I. AM. PLUS. SIZE

Plus-sized women shouldn’t think of themselves as a size. They should think of themselves as women with rich goals in life. Size doesn’t mean, really, anything. You can carry your size with pride and dress in a way that you like. ”    

Donatella Versace

The secret is out….I am a plus size woman. You see me when I walk into rooms. You hear me when walk. You know that I can not find any clothes in stores that are cute and comfortable. You may pay attention to what I do, how I do it, and why I do anything and everything.

Do I hate being plus size? No, I don’t. Do I enjoy the extra weight on my body? No, I don’t. Am I healthy? Yes, yes I am. Do I have a thyroid? No, I do not. Do I struggle with inflammation due to fibromyalgia? Yes, I do. Do I also have a form of narcolepsy? You fucking know it. And do all of these medical conditions cause weight gain? Oh baby, yes they all do.

You maybe a little intimidated by me, but really I am just someone that would give you a *consensual and platonic* hug. I mean no harm, but I will take no shit. Don’t call me out for my size. Don’t tell me I can’t do something, because I will prove you wrong. Even if that involves having tears in my eyes and sweat coming off my forehead you will be proven wrong.

It’s frustrating that I can’t go into a store and buy cloths like a normal sized human would (I know there are some plus size stores, I am aware). It’s hard to have to think before you do something. Like, will my weight affect this activity or will I break something…A normal human would not have to think about any of that. But, again I was made to be larger than smaller so…..I just roll with what life is throwing at me.

Dating is and has been interesting…..I would have never guessed that so many thin men would like a thick, plus size, and fluffy woman. I don’t know if it is my confidence or my good looks. Is it how I present myself or is it that I am taboo? Behind close doors I am the sexiest thing that ever walked the planet, but out in public I am the ugliest thing to ever walk the planet. I will never know, but then again who really knows what actually dating is anymore?

When it comes to my health…..people think that I am a slob that eats cheeseburgers and deep fried snickers everyday of my life. This is false. I eat healthy. Salads, high protein, coffee (lots of coffee), water…..you know the basic healthy living situations and staples. I work out as much as I can. This is limited due to the chronic pain I am in most days. But, swimming and yoga have been my go too for the past year. Have I seen the weight go down? No. But, do I feel better? Oh fuck yes I do. My goal is to keep at tweaking my health plan until it works for me.

At the end of the day I am a person, a breathing, living, HUMAN BEING. I have feelings, thoughts, and dreams. I aspire for life to be better than it is. I want to be the best version of me possible. I want to find love. I want to have success. I want to be happy.

I want to do this and have people not worry that I. AM. PLUS. SIZE.

Reconnecting With Nature

During transitional and transformational periods of life we (as people) tend to question why, how, and what the hell is happening to me.  Maybe we feel one of these words or statements for than the other, but the feeling is still there and the change that we are oh so dreading is there for an open ended stay….and if you look farther into the idea of change, stability, and the relationship it has within each human, you realize that everything is constantly changing (even if we don’t realize it).  So, we need change to stay stable, well at least minor changes.

The first 10 days in June bitch slapped me so far back it left me it took me days to learn how to stand up again, another few to realize what it was life to function, and a few weeks to to not feel like I was empty and dead on the inside (well, I am still working on that).  So, being Leah the typical thing to do would be drive herself into working all the time, doing things, trying to stay busy, and slap a smile on her face when anyone would ask if something was wrong.  Because eventually one of two things would happen.  I would either forget about what was going on temporarily and then feel the wave of emotion hit afterwards or I would just work myself into the ground and still feel all of the feelings towards the few different situations.  So, I did what all the best people do and I combined both together and decided to work a summer solstice retreat in the woods this saturday.

So, on Saturday I woke up early packed up my chair massage, food for the day, equipment for the day, and found a tad bit of sanity and left for Marengo, IL to celebrate the summer solstice with some wonderful humans.  The drive was about an hour and I got lost a few times, but with multiple cups of coffee in me I finally made it to the campground.  As I walked up to the pavilion where all the classes and workshops were happening I felt a sense of calmness take over.  Granted I knew no one in and around the area (I am kind of a lone duck when it comes to wellness situations, I am the odd one out).  So I walked up to the pavilion and noticed that the group was just starting a ceremony of some sort (again I am not fully knowledgeable with all of the wellness stuff that I encountered on saturday).  So I quietly walked up, sat down, and just enjoyed what was happening.  I couldn’t tell you what was happening, but I enjoyed all of the things that were happening.  I could feel people reconnecting with themselves and the healing energy from this particular event/ceremony.  It was refreshing, uplifting, and lovely to witness.  I also couldn’t help, but think that I had to teach after this!?!?!?  How the hell was I going to compete with the loveliness of this ceremony?  The truth was I wasn’t and I quickly made peace with this.  Once the ceremony was over I quickly and quietly looked over my lesson and realized I hated what I planned and said (to myself), “Fuck it, lets wing this bitch,” and class started.  The class flowed how the universe thought it would and as I ended classes some anxiety fled into my mind, but I quieted back down and ate some lunch and set up for 6 hours of chair massage (yes six hours will little breaks in between).  During this time I had a lot of time to think, while I was working (yes, I am a woman and sometimes I can multi-task, I said sometimes).  And I did come to an interesting conclusion…..

I deserve what I put into my work, my different jobs, my passions, my loves, my personal universe, and the universe in general.  I am deserving of it, of all of it; evening if right at this moment I don’t feel like I am.  I just need to relax, take a step back and realize that I can do this, and I will be able to move forward in my life which or without certain individuals, situations, and be able to get over huge ass obstacles that I thought would just destroy me in the long run.

This is the mindset that I will strive to have going forward through this life journey of crazy things.  Will I fail at keeping this attitude?  Yes, most definitely.  But, at least I know that it will be temporary failure and not a permanent state at being.  Lessons will be learned and life will be lived.  The main thing I need to remember is, I am worth it and I too deserve happiness.

Namaste Everyone, May Your Day Be Short & Your Coffee Be Ever Flowing.

-Leah

Happy Birthday Brother Bear!

Everytime June comes around I am reminded of the kind and wonderful human my brother was and how he impacted my life and many others.  My brother Johan was born on June 4th, 1988, three years before I was born, and was the apple of my parent’s eyes.  He was an active little dude always running around or doing something and this didn’t much change at all really when he was alive.  Well, the little dude thing definitely changed, he turned out to be 6’1 210-220, but he was always doing something or attempting to go somewhere.  Then in August of 1991 I decided it was time to break up the party and arrive.  According to my parents he was so happy to be an older brother, always playing with me, and making sure I was ok.  One of my favorite memories from when we were growing up was him reading to me or catching lighting bugs in the backyard on summer nights.  When our dad surprised him with a Super Nintendo (which I still have to this day, Mario Kart is my jam!) he would always ask if I could play it with him, even though I was terrible at video games.  I think he would purposely loose just so I could win every now and then.  We still were very close throughout middle school and high school.  When I was a freshman in high school he was a senior and anytime I would see him in the hallway, he would run up and hug me while singing/screaming my name.  At the time I remember how embarrassing I thought it was, but now I would give anything to have those moments back.  We drifted apart while I was finishing up high school and going into college due to my brother’s drug addiction and substance abuse.  It was a difficult time for myself and my family, but just like a lot of families did, we survived to see another day over and over and over again.  Johan was sober for almost a year and during that year our friendship was back to how it always was; he was my best friend.  We would stay up late talking sometimes till 1/2/3/4 o’clock in the morning just shooting the shit.  He would ask about something trivial and I would snap back a remark and before I finished my remark we would be onto a different topic laughing like two insane clowns that just got done murdering an innocent victim (my brother and I’s laugh sounds like the laugh of a killer clown).   Then one day, at the end of February he was gone and life as I knew it would be forever changed.

June 4th, 2018 my brother would have been 30 years old (he died at 26) and I will officially be older then him when I turn 27 in August, which is a strange feeling.

June 5th or 6th of 2013 marks the last day I ever saw Johan alive and if I did the math correctly that’s 5 years.  I haven’t seen him in five years and that is another strange feeling that I will eventually get use to.

His death is something I will never get over, there will always be a part of me that thinks he will eventually just come home and life will be how it was (even though I know it is not true and he is truly never coming home).

Happy Birthday Brother Bear, you are officially old…..I love you and miss you more now than I ever have.  Until I see you again (many, many, many, many decades from now), “keep on keeping on.”

-Leah

A Supermoon, the month of February, & Fibromyalgia walk into a bar…….

If you are looking for an uplifting I am sorry this is not one of them.  As we reached the end of January my emotions go all places that are associated with sadness and anything that could make me happy doesn’t….I just tend to go through the motions and hope for the best.  So, if you have made it this far and want to continue…sit back relax and figure out how the fuck I make it through everyday without killing everything.

On the last day of Jan 2018 the universe decided to have a supermoon/redmoon/bluemoon/lunarEclipse which sent me into the biggest, most intense, most painful flare up of my fibromyalgia I had ever experienced. I didn’t know my body could revolt this much causing myself and my stressed out mother to contemplate going to the ER. For those who know me personally understand that my pain tolerance is high, higher than most due to the chronic pain I have experienced in and through the passed 3-4 years. But, I have always been able to work through it. This was different. It was a constant burning, aching sensation in my back, chest, and shoulders. My hands were numb and it hurt to move. My mother tried to console me to try and not raise my blood pressure more, but nothing would help. It got to the point it hurt to inhale and exhale. I wouldn’t wish it on anyone, but finally after 5 hours of this, I fell asleep and woke up 75% of the way better…..and as I finish this post I’m right back on track to being 150% better. But, it was scary. I have never and don’t want to be in that position again. I am 26 years old and should be able to take on the world and the reality is I can’t and I have to come to terms with this.

One of the biggest reasons that I despise the month of February is the passing of my older brother. Three years ago on the 21st of February my older brother Johan unexpectedly passed away. For those who don’t know my older brother struggled with depression, anxiety, and addiction for close to 10 years. He was and will forever be my best friend, the nicest man I know, and the best older brother I could have ever asked for. He was gentle, kind, caring, and just a teddy bear. I was beyond lucky to have him for 23 years of my life and I miss him every moment of every day. The pain of loosing someone doesn’t leave, it doesn’t get easier, time allows us to adapt to the grief and learn what the new normal is. He is fantastic in life and in death. And for everyone that asks if I miss him, here is my response: of fucking course I miss him, I’m a human with feelings (damn this is nice to say).

So, now you know during February when you see me just know I’m trying my best. I’m trying my best to keep it together and moving forward and maintaining some sense of sanity (even though mine is not around anymore). I am trying my best. I am trying to survive each day. And I am just trying to be a normal human (this is forever impossible). Just know I’m putting whatever I have into each day to deal with my life.

I am forever grateful for my jobs, for my life, and for who I am as a person. I wouldn’t change anything even though some days seem impossible. Thank you for reading, know that you are a special human, and we are all just trying to make it this existence.

Until next time, stay bendy.

Leah

A much needed break…

When working at so many places putting in 10-14 hour days and feeling like life has hit you in the face and leaves you wanting to crawl into a hole and slowly whither away…and let me tell you it finally did me in. I was exhausted , overworked, and not making hardly any money after paying bills. So, I had to re evaluate some aspects of my life. What was working, what wasn’t working, and what needed to change so I could be living a more successful life. So, what did I do? I quick one job and got hired at another place, decided to beef up my yoga schedule to try and get more reliable income (still working on that), and decided to just pay off two credit cards in full draining my back accounts. Some things were done in the spur of the moment, others were done with a lot of thought and consideration. I have also had to shift how I think and feel about certain aspects of my life. How I do thinks? Can I do them better? How can I take care of myself better? And the best part is…I still don’t have any answers to any questions, I’m still lost in this crazy thing called life and I have a feeling this is going to be a permanent state of mind for a while. Do I enjoy being in this confusing state, no absolutely not. But, I know that it is necessary for me to be here; even though I may not enjoy any part of it. But, with this weird state, I am in and with myself just working my life into the grave, I know that good things are on the horizon. That if I can hold out for just a bit longer, things will be happier and healthier in my life. I’ll quote journey for a second, “don’t stop believing,” and that is just what I intend to do. Until next time everyone. Light, love, & Namaste.

Leah