I want to firstly mention that this blog does so much good for mothers and I am proud to finally add my submission. I had my first child at 17. I had no idea what I was in store for emotionally or physically at the time. It always really bugged me that none of my female family members took the time to prepare me for what would happen to my body after having a child, but honestly… none of my female family members bodies turned out anywhere near as bad as mine. My mother had me at 17 and I was her only child, she never even had a single stretch mark. I went from being 16 and JUST FINALLY getting boobs and becoming a women to having my body completely changed. A lot of the reason my body suffered as much as it did is the fact that I am extremely petite, I am only five feet tall and have almost no torso.
My first child did most of the damage but with each child (three total) following it got worse and worse. I gained and lost weight after and in between each pregnancy as most people do and of course breastfed my children which made my breasts sag and stretch just as much as my tummy. I spent 7 years yo-yoing, trying to get rid of the weight which I thought would get rid of the skin, I wore hard, tight compression garments daily just to be able to wear normal clothing without my tummy showing through my clothing. I always wanted a tummy tuck to fix my tummy because I knew my tummy was an extreme case that could only be fixed surgically. My husband and I had our third and final child 02/14/2011 and we decided to have my tubes tied not only because we were done having children, but because we knew that at some point in the future that I would finally have a tummy tuck and would not want to risk an accidental pregnancy after.
In August of 2012 I decided I couldn’t live with my body anymore and for the first time in my life I was seriously overweight. My heaviest weight was 185lbs and I decided it was time for a consultation with a plastic surgeon. I went in and had a consult and we put our down payment on the surgery scheduled over three months down the line so we had time to save for the surgery and for me to kick butt and shed as much weight as I could before the surgery. By the time my surgery arrived on 12/13/12 I had lost 35lbs and was at my goal weight for the operation. I had my tummy tuck and now I have my body back. I feel so blessed to have a beautiful family, loving spouse and my self confidence back. It was hard work to lose the weight and save the money for the surgery but it completely changed my life.
The point of my submission is that the joy that comes with parenting doesn’t have to come at a cost. You can say I have my cake (my kids) and I am eating it too.
I included a collage of pictures before my surgery and some photos from after. The before pictures are after I lost 35lbs right before the surgery. The difference between the before and after photos is only 5lbs! All 5 of those lbs were skin. I also want to mention that with my tummy tuck I had a Mons Pubis excision. As many of you know, after having children (especially if you have lots of excess skin) your vajay-jay can sag and become puffy, the Mons Pubis surgery corrects it.
I wish you all the best on your journey of finding, accepting and loving yourself no matter WHAT works for you.
Three pregnancies, three births, children’s ages (8,6,2)