I've been debating writing this article and posting a picture for a loooooooooong time...so here it goes!
For months, I thought my postpartum body would one day would be smooth, wrinkle-free and no stretch marks. I told myself over and over, "once you get back to your pre-pregnancy weight" or "when your baby turns a year old" or even "maybe you just need to try harder and really push yourself and workout more".
Two babies, a lot of weight gained and lost and then gained and lost and now 21 months after my second child and I sit here finally, slowly building confidence in my post-baby body. Those stretch marks represent 18th months of pregnancy between my two children, 18 MONTHS is a crazy long time friends! 18 months of loving and cherishing my growing belly and babies inside.
My wrinkly belly skin still looks like thin crepe paper from a smashed pinata but that's okay. My ab muscles never came all the way back together after a 9 pound baby and that's okay too. The skin above my belly button hangs over a bit and even that's okay. The point is, I could stand and look at myself in the mirror everyday and body shame those "faults" or "imperfections" or I could accept them...but even more than accept I could grow to love them!
Instead of stretch marks I call them love marks. That saggy belly? For my 21 month old it's the perfect platform for blowing raspberries. And for those split abs? While they may never look like the royal Kate Middleton after her mid-drift was seen playing volleyball shortly after the birth of her son, I'm grateful that God has given me two wonderful, sweet and rambunctious fun-loving children who I get to call my own.
Being fit and desiring to be strong for our children are wonderful goals! The problem comes when we lose sight of the bigger picture and obsess ourselves into insanity over a "photoshopped" celebrity picture we see in the grocery store checkout. My kids already see enough of the body perfection craze in our culture and the last thing they need to see is that message coming from their Mom.
All that to say, thanks for letting me share a little bit of my own journey with you. Hugs!
Curious why I love supporting families as a Birth & Postpartum Doula? Visit Doula...What? You can also follow along on Instagram #DaybreakDoula or Facebook
Alyssa Moulton is a Certified Hypnodoula who loves supporting her clients from pregnancy through the postpartum time. Her goal is to help each client feel empowered and supported in their birthing decisions. When not serving as a Doula, Alyssa loves teaching youth and adult cooking classes! From Healthy eating and meal planning to homemade pastries and baking themed birthday parties, she loves seeing her student's learn new skills and feel empowered in the kitchen! Interested in learning more? Contact Alyssa for a free consultation.
Autumn Alyssa, CHD is a Birth and Postpartum Doula serving women and families from Bountiful to Provo in Davis, Salt Lake & Utah Counties