Humans of Mettamade is a recurring project that highlights individuals who are actively engaged in the body positivity + body peace space.
Q: Why Mettamade?
There’s something about having a connection with the people who make the things I use or wear in daily life. The pieces become that much more special and each compliment is that much sweeter because I can be proud of what I’m wearing. Metta checks all my boxes — local/small business with an amazing owner I connected with immediately; the clothing is beautiful, comfortable, versatile, ethical; and most importantly, it makes me feel good!
Q: Tell us about your body positivity journey.
My body has always been on my radar. Growing up I was self conscious that my body was different than my friends and because of a heart condition I struggled to participate in any gym/sport activities involving cardio. As I grew up, I tried joining gyms and getting trainers and it never felt right. So instead I felt shame, gave up, and started the cycle again.
Then in 2016, I started having inexplicable and uncontrollable vomiting episodes. Through a lot of research, tests, and self-advocating, I was diagnosed with Cyclic Vomiting Syndrome. In this process I eventually could only eat purée/liquids and lost almost 30lbs in 2-3 months. During this time I went to my cousin’s wedding and everyone told me how incredible I looked. When I finally began treatment, the weight started coming back, and fast. I felt so guilty. I’d been “gifted” this gym-free weight loss and I wasn’t able to keep it off. The happiness of finally being on treatment was bittersweet.
On top of that, my weight gain was so rapid that I developed large, deep, stretch marks all over my belly. I felt like my body kept betraying me. I tried to find ‘body positive’ Instagram feeds in an attempt to feel less alone but every individual with belly stretch marks seemed to have some big story behind it. My stretch marks weren’t because I grew a baby in me or had some triumphant weight-loss journey.
Through all of these physical changes, my body fluctuated and with chronic illness came new body restrictions. My clothing either didn’t fit or didn’t feel good. I couldn’t wear anything that put pressure on my stomach and needed to wear layers to keep from overheating. Working to let go of the control and figure out how to feel comfortable in clothing again is a practice. I tried maternity jeans even though I wasn’t pregnant (super comfortable and look great) and started shopping for more comfortable essentials like Metta!
In terms of movement, I started going to Goodbodyfeel a few weeks after they first opened and my relationship with myself and my body began to transform. Since then I’ve attended over 115 classes (many of them wearing Metta)! The safety I feel in that space allowed that to happen and I’m so grateful for all the connections made in that space, including Morgan.
Q: How do you incorporate body positivity in your life?
I constantly have to make decisions all day in order to keep my health stable and with that comes a lot of shame and guilt. I’m actively working on self-compassion and validation and every time I look in the mirror and can appreciate my body for all it can do and survive is a win.
I wear what feels good and approach movement and eating the same way.
Q: Tell us about your capsule wardrobe.
Comfortable and versatile — I love that Metta jumpsuits can go from work to yoga to evening out. Layers and pockets are a must. A mix of black and pops of colour — based off my favourites, my bright blue Monet top and my ‘jumpsuit that’s not a jumpsuit’ which is the mock neck tank with the cuff pant in all black.
Q: What's one piece of advice you can give others on their body peace journey?
If it doesn’t feel good, don’t wear it. Make clothing work for you — the rules are fake.
After completing a BASc in human behaviour last spring, Allie recently received her graduate certificate in infant and early childhood mental health. She has worked in various support roles for families, including nannying, for over 6 years and recently launched a new website to put a face to her business. You can find her on Instagram at @supportbyallie and @craycatbae, on Facebook at facebook.com/supportbyallie and at that new website at alliewitek.com.