I know that many people protested on Facebook to get the “feeling fat” emoji taken down. 17,000 people signed a petition to have it removed.

I disagreed when it was taken down.I am a huge body image advocate, but fat is a feeling to me. A feeling that is not enjoyable for me.

I have never had a problem being either overweight nor chubby. In fact, I would not have a problem anymore if you called me fat.

But when I feel fat, I feel lost.

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In 2008, I felt fat. I remember looking in the mirror with tears rolling down my face. I was lost at 420 pounds. I did not know what I could do to better myself. Honestly, I hated everything about myself.

I was an ugly toad in my eyes.

I looked in the mirror and saw a weak man. One that let food consume his life. I saw someone who had nothing to offer the world. I saw someone who was miserable and one that just wished I was not around.

For some reason, I put all of those thoughts to the side. I started to eat better. I begun to work out. It was hard as hell. I did not see major results right away, but I felt better and better each day.

I started to believe in myself. I started to wear clothing that did not start with an X. I did not feel fat. I felt some things I never felt before. Inspirational. Powerful. Wonderful.

Not only that, but I started to see that I was not ugly. I was not weak. I was not worthless.

I started to see that I had talents like writing and making people laugh.

I saw all of the beauty that my wife had seen for years.

And although my BMI was high, and I had loose skin, I was not fat after losing weight and eating better.

Not in my mind.

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Here I am in December of 2014. Looking in the mirror once again. Feeling fat for the first time in years.

I am not close to my 420 pounds, but I could be. My eating is out of control once again. Selfish eating.

I have gained a good amount of the weight back. Every day I promise myself I will get back on track only to disappoint myself the next day.

This picture is the first time I have truly looked at myself in a while.

Looking in the mirror…something is different.

I do not hate myself like I once did. I can’t anymore. I see the beauty and the love in myself that my wife and family have seen for years. I see the beauty in my kids now. Kids my wife and I never thought we could have.

I do not believe I am ugly. I did for years but not anymore. I might have gained weight, but I have enough inner and outer beauty to combat that.

I see a real loving father.

I see a person who is talented.

I see a person who I love.

I also realize that I am not happy. I do not have to lie to the world and say that I am. I am upset that I let food take control of my life once again. And you can love yourself and not be happy.

I am not a single man anymore. I have two beautiful kids and an incredible wife. I cannot keep making selfish food decisions. I am not like everyone else. I have to eat a certain way.

I can’t keep saying that it is okay if I let my addictions run my life. It is not okay if I am not happy.

Because I know what I need to do to keep the weight off. I have done this before.

It is not 2008 anymore. I have lost over 200 pounds and kept most off. If I keep justifying my weight gain, then I will keep gaining. And that is not fair to me. That is not fair to anyone.

So in this photo, I am fat. You can be kind and sweet and tell me I am not but I feel fat. I do not like the feeling. I do not want to feel this way anymore.

I remember one time my wife told me that if I did not like being as heavy as I was then I should do something. I got frustrated when she said it.

Honestly, she is right.

I am fat, and I am not happy…

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And I did do something about it. ( Down 60 pounds this year)

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