There’s no need for an alarm clock when you’re a semi-seasoned mama. My body (and boobs) act as ticking time bombs, and I wake up each morning just before 6. I’m always sluggish, because I haven’t had a long stretch of sleep since before my 7-month-old was born. Between his erratic schedule, the husband’s snoring and insomnia, I’m not sure when I’ll sleep again.
But getting good sleep is at the bottom of my list today. I’ve got greater things to tackle—like my closet.
I’ve always had issues with finding things to wear. The body that my children gave me didn’t start this problem, but never before in my life have I ever been so unsatisfied with my body.
Hey, I’m not fat shaming myself. I’m well aware that there are more important things to worry about than my postpartum body. But I can’t deny just how sad I feel when I look in the mirror. I cry getting dressed for work. I’ve just about given away all of my pre-baby clothes, because trying to get into them made me miserable. I still wear maternity clothes, and I am regularly looking at a body that doesn’t feel right.
I try to tell myself that it’s temporary. I won’t always look this way. But as someone who has always fought hard to lose weight and maintain a healthy weight, it’s so hard to be facing this reality. How is this me? None of this makes sense.
I weigh the most that I’ve ever weighed in my life. With my first child, I only gained 12 pounds and lost even more post-birth. Yeah, I know: Every baby and pregnancy is different. But what went so wrong this time that I gained almost 20 pounds—AFTER giving birth?
I’m struggling to lose the weight, and I can’t remember the last time I felt good in any outfit.
“Oh girl, you’re nursing" you say. "The weight will drop off after you wean.” (Honestly, I cannot wait to wean.)
“Rock those curves and tiger stripes," maybe your'e thinking. "Your body carried a baby. Be proud!”
No. Just ... no.
I am not proud.
Maybe I should be but, right now, at this place in my postpartum life, I really don’t like my body. I’m struggling to lose the weight, and I can’t remember the last time I felt good in any outfit. My husband is the most supportive dude on the planet. He not only reassures me that I look great, but he keeps reminding me that I JUST had a baby.
“Give yourself some time,” he says. “Be gentle with yourself.”
I want to be a confident mama for myself and for my children.
I know, I know. That’s how I should be, that's how I should feel. I get it. But right now?
Right now I cry when I see the saggy skin, stretch marks and the back rolls ganging up on me.
Right now I cry when I can’t get comfortable in the bed, because getting used to all of this extra body is just so incredibly uncomfortable.
RIght now I cry because I don’t know how I’ll recover from this, because I want to love my body. I want to be a confident mama for myself and for my children.
Here's what I'm going to do: cry. I'll cry now. I will also toss on those maternity leggings and a flowy shirt or dress, glaze a red lipstick over my lips and dab concealer under my eyes and fake it. Fake it all until I accept this new normal or lose some or all of this weight, until things start feeling a little more right.
Fake it 'til I make it.