Congrats mama! If you’re reading this because you’re expecting or already have a little one, or even planning to have a little one-CONGRATS!
Pregnancy in general is freaking crazy. I mean you literally have a live human inside your belly! How wild is that?!
As wonderful as the miracle of life is, pregnancy & postpartum is rough.
You feel guilty at times for feeling so miserable or self-conscious & it just adds even more to the hormonal mess.
I started my pregnancy BEGGING to have a bump. Anything I could wear to make it known I was pregnant I was wearing it. Then by the end of my pregnancy I wanted to throat punch anyone that would say, “You’re so huge!” or “That’s going to be a HUGE baby.”. Like thank you for reminding me I’m fat.
All my pregnancy books said I should only gain 20-45lb and I gained 85lb. So if I wasn’t feeling self-conscious already, your comment definitely did it.
It’s hard not to get annoyed at these comments because by this time in your pregnancy you’re over the swelling, weight gain, and overall changes to your appearance.
No matter how happy and grateful you are for this little blessing, it’s hard when your body becomes foreign to you. Especially if you have struggled with appearance or body image in the past.
I was honestly naïve and thought the second I had our baby that my belly would go back to normal, the swelling would stop, and I would feel myself again.
HA HA HA HA HA HA. Oh, how wrong I was.
I think honestly I have felt more disappointed and sad over my PP body than I ever did my pregnancy body. At least being pregnant I had the excuse of growing a freaking human. But now that she’s out, what’s my excuse?
Writing this today I am 3 weeks PP and I still look about 6 months pregnant. But I experience cramping every day and they say that’s a sign of your uterus shrinking, right? And with having a C-section, I’m not cleared to exercise yet. I could walk but its 107+ degree here so that is a no for me.
My feet and hands swelled so bad during my pregnancy but I read so many stories of them going back to normal within 24 hours of giving birth. HA HA HA HA.
It took me about 2 weeks for me to recognize my feet.
I also got super lucky to not have any stretch marks while being pregnant. So you can imagine my surprise (and horror) when I got out of the shower 1 week PP and saw insane stretch marks all over my butt, lower back, and thighs. I stood there in shock for 10 minutes literally yelling WHAT THE HELL?!
And I thought pregnancy acne was a nightmare. HA HA HA. Postpartum acne has been even worse for me. All over my neck, back, and face are these huge painful cyst. I thought those days were over for me. But here we are 3 weeks and I am desperately trying anything to at least get the swelling down.
Pregnancy and Postpartum is not for the weak. That must be why women get pregnant and not men…
Oh! And these AWESOME boobs I had during pregnancy, my beautiful DD’s I’ve never had in my life! Now look like something from a horror movie. I’m actually happy at times when I’m engorged because they are perked up. And then I pump and it’s literally horrific.
I think times like these, navigating pregnancy and PP, it’s a good idea to stay off of social media or unfollow any new mom who is posting their 4 week PP banging body making you cry all day. Because this shit is hard enough without unrealistic expectations thrown at you thanks to social media and gossip magazines.
I mean it’s just not practical to look bangin’ the first couple weeks.. Or months.. Hell, even years.
How could you expect your skin to be glowing and your body to be fit when you barely have enough time to get a few hours of sleep in let alone time to exercise religiously and remember to drink enough water?! (And definitely not have time to brush your hair or teeth OR put on any makeup)
So I’m here to remind you that you are beautiful.
No matter how much weight you gained during your pregnancy.
No matter what your belly looks like or how many stretch marks you have.
You are a warrior and your body is a temple.
Please be kind and gentle on yourself. No matter how long the 4th trimester lasts for you. Your body literally grew an organ and birthed LIFE. You are a badass! Seriously how incredible is that?!
So when I start feeling down and self-conscious on myself (I mean I don’t even want my husband seeing me naked & you couldn’t get me to wear clothes before lmao) I stand in the mirror and practice gratitude & love for my body- no matter how hard it is that day.
Thank you for carrying me through a healthy pregnancy and postpartum journey.
Thank you for growing a placenta to give my baby the nutrients and life she needed to grow.
Thank you for adapting as needed to accommodate a growing baby and help her be the healthiest she can be.
Thank you for the strength to carry on each and every day.
Thank you for the strength to birth this baby.
Thank you for knowing exactly what you need to do to have a healthy postpartum.
Thank you for producing breast milk to feed my child exactly what she needs to grow up healthy.
Most importantly, thank you for giving me the miracle of life and the ability to bring my baby into this world.
I think we get so wrapped up in our image and comparisons at times that we forget truly what a magical experience it is.
I don’t mean magical as in sunshine and daisies all the time, but the fact that our bodies literally moved organs, grew a brand new organ, and tripled in size to carry and birth LIFE into this world. Excuse my french, but that’s fucking amazing.
So mama, it’s okay to have a bad day. And it’s okay to feel sorry for yourself. But remember, you are BEAUTIFUL. Forget society standards, you are a freaking GODDESS and don’t you forget it.
And if you’re having a really bad day or a bad week mama, that’s okay. Check out this blog I wrote on an especially painful day here. You are not alone.
Much love XOXO,