****This contest is now closed*****
I cringe at my reflection these days and I avoid having my picture taken at all costs. I know that I should just relax and not listen to my body image issues screaming in my head, but I cannot.
In my view, I am fat and I am hating every single minute of it.
I know that I will lose some weight once the baby is born, but there is still a long road ahead. And please don’t start talking about how breastfeeding just “melts the weight” off because it does not do that for my body!
I just got the book Does This Pregnancy Make Me Look Fat?: The Essential Guide to Loving Your Body Before and After Baby by Claire Mysko and Magali Amadei and it is eye-opening.
Aside from offering great tips on dealing with hormones, breastfeeding, and those offhand comments from strangers, this book helps to remind me that NOW is the time to be grateful, not hateful, of my body.
Yes, I have packed on some extra junk in my trunk, but I am also creating a little boy. I have a baby in my belly and my negative attitude cannot be healthy for him, even in utero. So what if my ass is now the size of a barn? I should just thank my lucky stars that he is healthy!
This is one of my favorite passages from the book:
- Thank your body for accomplishing such a remarkable feat.
- Remind yourself that you brought your child into the world with the body that you have, not the body you wish you could have.
- Accept your labor and delivery for whatever it was or wasn’t. Stand solid in the knowledge that you are amazing because you did your best.
- Treat yourself with kindness and compassion as your body heals and you adjust to your new life.
- Be a mother–beautiful, imperfect, and always learning.
I printed this list and now carry it in my purse. It is so difficult not to compare myself to all the media images of new mothers who lose their baby weight in a matter of minutes (Nicole Richie? Heidi Klum?) but the reality is that I do not have access to their lives.
The book interviews Ramona Braganza, a personal trainer to celebrity moms such as Jessica Alba and Halle Berry. Her program is called “3-2-1 Baby Bulge be Gone” and basically involves 45-90 minutes of intense exercise at least 5 days per week, starting at two weeks and no later than FOUR weeks after giving birth.
I don’t know about you, but there was no way my body was ready for intense exercise at just 2 weeks post birth. (most doctors recommend at least six weeks for full recovery).
One chapter that hit hard with me was the one about breaking the cycle. It’s one thing to hate your own body, but do you really want to hand that trait down to your child(ren)? The book reminds me to be mindful of my words and actions around my children. When I tell my kids that mommy can’t play with them or be in the picture because she is too fat it is not fair to them. They are completely oblivious to my size and just want mommy to be happy.
Does This Pregnancy Make Me Look Fat? asks that you listen to the comments you make about your own body and think about if you would like to hear those words from your child. I know I wouldn’t never want to hear my son say he can’t play soccer because he is too fat, so I need to stop saying that to him.
So this mommy is going to do her best to love her baby-building body more and stop being a hater!
Want to win your own copy of Does This Pregnancy Make Me Look Fat?: The Essential Guide to Loving Your Body Before and After Baby? (either for yourself or as a great shower gift for an expecting mom) Leave a comment below sharing the most bizarre comment you got when you were pregnant. For example, a person that I know (a male) once said “you must be pregnant again because your chest is HUGE!” (yes, it was true, but WHO says that to someone!?)
Share yours! The winner will be chosen at random on Saturday, October 24th at 9pm EST.