Owning the Numbers

Inspired by posts at Big Fat Blog, The Rotund, and Shapely Prose I’ve decided to do something I thought I’d never do. First, let me preface my disclosure with a bit of history.


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Across from the North Unit, originally uploaded by allaboutgeorge.


About three years ago, I got down to the lowest weight I’d ever seen in my adult life. Thanks to a points-counting-program and lots (and LOTS) of exercise, I got down to 198 pounds — a number I hadn’t seen since grade 9. I was proud of the body I had then. I felt fit and strong. My doctor felt otherwise. He thought that even though my body fat percentage was a respectable 27.5%, that I was still too heavy and wanted me to lose another 25 pounds.

I tried. Lord, how I tried. How I denied myself the simple pleasures of sugar, of going out with friends for drinks or dinner, of doing anything that didn’t involve protein, steamed vegetables, whole grains, and drinking nearly three liters of water per day.

The scale never budged.
I started working and my workouts fell off. I’m one of those (un)lucky souls who had to work out five or six days a week to maintain that weight loss, and as soon as I cut back to three days, the weight started to creep back on even though my eating hadn’t changed. Depression set in and my doctor put me on anti-depressants. Long story short, in the space of two and a half years, thanks to medication, reduced activity, and an injury, I gained over 50 pounds.
I’m not proud of it. But I’m done being ashamed about it.
The photo above was taken in August, 2007. Looking at this photo I can still see the person I was 50 pounds ago, but in all honesty, I don’t really mind the person I see in this photo and the person I see when I look in the mirror. Sure, I wish my knee would get better so I could start trail running and riding my bike again, but I’m not a bad person. I’m not in need of an intervention. I don’t deserve pity, or scorn, or your hatred.
I’m human. And in this photo, I weighed 254 pounds.
This is what 254 pounds looks like. This is what a fat person looks like. This is what society says a morbidly obese person one step away from her deathbed looks like.
All I see is me.

  • http://celeduc.blogspot.com/ celeduc.idproxy.net

    Cecily, I have known you for seventeen years and can honestly say that you’ve never looked better in all the time I’ve known you. I’m glad you’ve decided not to beat yourself up over having gained back some weight. You look great!

  • http://celeduc.blogspot.com/ celeduc.idproxy.net

    Cecily, I have known you for seventeen years and can honestly say that you’ve never looked better in all the time I’ve known you. I’m glad you’ve decided not to beat yourself up over having gained back some weight. You look great!

  • http://thebrotherlove.com/ j. brotherlove

    [c’est top]
    I’ve known you at varying weights over the years and am happy to say you are always the Cecily I consider a friend. You proved with incredible hard work you could change your body and change your life (not just on the scale). I consider you a success!
    Even when you were at your smallest I applauded you for your accomplishment; not the weight loss itself. Your insight, wit and courage are ingrained in your DNA. They always inspire me. Go on with your bad self!

  • http://thebrotherlove.com/ j. brotherlove

    [c’est top]
    I’ve known you at varying weights over the years and am happy to say you are always the Cecily I consider a friend. You proved with incredible hard work you could change your body and change your life (not just on the scale). I consider you a success!
    Even when you were at your smallest I applauded you for your accomplishment; not the weight loss itself. Your insight, wit and courage are ingrained in your DNA. They always inspire me. Go on with your bad self!

  • http://www.michellejones.net/onapath Michelle

    You are awesome. This is awesome. Thanks for sharing.

  • http://www.michellejones.net/onapath Michelle

    You are awesome. This is awesome. Thanks for sharing.