A New Zealand woman who claims she was publicly fat-shamed on a plane by the flight attendant used the hurtful comments to make a big change in her life.
Kayla Martin, a 25-year-old mother of three, shared her story on Instagram earlier this month. She explains that she was at the Auckland Airport in New Zealand on her way to Australia for a vacation. When she boarded the plane, already feeling self-conscious and wearing a baggy jacket to cover her body, Martin describes the humiliating moment she was called out over the loudspeaker because the seatbelt didn’t fit.
“The airline hostess found it appropriate to announce in the middle of a quiet plane that due to my size, I would need to use the seat belt extension that mums travelling w babies needed and maybe next time I should consider booking 2 seats to accommodate for my size to ensure a more [comfortable] flight for myself and other passengers,” she wrote on Instagram.
Martin explains how the moment of “pure embarrassment and shame” stuck with her. “I loved myself so little back then that I let that airline hostess treat me that way,” she wrote. “I [believed] I wasn't deserving of the same respect that she was showing the rest of the passengers because in my head, I was worth less than every skinny person on that plane.”
However, she decided to use the uncomfortable moment on the airplane as her motivation to get fit and transform her health. Martin has lost 71 pounds, but more importantly, she learned to start loving and taking care of herself.
“The day I started LOVING myself enough to start taking care of ME and nourishing my body was the day I turned a new page. Both my physical and mental health have transformed so much since then and I am so PROUD,” she wrote.
Alongside her post, Martin shared side-by-side transformation photos showing her dramatic weight loss. “The girl on the right side is a lot healthier, a whole lot happier and has so much confidence now (maybe a lil too much 😂). More importantly she LOVES HERSELF!” she wrote. “No matter your size or shape, colour or culture, you are worth just as much as everyone else. Love yourself enough to take a stand for yourself and doing things for YOU. The rest will start to fall into place from there. I am a walking testament to that.”