Although I had just lost 30 pounds, the minute Ms. Kathryn Finney asked me to be in the first ever BlogHer Fashion Show, I became obsessed with losing ten more pounds before the show. I mean, isn’t that what models do?
I found myself skipping carbs, adding workouts and obsessing over everything I ate. When I would mention to The Boy that I wanted to slim down just a little bit more before the show, he would just look at me like I was nuts and say “you’re fine”. Of course, I brushed him off. He couldn’t understand what was expected of me as a model in a fashion show. I needed to be militant in order to be presentable and if that meant salads and no wine during our date nights, he’d have to deal with it.
To add to my stress, the BlogHer12 fashion show would be the first time that TheBigGirlBlog’s readers would see what I looked like. I had been blogging anonymously for years, so I wanted to “look my best” for my Plus Size Princesses. Instead of being proud of the 30 pounds I’d lost, I was kicking myself that I hadn’t lost 40 pounds and although the scale was moving down, it wasn’t happening fast enough.
To put it plainly, I was driving myself crazy about my weight. Then two things happened that changed everything:
1.) I realized that I was dieting instead of living the healthy lifestyle that had helped me to lose 30 pounds in the first place.
2.) I logged onto the BlogHer website and read all of the comments about the upcoming fashion show.
The comments section was flooded with women asking what kind of models they would be using. Including questions like Will there be plus size clothing on the runway? and Are the models going to be a variety of sizes? I know they are “real people” not models, but a lot of style bloggers are of the smaller variety.
Seeing those questions stopped me in my tracks. Duh! There was a desire for women of all sizes to be represented on the runway and I was a part of that. Would there be skinny models? Yes. But it wasn’t my job to be one of them. It’s like I heard the words “model” and “runway” and suddenly everything I stood for flew out the window. My job was to be CeCe Olisa as of August 4, 2012. 30 pounds down… more to go, but as The Boy so sweetly reminded me… I’m fine.
I had to remind myself that beauty isn’t something that we aspire to be, its something that we are. It’s important to remember that we’re beautiful at any given moment in our lives. We’re beautiful at the beginning of a weight loss journey, we’re beautiful when we’ve reached our weight loss goals and we’re beautiful at every point in between. Those sweaty moments at the gym? Beautiful. When “Aunt Flow” comes to town and we gain 4 pounds overnight? Beautiful!
Walking down the runway with a diverse group of women, I knew that everyone in the audience saw someone who represented them in some way. When I saw the Plus Size Princesses cheering and clapping, I knew I was there for them and I hope that in some way, my presence let them know, “you’re fine” and by “fine” I mean beautiful!
To see me on the runway, visit PlusSizePrincess.Tumblr.com