I have spent the majority of my adult life being ashamed of myself and my body. What happened to the Division I basketball prospect? I had went from injury to college to unexpected pregnancy and full blown PCOS. The society standards were loud and clear for me. If you’re heavy, you should be hiding your body and be ashamed of it. There seemed to be a growing list of what not to do or wear for people like me. I talked myself into this mindset that fat girls should not wear lingerie.
In elementary school, I was not a skinny kid and I wasn’t huge either. I probably would have been considered a little chubby at best. As I entered junior high I became heavily involved with basketball. It became an obsession. I went from being this twelve year old girl who couldn’t dribble or shoot to save her life to a starter on the Junior Varsity squad at thirteen. Progressing into high school I ended up playing on a travel team in addition to my school team. Between my practices and home workouts, I generally worked out about 4-5 hours a day. Still with these workouts, I was a size 10/12 pants and weighed 170 lbs.
By the time I was a few games into my senior year, I injuries caught up with me and ruined my scholarship prospects. It was pretty devastating and I put on about 20 pounds by the time I graduated in June. I was depressed and my parents did not hold back when it came to commenting on my weight. It wasn’t enough that I had lost a dream but ended up being inundated with comments at home that I was fat now too. After graduating I had a fall out with my parents and ended up going to live with my high school boyfriend’s family.
Through my associate’s degree, I worked 60+ hours a week and went to school full time. College food and PCOS did not agree with my body. I started to hide my body. My wardrobe consisted of baggy mom jeans and loose/stretchy tops. In the classroom and around my friends, I was officially the fat girl of the group. This was unfamiliar territory for me. I buried myself in baggy clothes and my schoolwork. If I was fat, I needed to be smart.
I graduated with honors and went on to a four year school for my bachelor’s degree. A couple months into my second degree I found out that I was pregnant. My body shame spiraled. Not only was I 20 and pregnant, I was going to get fatter than I already was. I was so ashamed of myself. To this day, I don’t even have a true maternity photo of myself because I hid from pictures as much as possible.
Shortly after the birth of my daughter, her father left me. I remember thinking that my life was completely ruined. What guy my age would want a fat, single mother? I continued wearing flowy tops and dressing in mom jeans. My days still included a lot of time in my maternity pants because at least they were comfortable.
Looking in a mirror the last decade has been an ongoing battle. Part of what started my journey to being body positive was my career developing. I remember making the transition from a front desk agent to a sales admin at a big hotel. I’d watch all the sales managers walk in and out daily, dressed to the nines and ready to sell. That is what I wanted and needed to become.
I remember going to JC Penney’s to look for some cute clothes. Most of the dress up clothes in my size looked like they were meant for someone 40 years older than me. I finally found a few pieces and headed to a dressing room. As I undressed, I looked in the mirror. There was my big, fat body covered in stretch marks and a saggy pouch courtesy of my sweet little girl. My c-section scar makes my stomach look like buttcheeks. I sat on the floor cried for a good fifteen minutes before putting my clothes back on. The shame was so great that I couldn’t even attempt to try anything on.
Thankfully stores like Old Navy started making more youthful options for plus size girls. I started to feel more confident. As my confidence grew, so did my job opportunities. By the time I was 25, I was offered a Director of Sales position. This was a goal I had set for myself to reach by 30. I started experimenting with my fashionable options from Torrid and Forever 21 Plus. This new job empowered me to try new things and travel more.
I booked a group vacation with friends and my brother. There was only one problem with this upcoming cruise, I needed a new swimsuit. I had flashbacks to that JC Penney dressing room and started to sweat. The days went by and I was scrolling the internet for a solution. That is when I came across Swimsuits for all and my addiction to the high waisted bikini began. I remember trying on my first one when it arrived and I became obsessed. They are all I order now. I felt sexy and confident.
High waisted anything has been my comfort zone for years now. I have enjoyed helping other women feel empowered in their bodies by trying different fashion trends and bikinis. While the body positivity movement is growing, you still cant scroll through Instagram or Facebook without seeing nasty comments about a plus size model in ads. Instead of feeling bad about these kind of comments, I look at them and thank God that I don’t have those kind of jerks in my real life.
At the tail end of 30, I have decided to try another fashion piece out of my comfort zone. When it comes to lingerie, I’ve only ever dabbled in a baby doll. It accentuated my breasts and covered my stomach. While looking for a couple swimsuits for my cruise next month, I came across this red holiday set from Adore Me. I thought the bra would go great with some high waisted shape wear that I had. I have always bought cute bras and tossed to panties because they just showcased my flabby, saggy tummy. When it arrived, I tried on the bottoms for giggles and was surprised. Half of me felt sexy, the other half was pointing out every flaw from the stretch marks, to the scar and other imperfections. Obviously you can tell which half won this battle.
There is always going to be someone who won’t agree with you, who thinks you’re ugly/fat/too skinny or dumb. You can only control yourself and who you allow around you. I spent too many years trying fad diets and being ashamed of my body. This body enjoys Zumba and Netflix, salads and cupcakes. My skin enjoys rays of sunshine and the touch of an intimate partner. So if you think fat girls should not wear lingerie? I beg to differ!
Interested in this Lingerie Set? https://www.adoreme.com/plus/gynger-dark-red-plus
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