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Ambivalent Body Image – Struggling (Alanna)

May 13, 2013

Age: 24
1 pregnancy & 1 child
3 year old child

I want to start this off by saying that I have been following SOAM for a couple years now and never felt confident enough to submit my photos. I was in a very unhealthy relationship for 9 yrs with the father of my child. Just before I became pregnant, I was in the best shape of my life, I had never been more confident with my body image. I am a Martial Arts instructor. My pregnancy was extremely stressful, I had a partner who was abusing drugs and other non sense. I’m 5’2 and I weighed 130lbs before I got pregnant. At 9 months with my 8lb baby girl I weighed 185lbs. I wasn’t exercising during my pregnancy and could have been eating in a more healthy way. I wanted to have a natural delivery, but had to have an emergency C-section since my daughter was breech. After delivery, I was so unhappy with my body and i was still in an toxic relationship. I may have been suffering from PPD but I’m too proud for my own good most of the time and felt guilty telling the truth when i was assessed for PPD. I struggled with the pregnancy weight all through the first 2 years, I’m very active but I had to take control of my diet to get to where I am now.

I still feel like I am hiding. No one would believe it when I seem to be the most confident, bubbly and bad ass ( am I allowed to say bad ass on SOAM? Editor’s note: Hell yes you are!) lady that have ever met but I put on a good show. In actuality, my insecurities could eat me alive. My life has changed a lot in the past year as I got out of an abusive relationship and have been trying to find myself again after those 9 years. I just completed my first year of university. I’m a over achiever and a perfectionist, nothing is ever good enough for me. I am getting honors in school but its not good enough. I would consider myself a feminist and I am very aware of the false messages prescribed by the media to men and women concerning what the ideal body image is. I can think about it logically and I have great respect to the women who can take a stand against it but emotionally with myself, inside my own head I cant do it.

I guess I have my good days and my really bad ones. Some days I feel like it is getting better and I’m regaining my muscle definition. Its not my stretch marks that bother me but my loose skin and extra fat does. Everyday I run at least 3 miles and exercise, on top of my martial arts training and some days I feel like I’m seeing progress and other days I cant beat my naked self up in front of the mirror at least 4 times a day. I can take forever to get dressed, trying on pants after pants and hating how my tummy sticks out over top. I count calories obsessively and feel guilty if I don’t run far enough. I want exercise and diet to be a choice of health and not trying to achieve this aesthetic perfection.

Who would think a topless rights activist would be standing nude infront of her mirror eaten alive by her insecurities?

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15 Responses to “Ambivalent Body Image – Struggling (Alanna)”

  1. Katie Says:
    May 14th, 2013 at 12:48 pm

    Your body is so similiar to mine! I adore your pregnany pic it is beautiful :)

  2. mrspetunia Says:
    May 14th, 2013 at 5:30 pm

    What a beautiful preggo belly and a beautiful belly afterwards! I think your shape is lovely, so curvy and sensual. I hope the next time you look in the mirror you think, “Damn, I look good!”

  3. Traci Says:
    May 14th, 2013 at 11:55 pm

    your beautiful

  4. Veronica Says:
    May 15th, 2013 at 11:26 am

    You have the same shape as I do but I am heavier. My son is 9 and my daughter is almost 4. Will I ever be ok with my saggy floppy boobs?!

  5. Erin Says:
    May 15th, 2013 at 12:35 pm

    You look beautiful!! I know how hard it is to be insecure when you know that it isn’t right. I think you look great.

  6. Rachel Says:
    May 15th, 2013 at 12:50 pm

    You look amazing

  7. MHD Says:
    May 16th, 2013 at 7:15 pm

    You look amazing! Rock it girl!

  8. kathleen Says:
    May 17th, 2013 at 8:51 am

    you look incredible! Seriously! But i get the desire to lose the puffy lower tummy that all moms get. I never thought it could be done, but it can. Along with your terrific exercise doutine, add weight training. Muscles need lofs of calories to to function. More muscles u have, more calories you will burn off in a day. Also take a good look at your diet. I swear to you, diet is 75% of it. Cut out refined white flours and white sugar. It is so hard in the first two weeks cuz your body will keep having cravings and telling you that you need it. But you dont. After you have survived 2 weeks without it, you wont crave it anymore. I am also gluten free, and it has helped me get a flat tummy again. I wish you all the best. As I said, you look phenomenal now, but I totally understand your desire for more.

  9. Kristin Says:
    May 17th, 2013 at 11:50 am

    You look great!

  10. Hillary Says:
    May 18th, 2013 at 11:46 pm

    Hey do you have a facebook? i would like to chat with you about a few things….

  11. Alanna Says:
    May 21st, 2013 at 11:50 am

    Thanx all.

    @Hillary I’m Alanna GoldyLocks on facebook.

  12. Nicole Says:
    May 30th, 2013 at 9:11 pm

    Jealous….Your Breasts are WAY nicer then mine and so is your tummy! You are beautiful. Some day we will be 80 saying i was pretty then…i should have ROCKED it!

  13. Mette Says:
    June 6th, 2013 at 11:55 pm

    I want your stomach! Love yourself. You have one life, and it is short. Don’t waste time hating something as unimportant as skin.

  14. Rachael Says:
    July 3rd, 2013 at 4:32 pm

    Oh, sweetheart. Your story is so like mine. Overachiever, c-sections, unhealthy relationship, body image issues, PPD…

    This is my very first time finding this site; it is simply breath taking, isn’t it? Life saving too, for some.

    Anyway I think I was supposed to ‘meet’ you today. I’m 5ft 2in, I weighed 108ish lb and my kids were big babies 9lb11 – 7lb7 (the wee one was 4 weeks early!). Needless to say after that lot I have the suitcase of loose skin, and although I do have tiny boobs they are definitely not defying gravity anymore. When I look at your pictures I see sensuous beauty. Your skin looks smooth and soft. And could say that all day long and you would probably still feel the same. I do have some good tricks though. More habits of mind and practices really, than tricks, rachaelwantschocolatenow@gmail.com If you would like to chat please feel you can. I don’t have facebook but you can email. Rachael.

  15. Jo Jo Says:
    February 19th, 2014 at 2:39 pm

    You look great hun. XX

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