The Girl Who Didn’t Fit

posted in: My Story | 33



Here’s a little bit about why I’m doing this.

This morning, I was working on writing up a “Frequently Asked Questions” post, but was feeling rather uninspired.  It just wasn’t flowing.  Let’s face it, there’s nothing fun about going through e-mail, answering 74 questions about bowel movements.  Important stuff, but not exciting to write.

And as I was sitting here, my mind flashed back to one of my life’s most humiliating moments.  I’m not sure what brought the memory to mind this morning, but there it was.  And though this story took place in what seems like an entirely different girl’s life, it was still me.  And I just feel like acknowledging her.  Me.

I was a 22 year old student teacher at the time, and I was on a field trip with my high school band students.  We had spent the entire day at Busch Gardens, enjoying a day of rides to unwind from the previous day of performances.  I mostly held backpacks all day while the kids rode the rides, basically serving as an assistant to the band’s head director, Mike.  I had a good rapport with the kids and was enjoying the chance to unwind with them before graduating in a few weeks.

20150212quotecalloutI remember much about that day, including the clothes I was wearing.  I had on a pair of baggy khaki pants, cargo style.  And though I can’t remember what was on my t-shirt, I know that there was a thin hoodie over it.  It was hot as BLAZES that day, but I remember being too insecure to just wear an uncovered t-shirt, so I suffered through it.  I don’t remember my exact weight, but I’m going to guess that I weighed around 250 pounds that day.  I hated my size, my shape, my body.  I especially hated the way my sides looked when I wore a clingy T-shirt.  Hence the hoodie.

It was almost time to start gathering the kids up to head to our buses when a group of my favorite students asked me to ride a ride with them.  When asked if I rode roller coasters, I quickly answered, “Of course!” and left the book bags with Mike for a while.

After about 30 minutes of waiting in line for one of the larger coasters, the gate opened and I turned sideways to shuffle down to my seat.  I sat and tried to slide my hips back into the chair, but the sides were too narrow. I could squeeze in, but only if my hips were turned slightly cock-eyed in the seat. I started to panic, but figured it would be okay if I just turned my knees a little to the right.  I even talked to the kid to my right in an effort to look natural.

But when the shoulder harness tried to come down, it wouldn’t work unless I turned straight ahead.  Oh, god.  I don’t fit in this seat.  And here comes the attendant.

Everyone was harnessed in and the coaster was ready to go.  And there I was, blushing and trying not to let my eyes get moist, while a young man pushed with all of his might to get this harness to click.  But it just couldn’t.

I didn’t let this scene go on for long.  I quickly said, “It’s okay!  I promise!  I’ll just see you guys when you get off.”  I smiled. I tried to act like it was no big deal at all.

It was.

That was nearly 15 years ago.  The memory is still quite fresh, the feelings still raw.

But that girl, SHE is the reason that I want to share my story.  She had dieted and exercised and even prayed to be smaller.  She was trying, REALLY trying.  She wanted to be thin (or at least NOT fat) so badly that she would’ve done ANYTHING.  But had not a clue what to do, aside from starving herself.  Myself.

She wasn’t a glutton and she wasn’t lazy.

She was me.

And I’m a fighter.

But I was just had her fighting the wrong fight.

That day was a low point in my story, but it’s still part of the tale.  My doctor’s advice to lose 100 pounds by eliminating carbs made the story take a whole different direction, though, and I am forever grateful for his wisdom.  My life, forever changed.

Even though it’s been easier to just sit back for ten years, keeping my private life private, keeping my eating habits to myself…the girl in this story urges me to share.   And I won’t let her down again.







33 Responses

  1. Staci

    Thank you sooooo much for sharing your story. It’s like so many of your emotions and reactions are coming out of my own head. I’m currently down 120 lbs on a low carb diet in just shy of 11 months but it has suddenly gotten a lot more challenging. Reading this makes so much sense. It’s like an epiphany that I’m holding onto just enough carbs that my cravings are sticking around. I guess I honestly never truly understood that you could actually be healthy on a zero carb diet. It makes so much sense. That you so very much for sharing. Hoping my journey just got even easier too thanks to you!

  2. Tom Bunnell

    Staci – Heroin Addicts call it “chipping”, that’s when a heroin addict who has been fully detoxed and gotten clean off from heroin, begins to rationalize the using of small amounts of heroin occasionally here and there, feeding his or her uncontrollable desires and cravings for heroin and the high that comes with it. Small amounts now and then rationalized as being ok and safe to do when held in perspective and not done to much or to often. Shortly thereafter he ends up back in a full blown “run” and back to his old ways and using fully every hour and every day and robbing and stealing and prostituting in order to support his habit and buy his drug. A never-ending addiction. Acute in nature. Sugar and hybrid carbohydrate addiction is like a thousand of these addictions.

    • Nancy

      Wow. This comparison blew my mind. Having dealt all too much with addicts in loved ones and friends of loved ones that really resonated. I just watched the 8 episode run that Intervention did on the heroin epidemic in Atlanta where I live. I’ve often said I see so many parallels in food and drug addiction. Only you can’t avoid food and it’s everywhere! I’m going to remember your info about chipping, thanks.

  3. Barefootdeb

    I love how your students wanted you to ride with them. Your body may not have allowed it then, but they saw your heart. Thanks for writing this.

  4. Sarah

    I found you a couple of days ago and it truly made my heart sing. This post hits the deep dark painful parts of me….it made me cry. I am that girl right now. 250 lbs…. About to take my family on a vacation to WDW and Universal Studios….. Sigh.

    I am even more committed to being Zero Carb now… I’m so glad you are here.
    Toms comment on addiction is truly helpful as well….

  5. Lesley from zioh!

    Kelly, thank you thank you thank you. Aside from the compelling story that you’re sharing, you are also a fantastic writer. Couldn’t be happier that you are sharing your story with the world.

    • Donna Grant

      You are helping so many of us. You are helping me. Thank you and God bless you for being brave enough to share your experience.

  6. Mary L

    I just finished reading all your articles. You are inspiring me to start zero carbs in my life. Thank you.

  7. Marian

    Thank you so much for sharing! Please, please don’t stop. There are many of us like you out here that need to hear your story and long to hear that we too can have a healthy and happy life.

  8. Fred

    God bless you and your family, truly an inspiration to others and a new life for you.

    • jamesdhogan

      Kelly’s husband James here… Kel doesn’t. But you can! //jh

  9. Rina

    Thank you so much for starting the blog and sharing your story. Very inspiring. Please keep going. Love your story telling. What happened with all your exercise? How much do you exercise nowadays? You mentioned you worked out two hours a day before going zero carbs, what do you now?
    Also, you mentioned your husband’s blog in one of your posts. Where can we find it?mis he also zero or low carb?
    Can’t wait for your next post.

    • jamesdhogan

      Kelly’s husband James here… I blog at — would love to have you as a reader! //jh

  10. Kari

    I just saw the cholesterol answer in your FAQs. (sorry)
    So disregard the previous post,


    I’m breastfeeding. Would a drastic change from my current way of eating to zero carbs cause a decrease in my supply?

    Do you ever eat a bite of that cake you make your kids?

  11. kelly

    I had a very similar experience chaperoning a band/chorus trip to six flags. They had just opened the superman ride and I was so excited. My kids and their band mates all waited on line I sat in the seat and could not get the restraint on. The young male attendant said “sorry lady your too fat to ride you need to get off” my kids looked at me and all I could do was smile and tell them I would meet them at the exit. Worst experience ever.

  12. Janice

    Just wanted to say thanks for sharing your story. It has re-inspired me to cut out the carbs. I have been low carb, high fat for a couple of years now, and have plateaued. So perhaps this blog was my inspiration to cut the carbs. And thanks for also sharing what you eat. I often applied my own pressure to have to have meals be different, and it was nice to see that it’s ok to eat the same thing all the time. Now there are a stack of burgers in the fridge waiting for me. I’ve been drenching them in my homemade hollandaise sauce – no ketchup for me. Feeling full feels awesome!!

  13. Brenda

    I had one of those moments at an amusement park too. I couldn’t get the chain across me on the swing ride. I simply stepped off and walked away pretending like it was no big deal. For me … that happen about 20 years ago. It still shames me to this day..just remembering the humiliation I felt.

    I just read your whole blog. Saved it to become a regular reader.

    Thank you so much for baring your soul and reliving those painful moments so we can learn how to eat and lose…and most importantly..get healthy.

    Im starting today…right now! Dumping my can of diet coke in the sink and moving on! I truly am excited!


  14. Berni

    I have read your entire blog. Your story is so moving touching and real. The solution you have found for the rest of your life is so realistic simply and straightforward. I have struggled with weight my whole life and have been doing a very lowcarb lifestyle. I still struggle with cravings so I do believe zero carb is my next step. I just have one question do you use spices or salt on your meats?

    Thank you for writing and telling your story


    • Kelly Hogan

      I use salt and pepper on my burgers. And most zero-carbers do fine with using a little spices and seasonings.

      Thank you for your kind words! I’m excited for you!! Please keep in touch! 🙂

  15. Candi Leftwich

    Hi Kelly. Thank you for sharing your journey. I’ve been following a LCHF lifestyle for a few months, and with no weight loss. I started Zero-Carb two days ago, and have noticed some issues with heartburn. I’m hoping this is just an adjustment and will go away. Did you experience any issues such as this?

    I’m looking forward to your next post.

  16. Kimberly

    How about mayo and high fat no sugar condiments and milk ?

    I also just found you and can not stop reading !!! So me especially this story have done lc in the past back and forth the last time it did lot seem to work . Does it ever stop being effective ?

    You are an inspiration ❤️

  17. Laura

    You are so inspiring. I have been steadily gaining weight for the past year and even though it’s only 15lbs, my mind wonders when it will end. I excuse my actions away and you have just brought to light the sugar addiction. I spend my days thinking of ways to make Paleo treats and sweets with that don’t use sugar when the bottom line is that it really is like cocaine and it’s time to give it ALL up. It’s scary to think of not having an occasional glass of wine (so stupid I know) it’s such a social thing and I’ve already been through the peer pressures when you say no to junk food or liquor when in a social setting. Your blog is amazing and thank you for writing it. I’m sure you have been thinking about doing it for years and finally you did! we are all blessed because YOU decided to share your story. Thank you

  18. Pamela

    You are amazing! I just discovered your blog and I ❤️ it. Your writing is captivating. The zero carb thing sounds extreme to me but reading your story is turning me into a believer! Thank you for being so transparent – I’m inspired!!! Blessings to you.

  19. Paul Mabry

    I remember first being teased for my weight in second grade. Almost no one could use the seesaw with me unless I sat way forward. It always hurt. I think that’s whybrid I’ve always been so eager to help others not to be fat. I’ve had good luck with low carb but I think zero carb may be even better. This is day 2, let see where we’re at in 6 months. Eating the fatty parts off a smoked ham, yum!

  20. SB

    Theme parks are a huge motivator for me! It’s my biggest hobby. I haven’t been turned away from a coaster yet but I’ve been beat up a bit from the small seats and I’m scared of getting to the point where I can’t do what I love the most. I love your blog! I’m reading throught the whole thing from the first post and I’ve learned a lot so far!

  21. Sasha

    OMG! I am in tears! The exact thing happened to me when I was a teen. I have always been overweight and 265lbs at my highest. I started following a paleo diet a couple years ago and lost 70lbs. I am thankful to be 185-190lbs at 5″10 but my goal is 170lbs. Thank you so much for sharing your story, I am headed to the grocery store now to start these new lifestyle.

  22. Nancy

    I experienced something similar at a county fair years ago. We were trying to ride a Ferris wheel when the teenage attendant insisted that I was pregnant, and it was against the rules for me to ride. I kept trying to tell him I was not pregnant and he accused me of being a liar. He just kept rolling his eyes and told me to please step out of line. When I tried to register a complaint no one cared. I really felt your pain when I read your story. I have experienced many embarrassing moments likes that. Apparently I store most of my fat in my belly!

  23. Brent Giesler

    Wow. Thank you for leaving all of this up, for someone like me to find years later.

    I hope I can share this with lots of women that feel just like you did.

    Rom. 8:28

  24. alison

    thank you. as you already know- your story inspires. so happy that i’ve stumbled across your social media and for all that you’ve shared and continue to share. looking forward to starting my own journey.

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