My Path to Body Positivity: Learning to Love Myself

[00:00:00]: Picture this, you’re in 5th grade and the school year is coming to an end. You’re thinking freedom, swimming pools, ice cream and enough Doritos to die for. At least that’s what was in my head when someone came to bribe me and that’s where the story starts today. Hey. Hey. Hey. I am Tish. You’re fat and fabulous host of the unapologetically fat podcast.

[00:00:31]: You can find me on any app that supports podcasts like Apple, Amazon, Spotify, and more. I would love it if you would subscribe and leave me a review. I left off mentioning the end of 5th grade was near. I was excited about swimming pools, eating ice cream, and tons of Doritos. But someone came to bribe me. That person was my aunt. And let me tell you, oh, she made that bribe good. She said she was gonna take me on a $300 shopping spree for the next school year.

[00:01:10]: I was so flipping excited. $300? That was so much money all on me. All I had to do was lose weight. That meant all I had to do that summer was diet and count calories. There would be no Doritos, no ice cream cones, no other quote unquote junk food, but $300. $300. I could do it. Right? I did get to go on that shopping spree, and it was really a lot of fun.

[00:01:50]: And I got some really cool clothes. But yet, it was still sad because my aunt took me and her daughter together. And, of course, she was able to get way cuter clothes and had way more choices because my cousin was thin and our society tells girls, big is bad. You don’t deserve to dress pretty. Unfortunately, fat shaming is one of the few forms of discrimination that’s still mostly okay in our society. I’ve literally had actual doctors tell me I’d gotten a cold because I was overweight. Women tell me to cover my arms because my arms are too fat and no one wanted to see that. The problem is, when you hear something often enough, you start to believe it.

[00:02:48]: And after a while, no one even has to tell you these things because you’re telling yourself and you start to believe that you’re too big to take up space in the world. And I’m not talking just physical space. I’m talking you shrink your life, your ideas, your expectations so you’re not taking up too much space. When I got older, I finally had a boyfriend and I was so happy because little girls grow up and have boyfriends. Having a boyfriend meant that I was attractive enough to have gotten one and I was so thankful that he loved me. Except when I got so fat, he was embarrassed to be seen with me in public. But I was grateful. I mean, he didn’t break up with me.

[00:03:44]: We just stayed in. And I thought that was okay because the stories in my head that I continued to tell myself about me was that I was lucky to have him. Oh, nowadays, I can’t even believe that was me. So what changed? I had spent most of my life dieting, losing weight, gaining it back, plus more, holding myself back and shrinking who I was, all to try to fit into some fantasy mold that wasn’t made for me. And I knew something had to change because I didn’t even like me. So, I began to work on myself, not yo yo dieting and berating myself for being fat. I began working on my mindset, doing the inner work that would change my life. And I discovered I had value.

[00:04:51]: Fat Tisha had value. And I decided I deserved a hell of a lot more. I knew for certain I wouldn’t be going out with anyone else who was embarrassed to love me for me. You know, it’s funny how life works because I met a man, an actual man who loved me for who I was. And you wanna know why? All because I started loving myself. As I continued to want to, I don’t wanna say improve myself or fix myself because I don’t think I’m broken. I don’t think any of us are broken and need fixing. But as I continued to want to live a better life, I decided mindfulness and yoga might help.

[00:05:49]: I needed to stop feeling anxious and afraid and I needed to move my body. Not even needed to move my body, I wanted to move my body. I went to a friend who took yoga regularly and I asked her to take me to a class. So my friend was really trying to be a friend. I know she meant well when she said, I’m not saying you can’t go but, and you know what was following the but. Right? I didn’t go to class with her, but I didn’t give up on the idea of yoga either. And fast forward a few months, and I was attending my first real live yoga lesson. Keeping what my friend had said, I had searched for yoga for bigger bodies.

[00:06:41]: This is 2018. I’m in a brand new city, a new home, and my life had already changed. But this yoga class changed my life forever. I was laying on the floor of my yoga mat, nervous as all get out. The lights were off, candles cut through the darkness, and the instructor was about to give instructions when suddenly she said, I feel like someone needs to hear this tonight. You have permission to take up space just as you are fat and all. She was talking to me. I mean, she may not have known it but I was the person that needed to hear that.

[00:07:32]: I laid there with tears streaming down my face. For the first fucking time in my life, someone told me I was okay just as I was. Today, through, I teach and speak body positivity. I’m your body positivity fairy godmother and I want you to know that you are enough just as you are. You are lovable, beautiful, and perfectly imperfect just as you are. So never apologize for taking up space in the world. If you don’t take up your space, no one else can and that would be a damn shame. If you wanna read the whole, what I call, origin story, head on over to