A woman who shed an impressive 350 pounds and beat her nerves to wear a bathing suit for the first time in years has revealed she was cruelly body-shamed as soon as she headed out for some pool time.
Jacqueline Adan, 30, took to Instagram to recount how she decided to wear a swimsuit without a cover up while on a vacation in Mexico—a milestone that left her ‘nervous’ but determined to enjoy the occasion.
But just as the San Mateo, California, blogger removed her cover up, she noticed a couple nearby had started making fun of her.
Opening up: Jacqueline Adan (pictured), 30, took to Instagram to recount how she was body-shamed after wearing a swimsuit without a cover up while on a vacation in Mexico
Evolution: The San Mateo, California blogger has lost 350 pounds over the course of four years and has since had four surgeries to get rid of the excess skin she was left with
‘When we were on vacation in Mexico a few weeks ago, it was the first time I had worn a bathing suit in a long time, and it had been even longer since I wore a bathing suit without a cover up,’ she wrote of the important moment.
‘I was nervous to take my cover up off and to walk into the pool or walk on the beach. I still felt like that same 500 pound girl… then it happened.
‘A couple sitting by the pool started laughing and pointing at me and making fun of me as soon as I took my cover up off.’
But Jacqueline then detailed how she didn’t let the couple’s attitude keep her from getting inside the pool and continue enjoying her vacation.
‘I took a deep breath, smiled and walked into the pool. That was a huge moment for me. I had changed. I was not the same girl anymore,’ she wrote.
‘Yes I still have a lot of loose skin, I may still feel insecure at times, and yes I may still get made fun of. To be honest, yes it bothered me. But I was not going to let people like that affect me anymore! I am not going to let what other people think of me stop me from living my life.’
Strong: Jacqueline didn’t let the body-shaming get in the way of her pool time, and she ended up getting in the water and smiling as she continued enjoying her vacation
Community: The blogger’s post, which she shared last month, has received more than 30,000 likes as well as plenty of supportive comments
She then pointed out that the couple doesn’t have any idea about her weight loss history, nor do they know about the surgeries she went through to get rid of the excess skin she was left with.
‘They do not know how I have worked my a** off to lose 350 pounds. They do not know how I am recovering from major surgeries. They have no right to sit and point and laugh at me,’ Jacqueline added.
‘That’s why I smiled. It does not matter what others say or if they try to doubt you or try to bring you down. What matters is how you react to it. How you feel about yourself.
‘Loving yourself just the way you are is hard. Others might not like that. That’s OK. I hope you love yourself. Love your body. I hope you keep doing you and just keep smiling!’
Jacqueline’s post, which she shared last month, has received more than 30,000 likes and plenty of supportive comments from people commanding her for standing up to her body-shamers.
Amazing transformation: Jacqueline was inspired to lose 350lbs after getting stuck in a turnstile at Disneyland in 2011 when she weighed more than 500lbs
Happiest place on earth: After she lost nearly 200lbs, Jaqueline’s fiance Kevin proposed to her in front of the Disneyland Castle. The couple visit the park frequently
The blogger, who openly discusses her weight loss journey online, previously detailed her lifestyle change in a candid essay.
She began by recounting an ill-fated trip to Disneyland in late 2011, before shedding the weight, during which she had to rent a wheelchair to get around and was left heartbroken after being unable to go through a turnstile.
‘I was mortified! Once I got out, I laughed it off, but at that moment, I had never felt so much guilt, shame, and embarrassment, and I couldn’t believe that I had allowed myself to get that big,’ she wrote in the post featured on Extreme Weight Loss trainer Heidi Powell’s website.
Jacqueline explained that she had been overweight most of her life, and the more upset she got with the way she looked, the more she ate.
‘It seemed like no matter what I did, I could never stick to any “diet” plan and would end up gaining the weight back, plus some, or I would just quit when it got too hard and would turn to food again,’ she said.
After spending so much time trying to stick to her diet and avoid what her friends were eating, she decided to give up so she could live a ‘normal’ college life when she started school in 2005.
But in February 2012, Jacqueline said she woke up after her 25th birthday realizing that she wanted to make a change once and for all.
Making changes: The 30-year-old was plagued with excess skin hanging from her stomach and arms (left), and in July last year she had her first skin removal surgery (right)
Life-changing decision: Jacqueline joined Jenny Craig in 2012 and steadily lost the weight over the course of four years
Half of herself: Jacqueline wanted to shed 300lbs, but she ended up losing 350lbs
Rising star: Jacqueline often shares ‘before’ and ‘after’ photos of her amazing transformation on her social media pages
Jacqueline joined Jenny Craig, and the first time she had to step on the scale she broke down in tears. However, she was more determined than ever, and the team at Jenny Craig helped her to set a 300-pound weight loss goal.
In the first year, she lost 100 pounds, and by May 2013 she was halfway to her goal weight.
When she returned to Disney a few months later, she still needed to use a wheelchair, but she was pleased to learn that she was able to fit on all the rides.
During her second trip to the amusement park that year, Jacqueline had lost almost 200 pounds, and her partner Kevin proposed to her in front of the Disneyland Castle.
‘I was determined to get married in a non-plus size dress, and I told myself that no matter how long it takes, I will get married with the body I have worked so hard for, next to the man who was by my side through it all!’ she explained.
Come a long way: The blogger also shares photos of herself now compared to when she first started working out
Making a difference: Jacqueline previously wrote about fighting her insurance company to cover the costs of her skin removal surgeries
Despite her success, Jacqueline admitted that she found herself discouraged the next year when her weight had plateaued. She was also struggling with getting food down, which made eating difficult for her.
‘I started eating different foods and mentally had to tell myself that eating was not going to make me fat or gain weight,’ she explained. ‘It took a little while, but I was finally able to get back on the right track and continue my transformation.’
Jacqueline started boot camp classes at Fit For Life Solutions in January 2015, and she is now doing ‘intense exercise with cardio and weights’ four to five times a week while still following her Jenny Craig eating plan.
Uncomfortable: Jacqueline said that the excess skin left her with rashes and irritation, as well as neck and back pain
Weight loss journey: Jacqueline has lost 350lbs and been able to maintain her current weight
‘The number on the scale is not only dropping, but the inches are as well,’ she said. ‘I can actually see some muscle definition now, and I was so excited when I could see my collarbones for the first time in years.’
Jacqueline ultimately lost 350 pounds and has been able to maintain her weight. However, she was then left struggling with the excess skin that was left on her body after her dramatic weight loss.
Not only did it affect her emotionally, but it also left her with rashes and irritation on her skin, as well as neck and back pain.
Unforgettable: She bought a 3X shirt that was too tight on her when she went to Disneyland in 2014 (left). A year later she returned and got a new shirt in a size small (right)
So in love: Jacqueline is pictured with Kevin the day before her first skin removal surgery
‘I am still in the process of fighting my insurance company to cover the costs of surgery because they are deeming it cosmetic,’ she wrote at the time, but she was trying to stay positive while recovering from the first skin removal surgery she had before writing her essay.
Jacqueline has since undergone three more skin removal procedures, the latest of which took place in June.
The blogger has been sharing photos from her journey on her Facebook and Instagram pages, and she has accumulated more than 60,500 followers since starting her inspirational Instagram page.
After sharing her post about being body-shamed in Mexico, Jacqueline thanked her supporters in a follow-up message.
‘OMG I am so beyond thankful and appreciative of all of the love that has surrounded me after I posted about being body shamed in Mexico! Body confidence and body positivity is something I am very passionate about!’ she wrote.
‘I feel that there is so much negativity that surrounds people who are different and I feel that it is our job to raise each other up and not tear each other down! True happiness comes from within and being truly happy with yourself is all that matters.’