Carrissa Clark

I don’t really know how or where to begin, but when in doubt, always start at the beginning.   I suppose that I have been overweight my whole life. I can remember being in kindergarten and shopping in the junior miss section for clothes that fit.  I needed a size 14-16 and was almost 5 feet tall.

From that point on, I was bigger than anyone in my class including my teacher.  I was teased relentlessly about being fat, so I kept eating and eating and eventually I became exactly that.  In February 2010, I topped out at 5 feet 7 inches and 375 pounds. 

It was then I knew I needed to change something.  I was sitting in an LA weight loss center listening to the lady who was trying to convince me if I wanted to get to my ideal weight, it was going to cost me $2,500.  However, they offered no guarantee of results and could not provide me proof of anyone who had hit their goal weight and maintained it for more than one year.  Additionally, they explained to me that it would take 24 months for me to hit my ideal weight, and I had to pay the full amount up front.  I felt there was no hope and I was going to be stuck like this until I died.

In April 2010, I learned the company I worked for was going to downsize. If I wanted to stay in the same position indefinitely I could stay or, best case scenario, I would be out of a job by January 2011.   I knew something had to change drastically because I hated every aspect of my life.   The thought of staying in the same job that I loathed every day for the rest of my life had me seriously contemplating suicide.  It had taken me more than a year to get this job because each time I applied for a position for which I was qualified, Human Resources or the hiring managers would take one look at me and I knew they wouldn’t hire me.  I could see on their faces or hear in their questions that they no longer had a desire to hire me because I was fat. 

I had been a business analyst with my company for 10 years and knew as a result of losing my job, I was going to be in the job market again and was going to have to lose a lot of weight.

Now, I am a five years past and I have lost more than 200 pounds!   I am now a size 12 and I can’t ever remember being this happy, or being this small.  I have a great job, and for the first time in years I don’t make excuses for going out with friends.   I just go and don’t have to worry whether I will fit in the seats at a movie theater or at a play.  I don’t notice people staring at me when I go out to eat.

I have spent my entire life having to make do with whatever fit and I never gave much thought to style as long as it fit.  For the first time, I determine what style fits my personality.  My only regret is that I did not do it sooner.

Carrissa Clark_BeforeCarrissa Clark_After