Stick with me-it’s a long one, but a necessary one! Every pregnant woman and mother has their struggles, but WE can find strength in them.
I found myself wondering “Do all women love their bodies the entire time they are pregnant?” I can’t speak for all women with my answer, but I definitely did not. It was even harder for me to love my body postpartum when my emotions were at an all time high and my body was continuing to change! Pregnancy and motherhood has entirely changed my outlook on hard work and balance and reshaped my perception about body image.
One of my biggest pet peeves during this process is when women say to other women, “Enjoy your body, because once you have a child it all goes to shit.” (now…maybe not those exact words, but you get the picture) When this happens I want to scream at the top of my lungs! That statement is so harsh and could not be further from the truth! Yes, of course our bodies change. You may get stretch marks, scars, or even gain a daunting amount of weight! However, the bottom line is that, we as women, need to stick together! We all recover at different rates. We have to listen to our bodies, BUT if you want that body to look like it did pre-pregnancy you bet your bottom dollar- IT CAN. Don’t ever think differently. My mantra has always been hard work conquers all and I truly believe this. If you want something bad enough you can achieve it.
Every woman is different, every mother is different. But the end result of a goal depends on the work you put into it. If you want to drop those lbs-you will do anything and everything in your power to do it. Trust me, I completely understand the exhaustion, the time commitment and everything in between. (Ivy is currently going through sleep regression & I feel like sleep doesn’t exist in my life right now) But, when challenged with these obstacles I find myself thinking, “Do you want to feel good about yourself? Do you want to feel confident in your own skin? Do you want to prove others wrong? Especially when they say right to your face “your body will never go back to the way it was?” The answer has always been YES to all of these. Of course my body is different, but it gave me my little Ivy and NOW I’m going to make it stronger. I want to prove to Ivy that- if you put your mind to something you can accomplish it. Mommy worked hard to get her body back- not because she is vain, but because she wanted to feel like herself and push herself. Determination is the core to success.
When I took a month of maternity leave from the gym I let my body heal and as I felt ready I slowly got back into it. Each day was different. I had my good days and bad days. I always reminded myself to have patience, fit in workouts when I can and try to control my eating (which lets be honest none of these things are easy). Funny enough, I found myself nursing Ivy and going into the gym before the sun came up-because “time” doesn’t exist when you’re a Mom. I’d get home just in time for my husband to leave for work. Although it was early-I made it happen. Of course not everyone loves working out and definitely not that early, but let me tell you–those endorphin’s helped my recovery immensely! I love knowing that I can see progress and it allows me to have my ME time (come on Moms we all know a little ME time is necessary). We all have different versions of our ME time, but mine is definitely the time I can get a quick workout in!
The point of this post is you HAVE control. Someday’s it might be harder to see- especially when you birth a child, or want to lose weight, but remember-the task is in your hands! It doesn’t matter how slow or fast you achieve your goal, but that you can achieve it! So, ask yourself -How hard do you want it? What are you willing to do?
Yes, Ivy is my first child and I’m sure things will continue to change- I’m not oblivious to that. However, I can tell you one thing that won’t change and that’s my determination. I want to love my body. I want to work hard for it. Life doesn’t stop once you have a kid! This one is for ME. I do not want to say I couldn’t do it. I want to teach Ivy that people can always tell you something-but it’s your heart and passion that teach you a lesson. Having a baby did not destroy my body. It’s only made it BETTER.