I had a pretty great postpartum experience this last go round. Jamie was a pretty easy baby. He’s added so much to our lives. Ayva is adapting well to being a big sister. My husband is incredibly helpful. I have no complaints.
Except for one thing.
It’s been over a year, and I’m not happy with my postpartum body.
When I was pregnant, I loved having the big belly as an accessory to my regular body type. While I may not have been in top physical condition, my body felt and looked good to me. During my pregnancy, dietary restrictions helped me to make the right choices when it came to meal time. Now that the baby is here, all bets are off.
The coffee with loads of cream and sugar that I gave up when I was pregnant? The donuts I stopped eating? Pizza twice a week? Ice cream? They’ve all made their way back on the menu, and are wreaking havoc with my weight and the way I feel about my body.
It’s not even really about the weight, though. I just stepped on a scale yesterday for the first time in a month, so the actual number hasn’t been an issue. The problem is, I feel weak. I feel slow, not myself right now, and I don’t like it.
I know what you might be thinking. “Wah, wah…you have a cute little baby and you put on a little weight. Stop eating sweets. Start exercising. Get over it!” And you’re right. I want to, but it’s (and I feel like I’m making an excuse) harder than that. My baby is fantastic, but he needs a lot of attention. As much as I love snuggling with this little cutie, I do feel some stress about the other things I need to take care of but can’t because I need to be focused on him. Cookies? They seem to help.
Earlier this year I was diagnosed with postpartum anxiety, and the meds seem to increase my appetite. I’m always hungry! I’ve tried drinking lots of water to stay full, and increasing my fiber, but it’s still hard.
When I had my c-section, I didn’t have a ton of time to heal because my little guy was nearly 10 pounds when he was born. Nursing, holding, and carrying him was a strain, but I did it because he’s my baby and not doing it wasn’t an option that I wanted to choose. My core is still weak from those first few months, and it makes my entire body ache.
The aches and pain coupled with stress eating is hard on my body. It’s hard on me.
I already wasn’t feeling like myself, but with my body doing its own thing, I feel even less like the Brandi that I was before I had the baby.
I’m doing the best I can to stay motivated. To get motivated.
So, what am I doing? I’ve joined a Facebook group that’s focused on making healthy choices. I’m blending up green smoothies, not buying cookies and donuts because if it’s not in the house I won’t eat it, and haven’t had a soda in a few days. They’re small changes, but I’m hoping that they’ll eventually make a difference.
I don’t want this kid to know a fragile mama who can’t move or run. Having this baby was an answered prayer. If not loving my postpartum body is the payment for this sweet little boy, it was totally worth it. I just, you know, kind of want to feel like myself again. Strong, fit, and able to take on anything.