Wednesday, September 19, 2012

And, oh yeah, I'm hot now

Back in June (or was it late May?), I wrote a post about how I could cross my legs. I was thrilled and excited and thought I looked so cute in my plaid madras Old Navy dress.

I'd like to take a moment to talk to that Jessica: Oh honey, it's about to get so much better.

I am done almost 50 pounds from April (48 to be exact; wanted to hit 50 this week, but then PMS happened, and all of the things that go along with it), and I am feeling like I can rule world.

I mean, more than usual.

And I'm feeling poorer, too, as I keep having to shop for clothes that fit me.

(I believe they call that a first world problem.)

I feel a little bad writing all of this, vain even, because it's consider impolite to talk about yourself so much. This has been an on-going adventure since early April, but this past weekend, the compliments started coming in. We had a big festival in our town, and like any good parent, I had to shell out the cash for the carnival rides and accompany my kids to carnie convention. We saw just about everyone from our town, and by the time I left, my head had swelled up to the size of the ferris wheel. "You look great!" and "How much have you lost?!" ringing in my ears. It was so nice of the town to throw my coming out party, but next year, can we have a few less carbs at the reception?

And people were saying things to Disgruntled Husband, too, which he happily reported back to me. (The one time I heard someone say something to him about how I looked, it was a well-respected older lady in town. DH responded, "You should see her without any clothes on," and then I wanted to DIE!)  And husbands were telling their wives, who were reporting back to me.

Please, no autographs.

Like I said, I feel bad and vain and slightly uncomfortable with the attention. But I get over it pretty quickly. I am now under the weight I was at when I weighed in at my first OB appointment almost 11 years ago. And for me, that puts it all in perspective: the last time I was at this weight was before I had kids, and I've had kids FOREVER (or so it seems). I've been through hell (and Lane Bryant) and back, so pardon me if I do a little verbal jig about it.

This is me (with short hair) in January of 2011. Sadly, I gained another 10 pounds on top of this.

I was always on the heavier side of life, but just barely. It wasn't until I got married that things got from almost-plus-size to not-far-away-from-having-to-special-order. I am going out on a limb here by admitting this: when I started in April, I was in a size 24. A tight 24. Like, I probably should have gone up the 26. Lane Bryant (who, in all honesty, has been good to me all these years) was starting to not be an option anymore. And what made it worse was that I thought I looked good. It was when I'd get pictures back of myself that I would stop and gasp. That wasn't what I looked like in the mirror! I swear, it was like I had reverse anorexia...I thought I was thin.

Now, I am solidly in a size 18 pants, L or XL top. Like, it starts with a 1. I can shop in Old Navy again, and for more than just the XXL stretch tops I seemed to sausage my way into.  The other day, I stopped in a Talbots. And, I'm right in-between their plus-size and normal size selections. Pardon my French, but Holy Fucking Shit!

A few years ago, I ran into an old friend at Target the day after Christmas. He didn't recognize me, until I started to talk. That gave me pause, as I had hung out with this kid nearly every day of the summer for all the years of college. And he, who hadn't changed one bit, didn't recognize me. I thought it was my was short back then. A year later, I met up with him for dinner and I brought up our chance meeting, with my hair grown back out. "Do I look like me again?" I asked, confident he'd say yes. He chose his words carefully. "You look...more....yourself." And that's when I realized, it wasn't the hair (though it didn't help), it was the weight.

This is me. Today. God, I hope you can all see a difference.

Last summer, DH took us all on a hike at a county park nearby. It's not a long hike--maybe a mile--but it's steep. I huffed and puffed my way through that hike, stopping to rest several times and being the caboose of the family. It was awful. Labor Day this year, we went on the same hike, where I was the first one to the top and made it there easily. DH came up to me and whispered, "I'm so proud of you." He told me later that essentially, I had lost the weight equivalent of Hoover.

I still have a ways to go, and I hesitated even posting this for fear of jinxing myself. But I know I'll get there. And as good as places like Lane Bryant, Torrid, and the plus-size section of Lands End have been to me, I won't miss them at all. My money (and store credit cards) will go to places like Banana Republic, Ann Taylor, and White House Black Market (or, let's be honest, any place that I want.)

To my friends who haven't seen me in a while, the title of this post is for you. Because that's how I'm going to start every conversation from now on.


  1. So proud of you! It's not an easy journey in either direction, and you totally rock it.

    I went from a BK-14 to an AK-24. Still 24. I hate pictures of me, though I always have. I'm currently giving weight watchers one more chance (I've not been able to lose more than 10-15 pounds in the last 9 years) before I consider something a little more drastic. Although, dieting seems to make my already less than stellar boobs totally disappear...

  2. So great that you stuck with it all these months. It was my goal to drop 30 lbs this year and I've yet to make it happen. And I know what you're talking about when you say 'reverse anorexia'. I walk around thinking I look just great. Then I see a pic of myself, or I'll look in the mirror and the briefest flash of just how big I am will come and then disappear. Crazy stuff.

  3. Whoo hoo! You are one HOT snarky mama! :). Proud of you! (will you pass some motivation on to me please?)


  4. It's definitely not impolite to talk about YOUR health on YOUR blog. Especially since you are going to inspire and encourage other people by sharing this. -- This is so great!! How did you do it?

    It's also great that you got rid of the mom-hair on the "before" picture and let your red hair out in all its look fantastic.

  5. I love it!! I am sooo proud of you!!
    You are doing great, baby. Keep it up!! :o)

  6. Congratulations! You look great and I hope you are able to get to your goal, you've worked so hard for it!

  7. You seriously are gorgeous, and so inspiring. I am at a point where I need to make some changes, too, so I can look more like myself again! CONGRATS!!

  8. Thank you so much for this post it gives me the hope and courage I need to not only grow out my hair and lose weight but to embrace "pretty" again. I have been hiding since our last big move. I think I am finally ready, with this post as a touch stone I can refer to at will, to be me.