertaining thriller had it not gone down the tired ‘crazy’ route. The vicious killer has dissociative identity disorder & of course has alters who want to abuse people. This is basically the only way DID is represented by popular culture & is so stigmatising. It’s a shitty trope that needs to stop. In short, I’d suggest giving it a miss. 


Amusing outtake. 

I would be good…..

So, here it is, the obligatory New Year’s resolution post. I doubt it will surprise anyone to learn that I will not be worrying about any of the dieting bullshit. In fact I shall be trying my best to eschew all negative, body policing type thoughts. My focus shall be on enjoying life & challenging myself in positive ways.

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Living with chronic illness can make seizing the moment difficult. Sometimes I really am too sick to do anything, no matter how amazing the opportunity. This year I have decided I will try to be a bit more strategic about my day to day life. I’m hopeful that simple changes such as keeping track of how much sleep I’m getting, taking gentle excercise when I feel up to it & keeping up with my food diary will ease managing my illnesses. I have also resolved to make bigger changes for instance trying a gluten & dairy free diet & pushing my consultants to make a care plan of sorts instead of just constantly adjusting/altering meds. Of course none of these things will cure me, but perhaps a change in diet, being conscious of getting enough rest & so on will improve my symptoms somewhat. At the very least I will feel more in control & I am big on control!

That time of year can be a nightmare for fat folk. Everywhere you look there are diets & fitness regimes. Friends, magazines & celebs alike insisting we must lose any xmas weight gain, pushing us to aspire to a ‘new you’ for a new year. Well, I am hoping for a slightly new me, but it has nothing to do with my weight. I am striving to block it all out completely. I no longer want to think of myself in terms of fat/thin. If you’ve been reading this blog for any length of time, you will know I have already come a long way on the body acceptance trail, now I want to consolidate that. I don’t want to waste energy worrying about weight loss (through ill health) or any future weight gain. My plan is to divest my identity of it’s link to my size. I will be me wether I am a size 22 or 12. My writing, opinions, talents & interests will remain unchanged. This is the message I hope to drive home.

On the challenging front I want to push myself in healthy ways. Instead of berating myself or being
weighed down by guilt, I plan to make it ok for me to be unable to achieve certain things. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not giving myself permission to stagnate. In fact, the opposite, by stretching myself to try things I worry will be too much, I will perhaps surprise myself. However, if I prove unable, I refuse to beat myself up. With a bit of luck this approach may help me extend my freelance work & possibly even branch off in new directions.

Finally, I aim to have as much fun as possible. I will see friends & family as often as I can. Try new activities, even if they scare me or I am rubbish at them! I don’t want to deny myself anything that will make me happy. Be that expensive shoes, a man, a big cake or a day in bed.

2015 is my year to get living.

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I’m all about that bass…

As I have previously mentioned I haven’t been feeling tip top of late. My creativity has been somewhat lacking for which i apologise. When you feel & look deplorable dressing up & trying to take exciting blog shots isn’t high on your list of favoured activities. However, I do really enjoy blogging and I believe it has boosted me towards my body acceptance goals, so I am determined to try harder. Even if I have to start to showcasing my pajama choices, I will be showing my looks.
One of the side effects of my ill health has been weight loss. In the past I would probably have been ecastic with this development. I have certainly done some crazy things in my previous attempts to lose weight, but alas, I am not rejoicing. I have been on the larger side for most of my adult life. I have lost significant amounts of weight on a number of occasions, but never managed to maintain a more svelte physic. I battled long and hard with my body image, in the last year or so, I had begun to feel that I was on the road to winning my own personal body war. I realised I could be fantastic and fat. The only person who was ever really holding me back was me.

This ephinay was the spark that brought this blog to life. I forced myself to be photographed, to display those images and more importantly, to be proud of them. It would not be overstating to say that I it has been a life changing discovery. I’ve grown from a person who cringed at her naked body in the mirror to one who is considering modelling naked for a feminist art project. I have embraced me; flab, scars, stretch marks, droopy boobs & all.

So, here I am, finally reaching contentment with my plus size body when it decides (without consulting me) that it will shrink. I have never lost weight before without being on a deliberate & strict diet. In my dieting days watching those pounds fall away was a joyful experience. Now it is deeply unsettling. I fear the lack of control & am obviously not enjoying the condition that is facilitating the reduction. To be honest, I am at a loss. I have no idea when this loss will stop or how i will look when it does. The truth is i am a little frightened of losing my fat identity. Shock, horror, I don’t think I want to be thin.

I realise I have failed in this post to come to any conclusion, which very much reflects how I feel at the moment. I just wanted to talk a little about what was going on with me. I suppose i also felt i needed the asert the fact that i am not consciously changing myself. It is import to me that woman can believe in body positivity. Everyone can discover how wonderful their body is. I am not turning my back on my fat self, my confidence & pride in my large, curvy form are real. Perhaps this is just an unexpected turn in the journey to self love.

Big is beautiful….

The Cosmopolitan website featured an interview with two fat women that caught my eye. Cosmo is not usually a publication I favour, but this interview was a rare beauty. An honest & mostly positive account of life as a plus sized woman. The article was a big hit with the plus size blogging community & a number of bloggers have answered the questions in their own words. I have decided to join the pack because the world needs more body positive voices.

How do you feel when other women around you complain about feeling/being fat?
This is a hard question for me because I have such mixed feelings. Of course it can make me feel bad when women who are much smaller than me complain about being fat, but I don’t think I have the right to police their thoughts & feelings. I am learning to love my body and I would like others to feel the same. However it’s not my place to tell others how they should feel about their bodies. I will always be supportive & body positive, but I’m not going to censure people for having insecurities.
How has your body image changed since high school/college?
I was slim when I was younger. I started to gain some weight at university, but I was far from plus sized. Despite that I always felt fat. I believed I was the biggest in my group of friends, wouldn’t wear certain types of clothes and generally didn’t feel very attractive. When I look back at pictures I realise this was nonsense. When I did actually become fat there wasn’t a huge shift in how I felt about myself as I already thought very negatively about my body.

Have you ever tried dieting? What happened?
Yush! I have dieted on & off for years. I am very successful at losing weight, but have never been able to maintain the loss. This is mostly because dieting always becomes very extreme for me. I start off trying to stick to a healthy eating plan, but it descends into a crazy regime. I usually end up restricting myself to about 500 cals a day, which anyone will tell you is not sustainable. I have also occasionally resorted to making myself sick. I’ll be honest, I feel fantastic when I lose huge amounts of weight. It just isn’t worth what I do to myself to achieve it.
Do you think in your case your weight is partly or entirely genetic?
I don’t think I have the kind of body that is ever going to be skinny, but no, my weight is not genetic.
Do you consider yourself healthy? Have there been instances where people assumed you were unhealthy?
I’m not healthy, but that has nothing to do with my weight. I am plagued by a number of chronic conditions, which greatly impact my life. On the other hand my cholesterol level is very good; my blood pressure is low and so on. Losing weight would not improve any of illnesses I suffer from.
Are your parents both supportive of the weight you are at? Have they always been?
Neither of my parents is ever cruel or forceful about their desire for me to lose weight, but I am aware that they would prefer me to be smaller. They have both been very happy when I have lost weight in the past.

How do you think retailers can improve clothes for plus-sized people?
Basically, I want the same clothes as smaller women. Just make all your clothes in bigger sizes & let me decide how I want to dress instead of making assumptions about what fat women want to wear. The only retailer I am aware of who do this are ASOS. I highly recommend their curve range. Oh & stop charging me so much.
Do you think plus-size women are judged differently than plus-sized men?
Yes. There are so many visible fat man on tv, films etc. Large men are portrayed as successful and attractive. You often see very fat men with gorgeous partners and fulfilling lives. On the other hand fat women in the media are usually the joke. They’re the stupid big women who thinks someone might be attracted to her (haha, gross) or the miserable failure. Male actors are allowed to be fat in a way that women are not. There is one version of female beauty in mainstream media and it is not fat.
Do you think there is an assumption made/stereotype that exists about plus-size people? How would you respond to it?
Lazy, unattractive, unsuccessful & unpopular. I respond to that by living my life complete with friends, accomplishments & hot men.
Do you think there is ever a right way or time to express concern about someone’s weight?
Do you suspect that someone has an eating disorder? If not, no.
What are the worst things people have said to you about your body?
I think I have been lucky in that I don’t often get negative comments about my weight. I’ve had men I’ve turned down resort to fat slurs. Similarly I have had a few people throw some names at me during arguments/disagreements. That doesn’t happen often & I tend not to keep folks like that in my life.

What have people said (or do you wish they’d say) that would complement your body or appearance?
I want to hear the same things as anyone else. I don’t need specific compliments because I’m fat.
Do you find yourself hanging out with women who are closer to your size?
Nope. I have friends of all shapes and sizes. Physical attributes have no impact on whom I form friendships with.
How has weight affected your sex life, if at all?
It hasn’t. To be honest I think I have a more active & exciting sex life than most of social circle.
When you’ve been single, has your weight affected your dating life?
Only in that I haven’t always felt attractive. I get the same amount of romantic attention fat as I did thin. It hasn’t stopped me dating anyone I wanted to date. Nor has anyone I’ve been in a relationship with ever had a problem with my size. I am sure there are people who look at me & think yuck, fat. Since I have no desire to date anyone harbouring those feelings it has no impact on my life.
Do you feel weird if the guy you’re with only dates larger women?
I would if he was only with me because I was fat, but that goes for any other single attribute. I want a person to want all of me. Having said that I have no problem with someone being attracted to larger women. If I did I would be saying there is something wrong with being fat. Why shouldn’t folk prefer fat women? As long as that’s not the only attraction, it’s fine with me.

Do you feel weird if he’s only dated slimmer women before?
No. I’m not really interested in who he’s dated before. He’s with me now; he clearly likes & fancies me. Who cares about the past?

You can find the original interview here
http://www.cosmopolitan.com/sex-love/fat-women-real-talk