Before having my babies, I was that girl you probably envied. I was fit and fabulous, and everything I ever tried on looked awesome on me. Only thing was, I didn’t appreciate the way I looked. I seriously thought I was fat.
It’s funny because years later, I looked at photos of myself during that time and I couldn’t believe how thin I was. Almost TOO thin. Yet it was always in my head that I wasn’t thin enough. I know I’m not alone in this thinking either. Mainstream media bludgeons us to death with magazine covers of famous people, making a big deal about those who had babies and within a week are back to their pre-baby bodies. But what they don’t tell you is that those women we’re supposed to worship often have personal trainers who make them workout for several hours a day. They have dieticians who control everything that goes into their mouths. And let’s not forget that they have nannies who take care of their little ones so they can get this all done.
If regular people like you and me had these things, we’d be back in our favorite jeans from high school. For once though, I’m not striving for that. I just want to be my best, fittest self, and if that means I’m not a twig like I once was, so be it. I’ve learned to stop loathing myself and start loving myself again. It wasn’t an easy task.
First, I reminded myself of what my body did. I had three beautiful babies. My body carried them and nourished them. It’s nothing short of a miracle what a woman’s body is capable of. Next, I get myself stylish nursing dresses, reminded myself that getting my body back in shape was going to take some time. I’m mostly disciplined, working out 5 days a week. But I also love a good donut or a slice of pizza here and there. I’d rather enjoy my life than feel like I’m deprived. Even with that, it is still taking me longer than I expected but I’m becoming stronger than I ever was, both physically and mentally.
Finally, the most important thing I did for myself was to let go of how I thought I should look. I wanted to fit into some ideal image within a certain time frame. And when you think about it, that’s so silly. It’s good to have goals and to strive for them but being too rigid about them will only bring about disappointment. So will comparing yourself to others.
Find a way to be comfortable in your skin wear your favorite maternity clothes designed for before and after pregnancy, hold your head up, you just made a living being. If you’re not happy with how you look and feel, you’re the only one with the power to change that, and realizing that was one of the most liberating things for me. It will be for you too, once you stop striving for what the mainstream cult attempts to force you into obsessing over.