Emotions Lifestyle Obesity Travel

Overweight On A Plane

I’m going away for a few days on a trip that I’m really looking forward to, but with the excitement comes hesitance. I posted about it last month, and I’m excited to say that I’m 10 pounds smaller than I was when I wrote the post in August. But the anxiety and dread is still there. And it’s a little worse because this flight will be about an hour longer than the last one.

It’s not so bad when I fly with my boyfriend, but he’ll be staying in NY after bringing me to the airport…Sad…just saying.

Anyway, I can’t sump up my feelings anymore than I did in the last post so if you’ve already read it, please excuse the repost. Either way, feel free to wish me luck on my flight. I prefer to sit alone, as I’m sure the person sitting next to me (if there is such a person) would too. But if that’s not possible, I hope I’ll sit next to someone who is polite.

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Originally posted on August 5, 2009

I love to travel, and traveling by air is certainly most efficient for me since I love relaxing on Caribbean islands and because my closest family member lives over a thousand miles away. But the love I have for traveling and for my family is mixed with anxiety because I am an overweight passenger.

I fit into the seat, and with the help of an extension, I am able to buckle myself in. I just board the plane early then discreetly ask for a seat belt extension before carefully making my way to the back of the plane (where people are less likely to be sitting right next to me.)


Sitting next to someone on an airplane when you’re obese (err, at least when you’re obese and your name is Kenz) creates the kind of dread that I cannot begin to express. And unless you’re fat (or have ever been fat) you just cannot possibly understand.

So when I arrive at the airport tomorrow, I will look for a customer service agent who seems polite and ask if there is anyone in the seat next to me. If so, I will ask if there is a seat on the plane in which the seat next to me could be free.

If I can sit alone then I’ll take a deep breath and be extremely thankful. If I have to sit next to someone then I will pre-board, ask for the seat belt extension, take my window seat then stay seated until the plane lands. And I will hope, with all of my being that the person next to me understands.

After all, I don’t spill over into the next seat. I can even put the arm rest down if my neighbor wants to be a jackass wants to use the tiny armrest. But I hate the thought of crowding someone, especially someone who seems bothered by it. And believe me, I’ve been seated next to those people (thankfully not many times.)

I will never be able to explain to anyone how difficult it is to hope that no one causes a scene on a plane due to my size. And I will never be able to help anyone comprehend how it feels to wish for nothing more than to be invisible.

But I am going to get on a plane in a few hours because life will not wait for me to achieve my goals. The difference this time is that I know I’ll be smaller next time. I’m 37 pounds smaller this time, and I look forward to the day when I will no longer need a seat belt extension. Until then, wish me luck because I’m definitely going to need it tomorrow.

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2 Comments

  • Reply
    Foodie McBOdy
    September 23, 2009 at 2:53 pm

    I will be thinking of you and wishing you a comfortable, stressfree flight. I recently flew and sat next to a man who was quite large. I could tell that he was just stressing and had probably been harassed terribly in the past. He kept apologizing for his size and I felt so bad for him. Unfortunately he was in the dreaded middle. I tried to be as reassuring and kind as possible, but the guy on his other side was an ass. ARGH.

  • Reply
    Anonymous
    September 27, 2009 at 5:55 am

    You can sit by me anytime.

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