My babies and pregnancy changed my body forever. Physically, spiritually, and oh did I mention physically?
I gained nearly 35kg in my first pregnancy. I felt enormous, I was enormous, and that was perfectly OK because it was a delightful, healthy pregnancy that produced a delightful healthy baby.
But once that baby was birthed, and in my arms I was so shocked to discover that I still sported a sizeable belly. (and cankles that were out of this world!)
Snap Back, Bounce Back To Your Pre-Baby Shape...
As a youngish mother I felt a lot of pressure to "snap back" to my pre pregnancy state - and as soon as I had the OK from my doctor, I started playing badminton and exercising as much as I could.
I had the voice of a very loved family member in my ear "I didn't want to have a pot belly at 29, so I did 50 sit-ups a day" and that pressure to not be the "fat mum" was overwhelming.
My body never snapped back though. It shrunk, but the marks of pregnancy remained.... a tiny abdominal separation that I wouldn't become aware of for another 2 babies, and a squishy belly stay behind, to remind me of a belly that once held a 3kg baby.
My body never snapped back though.
The next pregnancy I was determined not to gain as much weight, and I continued playing badminton (with my doctor's OK) through the pregnancy. I was strong, healthy, fit, and toned. I had a glorious home birth, and my 4.5kg babe made his way into the world with ease.Baby
My body was now slightly more marked, slightly more squishy around the belly.... and the pressure to "snap back" a little further was still there.
Baby number 3 blessed us with an intense pregnancy, during which I was ill, and gained a fair bit of girth (this time I didn't weigh myself) We faced some intense challenges during the pregnancy, and after a stressful gestation, I finally gave birth to a perfect little boy, who was all of 5kg....It took well over 10 months to get back to a pre-baby jeans size, but my body bore the marks of three pregnancies.
It took well over 10 months to get back to a pre-baby jeans size, but my body bore the marks of three pregnancies.
I went to see a woman who created handmade dresses, and she looked at my soft tummy and stretch marks and said "YOU ARE TOO YOUNG FOR THIS... YOU GAINED TOO MUCH WEIGHT" I took the dress that she created for me (that looked incredible I might add) and sobbed the whole way home.
My body was ruined.
My body was scarred.
I was fat.
I was worthless. I was hideous.
But.... I wasn't.....
As I pulled into my drive at home I realised that the person with the issues was perhaps the dress maker. And that no matter what marks, and squishy bits and scars I bore - my body had achieved incredible things.
I found love, and I found positivity in the new curves, the softer belly and breasts, and I made a conscious effort to fall in love with my body all over again.
By the time baby number four quite literally fell into the world, I was SO in love with my body that I never weighed myself. I didn't have pre-pregnancy jeans, I had delightful skirts that made me feel like a goddess.
I didn't care that leggings weren't pants, they made me feel GREAT, so I wore them.
I celebrated my body, I gave myself time to heal afterwards. It honestly has taken nearly 4 years to rebuild strength, confidence, and continence (gasp) but taking that time and giving myself the space has been so worth it.
Now, I run, I lift, I rest and I truly care for my body.
I have this gorgeously supportive Facebook Group that I would love to join!
I wanted to invite you to join my free Facebook group called Polkadotsi Body Love. It’s all about helping women who struggle withloving their bodies and who want to wake up every day, look in the mirror and feel gorgeeous!
Polkadotsi is an incredibly fun and uplifting community where you can fall head over heels in love with your body!!
If this sounds like something you think you would benefit from, you can request access to join here: http://on.fb.me/1NYfrQy I’ll be waiting there to welcome you to the sparkliest corner of the web!