Sick and Tired of Being Sick and Tired. It’s Time for a Re-Evolution!

I like bodies.

I think bodies are marvelous.

I love their curious creases and billowing bellies.

I adore their freckles, their moles, their rad wrinkles.

I worship their lovely lumps and hefty humps.

I revel in their sacredness.

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photo by Substantia Jones (Adipositivity)

 

adipositivity

I am so fucking committed to loving the shit out of myself.

I’ve been to the mountaintop and we are in the midst of a re-evolution. And by that I mean change is coming. A strong wind is picking up speed and new ideas are ripe for implementation.

It's time for aRE-EVOLUTION

I believe we are constantly evolving, and that important movements get impeded by greed and the desire to be the in the limelight. But now we are in a time of recognizing that the isms of our society must be addressed in a more holistic and inclusive way. No more 2nd wave feminism that excludes women of color. No more vilifying fat bodies. No more leaving oppressed peoples out of the conversation.

I adore these drawings by Carol Rosetti.

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fd42681438f5b1673a8e22dbcd1cd448           Jane-Weight-580x800

The universe must evolve beyond stigma and hate. It must evolve past judgment and stereotyping.

Women are prepared to dismantle the patriarchy and all its hideous cousins — misogyny, racism, homophobia, and ableism.

Fat folks are taking back the “F” word, and refashioning in it into a big “FUCK YOU” needlepoint doily for the dieting society.

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So you see, it’s inevitable. We’ve tried the white, male, cisgender, abled way of doing things for more centuries than I care to count. And it doesn’t work. Well, it works for them. But it sure as fuck doesn’t work for us.

Now is the time for female led, POC (people of color) led, LGBTQ led, and differently abled led, social movements. We must take up space instead of asking for permission.

The oppressed must stand in solidarity if we are ever going to create sustainable social change. And that happens through a sincere desire to learn from one another, and an awareness of our intersectional privilege. And it also requires action.

Sitting on your sofa, watching reality television ain’t gonna change the world.

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I think my colleagues and I are doing a decent job of being inclusive in our activism. It’s not perfect — though it’s a good start. But we need to step up our game. 

When we are inclusive in our activism, we lift everyone up. And that’s the fucking point.

We will encounter struggle and frustration for sure. And the road will be long. But can we at least commit to being collaborative and radical in our approach?

I can.

Are you sick and tired of being sick and tired?

I hope to see you on the road to #ReEvolution!

xo

My Virgo Style: Bohemian Bling

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I’m a Virgo. But does my personal style match the characteristics of my zodiac sign? Let’s see…

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Well, I’m definitely those things, but I’d like to  think there is more to me than my perfectionism.  I’m also creative, generous, and humorous. I have a penchant for bright colors, bold patterns, and comfort, above all. Below are some pics of me reveling in my favorite new dress and some dope accessories. I felt so free and so good in my body. Thank you to my friend Michelle of Glitter in the Dirt for taking these photos of me.

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As a Virgo, I am all about the details. Perhaps that explains my obsession with jewelry! I think of my style as Bohemian Bling. I love flowy tops, funky printed kimonos, and comfy dresses with pockets. And I add my personal twist with unique jewelry. I’m currently coveting almost everything from Stella & Dot, which carries gorgeous, well made pieces for almost every style. And half the line is under $50, which makes it pretty accessible. And from time to time, I hit up Forever 21, because they have trendy pieces for not a lot of money. But my favorite is acquiring unique pieces during my travels abroad. It’s such a wonderful reminder of  my trip every time I wear that piece. It’s a wearable memory!

Although Virgos are known for being sophisticated and elegant, I must say, I’m a total goofball! A good laugh will always set me free from the bondage of fear and anger. It’s why I surround myself with people who are funny and also enjoy laughing. It heals the soul like almost nothing else can.

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GGGRRRRRRR!

Told ya I’m a goofball.

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I found this awesome meme on Facebook and shared it with my #untamedstyle sisters. According to the chart, I’m the Princess of Lost Moons. I love that name so much! There is almost nothing as divine as a night sky full of sparkling stars and a velvet moon.  Look at the chart and tell me your tarot card name!

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 I hope you get some solid inspiration from this post and realize that radical ideas are all around you. Don’t be afraid to experiment, even if it’s not in sync with your sign. And let the ideas that come to you be an extension of  how you feel about yourself. Find something magical to wear, and it may be just the push you need to begin your journey toward body-freedom and self-acceptance.  Check out these awesome zodiac inspired posts by my untamed style sisters: Glitter in the Dirt, Curves Become Her, Curves a la Mode, SweetLeigh Sewn, Cid Style File, and Margot Meanie.

xo

One Fatkini Worn 4 Ways: It’s all About Accessories!

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I bought my first fatkini last year, and since then I haven’t bought another one because hey keep selling out! (It feels so good to write that.)

As summer approaches, I always like to think of unique ways to style my look, especially if I’m on a budget. Plus it’s a creative challenge to make the same items work in different ways. I adore accessories, and in my opinion, they can completely alter the look of anything you wear. So, I decided it would be fun to do a post on this with a swimwear theme.

In the photos below, the bikini top is from ASOS Curve, and the high-waisted bottoms are from Swimsuits For All (both from last year, but the bottoms are still available). All other deets are mentioned under each photo. Enjoy!

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Headwrap and necklace from Stella & Dot, Leopard Kimono from Ross, Sandals from Nine West.

There is almost nothing I love more than a head-wrap.  It solves a bad hair day, and instantly gives your look an unexpected twist. You don’t have to spend lots of money on a scarf. Thrift stores are a great place to find cheap ones with good patterns. And the leopard kimono is one of my faves. I get so many compliments on it. Leopard is a neutral and goes with EVERYTHING!

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Jacket thrifted from Out of the Closet (it’s actually a man’s jacket), Ring from an artist shop ages ago, Earrings from Runway Boutique in L.A., Bracelets from Forever 21.

I bought the jacket at Out of the Closet for $7. Yup, it was a major score. It has pockets, which are perfect for holding my phone and sunglasses while at the pool or the beach.  When you’re thrift store shopping, keep an open mind. And those big ass earrings only set me back $16 — well worth it for the impact they give this whole look. I feel very Grace Jones!

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Paisley Kimono from Nordstrom Rack, Necklace from Stella & Dot, Sandals from TJ Maxx.

I think a smile is always your best asset.  But a paisley kimono ain’t bad either. When you’re mixing black and white with other colors and patterns, be bold. It’s OK to mix it up because they’re so neutral. The sandals are flat, which is key for me, and whenever I see anything in a size 11 for a good price, I snatch it up!

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Sunnies a gift from my boo Michelle, T-shirt from Mode Plus, Confidence from ME!

As far as I’m concerned you can never have too many pairs of sunglasses. And I refuse to spend more than about $10 on them because I lose or break them very easily. The klutz in me just can’t help it! And white t-shirts are a must for any wardrobe. I have at least 5 or 6 in slightly different styles because they’re so classic.

I hope these looks give you some inspiration and the confidence to show off your body in all it’s ample beauty this summer and any time, really. I would love to see how you style your swimsuits. Post your swimsuit photos on instagram, and tag me @mixedfatchick with the hashtag #myfatiscute!

xo

The Right to Bare Arms

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My ample arms!

My arms are fleshy, plump, and have cellulite on them. They are fat. And they are also beautiful.

Before I evolved into the body-loving woman I am today, I NEVER wore tank tops, even on the hottest summer days. Showing off my arms was the totally off limits. I would wear a sweater or something with sleeves that covered me to at least mid-upper arm. And let me tell you, being hot as fuck is not comfortable.

But one day, about 3 years ago, I decided it was time to conduct a social experiment. My theory was that if I wore a sleeveless garment, that people would stare at me in disgust, which would derail my journey toward self-acceptance. So, in an effort to break free from societal judgement, I did the unthinkable. I wore a tanktop in public.

I wanted to have Gabby's confidence!

I wanted to have Gabby’s confidence!

At first I found myself having a panic attack, wishing I’d brought a sweater with me just in case I chickened out. But then something weird happened. I saw another fat woman in a sleeveless blouse strutting down the street, her meaty arms undulating in rhythm with her steps. I saw in her what I had not been able to see in myself. I witnessed a woman taking up space and wearing a weather-appropriate garment with gusto! And no one batted an eye. Except for me of course.

That was a pivotal moment for me. I decided that the only solution to loving my arms was to show them off more often. Though I knew I wasn’t going to feel sure of myself right away,  I could certainly fake it for the time being. And that’s what I did.

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With Sonya Renee Taylor and Kimberly Nichole at the Body Love Conference 2014.

That experience made me realize that most people aren’t looking at me and they don’t give a rat’s ass what I’m wearing. After a summer of donning tanks and halter tops, I no longer had to fake my comfort. I was comfortable.

For me the lesson is that I’m my own worst critic. When I can abandon perfectionism, even just for an hour, my whole world opens up. I become free. Free to love my arms and to free wear whatever the fuck I want.

I hope you’ll tune in for my upcoming post on plus swimwear, where you’ll see not just my ample arms, but my thunder thighs too!

  xo

That One Time I Had Liposuction and My Life Still Sucked

This is 12 pounds of fat removed through liposuction.

This is 12 pounds of fat removed through liposuction.

I have vaguely mentioned my liposuction surgery in other posts, but I’ve never really delved into it until now. When I was 23 I had 11 pounds of fat removed from my stomach, hips, and thighs. I had the surgery done in the Philippines, where my parents were working for two years.

It was the summer of 1998, and I recall my father first mentioning to me how inexpensive it was to have plastic surgery done in Manila, and my heart skipped a beat at the thought of thin thighs. He kept hinting at it until I pressed him for more information on the procedure. I probably weighed around 230 pounds at that time, and my self-esteem was in the crapper (I weigh about the same now). I had zero self-love and I was desperate. I really just wanted to feel desirable and beautiful. And thin, of course.

Why I want to lose weight

I believed this would make me happy. It never did.

I had no idea I was already magnificent.

I met with the surgeon and finalized a date for the surgery. In the days leading up to it, my father threatened to not pay for the liposuction. He wanted to make sure I was going to commit to losing more weight afterwards.  His intentions were good (tough love and all that), but it really just broke my heart. All my hopes in this life-changing surgery were about to be dashed. How could he threaten to take away the very thing I’d always hoped would make me happy?

Me before the surgery near my top weight of about 230 pounds.

Me before the surgery near my top weight of about 230 pounds.

In the end, he paid for the surgery. I remember waking up in the hospital bed wrapped in layers of gauze, alarmed at the amount of pain I was in. My father stood at my bedside, gleaming, and telling me they’d sucked 11 pounds of fat out of my body. All I could think was, I wished they’d sucked more out.

It took my body many weeks to heal. Plastic surgery is real surgery. My body was altered permanently, which at the time, seemed like a good thing. But it would catch up with me years later.

This is the cannula being inserted into a woman's stomach. They basically jam this violent instrument into your body.

This is the cannula being inserted into a woman’s stomach. They basically jam this violent instrument into your body.

In the months following the surgery, I moved to NYC to study interior design at FIT. I walked. A lot. And the weight came off quickly. I went down to about 160 pounds, 60 pounds down from my pre-surgery weight. And although I enjoyed shopping for clothes in mainstream stores, my self-esteem was not improved.

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Probably weighed around 165 or so here.

post surgery 2

Started to gain a little bit of weight, but still quite slender.

 

You see, I thought I was taking a shortcut to self-love by having liposuction. I honestly believed that having a smaller body would magically make me a happy and fulfilled person. So when it didn’t happen, I was devastated.

NY was a lonely place for me, and I ate to numb the pain. When I left with my design degree in hand two years later to head back to my hometown of D.C., I had put on some of the weight I’d lost.

My struggle with body image only got worse in the years following my surgery. I hadn’t dealt with the real reason I wasn’t happy with myself. I could not fathom the idea that I could be fat and still be worthy. The crazy dieting went on for years and years, well into my thirties. It wasn’t until I found 12-step programs, that I learned to find acceptance in my body. That, and lots of therapy and self-reflection.

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I think plastic surgery is a personal decision that people make for various reasons.  And if you’re considering it, please do your research and think about why you’re doing it. There are many days that I regret having had it because I still have scars and a lower stomach that is uneven because my surgeon didn’t do a great job (I might qualify for the show Botched. Ok, not really). But then I remember that all these life decisions are what make us who we are. Perhaps if I hadn’t had the surgery, and the experience of being thin and unhappy, I wouldn’t be where I am today.

This E! show depicts people who have had plastic surgery gone bad.

This E! show depicts people who have had plastic surgery gone bad.

Life is full of lessons, some more painful and persistent than others. When I look at my scars and my oddly-shaped tummy, I am witness to the many years of self-hatred that I’ve had to let go.

body positive affirmation - mixed fat chick

Today I am stronger, wiser, kinder, and more compassionate with myself. I am learning everyday the perils of perfectionism, and moving courageously forward, sharing my story with the world. I urge you to the lift the veil of  your own past pains and to face them head on. It’s hard fucking work, but freedom is on the other side of fear. Be bold.

xo