Hi and welcome to Style for Curves. As you can already tell by the title, I will talk about my weight gain story. The reason why I chose to tell this story is to help people to not be too quick to judge others because of how much weight they have gained or lost.
Today, I chose to tell you all a story that I never told anyone, but decided to share, hoping that it would help someone. As you read through this story, you will see that I didn’t just post the story of how I gained weight but, also the struggle that I have faced as a bigger person. I used this experience to help anyone who is experiencing bullies to know that they are not alone in this battle. And, I also want to make everyone understand that living as a “fat” person isn’t easy and that they should show compassion and respect to those that are overweight.
Ps: This post was not made to ruin anyone’s reputation. Also, PLEASE BE POSITIVE in your comments down below.
I wasn’t always big growing up (even though my step-mom always made me believe that I was). However, I was always the tallest in my all classes. And since I grew up faster than most kids my age, by the time I reached the age of 10, I was fully developed and even my walk changed. I didn’t walk like everybody else did. I cat walked, and it got me bullied by most of my school-mates back in Africa. All I wanted then was to walk normally so that I wouldn’t get all the attention but was stuck with it. Besides the bullying that I experienced then, the cat walking also opened a lot of doors of opportunity for me that I received a few modeling offers and compliments from adults who thought that my cat walks were beautiful and very feminine.
After high School
My high school graduation was the best time of my life. It was the key to my freedom. I was never a wild child growing up. In fact, I never dated anyone before graduating from high school. The reason why I wanted my freedom was because I was Cinderella trying to run from abuse, and dating would have gotten me in a lot of trouble.
Sadly for me, just when I thought that my life was going to get better, well, it turned for the worst. Two months after graduating from high school and a month after finally secretly dating my first boyfriend (who would later become my husband), my sister became pregnant and the people that we lived with tried to force her to have an abortion. And since I lived with my step-mom, her children and my sister, I had to choose between killing my niece or staying home with them, hopefully getting my American dreams. So, I chose my niece and got kicked out and became homeless.
As mentioned earlier, I always dreamed of the day that I would leave my step-mom’s house, but I never thought of leaving this way. I wanted to first be prepared. Unfortunately, I wasn’t. On my first day of college, when every body else was thinking about their future, I was thinking about where I was going to spend the night and which warehouse job would pay me enough to support both my sister and I. ( keep in mind that I have lived in America for 4 years at that time and didn’t know that universities offered housings or financial aid to pay for it. That’s why I did things the hard way).
Just when I thought that things couldn’t get worse, well, my mom who was still living in Africa, passed away just two months after I became homeless. And after her passing, Some fake religious people started looking for who to blame for my mom’s death. But because I didn’t want to be a part of their cult, BINGO! They chose me as the person of interest. They made my sisters, including the one that I was helping, believe that I have killed my mom in witchcraft. And so, I was mistreated by both my pregnant sister and her fake christian friend. After my niece was born, they told my sister to leave me. And she did, taking her then 2 months old baby away from me.
Since news in the African community travel very fast, well everyone thought that I had witchcraft, and some of them blamed my boyfriend (husband now) for it too.
HOW I GAINED WEIGHT.
As you can tell by the story that I have told you, life was really hard. what a way to being deceived? Not every 18 years old girls would abandon their dreams to take responsibility of their 22 years old pregnant sister because the father refused to take responsibility. But on top of that, she takes the child away from me after she was born saying I would “kill” her like I did mom. My mom was a praying woman who died of a stroke because she was old and in her 60s, not to witchcraft. How dare they insult the God that my mom have served?
So, as you can tell, this was a lot to take on.
Since I only had my boyfriend there for me and no one else, I turned to food and became addicted to it without realizing. I turned to junk food, soda which I drank more than water, and I ate late at night both for snacks and dinner (I was also introduced to fast food at that time). My food choices were but not limited to:
- Ice Cream
- Potato Chips
- French fries, mashed potatoes and other high carbs items
- Soda (not diet soda)
- Any fast food
- I also eat at restaurants every week ( this was my boyfriend’s family tradition)
Depression was deeper than I thought. When my mom passed away, I was told by family members to be strong for my pregnant sister and not cry. So, I kept the pain in to show strength like I was told to do, but had no idea how it was going to backfire. I was so depressed that sometimes I didn’t even have the strength to get off the bed. I loved to sing and dance and always did it but, the depression that I experienced kept me from enjoying the things that I loved the most. And so, I didn’t just eat unhealthy, I also became inactive (not that I wanted to).
“But even when God saved me from these depressions years later, I still kept those bad habits for a while before realizing that my lifestyle also had to change”.
PEOPLE’S ASSUMPTION AND THE EXPERIENCES FACED AFTER THE WEIGHT GAIN
Assumption No 1
The first person who noticed my weight gain was a cousin that lived few miles away from me. At that time, my boyfriend’s parents (my in-laws now), gave me a room in their house to live in since my sister had left me. They thought that there was really no point to continuing to work at that awful warehouse job that I worked to support her and her child.
My cousin and many others, unfortunately, did not understand my pain nor asked me why I had gained so much weight. Since I gained weight living at my boyfriend’s parent’s house, they assumed that my weight gain came from having LOTS AND LOTS AND LOTS OF SEX with my white boyfriend even though it wasn’t true. I was treated like a prostitute some even called me one.
Assumption No 2
After my sister had left me, I withdrew from everyone to avoid being judged for living with my boyfriend’s parents. So, I stopped all contacts with everyone I knew, even close friends. Unfortunately, I thought that withdrawing myself from the crowd would kill any rumors. But, I was wrong. On my 19th birthday, I received a call from one of my sisters who still lived in Africa and called to wish me happy birthday. I didn’t expect her call, but I appreciated that she thought of me after all. But after she wished me a happy birthday, she asked me how many weeks pregnant I was (keep in mind that at that time, I didn’t post any picture of myself on social media until the day after our phone call). When I told her that I wasn’t pregnant and asked why she has said that, she told me that my dad who was also in Africa during that time, received a call from one of his friends in America who had seen me at a Walmart and assumed that I was pregnant (stupid, right?).
I didn’t want to let that bother me. I said to myself that it was just one person who mislead my family members and that no one else knew about it. But I was wrong. Apparently, the person told everyone that he/she saw me and that they had every proof that I was pregnant. So, for as long as I withdrew myself from the crowd, I had no idea that there was pregnancy rumors about me.
That was very upsetting.
Now let get to the insult part
“She’s too fat to fit in her gown”
On my 20th birthday, my boyfriend proposed to me. Preparing for the wedding was amazing, and I believe that God used it to make my depression and prostitution accusations go away (I got engaged and now they respected my “white” boyfriend after they told me many times that he only wanted me for sex). But during that time, I didn’t know that I was going to face insults that a woman should never have to hear at a time she’s preparing for her wedding or on her own wedding day.
Since I didn’t have bridesmaids or friends to bring to the dress fitting, I brought my sister, the one who had been pregnant (we made up just few months before my engagement). Sadly, she was not the support I needed nor any support at all. I remember that she would only accompanied me so that she could try on “MY” wedding gowns. She even told the wedding dress sales person that I have allowed her to try on my gowns since I was too “FAT” to fit in. So, for most of my engagement, I had to watch my sister try on my bridal gown as if she was the one getting married and not me.
“I let her get away with trying on my gowns only because I wanted her support. And since her trying on my gown and dictating my wedding was the only way she gave my wedding and engagement any attention, I decided to take all I could get from her just so that I could have someone to share my happiness with me. I let her dictate my entire wedding the way she wanted even if she never helped me plan it but took all the credit. I let her steal the show at my wedding because she wanted all the attention on her. I can’t deny that I was naif and loved her and wanted her support and had no choice but to let her do what she wanted”.
Thankfully, I went to Elizabeth’s bridal down at Hurst Texas. The lady there, I believe her name was “Elizabeth” stood up for me. When my sister, who just had a surgery but decided to accompany me only to try on my dresses, told Ms. Elizabeth that she will be trying on my dresses because I was too fat to fit in them. My sister didn’t know that she was going to be stopped on that day. The lovely Ms. Elizabeth from the bridal shop stood up for me. She told her right to her face “mam your sister is a very beautiful lady and she’s not fat. This is her time to shine, and her big moment and not yours. You would only try on this gown if you were the one getting married. Since you’re not, I want you to sit on that couch and watch her try on her dress. And try very hard to give her the support that she need from you right now”. BANG! In her face! My sister of course, was not happy to hear that. But who cares, right?
“Elizabeth’s bridal closed shortly after I bought their gown. But I really pray that they would reopen. So please share my story with everyone so that Elizabeth’s bridal can reopen. I went to 6 bridal stores and none of them stood up for me the way Elizabeth did. And I’m very sure that there are plus-size women out there who would want someone to stand for them like Elizabeth from Elizabeth’s bridal stood for me. So please share the news so that Elizabeth bridal can get back into business”.
“You would have looked prettier if only you’d lost the weight”
My sister adjusted herself on my wedding day. At least she didn’t call me fat. She actually complimented me and it meant a lot. But, the devil didn’t want to see me happy on that day, he sent more people besides my sister to tell me “ Rachel, you should have lost weight… I’m so disappointed in you for staying fat. You would have been more beautiful if only you have lost the weight. Obviously, your are blessed to be married to a man like Daniel”. What was more upsetting was how everyone kept telling me, even months after the wedding, how I was blessed to have Daniel rather than saying “Daniel is blessed to have you”. I know that I’m blessed to have my husband but no one told me him that he was also blessed to have me.
That, to me, was upsetting. But, I loved how my husband would always correct them by saying “no, I’m the one who is more than blessed to have Rachel as a wife”. But even when he would say that, they would not correct themselves. Oh well…
I have kept quiet all these years because I thought that sharing my story would be so important and also because I didn’t want to hurt anyone’s reputation. But, today I chose differently. I want to show the world that there’s usually a painful story behind everyone who are considered to not be “as pretty or skinny as they used to”, and that every “fat” person have to experience harsh insults every single day of their lives. “Fat people deserve gold metals and respect because of how much insults they have to take in every day. So, learn to see and appreciate the beauty of everyone.
Thank you for reading my story and I hope that I was help you understand the struggle that we, as “fat people” go through. I also really hope that I was able to somehow help other big people to know that they are not alone in this.
But please, If you feel depressed and you have no one to talk to or no money to see a counselor, then, give the Lord almighty, Jesus-Christ a try. He cares a lot for you and He will never abandon you.
Also, you don’t have to have money to get someone to listen to you. You can go to some hospital’s hotlines for suicide prevention. All you have to do is to go to their front desk and ask for their free counseling hot line numbers and they’ll give you a bunch of numbers. Some big hospitals will even send someone to you once in while to check on you and to pray with you. They would ask you if you need help with food, clothes, paying rent, Etc. and will provide you with lots of information on how to get help free of charge. Just to let you know that there a lot of ways you can get help. YOU ARE NOT ALONE!
Please comment below and tell me your story or ask me any questions. But please, share my story. I want to use this story to help someone. Also, feel free to subscribe to get newsletters on very fabulous clothing for plus-size women (trust me, there are many), and newsletter for their sales offer. My mission is not to sell you anything but to bring you confidence and to support you by showing you that the plus-size fashion is on flick. Ms. Elizabeth from Elizabeth’s bridal was my support, and I want to be your support as well. So, please subscribe.
Style for Curves Manager
“I didn’t tell you my story to try to make anyone feel sorry for me because I’m not a victim but I am victorious. These hardships helped me to be the woman that I am today. I became stronger, wiser and even closer to my God, the Lord Jesus-Christ”.