I have been a rather small person my whole life, so pregnancy and the weight gain that came with it was an interesting experience for me. The pregnancy itself was great for the most part, and I am extremely thankful and appreciative for that. However, there were still moments during pregnancy and postpartum where I was less than excited about the changes taking place inside and outside of my body. While I was pregnant, I remember thinking that it was impossible for my stomach to stretch any further and I felt like there was no where else for any extra weight to go.
After I gave birth, my body was completely different and I hated it. My friends gained beautiful curves after their pregnancy, but I was stuck with a flat butt, jiggly midsection, even skinnier legs, and huge boobs that were painful. I was able to get into my pre pregnancy clothes, but they just didn’t fit quite like they did before. I thought everything I owned was unflattering on me. My partner, Jay, thought I was being hard on myself. He thought I was as beautiful as ever, but I didn’t believe him. I had this expectation that I had to “bounce back” a month after the baby was born, and I know now that it is extremely unrealistic, but I just wasn’t completely comfortable in my body On top of not liking the way I looked, I felt like I could not talk about how I was feeling because I was still considered small. I thought my feelings would be dismissed because I still looked “normal”, but I was struggling with my postpartum body. I realize now that I was being really unfair to myself by not sharing my experience. Even while writing this I’m fearful of how people will perceive me talking about body insecurities, while looking at a picture of my small frame.
One day, I was looking in the mirror and sucking my in my belly when Jay comes in and says, “You know, if you don’t like it, just go to the gym.” It’s weird, but in that moment, I decided to fully embrace my body the way it is. If I work out, cool, if I don’t, cool. I have a beautiful family and I’m the happiest that I have ever been in my life. I carried a baby in my body. I delivered that baby! I use my body to feed my baby! I’m a freaking super hero, flat stomach or not. I refuse to continue to pick myself apart anymore. I am smart, I am beautiful, I am a mom, but most importantly, I’m me and that’s’ enough. I am 5 months postpartum, and the one thing I would say to any mom out there is to remember to love yourself first. We’re rockstars, we just have to believe it.
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