This past weekend at Sigma Lambda Gamma’s National Convention in Dallas I had the opportunity to reconnect with sisters who I have not seen in a year. I should have been extremely excited for this but I actually dreaded it.
For those of you that follow my blog, within the past year, I have lost close to 130 pounds with the support of bariatric surgery (aka weight loss surgery). The photo taken at National Retreat in 2015 literally happened right before my surgery. At this National Retreat, I announced pubically to my sisters in an EmPower Session that I would be undergoing the surgery. I had not clue at the time how much my life would change in a year both physically, professionally and mentally.
A year later, Chris and I walked into Convention healthier than ever. Chris and I have worked together to both live healthier lifestyles day in and day out. I think proof of that is shown in the picture at Retreat compared to the picture at Convention. But even with all of this progress, something was wrong.
Going into the SLG Convention this year, I should have been ecstatic to show the progress I have made. But honestly, it terrified me. While I have had many supporters along the way, some of you know that not everyone has supported my lifestyle change. I occasionally get messages from individuals informing me that “I took the easy way out” or that I am “conceited” for showcasing my transformation. So, I thought going to convention this year would trigger some complaints/dirty looks from those who follow me on social media.
Convention came around and to my surprise I was welcomed with open arms. Sisters were honestly sooooo supportive of my transformation and even asked me questions. I even had sisters come up to me that I did not even know. Even sisters, like Nicole Nimmons and Crystal Cavey, who I presented with at the EmPower Sessions last year, reminded me about how far I have come since leading that session and how proud I should be. I honestly was in shock sometimes and would just smile because I did not know what to say. This encounter with sisters like Nicole was eye-opening.
Going to the SLG Convention gave me a reality check. Now that I look back at this past weekend, I honestly do not know why I was soooo intimidated by going to Convention. From day one, I have been extremely honest about my lifestyle change. By showcasing my story, I hope to do a few things: utilize social media to hold myself accountable/be a support system, inspire and educate others about healthy lifestyle habits and promote body positively at all sizes. I worried for nothing. I should be proud of all of the progress I have made even if there are the occasional haters.
Honestly, the sisterhood reminded me this past weekend why I joined this sorority….we truly are sisters beyond graduation and strive to empower one another no matter how near or far or close we are. I am in awe of my sisterhood and what we stand for.
So with that said, thank you sisters for empowering me and for lifting me up this past weekend without even knowing it.