I’ve heard women say that after they have babies they feel much more in tune with their bodies. Like having the baby showed them what their body was made to do and they have a newfound respect for it.
I don’t feel that way. At all.
Maybe it’s because my body proved to be not very good at being pregnant – I was horribly uncomfortable the whole 42 weeks, and yes, I went to 42 weeks and had to be induced. Maybe it’s because I’m almost 30 years old and I’ve only been pregnant once, for less than a year. (And I don’t really plan on being pregnant again).
After 42 weeks of feeling uncomfortable and not at all like myself, and then 6-plus weeks of healing from birth, my body became mine again, but so much was different.
My belly is much more elastic. I have stretch marks across my stomach. My hormones are still going wild 7 months later. I am scarred, literally. I am thankful that my body could handle the pregnancy in the end – there was some question about that – but I also felt a little betrayed by how it reacted. If this is really what is was made to do, then why did it end up being so hard?
Still, I know that my pregnancy could have been a lot more uncomfortable and a lot more dangerous. I was at risk for things like ectopic pregnancy, early miscarriage and gestational diabetes that I was very lucky to have avoided. My blood pressure stayed low and she was born healthy.
But now that she’s here it’s so much easier to complain that I want my old body back. In fact, I want better than my old body back. I’ve heard other say it and I’m jumping on the bandwagon – I don’t want to be the ‘Fat Mom.’
I want to be an example to her, and I also don’t want to reach a point when she’s embarrassed of me. I don’t want to reach a point when she doesn’t want to do an activity because she doesn’t think I can physically handle it. I want to be energetic and ready to go when she says she wants to try something new. I want to try new things by myself so she knows it’s okay to go in blind. (Like the Hip Hop class I signed up for this fall – more on that later, I’m sure).
I don’t think I’ll ever be classified at thin, but I want to be not fat and not tired all the time. I want to be able to put on anything in my closet and feel good about how I look and how I’m representing myself. I want to be able to say no to myself and yes to her more often.
I want her to know I’m working on it.