Childbirth and pregnancy are a hugely physical process. In the space of just nine months, your body expands to fit another human being inside of you – and then forces it outside once it is big enough to survive alone. It leaves us with stretchmarks, scars, excess skin, excess weight, and all the rest – and you can soon add sore breasts to the list once you start breastfeeding. It’s enough to make you hate your own body – but you can learn to love it again. Here’s how I did it.
Embrace Your Imperfections
The first step was accepting that my body had changed. Yes, I was no longer the same person I had been – but this was all for a good cause. How proud I was to think that I had born a child and managed nothing short of a miracle by bringing it alive into this world! Jasmine Tookes recently turned heads by posing for Victoria’s Secret with her stretch marks on full view, normalizing them. A commenter responded that she was proud of the marks that show her to be a mother. And she’s absolutely right.
Although you do have to wait for that 6-week period, getting busy with your partner again should be something of a priority. Doubts about your body, feelings of insufficiency, and even a fear of pain can hold you back and destroy your self-confidence. If there is some discomfort when you get back to it, consult with your doctor. Things change after you give birth, even if you have a Caesarean like I did – this can actually cause more pain and last for longer because of the damage caused when cutting through your tissues. Most pain issues can be resolved with treatment or advice, so don’t put it off.
Change Your Habits
It’s perfectly fine to slack off a bit when you are pregnant and when you have young children to think about. You barely have any time to yourself as it is, and if you prefer a hot bubble bath to going to the gym, then fair play to you. But there comes a time when you have to change your habits. I was carrying over two stone of extra weight compared to my pre-pregnancy size when I realized enough was enough. Getting fit again made me love my body more, and it also meant that I was taking good care of it. The last thing I wanted was to shorten my lifespan with the unnecessary strain of obesity.
Repair The Damage
Finally, once your children are no longer breastfeeding, you can think about yourself for a change. When I was sure I wasn’t going to have any more children, I decided to book myself in for a breast lift – the details on this page explain what it’s all about. There was a fair amount of sag going on after they had swollen up with milk, and now that was over, I wanted to feel good about myself. Having the procedure done was a small price to pay for being able to admire myself in the mirror and feel body confident again.
Loving your body is so important for your quality of life and state of mind. Don’t delay – start loving yourself again as soon as you can. You won’t regret it!
Written by Emily Green for Working Mother and legally licensed through the Matcha publisher network. Please direct all licensing questions to email@example.com.