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Before, During and After My First Pregnancy (Anonymous)

December 3, 2007

I was so excited to get pregnant. I was not married yet, but I was engaged to the man I knew I wanted to spend the rest of my life with. I conceived in February and we got married when I was about 6 months pregnant, in the end of July. I loved being pregnant and showing off my belly, even though it hurt my feelings when people would make comments about how I looked too small to be so far along. I took great care of myself: eating well, never missing even ONE day of prenatal vitamins, and certainly never smoking, drinking, or using any kind of drugs. I experienced some depression toward the end of my pregnancy and postpartum (it didn’t help that I got a really bad haircut at 36 weeks) and because of the medication I was put on I was initially deemed unable to breastfeed. That was VERY disappointing to me. Some of you may say my body bounced back very quickly. It’s true–I never even got stretch marks. But in a big way these things are upsetting to me. Since I don’t have any bodily reminders of having my daughter it makes me sad, especially since I’m not even able to breastfeed (I was eventually approved to do so, but by then she was too used to the bottle). I had to watch my engorgement deflate and my milk dry up. I had to watch my body look as though I had never given birth. This isn’t always a good thing. I love my daughter, Natalie Grace, immensely. Please don’t doubt that. I know SHE is a reminder of the experience. But the truth is, in some ways I miss being pregnant. That was the only time in which my body truly looked like that of a mother (or rather a mother-to-be.) Plus I just miss feeling her inside me and, hence, with me all the time Please appreciate the beauty of the bodies that bore your children and for those of you who could, fed them. It is a tremendous gift and I think you all look beautiful and happy and I wish I could enjoy these first few weeks more instead of feeling so disappointed and sad at times. The first picture is pre-pregnancy, then 14 weeks, 26 weeks, 32 weeks, 37 weeks, 3 days postpartum, and 3 weeks postpartum with Natalie. Good luck to you all.


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13 Responses to “Before, During and After My First Pregnancy (Anonymous)”

  1. Sarah Says:
    December 4th, 2007 at 12:34 am

    When I read what you wrote, I could feel your pain… to see that milk dry up and not be able to nourish your child!!! :( I think it would break my heart in two if I wasn’t able to breastfeed my daughter and if I was left with no reminder of her being inside of me… :*(

    Your daughter must have been tiny, she looks so itty bitty! And so beautiful! Cherish her always!

  2. Melissa Says:
    December 4th, 2007 at 7:05 am

    You look AMAZING…And I mean during pregnancy you look just totally radiant and glowing and beautiful!…congrats on your little girl!

  3. Sam Says:
    December 4th, 2007 at 7:33 am

    Congrats on yer baby girl! I too got comments, with both my 1st 2 pregnancies, about how small I looked (my story is posted here: http://theshapeofamother.com/2007/05/37-wks-pregnant-w-2-anonymous.php )
    Im preg w/ #3 and showing sooner, maybe ppl will keep their mouths shut this time:)
    (and since U sound like Ud really like to breastfeed still, just know you still probably could, check this out: http://www.kellymom.com/bf/supply/relactation.html ) Good Luck!

  4. Grace Says:
    December 4th, 2007 at 7:42 am

    Hi “Natalie’s Mom,”
    Don’t feel bad that you don’t seem to have any “body reminders” of your pregnancy or of being a Mom. You’ll always remember the way it felt when your little one was kicking inside, and of giving birth to her. And, if it’s God’s will, you may even be blessed with another baby sometime.

    In my own experience, my “post-baby body” is almost exactly the same as before except for a softer, rounder tummy (which even the most rigorous exercise can’t remove). But my sweet 6-month-old daughter Angelina loves to climb on it and snuggle, and that’s what makes it all worth it.

  5. tiamama Says:
    December 4th, 2007 at 3:12 pm

    Could you be any freaking cuter?!?! You are so beautiful (with bangs or without :) ) Congratulations on your baby girl. Very pretty name.

  6. Kerstin Says:
    December 5th, 2007 at 10:44 am

    I feel for you that you had to go through PPD – so did I and I know how horrible that is. I also only breatsfed for 2 weeks because of it and it was very very hard to give it up. But please know that your daughter is just fine anyways and loves you and will grow up and be more and more fun every day. My daughter is now a year old and I am fine and PPD is only a bad memory. Things truly get better and work out the way they are supposed to be. Good luck!!!

  7. Sarah Says:
    December 8th, 2007 at 9:12 am

    You are beautiful, and no matter whether you have stretchmarks or not you have a beautiful mother’s body. xxx

  8. Rockpainter Says:
    December 27th, 2007 at 7:21 am

    I accidentally fell on this site when I was looking for before an after pictures for a paint and body site. But since I am here I couldn’t help but comment on how amazing you look! You could be a pregnant Mom model if you want. Oh and your baby looks beautiful. Congratulations!

  9. Jenni Says:
    December 31st, 2007 at 9:49 am

    Your post got me all teary! When I was pregnant I wished my body would just ‘go back’ when I had my daughter, everyday the the stretch marks got worse in the last couple of weeks, I begged for her to come so that they wouldn’t get worse. Reading your story and looking at thigs from your point of view made me grateful for my marked body. Thank you for your story!

  10. Drea Says:
    January 4th, 2008 at 6:08 pm

    you are sooo pretty!
    My boobs looked just like that haha. I know how hard that had to of been. It was like that with both my babies. 1st one wouldnt latch.. 2nd would but because of IVS I didnt nurse in the hospital. when I got out he wouldnt have anything to do with me. so i pumped and go tmajor milk duct issues.. was awful! I kicked myself for months over it…

    but knowing I tried and that my child is just as healthy im 100% happy.

  11. Stephanie Says:
    January 9th, 2008 at 12:42 pm

    Thank you for showing that real women and mothers don’t always have to be the ‘mother goddess’ type with stretch marks and rolling bellies. I appreciate them and their standpoint, and I honor them and find them just as beautiful, but sometimes feel degraded by their words against ‘perfect’ bodies.

    I use quotation marks because these are all labels, on either end of the argument, given to provide validation to the person who shows the qualities of those ‘types’.

    I don’t see why we can’t all be women and why we have to make each other feel bad — in either direction. You seem to feel bad because you don’t hold any of those ‘scars’ of pregnancy, which I feel is coming from the backlash of those who do and denounce those who don’t as not being ‘real women’.

    You are just as much a ‘real woman’ as anyone who has retained their pouch or scars. Don’t ever forget that, and always look at your daughter to know that you are just as much a mother and deserving of as much honor as any other who has been through this process.

  12. bonnie Says:
    January 9th, 2008 at 9:04 pm

    Stephanie, I think you misunderstand the purpose of this website. This place if nothing more than a place to share and support something that has been secret for far too long. It is not to say that one type of body is better than another, and in fact, I love that there are many shapes on this site to represent the many forms of beauty that is a mother’s body. It may be true that “mother goddess” types have found a haven here, but I passionately believe, as you do, that all mothers are “real women” regardless of how many stretchmarks there are. This is not a contest, but a place for support. I moderate every comment and I have not seen one that I feel makes another woman feel bad for not having any marks from pregnancy. Please, do not misunderstand support for one woman to be backlash against another.

    Peace.

  13. mama Says:
    October 25th, 2008 at 6:11 am

    i completely understand the feelings you describe, anonymous. even though no one “wants” stretch marks or scars, they do stand as a lasting reminder (a tattoo of sorts) of one’s amazing journey. i remember feeling like no one could tell that i was a mother and that upset me. i didn’t bounce back quite as beautifully as you did, but i definitely felt like i had been through something major and that i lacked a sort of tangible “proof.”

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