“You’re Fine.” (My BlogHer12 Modeling Experience)


Although I had just lost 30 pounds, the minute Ms. Kathryn Finney asked me to be in the first ever BlogHer Fashion Show, I became obsessed with losing ten more pounds before the show. I mean, isn’t that what models do?

I found myself skipping carbs, adding workouts and obsessing over everything I ate. When I would mention to The Boy that I wanted to slim down just a little bit more before the show, he would just look at me like I was nuts and say “you’re fine”. Of course, I brushed him off. He couldn’t understand what was expected of me as a model in a fashion show. I needed to be militant in order to be presentable and if that meant salads and no wine during our date nights, he’d have to deal with it.

To add to my stress, the BlogHer12 fashion show would be the first time that TheBigGirlBlog’s readers would see what I looked like. I had been blogging anonymously for years, so I wanted to “look my best” for my Plus Size Princesses. Instead of being proud of the 30 pounds I’d lost, I was kicking myself that I hadn’t lost 40 pounds and although the scale was moving down, it wasn’t happening fast enough.

To put it plainly, I was driving myself crazy about my weight. Then two things happened that changed everything:

1.) I realized that I was dieting instead of living the healthy lifestyle that had helped me to lose 30 pounds in the first place.

2.) I logged onto the BlogHer website and read all of the comments about the upcoming fashion show.

The comments section was flooded with women asking what kind of models they would be using. Including questions like Will there be plus size clothing on the runway? and Are the models going to be a variety of sizes? I know they are “real people” not models, but a lot of style bloggers are of the smaller variety.

Seeing those questions stopped me in my tracks. Duh! There was a desire for women of all sizes to be represented on the runway and I was a part of that. Would there be skinny models? Yes. But it wasn’t my job to be one of them. It’s like I heard the words “model” and “runway” and suddenly everything I stood for flew out the window. My job was to be CeCe Olisa as of August 4, 2012. 30 pounds down… more to go, but as The Boy so sweetly reminded me… I’m fine.

I had to remind myself that beauty isn’t something that we aspire to be, its something that we are. It’s important to remember that we’re beautiful at any given moment in our lives. We’re beautiful at the beginning of a weight loss journey, we’re beautiful when we’ve reached our weight loss goals and we’re beautiful at every point in between. Those sweaty moments at the gym? Beautiful. When “Aunt Flow” comes to town and we gain 4 pounds overnight? Beautiful!

Walking down the runway with a diverse group of women, I knew that everyone in the audience saw someone who represented them in some way. When I saw the Plus Size Princesses cheering and clapping, I knew I was there for them and I hope that in some way, my presence let them know, “you’re fine” and by “fine” I mean beautiful!

To see me on the runway, visit PlusSizePrincess.Tumblr.com

  • ALJ

    Great post! I have been reading your blog for a few months now and find it quite inspirational. I was super excited to see your pics from the BlogHer Fashion Show. You are definitely more than fine, you’re beautiful!

    • http://twitter.com/thebiggirlblog The Big Girl Blog

      Thanks ALJ!!! That means a lot… xoxo

  • LadyK

    Hi CeCe,
    I just wanted to say that I have been a reader for awhile now, but never commented. Always lurking abut really appreciating your honesty and humour. I saw your photos on Tumblr and I just wanted to reassure you (as did ALJ) that you are beautiful! I loved the red halter outfit, that colour really suits you! Keep on doing what you do, I look forward to your blog updates every day! Love from London xxx

    • http://twitter.com/thebiggirlblog The Big Girl Blog

      Hi LadyK,
      I love when lurkers come out to say hello, haha! Thanks for reading… That red halter outfit was my “omg, I’ve lost 30 pounds!” outfit ;-) I hope to get out to London next year *fingers crossed* so maybe I’ll see you soon! xoxo

  • Niecyjenkins

    So true! I’m proud of you for coming to that realization and thank you for pressing “pen to paper” and sharing your thoughts and experiences with the rest of us.

    • http://twitter.com/thebiggirlblog The Big Girl Blog

      Niecy: Thanks for your kind words… I saw your tweet too! <3 xoxo

  • http://austinstf.tumblr.com slavetofashion

    It’s not easy modeling for a big show; it’s even harder to “come out” to your readers after years of anonymity, so I applaud you on both! I follow you on Instagram and Tumblr, and girl you are so lovely! Thanks for sharing your story and being willing to be open with your readers :)

    • thebiggirlblog

      @slavetofashion – Thank you… there was a lot of anxiety, but as scary as it all is… I’m glad I’m doing it. I think I’m following you on ISG… what’s your tumblr? xoxo

      • http://austinstf.tumblr.com slavetofashion

        It’s austinstf.tumblr.com – I post instagram pics there as well as my blog posts and other stuff that strikes my fancy….. sometimes cute boys :)

  • Patti

    Just bookmarked your blog yesterday, I came here from Southern Hospitality. Love your writing and it’s so nice to put a face to the words. You’re awesome!

    • thebiggirlblog

      @ Patti: Welcome! Ms. Southern Hospitality was gorgeous on the runway… thanks for the bookmark! xoxo

  • Mari Almeida

    You’re more than fine! Loved that you started showing yourself, I was so curious! lol And you’re beautiful and have a great body!

    A couple of weeks ago I started my diet (mainly cause of health issues) and now I’m going to Weight Watchers. It’s very hard when you have a “fat mind”, I even realized that I’m normally not hungry, just feeling like eating anything that’s in front of me! Gluttony as its best!

    Keep your healthy journey! Diets suck! hahaha

    • http://twitter.com/thebiggirlblog CeCe Olisa

      Diets do suck… but here’s to healthy living!!! xoxo

  • Mallorytiffany

    You looked fabulous on that runway!! I must say as long as you were wearing your confidence you would have been looking your best to us, 10 lbs lighter or even 30 lbs heavier we would still love the PSP CeCe that we have grown to love.

    • http://twitter.com/thebiggirlblog CeCe Olisa

      Awwww I “heart” you!!!!

  • Liz

    You look amazing! I have wondered for a very long time what you look like! Oh and I don’t think I have every posted a comment before I lurk, read and go! Just felt I had to say how fabulous you look!

    • http://twitter.com/thebiggirlblog CeCe Olisa

      Hooray for my lurkers lol xoxo

  • Hayley_RH

    One word review: Thankyou.

    You’ve reminded me of exactly what The Boy reminded you and it’s something every PSP should remember.

  • http://www.alltheweigh.com/ Kenlie

    You are gorgeous inside and out.

    Here’s what I’m going to try to accept long after this comment is over:

    “…beauty isn’t something that we aspire to be, its something that we are. It’s important to remember that we’re beautiful at any given moment in our lives.”

    I know it’s true about you, and I’m determined to someday believe it’s true about me too.

  • Sarah

    CeCe you are sooo gorgeous!! I hope you really know that :) And not to be weird, but you have a great figure too…from what I’d read here, I assumed you’d be more straight up and down/Grimace/Sponge Bob-esque…you are curvaceous And beautiful…PS where are those DELICIOUS knee high boots from? And are they wide calf?

    • http://twitter.com/thebiggirlblog CeCe Olisa

      @ Sarah – Not weird at all lol that’s a very nice thing to say! (lol @ Grimace)

      The boots are from 6pm.com the brand was “fitzwell” and I think they were wide calf, my legs are pretty thick so I can’t fit anything narrow :-)

  • 6′ princess

    Wow Cece you are stunning- no lie or flattery here….been reading your blog for a while and I was like wow…when I saw your pic for the first time…..Truly an exotic beauty

    • http://twitter.com/thebiggirlblog CeCe Olisa

      Wow, thanks so much 6′Princess! <3

  • happinessisme

    Hmmmm… I always thought you were white. I guess I should check myself huh?

    • thebiggirlblog

      You’re not the only one… *shrugs*

  • http://twitter.com/FabFroChick FAB FRO CHICK

    you looked great

  • LC

    i’ve been reading this blog for years now.. and never knew what you looked like. you’re gorgeous!!

  • http://www.stacyjillcalvert.com Stacy Jill Calvert

    YOU looked amazing! It was so much fun being part of this with you! ;)

  • Pingback: STACY JILL CALVERT – BlogHer12 or Bust: My Life as Model

  • http://www.guysforladies.com/ Male Escorts

    You’re gorgeous one. Definitely you’ll be successful.Keep up the good work :)

  • http://www.facebook.com/jessi.love.x3 Jessi Love

    You’re definitely gorgeous and an inspiration. I pray to one day be able to see myself in a positive view. I’ve been tapping into the world of Plus Size Modeling and it’s proven to take a big toll on my emotions and self image. So many Plus Sized models have this gorgeous perfect hourglass figure that I can only dream of one day making it to, I’ve got this odd diamond shaped body and have a small bust compared to every single other plus sized woman I’ve ever met. It’s really quite discouraging having such a shitty self image. I hope to be as confident as some of the women I know in this industry.