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Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Say Goodbye to Your Pre-baby Body

Putting pressure on yourself to get your body back to how it looked before you got pregnant is holding you back.

That's right. I said it.

We moms get so fixated on our bodies and what it isn't doing or what it isn't looking like. We stand for what surely amounts to hours, looking at ourselves in the mirror. We tug and pull at skin, find stretch marks we never saw before, question whether our boobs will forever be deflated after breastfeeding, have bellies that can't quite seem to get flat ... the list goes on.

And after these agonizing self-critiquing episodes, we usually walk away from the mirror, depressed, and throw on something that darn sure better not be form-fitting. "Flowy and loose," you tell yourself. A must. Heaven forbid we be reminded of our jiggles and fleshy parts as we navigate our days.

But what if we just forgot about what we used to look like?

What if we used this as an opportunity to be a new version of ourselves? Whatever that might be. Imagine how much better we would feel. Gone would be the pressure of looking the same way you did in those/that _____ (you fill in the blank). Right?

Because let's face it. Even if we do get back down to our pre-pregnancy weight, our bodies are not the same. For me, my stomach has loose skin. I have crazy veins in my legs that I didn't have before. My muscle tone darn sure isn't what it used to be -- to name a few.

After both of my pregnancies, I was so happy to finally hit that number. Geez, why do we put so much value on a stupid number? I did it. And I know better. But there's just something so satisfying about hitting that silly number. It's like a soap bubble that jumps into the air while you're doing dishes, and you catch it in your hand. Ha! Gotcha!

But oftentimes once we hit that number, we are immediately still dissatisfied because our bodies are different. Maybe it's the skin. Maybe it's the cellulite that wasn't there before. Maybe your posture sucks now. Or maybe your joints are all jacked up. Or maybe ... any of a number of things.

I'd like to suggest we look at pregnancy as an opportunity for us to become new versions of ourselves. And with each pregnancy, is another chance to be renewed.

I'm not suggesting you don't work hard to lose the baby weight. By all means work to do that, if that's what's important to you. But if it's not important to you, don't put pressure on yourself to force something you don't even want.

What's great is that we all have the freedom to decide what's best for us.

I'm just encouraging all of us moms to be kinder to ourselves. Don't stare at yourself in the mirror in shame or disappointment. Instead, embrace it. All of it. For you are an awesome woman who had a child and that-- all of that-- is beautiful.




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