Kathleen Bruno is a beautiful, upbeat southern woman who used to be morbidly obese, massively depressed, and stuck in a place where she felt like giving up. After losing more than 150 pounds and finding a new life at Live In Fitness, Kathleen Bruno’s excited to reach out to anyone who is desperate and struggling to make a change. Please read her story and don’t be afraid to reach out to her…she wants you to.
Last week I addressed some of the questions you will have to answer when you lose weight — not when “one” loses weight, but when you lose weight. I may not know you personally, but I know that, if I can do it, you can.
Besides the questions you will be asked, you need to be ready for some change. Of course, you will feel better and look better — there’s nothing stressful about that change — but you’re also going to have to make a whole mess of decisions you didn’t have to deal with before. These include, but are not limited to: what exercises do I feel like doing today? What (healthy) foods am I going to eat? Who am I going to date (unless you’re already happily spoken for)? And of course, what am I going to wear?
I thought this would be pretty simple, but it turned out to be more overwhelming than I anticipated. It was so easy to get clothes before I lost weight. For starters, I hated to buy new clothes, because I didn’t feel I deserved it. I wasn’t going to look good anyway, so why spend the money? I didn’t value myself, so it was easy to just wear the same thing every day.
I wore the same pants…not literally the same pants (gross)…but many pairs of identical pants. Ironically, the name of the fabric that the pants were made of was called “slinky”. And let me tell you, there was nothing slinky (or sexy) about these pants. Stretchy, yes. Roomy, for sure. Comfortable, you bet. Slinky? No.
With those pants, I wore what is referred to as a “shacket.” I guess it’s half shirt, half jacket…fashion’s answer to the spork, I suppose. Anyway, I wore those shackets until they were frayed at the cuff and thinning at the elbow.
And shoes? My feet hurt all the time from the extra weight, so I wore those huge clunky rocking shoes called MBTs a lot. I only shopped at shoe stores for comfortable shoes with brands like Rockport, Hushpuppies, Mephisto – anyway, lots of wide footbed German stuff — I even had a special pair of shoes made where they have you stand on a piece of special foam and create shoes especially for you. My friends would cry from laughing so hard when I came clodhopping in wearing my homemade shoes.
I did have to make a decision when I was required to dress up “fancy pants.” And no, I did not wear fancy pants. I opted for a dress, a.k.a. my rhinestone-studded muumuu.
Then I started losing weight and noticed that my clothes didn’t fit anymore. I remember, after losing 75 pounds, I was still wearing the same clothes. I admit, they were starting to look like pup tents, but I could still wear them. My pants weren’t falling off just yet, although my underwear were (literally…get your mind out of the gutter). Folks started noticing that I was making adjustments to my droopy drawers, especially when playing basketball.
Still, it was difficult for me to buy new clothes. Sometimes along my journey I would think, “I’m never going to be pretty. I’m never going to be a ‘normal.’ No matter how long I work my program, I’ll still be supersize.”
But it wasn’t true. I kept exercising and stayed focused on two important things I learned at Live in Fitness™: (1) Stop all or nothing thinking (This is the part where I think I already blew my diet on pizza, may as well chase it with some doughnuts). Now I don’t do that — I get right back on track the next meal or snack. (2) Remember that I can eat again in just 3 hours…the other half of the cheeseburger…another slice of pizza…another 25 grams of filet mignon, whatever it is I feel I must have.
Then one day I realized I had gotten too small for my “goal dress” and needed to have it tailored. Of course I had the classic errant thought, “Maybe I should keep it the way it is just in case I gain some weight one day.” It was a terrifying thought. I hear about people breaking a leg or getting a disease and gaining a ton of weight — that thought scares me too. So I keep exercising and stay focused on…(see above paragraph).
I also realized that none of my old clothes fit anymore. They didn’t fit my body, and they didn’t fit the way I saw myself. It was time to get some new clothes, and I had some decisions to make. I’m not going to go through my entire wardrobe, but suffice it to say it is a blast shopping at “normal” stores for normal-sized clothes…especially shoes.
One of the best things about losing weight is having smaller feet. One of the best things about getting dumped by your 5’8 husband is getting to wear heels with the 6’2 man you’re dating. Plus strappier styles have become more doable. I feel so sassy clicking along in high heels, towering over most folks, feeling like a glamazon.
Buying new undergarments isn’t the most exciting thing in the world, but “having to” is pretty nice. I bought some new undergarments from a popular lingerie store a few months ago, but some of it had to be shipped. When I received the package, it contained more than I actually ordered, including a dozen pairs of panties that were about one size too small. They weren’t fun or sexy or even pretty really…just your basic, nude colored, utilitarian undies. I knew this must have been someone else’s order and wondered how it could have happened.
I had another decision to make. This one was easy: send them back. So, I threw the box in my trunk and vowed to return the underwear to their rightful owner. I even put “return panties” on my “to do” list. But I have adult A.D.D. and soon forgot. Besides, stuff piled up on top of the box.
I wasn’t wavering, just procrastinating. I had no intention of pilfering panties, but I was faced with a dilemma: take the underwear or get a massage commando. You see, I had just worked out vigorously…to the point that I was dripping with sweat. I quickly jumped in the gym shower, because I had a massage scheduled in half an hour. When I started to get dressed, I realized I had forgotten to bring any clean underwear. There was NO WAY I could wear the drenched workout pair, and I’m just not comfortable going commando during a massage. Then it hit me, I have a dozen pairs of perfectly good panties in the trunk of my car.
So…I did it. I took a pair of panties. It started with just one. But then those felt so good, I ended up blowing through the whole dirty dozen. I think it was the thrill of wearing that new size, a size that some normal-sized woman ordered for herself (tried anyway).
I’m not proud of it, but as I said before, losing weight comes with new decisions. That one I’m not proud of, but I have since made amends.
You have a decision to make, too. And if you make the right one, you will be wearing new clothes before you know it…that you paid for, of course.