Being a woman is pretty incredible on many levels. Our power. Our will. How good posture and an air of self-confidence makes us stunning regardless of our color, shape, size or age. But, without a doubt, one of the most amazing talents we ladies possess is the ability to grow and give life to our (undoubtedly adorable) offspring. It’s a gift I cherish every time I look at my young daughter and a gift that has changed my heart, soul, purpose …and especially my body.
Whether you’re 3 months postpartum or 3 years, it’s time all of us mamas had an honest conversation about why our post-baby bodies are something to be celebrated. Growing a baby inside of you, giving birth, becoming a mother and being able to nourish your child with your body is just jaw-droppingly awesome. However, what that process might do to your body may be a bit harder to love. Truly, it can be. And it’s okay to say it. But that doesn’t mean that your post baby body is something that needs to be hidden, ashamed of, or to make excuses for. Regardless of how motherhood has changed your silhouette, it is something for you to celebrate.
Here are 5 ways to celebrate the beautiful body motherhood gave you.
- 1 // View your body like the miracle maker it is! Ladies, you created a life! Seriously. Stop, go look at your adorable kid. You did that! You made that life AND brought it into the world. A life that will change other lives and be important to so many people. A life that will make new life, and make your heart grow 3 sizes bigger. That is beyond amazing. Your body, its strength, and its miracle-making ways are amazing. So enjoy and cherish that incredible gift.
2 // Stop comparing your body to anyone else’s’! I’m sure I sound a bit like a broken record saying that. I mean, you’ve only been told to not compare yourself to others since kindergarten. But it is especially true after you have a baby (or 4). Just like no two bodies are the same before birth, no two bodies bounce back from pregnancy and birth the same. Especially resist the urge to compare yourself to celebrity mamas! Remember that those ladies in the limelight have personal trainers working them to the bone, nannies to man the children, and a closet full of spanx helping them look like their bodies bounced back like a rubber band from pregnancy. Bottom line: comparing your postpartum journey to anyone else’s is just going to set you back mentally rather than motivate you.
3 // Just do you and ditch the timelines. So many women plan to be back to their pre-baby silhouette by some sort of predetermined date. “I’ll be back in my bikini by summer” or “I’m going to wear my favorite black dress to my cousin’s wedding in May if it kills me!” Ladies, goals are always great…but seriously, give yourself a break. Your body has been busy for nine months growing a human life, it’s not fair to expect that the weight is going to just melt right off. And besides, not only did your body go through a major transformation, but so did your life! Becoming a mom is no joke and really turns your life upside down and inside out. THAT in and of itself takes some serious adjusting, so if you can’t be the gym rat you once were, don’t get down on yourself. Do your best and give yourself and your body time to adjust to this major life change.
4 // Don’t hide your postpartum body! Show it off! It’s tempting to wear those maternity jeans (they are oh-so comfortable) and the baggy t-shirts that hide all the things about your body that you are less than in love with for the foreseeable future. But that kind of mentality promotes shame in what your amazing body just did and how it looks. Negative thoughts never got anyone anywhere good, ladies. Celebrate and show off your new shape. Go shopping to find styles and clothes that suit your post baby shape and make your feel beautiful. Beauty isn’t a size, it how your carry yourself and the confidence you shine.
5 // Treat it with love and care. Just because you shouldn’t obsess about getting back into your favorite pair of pre-pregnancy skinny jeans doesn’t mean that you should let all self-care go out the window! Eat well. Move your butt (strollers and baby wearing devices are there for a reason). Leave the baby with your partner or trusted friend and go get yourself a pedicure sans child. When your body is treated with the love, kindness and respect it deserves….it will shine form the inside out.
Moral of the story? Don’t let your new shape and a few stretch marks define how beautiful you feel. Celebrate those stretch marks, you earned them over 9 long months of selflessness. Embrace your new curves, as they were made by the newest love of your life. Motherhood is a beautiful adventure….and you should celebrate the body that made it all happen.
Share with us! Tell us about your experience with post-baby body and what challenge you faced after giving birth. We might use your comment or question in an upcoming post.
Taesha is a wife, mother, and teacher based in San Diego. She aims to use her website, TheNaturalNurturer.com, to inspire people towards a healthy lifestyle through her family-friendly recipes and tips. Connect with her on Facebook and Instagram.