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Weight no more

Weight no more? I wish.

And I wish my fat away if it’s not obvious already.

“Some people have real problems,” I tell myself. Like poverty (more than being broke) or Cancer. Not that Cancer is the worst problem and other invisible illnesses are not problems but you know what I mean. Being fat isn’t the end of the world.

Or is it?

For most of my life I have been overweight. I wish I could get a prize for that (not edible). And if it couldn’t get any worse, I’d like to add that there were numerous times and long periods where even when I was “thin”, I didn’t feel it. I always felt bigger and so uncomfortable in my own skin. I can recall all the times I got to that point of no return.  I’m sure you know it- that point when you say, “Enough is enough!” I see you nodding your head.

I get fed up of my fat self and do something about it: stop eating or drink copious amounts of water.

So dumb.

So desperate.

I remember going to Knysna on a family vacation a couple of years ago and asking my then boyfriend to take some photos of me on the beach. I pranced about and did a few poses. I asked him if the pics came out okay and he said yes. I’m almost certain sure he said ‘of course’. Sigh, but the horror of horrors when I loaded the pictures onto the PC…


I couldn’t believe that THAT was me. I was round, like an ugly ball (who knew a ball could be ugly). My thighs were huge (I was wearing a short skirt) and my arms were f-l-a-b-b-y. I was so disgusted. That of course was my initial reaction. After that, I klapped (smacked) then boyfriend across the head and asked him firstly why he lied (the pictures were not okay in my books obviously) and secondly I asked him how could he be with a fat chick. He saw how much it bothered me so he got me a thigh exercising thingy and we signed up at Virgin Active in Steenberg, Cape Town (the rich side). We would mostly gym in the evenings. I attended Zumba or Yoga and we even attended a spin class together. We stopped Mc D’s. Hell, we even stopped supporting the 2-for-1 Pie Fridays special at the BP Garage in Newlands. *drools after that killer cheesegrillers*

I even went onto Herbalife.

Gasp. Yes, I did.

It worked. I lost the weight.


Back to being ‘hot’, back to being ‘acceptable’. I buy the jeans (real jeans with a zip). I ditch the loose-fitting clothes and opt for figure-hugging, stretchy and brightly coloured clothing. I want to be seen, no?


I can’t remember what happened exactly but I think I ran out of money for the Herbalife and broke up with then boyfriend (so no one to pay for the gym). I also stopped watching what I was eating: cafeteria hot (slap) chips were delicious, cheap and filling.

So it never lasted. [Insert sad face here].

Being thin and healthy and happy NEVER lasts with me. I even remember being big in high school. I always felt ashamed liking a boy. How dare I? I wasn’t thin (and therefore pretty) enough.

I was not good enough!

I passed Grade 12 and went onto varsity and was not keen on or expecting any attention from guys. But someone did in fact eye me and we started dating. What a bloody miracle! He was very popular so it WAS a miracle. What set him apart was that he always, always encouraged me to see myself as special and important. I should be my biggest fan and in that way I should stop hiding myself. He saw the big, baggy clothes as taking away from my awesomeness. It took me a really long to believe him and to apply rules of self-care. As time went on, I learned to look at myself differently, to look at HOW I treat myself. That included looking at what I was wearing and why I was wearing it; looking at what I was eating and why. But most importantly, I made sure that I was aware of every message I was sending to my brain about myself. This was a real game changer for me.

Pity I didn’t keep all the gems I learned.

Life happened.

It wasn’t long when I dropped out of university (to be a dancer –I DID have the body now) and after a while I attempted suicide. Life was horrible for me. I was thin but was terribly unhappy.

Years on and I’m STILL struggling with weight issues. Yes, some due to the side effects of medication for my Bipolar Disorder but others due to me being unhappy. That’s the simple truth. I do not like being a size LARGE- EXTRA LARGE.

More extra-large than anything else.

I don’t like that my stomach hangs over. I also hate that when I do a sit up, my stomach concaves. This is a medical condition I scored when I had multiple pregnancies in quick succession. Yay me.

I don’t like what I look like in photos. I don’t like being in photos.

I don’t like those body shaping things because it’s really difficult to get up AND super inconvenient and tricky to get up and down when you go to the toilet on a night out on the town. (Does not work well when you’re drinking. That wine just goes through you and well, what a mission as one can imagine!)

I also do NOT like it when someone buys clothes for me (can be anyone really, husband included) and they buy you clothes that FIT! Embarrassing! Firstly because they know how big you are and secondly they really know how big you are.

I don’t like who I have become. I’m specifically referring to my weight and they way I see myself. The other stuff is complicated and although many issues are interdependent, I’m focus mainly on the weight issue in this post.

I have been through so much and sometimes I find it difficult to wrap my head around every single challenge I have faced and their effects on me.

I know many people are doing the whole ‘body positivity’ thing but in this moment I just want to reflect on why I feel ugly. Maybe I’m ranting or being negative (and that’s not trending right now).

I feel ugly not only because I am not happy but because I am not happy with the woman I see looking back at me in the mirror. Not because she is fat but because she is constantly judging what she looks like and who she is. She cannot see beautiful. She cannot seem to love herself.

That is sad. I’m well aware of that.

But I know that this is my struggle. It explains the yo-yo diets. It explains the fact that I silently compare myself to everyone who fits into a certain size. It’s not shallow. It’s painful. It’s painful because in my eyes, as we speak, I will never see myself as worthy. And as much as I know there are so many women who feel just like I do, I still feel alone.


Most of all, I want to stop judging myself… Wait. I want to stop imagining what I look like eating a KFC Zinger wing and be disgusted. Why should I do that to myself?

I deserve to treat myself better. Don’t I? I have a life worth living, worth claiming as my own but for some reason, I am struggling.

I’m admitting it right here. I am struggling to give myself a break.

I am struggling to give myself a reason to more than just say, ‘Yvette, you are beautiful.’ Or ‘I love you.’ It’s funny because I am not disgusted by fat women (or men). I have dated men with varying waistlines and I liked it.


I am struggling to be the reason why I give myself all the love that is rightly due to me.

So, is being fat the end of the world?

It is the end of my world every single fucking day.

Here’s to tomorrow.


P.S For your entertainment, I have included an array of photos of myself as the years went by.


  • Chanell

    My beautiful sister, yes we all have our flaws and sadly we keep it to ourselves. High five for being your honest self. My journey is a kak one too, but getting up is the first step, every time. There will be many first -steps because of failure, but we learn from it. Just like people are struggling with losing weight, there are others trying to gain weight and everything else in between. Unfortunately we have to go through almost every shitty route to get wherever it is we want to be becuase its not easy. Don’t hou dit to tomorrow, the time is now!

    • admin

      Haai sis 🙂 Thank you !! **blushing for days** You’re so wise btw. I had to laugh for “Don’t hou dit to tomorrow” Uncle Denver.

  • Keri Stroebel

    I thought was a really interesting perspective on body positivity. It’s all good and well to be told to love the skin you’re in, but if you’re not happy with how you look, how do you do that? Even at a size 34, with the post pregnancy belly still hanging around, I have days where I HATE the way I look and there’s nothing I can do to change that in that moment. It would seem that true body positivity really only comes when your happiness isn’t solely dependent on that factor. What I mean is that when I’m hating my tummy, I also might notice that my hair is looking great and my makeup is on point, and I realise that my tummy isn’t the be all and end all. However, in your situation, you’re dealing with so many contributing factors, like your psoriasis and your mental health, that it’s really difficult to see out, and I understand that. I feel (and I might be way off) – that perhaps in your case, this might be a case of starting at one point of your self esteem and working through it bit by bit. Eat a bit more healthy so you can feel better about your health in general, but don’t deprive yourself, because life is short really. Have a choccie if that’s what you love. Have a glass of wine, and tomorrow start your day with some hot water and lemon. When you’re looking good, take a selfie and share it with us, let other women help you boost what you aren’t able to do for yourself right now. There are some incredible plus size models you can look to for support nowadays. Being “thin” or having the sort of figure you think you should have, is doing nothing for your mental health. Honestly, I think if all the other stuff starts coming together, how you feel about your body will improve automatically. I might be rambling a bit, but I hope that made sense.

  • Lynne Huysamen

    Yvette you actually sound quite normal. I feel the same way a lot of the time. Even when I was skinny I wasn’t happy with the way I looked.

    I am feeling more comfortable now with myself than I have in years, but that is probably due to the fact that I spend most of my time in stretchy clothes, in my nightgown at home alone where nobody sees me.

    When it comes to dressing up and going out I don’t feel so great any more.

    I do believe positivity comes into it though, when I am feeling positive I behave in a more healthy way and I do lose weight. I was on a roll earlier this year and I was feeling amazing. Then I lost it again LOL. I am going to get back on it.

    I do believe you can think yourself thin.

    • admin

      Firstly, I’m glad I sound normal -> SCORE.

      I hear you when it comes to going out. I have one outfit- a black jumpsuit which is stretchy, of course. But I don’t have ordinary clothes that I feel comfy in. Even my jeggings are giving up on me and life. I think shopping makes me feel fat and I don’t look as nice as I imagine. I just avoid the mirror…

      But I need to change my mindset. I can be positive about goals and life, you know. It’s just this. But I’m really going to try.

  • Siobhan

    I still believe weight loss is a mental battle especially after you lose the weight because sometimes you’re thin but you still think youre fat and so you’re still unhappy. Know what I mean?
    Also fuck that women must look a certain way to be worthy. I shove those rules down the toilet written by men who aren’t with the times.

    • admin

      It is in the mind, defos. I agree with you. Yeah, it’s a pity we have been conditioned to believe this. It sucks big time! I think what I hate about being big is that NOTHING FITS ME RIGHT!!!!!!!

      I might as well wear a blanket.

      *ideas brewing….* lol

  • Jonelle

    I hear you! I’ve never been as big as I am now post baby, post PTSD, post being young, post caring about gym, post having time to sleep and eat healthily… I often hate my body but then I remind myself what my body has been through to get to here. SIX surgeries after carrying a baby for almost 9 months and then I remind myself that perhaps my body isn’t so bad after all. It’s awful when people tell you to just be grateful, things could be worse. Things could always be worse…I’ve finally stopped trying to fit into medium clothing and accepted that I’m just not a size ten anymore and probably won’t ever be again.. and that’s okay. So I eat the chocolate and drink the wine and thing tomorrow, tomorrow I might try again. I loved reading this. Could SO relate! xoxo

    • admin

      You made me think when you listed all your “posts”. I suppose if I have to list all mine, not to mention listing ALL the meds… The I really should be grateful. I remember my GP said once, “Do you know what your body did? It became a vessel for another human being. And ONLY a woman can make such miracles happen.” Thanks for sparking that memory for me.

      Thanks for stopping by, Jonelle. 🙂 xxx

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