At first glance, I hated it. During my pregnancy I only gained 35 pounds. Hard to believe with a twin pregnancy, right? I put oil on my belly every single night and made sure to never skip this routine. Shortly after my C-Section and once I lost all the water weight, I took a glance in the mirror and started to see just how much my body has changed from entering motherhood and the nit-picking began. My fiancé has done a great job with having his quick and easy compliments ready to spew out once I start commenting on these changes. It’s not the first time he has reminded me how beautiful my “mom bod” is and it certainly won’t be the last.
I know a lot of you – my dear readers – are mamas too, so today I want to chat about our mom bodies. I want to write honesty about the changes my body has gone through since becoming a mother and how I’m owning each change.
HERE ARE 5 WAYS MY BODY HAS CHANGED WITH MOTHERHOOD AND HOW I’M OWNING IT:
More Body Weight
With my pregnancy, I gained 30-35 pounds. That’s a lot of weight for a petite woman! I was lucky to lose majority of that weight when I was breastfeeding for 2 babies. I was told by several nurses to make sure I was eating 500-1000 additional calories than I normally would because I was breastfeeding. As soon as my girls were cleared to come home, my supply dropped. Juggling newborns on top of a household meant ordering out, my fiancé’s favorite; pizza cooked in the oven, and many unhealthy meals. I’m thankfully back at my pre-pregnancy weight but I’m carrying it differently than I did before. This is the hardest change my body went through when entering motherhood.
How I’m owning this? I’m slowly getting used to my curvier self and learning to love my figure. It carried 2 healthy babies and operates exactly how I need it to. I do want to be a healthy mama for my girls, so my main goals are to eat healthy foods (like lots of veggies and whole grains) and exercise daily. It’s challenging but I’m trying not to be too hard on myself and reminding myself that each day is a fresh new start!
Motherhood = Thinner Hair
My hair fell out in clumps postpartum. It was frightening! To be honest, I’m still dealing with it but day by day, the hair loss seems to be getting better. I have always had a full head of thick, curly hair. To most, it probably looks the same as it did before I had babies. But the saying “you know yourself best” is so true. I remember washing and brushing my hair pre-babies and I distinctly remember not having my hair wrapped around my fingers in wads. How I’m owning this? I’ve discovered the wonderful world of hair masks, oils and vitamins. I treat myself to a self care day every week where I lather my hair up in oils and soak in a bath and religiously take my vitamins every morning. These are the vitamins I take!
The body change everyone hopes to dodge with motherhood: Stretch Marks
It was so weird – I didn’t have one single stretch mark while my girls were still in my belly and then – boom! – babies are born and I’m left with stretch marks on my stomach and hips. How I’m owning this? I stopped paying attention to them and giving them power over my mood as challenging as it can be when you’re standing in the mirror. I view them as battle scars that prove I’ve carried 2 precious babies in my womb and helped them enter this world. How do you feel about your stretch marks?
Is it just me, or does a person’s skin chemistry change after having babies? I’ve always had problems with large pores and oily skin, but my condition only got worse postpartum. Not only do I still deal with breakouts at 26, but I’ve started to battle under eye circles like most tired mamas. How I’m owning this? When I see the bags forming beneath my eyes, I’m reminded that I need to REST. It’s such a foreign word to moms, right? We often put our children and husbands before ourselves and forget that we need to take care of our bodies in order to take care of our clan. Better sleeps and taking a little time to give myself a DIY facial helps me take care of my skin.
This is something I have always struggled with even before having babies. I remember when I was younger I asked my aunt to buy me makeup so I could put it on the back of my legs to hide the stretch marks and cellulite that I was so self conscious of. I was just looking at my daughters the other day and realize they too, have cellulite even as babies. How I’m owning this? If babies have cellulite with their perfect, angelic skin, it must be a reminder that it’s completely natural to have those little dimples in our skin. I realized I am not the only woman struggling with the idea of having cellulite and instead of hiding it, I embrace this chapter of motherhood.
My goal this summer is to appreciate my mom bod and not let any of these changes prevent me from enjoying life to its fullest with my girls. I want to swim in the lake with my daughters – instead of thinking about the size of the stretch marks, I want to think about the size of my smile. Or go camping with my family – instead of thinking about the state of my hair, I want to think about the state of my heart. Even just a walk around the neighborhood with my girls – instead of thinking about the imperfect cellulite on my legs, I want to show my girls they’re imperfectly perfect as they grow.
Thank you for letting me be transparent with you and sharing these simple mindset shifts. Read more about mindset here!