…3 children did not show respect and have trashed the place.
3 babies, one of which was 10lb 7oz, a total of a year and a half (and counting) of breast feeding, getting older and quiet frankly not giving a fuck about the gym and it’s safe to say my body looks pretty different from 5 years ago. I gained over 3 stone in my first pregnancy because I craved cake and mars bars (well this isn’t limited to pregnancy cravings but is a good excuse) and I have no idea why but I assumed after I had my baby, my body would probably go back to about a size 12/14. I literally had no idea you still looked pregnant for at least 8 weeks post partum and when I did start to feel slightly normal after 6 months things would never be the same. My ribs are wider my tummy will never be flat and don’t get me started on my deflated boobs. I have found a few things to help me cope; so here goes:
1. Part of getting ready for a baby should be getting things ready to wear post baby. I packed away all the things I knew I wouldn’t fit for the foreseeable future and the skinny clothes I owned either went to charity or eBay. No point making yourself feel worse, unless your the type to get down the gym straight away, just don’t do it to yourself!
2. Figure out what works with your new body. It’s so hard, I thought I had cracked my style pre Rory then I had style crisis, after every baby I have changed again. I have now finally found a rhythm. I still need boob access so have to think a bit more about what I buy or put on and I make sure I not only like what I wear, I feel comfortable in it and it’s practical.
3. Stop dressing to look skinny. I kept putting things on thinking, do I look my slimmest? My main objective was to look the smallest I could. Why? For who? So I ditched that idea and started wearing things I wanted. I love the skirt, t-shirt look and it’s so good for boob access but I have big hips and I felt like this accentuated it…I love the look and I feel good, which after all is the objective.
4. Get some good underwear. I’m still working on this one but those few times I get undressed in a changing room or walk around my bedroom getting ready and catch a glimpse of myself in underwear you don’t want to look at your semi naked self and think there is no hope. Get stuff that fits so you avoid bulging and get stuff that’s pretty, it really does make a difference.
5. Stop getting on the scales. Who cares how heavy you are I’m back down to a size 10/12 but I’m half a stone heavier than I was before. And likewise clothing sizes are there to help you get the clothes that fit, not to judge you. Cut out the label if it makes you feel bad.
6. If your still not prepared to takle the body/clothes situation post birth focus on something else that makes you feel good, buy that nail colour you liked, get that scarf you fancied or buy those statement earrings. Clothes are meant to be fun (yes practicality aside we all know the main reason is to keep warm/cool/dry) but I bet you get a compliment and these things don’t have to be expensive. You don’t need a whole new wardrobe to make you feel better.
7. Find your uniform, something that works and you don’t have to think about. Parenting is time poor so for me Winter – Skinny jeans/massive jumper/boots, Spring – Jeans/Breton/trainers, Summer – Skirt/vest/sandles and Autumn – Dress/massive cardi/boots. Nope nothing new there but they are my go to outfits I don’t have to think about, I can dress up or down depending on if I can be arsed to put make-up on or not and it works for me.
8. Take a moment to look at how your child looks at you. Do they see the things you hate? Do they look at you and “think blimey love, those stretch marks are gross!” or do they look at you and if they are still little enough not to have the toddler attitude, they are probrably looking at you thinking, “Mummy your my world”.
9. I got rid of the full length mirror until I felt ready. I found I was feeling good then I’d look at myself and think “oh really woman, what where you thinking?” Then I would spend a good half our pinching and pulling bits of skin dreaming of liposuction. That’s not healthy so I stopped looking in the mirror. When I felt ready to put it back up I spend a long time looking at myself getting used to me in the mirror. My body and I aren’t the best of friends and we do have a chat every now and again.
10. When you fall pregnant your body moves organs to accommodate the baby. When you feel awful, fat and rubbish about yourself just think about what your body did. You did all of that and you did it while working/sleeping/running/eating/having sex…..the body is a pretty clever piece of engineering so appreciate that your body moved organs out the way, created not only a completely new organ (the placenta) but also created life. Give your body a pat on the back because when you think about it, it’s extraordinary.