One Woman’s Story – Chrisetta Mosley

Chrisetta MosleyOccasionally, to see what can be learned, Childhood Obesity News looks into the lives and thoughts of formerly obese people, not all of them national or international celebrities. Chrisetta Mosley has achieved renown in her neck of the woods, an area that encompasses both Vancouver, WA, and Portland, OR, where she has been the subject of many news articles.

No, she is not reed-thin. Her struggle against obesity is ongoing—but Mosley’s story is inspiring nonetheless, because it is a story of a life dedicated to sharing knowledge and hope with others. As a blogger, teacher, and cookbook publisher, Mosley is all about taking personal responsibility to break the cycle:

I don’t want to see [childhood obesity] continuing. I’ve got to talk the talk and walk the walk.

In 2011, Mosley told her story (up to that point) to journalist Scott Hewitt. She came from a family of 8 kids where money was as scarce as nutritional consciousness, and Kool Aid was the house beverage. Culturally, fat babies were seen as cute, and hefty kids were regarded as lucky to be so well-fed. During the college years, her life was shame-driven. The reporter relates this detail:

Her ultimate (but secret) humiliation: She used to check what rooms her college classes were scheduled for, and if they included attached desk-chair units, she’d quietly appeal to the administration to move the class to a different room—with furniture that fit her.

Characterizing herself as “a product, and now a survivor, of childhood obesity,” Mosley tells about the low point, when she weighed 388 pounds and could barely walk and or even breathe:

The whole world was an obstacle course…I was a miserable, fat, gross person.

This was hitting absolute bottom. But, perhaps swayed by the lure of a quick fix, and certainly not thinking straight, she opted for gastric bypass surgery. Unfortunately, the medical professionals did not emphasize the need for a change in lifestyle from the ground up.

It is tempting to “blame the victim” by wondering why the patient didn’t get out there and research the subject on her own. But ultimately, that part of Mosley’s medical history serves the useful purpose of a cautionary tale, warning other surgical candidates to insist on a good education about how to proceed. Complicating the situation was the fact that, although part of Mosley’s anatomy had been removed, the tendency toward emotional overeating remained intact. There was another factor. She wanted to set a good example of normal weight for her teenage daughter, Jasmyn. The desire to reach for health was still strong,

Sharing the Struggle Against Obesity

Mosley shared the whole process in her blog, “Farewell, Fatso,” (the source of the photos on this page) complete with healthful recipes, helpful workouts, and notes on personal reprogramming. Writing posts for the public helped keep her honest with herself. There have been setbacks. The fall of 2009, when job, car, and boyfriend all unexpectedly exited from her life, was particularly awful. She responded by signing up at a local gym for classes in weight-lifting, yoga, Zumba, and whatever else was offered.

In 2011 Mosley was hit by a car and had to live for months in a wheelchair—not the best place to either work off calories or plan a sane diet. But she banished fast food and sugar-sweetened beverages, and concentrated on a sensible home-cooking regime allowing a very infrequent edible treat. Six years after starting an obesity-beating life, only 38 years old, not perfect but still in there pitching, she had tamed the bulk down to 225 pounds.

Chrisetta Mosley has a currently active Facebook page, but three years after the interview with journalist Hewitt, she put her blog on hiatus, writing:

As I was talking with a respected professional, this was her advice: “Time to stop visiting the past… Only focus on today and moving forward.” She’s absolutely right. Time to stop living in the past. This is who I am today. No more looking back…I’ve put on some of the 170 pounds I had lost. I’m upset with myself. Disappointed…So where I am today is what I must embrace…It’s time to use the past to make tomorrow better.

Your responses and feedback are welcome!

Source: “Woman packs on happiness as she sheds pounds, 07/13/11
Source: “In between, the past, 11/16/14
Image by Farewell, Fatso!


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