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Friday, December 16, 2016

Learning to "Love" my Postpartum Body

I keep saying that I am happy where I am at. I say it on Facebook, in YouTube videos, updates about Calvin and myself. I say it out loud to myself, to my husband. But I don't know if I believe it.

Don't get me wrong, there are days I wake up, get dressed, and say to myself "you look good." There are also days I don't even look in the mirror as I'm getting out of the shower.

There are days I look back at old pictures of myself and think I looked sickly skinny! And there are days I see my plump pregnancy face and think that chubbiness actually kind of suited me. :) There are days that I just want to fit into my old clothes because it feels like a waste for them to sit around in drawers, never being worn. Some days I just want to take all that stuff to Goodwill and start over with the bigger clothes I've bought postpartum. But I fear that will make me feel like a failure, like I'll never even try to get back to my regular size if I do that. I feel like that will be admitting defeat.

There are definitely days I get mad at my husband for having gained weight since we first got together 7 1/2 years ago, or even since we got married a year and a half ago. I get so mad at him because, in my eyes, he has no excuse. I just grew another human life and am currently providing the bulk of his nutrition just from my body, what's Justin's excuse? And it makes it so hard to make changes that help me lose the weight when my husband isn't on my side too. Working out and eating better are simply just up to me at this point. Let's not even get into the fact that feeding Justin is like feeding an 8-year-old, he is the pickiest eater I have ever met. Healthy dinners for two are impossible. And I'm not about to cook two separate meals everyday either.

And exercise. My last semester of college I would go for short runs nearly every day. I started in the winter and the cold didn't even matter to me. I loved it. I enjoyed it. Even Justin saw me gaining muscle tone in my legs. I don't even remember why I started doing it. I wasn't trying to get buff, I wasn't trying to lose weight, I just liked doing it. I wish I could get back into it. Honestly, it's part laziness, of course. I could totally figure out some mommy-son workouts to do that involve Mr. Cal. But running, or stopping by the gym on the way home, just seem like a waste to me. To me, that's wasted time I could be spending with my baby boy. Mom guilt is real. I would feel so guilty for taking 45 minutes to myself instead of heading straight home to Calvin after work. And is it really worth it to look good but lose a few hours a week of Calvin time? For me, it's a tough decision.

And lastly, more babies! God willing, Calvin isn't going to be my only baby. We want many babies! So is it really worth it to get a nice flat tummy in the winter and have a big ole belly the next summer? I understand you don't just want to keep piling baby weight on top of baby weight, but what about muscle tone? Why even work on six-pack abs if they're going to be ruined again and again?

Overall, simply learning to love my body has been hard, it's been a journey, with plenty of ups and downs along the way. But what am I actually striving for? Do I want to learn to accept this body or put in the effort and work toward a more appealing figure that makes me happy again?


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