I know what you are thinking.
“What!? This woman likes her body more now that she did before children!? You’ve gotta be kidding me…”
But it’s actually true.
I have never considered myself a thin person. I have an hour glass shape with many a curve. And I’ve never been the kind of girl who enjoys working out or avoiding all the pleasures junk food can bring.
When I was a teenager I hated my body. Curves weren’t in and I wished I didn’t have hips (though I was perfectly happy with my upper half.) I tried to force my body into styles and fashions that didn’t fit my body type whatsoever and I cringe now when looking back at the photos. My mother assures me she tried to talk me out of many an outfit, but of course I was way too stubborn to take advice from her. Oh how I wish I had!
So what’s changed?
My hips are wider. My waist is thicker. I have stretch marks and scars in various places. My tummy is no longer tight. Never again will you see me prancing around in a bikini. I have a few grey hairs on my head and brown spots on my face. My teeth aren’t shimmery white, my cheeks don’t always have that natural pinky glow and I am starting to get wrinkles. Hmm, that doesn’t sound like a whole lot of positives now does it!
But that’s not all that’s changed.
I have a husband who loves me for who I am no matter what I look like on a particular day. I can dress up and I can dress down and he still accepts me for who I am. He didn’t marry me for how well I could apply makeup or how toned by abs were. He loves the person behind all that and that gives me confidence.
I have grown and given birth to two beautiful little boys. They are fully responsible for changing my physical appearance and yet I’m willing to do it all over again to bring another life into this world. My boys certainly don’t care if mommies hair is straight, curly or in a pony tail. And I’m sure they’d much rather I wear a comfortable pair of pants or bathing suit so that I am better able to play with them. That gives me confidence.
I accept my body for what it is. I have learned what kind of cuts flatter or don’t flatter my body type and I follow those rules. It doesn’t matter if I think the style is adorable or if it’s on sale. If it doesn’t work for me I won’t embrace it. The same goes for colours that I wear. I know what washes me out and what brightens me up, and I try to stick with the latter. That gives me confidence.
I am aware of what foods keeps me healthy and at a reasonable weight. I’m more conscience about what I put into my body and how it makes me feel. I lost my gallbladder after suffering from horrible attacks during my first pregnancy and it totally changed the way I think about consuming food. Before my surgery, I had to completely cut fat out of my diet for weeks because it literally was creating scar tissue in my body. It was a rude awakening! I am now able to eat fat again post surgery, but I will feel sick of I go overboard and it’s a good instant reminder. Besides, I notice when I make healthy choices I just feel better in general. That gives me confidence.
And last but certainly not least, I have confidence in my decisions. Being a wife, a mother and a Christian has given me a sense of confidence I never could have imagined. I am totally 100 percent confident in the decisions we make as a family and I honestly don’t care if someone disagrees with me. I am open to hearing others opinions and ideas, but I do not let them sway me in the slightest. Do you know how liberating that is? It’s a pretty great feeling.
So that’s why I am more confident in my postpartum body. I know where I’ve been and where I am going in the future. Come what may, scars and all.
Absolutely beautiful post, Carolyn! There are days I sometimes “wish” I can fit in my college day pair of jeans (that is completely impossible at the moment!) but then I also think how much more happy, confident and content I am than I ever was.
Great reminder for us all!
Such a beautiful post, Carolyn! A great reminder to all moms that our postpartum bodies are beautiful.
I meant to say we should be confident in our postpartum bodies 🙂 After all, they created and carried the miracles that are our children 🙂 If that’s not amazing, I don’t know what is!
I love this post and I feel the same. I have never struggled with my weight but after our 2nd I noticed my body didn’t bounce back like it did. I did the 30 Day Shred and it kicked me back in gear…but then I lost my toning and I could quite honestly care less. I still feel healthy and my bit of fluff in the mid section just reminds me of the amazing thing my body went through. Great post!
What a wonderful post! Easier said than done to have that confidence in todays look obsessed society, but something to keep in mind 🙂
Thank you Carol!
I totally don’t fit into the same clothes that I use too, simply because my shape has changed. But It’s a good excuse to change up our styles a bit anyways right? 😉
Our bodies have accomplished a lot – we should be proud of that!!
Toning up is exactly my problem too Sarah! I’ve managed to lose the baby weight, but I still feel pouchy. I know that will take a lot of work and probably won’t ever go back to how it was. For now, I’m not too concerned. I have an 8 month old!
Thank you, and yes, you are so right. The media is constantly there telling us how we should look post baby. I just try to remind myself that I’d probably look dynamite too if I had a personal trainer, nanny, hair and make up team with me full time! But that’s not reality, and those moms aren’t necessarily any happier than I am because of it 🙂