While buying smaller clothes and feeling energized and strong are wonderful, there are some parts of weight loss that NEVER get talked about, and I can’t find highlighted on very many blog spots. To someone that has only needed to lose 10 or 20 pounds at a time, this won’t apply. I’m talking about major weight loss and what you’re left with….extra skin and becoming just as self-conscious over the loose skin as you were when you were 100 lbs heavier.
People that don’t understand will chalk this up as vanity and minuscule, because like I said, they don’t get it. Yes, it’s super exciting to not shop in the plus size section anymore, but when you’re still having to wear larger clothes than you actually are in order to accommodate your extra skin, or that really aggravating extra skin on your tummy gets stuck in your zipper and ends up ripping your skin…..it ain’t fun. It ain’t cute, and in turn, it messes with your mind and allows Satan to attack you physically just like he did when you were fat!!!! Grrrrrr!!!!!!
I’m here. I’m at this point. I feel like screaming. As of July 4, I have lost 93 pounds and over 100 inches since July 28, 2017. Don’t get me wrong, I’m beyond proud of what I’ve accomplished, and I feel amazing. I exercise everyday, and even find myself wanting to push harder and further with the exercise. I get compliments often from people who haven’t seen me in a while, and that is wonderful. No matter how much I focus on the positive and quote truth to myself of who I am in Christ, when I look in the mirror, or try on clothes I feel ashamed and self-conscious. Ashamed that I ever let my health get so far out of control, and self-conscious because even though the size 12 dress fits, I still have to buy a 14 to accommodate the extra skin and it’s too big everywhere else. Lately, I’ve even found myself avoiding waving at people, because a few weeks ago I waved at a friend and my 5 year old told me, “Mom, when you wave, your bat wings swing back and forth.” Now as innocent as his statement was, it hurt my feelings, and ever since then I’m extremely self-conscious about it. If you don’t know what he’s referring to as “bat wings,” they are all the extra skin on my upper arms. My biceps are toned and I can feel my triceps now, but where all the fat was in my arms is now just loose skin that apparently is still waving even after I’ve stopped.👋🏻
These are my “bat wings” for all to see, and for those of you that get it, I’m thankful that I am not alone. We talk so much about being the best version of ourselves. That’s all well and good to talk about it, but in reality, I know myself, and I know I will never feel like the best version of myself until all this loose skin and the self-consciousness is gone. Being the best version of yourself references not only your physical health but also your mental and spiritual health. It’s hard. It’s a different kind of hard than being 150 lbs overweight, but hard nonetheless.
This extra skin in my lower belly is what gets caught in zippers and rips and just sits there like a kangaroo pouch when I try on cute clothes. My brother is getting married in October, and I started trying on dresses last week and was excited to put something on that showed off the work I’ve done, but in actuality, I tried on 5 dresses and cried in the dressing room because now I have 2 options…wear Spanx and be uncomfortable in order to smooth my kangaroo pouch out OR wear a dang mumu to cover it all up. I will tell you now, I refuse to wear a mumu! I’ve spent the better part of my adult life in mumus because that’s all they make for fat girls!
Some may be reading this and thinking, “this is just vanity. This girl is just vain.” You’re the people that just don’t get it. Maybe you think I’m having a pity party. Again, you don’t get it. Until you’ve lived it, you don’t get it! The hard part is this isn’t something I can fix quickly, inexpensively, or anytime soon for that matter. I still have about 60 lbs left to lose (at least), and I can’t even see a plastic surgeon until I’m within about 10-15 pounds of my healthy weight. So, until then, it’s just this constant battle in my mind as well as the emotional battle that then ensues. It’s exhausting!
To those in my same boat, congratulations on your weight loss and taking the action required to become healthy. We will get through this, and I’m sorry no one sees the need to address this portion of weight loss. I get it! It’s hard. It’s embarrassing. Its uncomfortable. Here’s what I’ve been telling myself and maybe it will help you as well. I have to admit, it’s a bit of tough love, because that’s the way I operate. When the self-conscious thoughts and emotions overcome me, I tell myself, “Jessica, pick your hard. Pick your embarrassment. Pick your uncomfortable.” I would rather roll up my bat wings in order to wear a structured shirt than only have the option of mumus. I would rather be embarrassed by my bat wings flappin in the breeze than be embarrassed because my rear end doesn’t fit in a chair. I would rather deal with how uncomfortable it is to get my kangaroo pouch unstuck from my pants zipper than the uncomfort I felt when I was out of breath and having chest pains just from going grocery shopping this time last year. No one ever told us this journey was going to be easy. If it was, everyone would do it. It will be worth it someday. When we truly do feel like we’ve become the best version of ourselves, it will be soooooo worth it, and then I will write a blog about that. Until then, let’s just put on the dang Spanx and wear the dress we deserve to wear!