Celebrating Accomplishments

Sometimes, it’s important to take the time to celebrate your accomplishments in style. This week, I made an Infinity dress, which I wore today to celebrate my bride in my accomplishments. To take the celebration even further, I made a decision to share the full body photos.

When I first started this weight loss journey back in January,  I made a decision that I was not going to post photos from the shoulders down online. I thought that it would be better that way, that I would enjoy the reveal much more. I also wanted to keep my weight loss a surprise from the folks back home–I mean, how wonderful would that be? “Hey, y’all! You haven’t seen me in a year! And now I am 80 lbs. lighter!”

I was wrong. About a month ago, when I was feeling especially homesick, I called my childhood best friend and left her a ridiculously long voice mail. Until that point, she didn’t know I had been losing weight, and I left a vague but excited message about how proud she would be of me at Christmas. (I was riding high on getting down to less than 200 lbs.)  Of course, she called me back to question my completely vague voice mail. I was having an over-emotional day, and had recently bought my size 12 pants, and my big surprise just came tumbling out.

Her response was more motivation than I could possibly have hoped for. It was so overwhelming to hear her excitement and praise of my accomplishments. Some back story, she and I have known each other since we were about six months old. We’ve been steadfast friends ever since. We went to elementary, middle, most of high school together, and college together. She’s known me at my smallest, and known me at my heaviest. She has never known me as an adult in a size that’s so close to her own—I have never known me as and adult at this size, and it’s a phenomenal feeling. I hesitated showing her the photos, but now I’m so glad I did. She showed her father a photo of me that didn’t show my face, and asked him to guess who it was. When she told him it was “Smiley” (his longtime nickname for me,) he was astounded, and very proud.

I decided last week that I would share my photos with my friends. I need y’all’s support to do this, and hearing it means so much to me. It’s also amazing to look at these photos and not only realize how far I’ve come, but to see myself and feel beautiful from head to toe, for the first time in a long time, if ever.

So here’s my half year photos to document my reaching six months/40 lbs. into my weight loss journey, and here’s my celebration to myself. I can do this, and I’m so excited!

Start: 233 lbs., size 18/XL-XXL, Hips: 51″, Waist: 39″
Current: 190 lbs., size 12/M-L, Hips: 43″, Waist: 34″

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3 thoughts on “Celebrating Accomplishments

  1. Helena Handbasket says:

    You are amazing and a total inspiration!

    Taking regular photos and comparing them is really what kept me going. Also uploading them online so there’s an additional accountability can definitely be a positive force that drives you to succeed.

    • heybates says:

      Thank you so much. The positivity and comments from everyone has really got me stoked! The photos have definitely helped my motivation this week! :)

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