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Three things you need to know in order to love your post-baby body

Posted on October 12 2017

"So let me set the scene for you: 

It's a gorgeous, sunny day and I'm pushing my new baby in his stroller through the mall with my husband when I get the genius idea that I need new jeans. I mean, I just had my son a couple of months ago and I was tired of existing in just maternity clothes. 

As I'm strolling, I stop in front my favorite store for jeans, Delia's. (I'm dating myself, do those even still exist?!) 

Now if you don't know anything about Delia's, it was basically a store geared toward teens and young women, selling itsy bitsy teenie weenie yellow polka dot bikinis, graphic tees and some killer ass hugging  jeans. That being said, their largest size was a 12. 

I head in, and happily (and naively) grab a 3 or 4 cute pairs of jeans in my pre-pregnancy size, which was a 9 and I make my way to the fitting room, leaving the stroller and my little man with my husband.

I whip out the first pair, and the struggle began. I'm jumping, grunting, and tugging, but these size 9's aren't going to go up my thighs. 

No biggie, right? I'll just go a size up. So I continue this pattern (you know, the jumping and squeezing and tugging) until I get through all of their sizes, and I'm sitting in the fitting room with a size 12 jeans that won't budge past my newfound big hips that I was marveling at just some weeks before but was cursing now.

So when I asked the associate for a size up and she told me that the pair I had was their largest size, I did what any reasonable, 22 year old, new mother who can't fit into some jeans would do. I broke down crying some real ugly tears in my bra and undies in the fitting room at Delia's.

When I finally pulled myself together a couple of minutes and "Yes, I am OK's" later, I put on my maternity leggings which were beginning to tatter between the thighs, and headed up to a plus size women's store, feeling defeated, feeling embarrassed, feeling angry and hating this new body I was left with after bringing a life to this world. 

This wasn't the first time that I realized I hated my body, but it was the first time in a while that I felt embarrassed about what I looked like. And I carried that with me for years.

The social butterfly who loved herself, her body, how it looked, how it moved, she was long gone.

 

And it took me way too long to realize a couple of things:

1. Its ok not to be a size 2 a month after birth. I mean, who even came up with the concept of "bouncing back"?

Not every woman's body "bounces back" after birth. Seriously. It isn't even meant to do that. I had to come to terms and accept that my body had changed during my pregnancies, and I had to be grateful for what my body did, not only for what it looks like.

2. You don't have to look like society's standard of beauty to love yourself.

Yes I'm talking about loving everyyyythang about yourself, without feeling the shame or embarassment. The cellulite, the stretch marks and the not so perky anymore boobies. Every woman is built differently and even then, we all somehow find something to nag on about ourselves. 

3. Loving yourself is a damn journey. It isn't going to happen overnight. It will require you to get yourself off the backburner and care for yourself; mind, body, and spirit. Learn to, if anything, accept the flaws that make you who you are. Change what you can, love (or accept!) what you can't!"

 

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