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Hoping to love myself again (Anonymous)

April 23, 2010

~Age:26
~Number of pregnancies and births: 3 pregnancies (3 c-sections)
~The age of your children, or how far postpartum you are: Children ages 7, 2 and 8.5 months

Some days I look in the mirror and see my reflection somewhat of a positive way. “The stretch marks and skin aren’t that bad after all,” I say to myself, “maybe with just a little more time things will get better.” Then there are the other days…the days when I look at my reflection and feel disgusting. The days that I can’t understand how my husband would ever think that I am beautiful. My husband tells me all the time that I am but I’m not sure that I believe him when he says it. Part of me feels like he is just saying it out of pity, to somehow try to make me feel better. I fear that deep down he really feels like I do about it….disgusted. I hate it when my husband touches my stomach and I am always thinking of how I can position myself so that my stomach doesn’t seem to sag so much. I worry that my husband will find someone else….someone more beautiful….someone less “used”. I know that I shouldn’t feel “used”…I brought three beautiful children into this world and my body let me do that, which is a completely amazing thing but that is how I feel. I feel envious of those who are able to bear children without as much as a mark on them afterwards. I worry because I am not the same person (physically) that my husband fell in love with and I am afraid that he will fall out of love with me. I want to be confident and happy with my body but I’m not. I want to be proud of it and what it has done and not feel that I need to hide behind bulky clothes and shapewear, but I am nowhere near that place. The idea of a tummy tuck is always in my mind. The thought that somehow if my stomach would be flat I would be happy… I could deal with the stretch marks….there is nothing I can do about them anyways. I used to be so confident…thought that I was pretty when I looked at myself in the mirror. Now I don’t feel any of that. I used to like when I got noticed…and now I just try to blend into the background…hoping that no one will catch a glimpse of me. I don’t want to feel this way and I want to be happy with that I have. I don’t want my daughter to grow up and think that she has to fit the world’s ideals of being beautiful and most of all I don’t want her to feel like me. I hope to get there someday…a place where I am at peace with myself and my “mom” body…a place where I don’t have a daily struggle with the mirror…a place where my body is not always on my mind…a place where I am comfortable. Until then I will continue what I am doing…sucking in….shapewear….baggy shirt and fading into the background…

Picture 1 and 2: Me now 8.5 months postpartum with baby number 3.
Picture 3: Me pregnant 38.5 weeks with baby number 3.

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7 Responses to “Hoping to love myself again (Anonymous)”

  1. heather Says:
    April 23rd, 2010 at 11:58 am

    you had 3 kids, and you lookpretty good if i do say so myself.

  2. Colleen Says:
    April 23rd, 2010 at 12:00 pm

    For 8 1/2 months post partum you look pretty darn good! Look how small your waist is! If you buy some clothes that really fit and flatter your body you would probably feel better than wearing shapeless baggy stuff all the time,

    I was struck by two things that you said…that you’re not the same person (physically) that you were when you met your husband. I have news for you…neither is he. Is he exactly the same weight and build that he was when you met? No? Do you still love him just the same? If you love him despite his changes, why is it so hard to imagine that he still loves you? Look at your parents or grandparents. They’re nowhere near what they looked like when they met and THEY still love each other (hopefully).

    Second, I find it significant that your put “3 pregnancies (3 c-sections)”…not three births. Maybe I’m reading too much into it but I know that after my c-section I could never say I “gave birth”, so I thought it was interesting you chose to phrase it that way.

  3. tanya Says:
    April 23rd, 2010 at 5:55 pm

    i honestly love how yur body looks! and its only 8 months post.. give it another few months of eating healthy and walking and yu will look amazing i know it! cuz you already do!

  4. mrs. petunia Says:
    April 23rd, 2010 at 6:05 pm

    I love how small your waist is and it doesn’t look like you are carrying extra weight. You look lovely, really. I hope that you are able to find some peace with your body, whether that be thru a tummy tuck or just a gradual acceptance of the changes. I will say that I had pretty bad case of acne for about seventeen years (really) until I finally got on accutane (an expensive and sorta invasive med.) that finally cleared it up. I guess I put it off because I felt vain taking it. However, now my only regret is not having taken it sooner. So….if you feel like a tummy tuck is the only way to make peace with your body, I’d say go for it and don’t look back. However, I do think you have nice curves just as you are… Ultimately, only you can know what the right decision for you is.

  5. Sarah Says:
    April 23rd, 2010 at 6:26 pm

    Three kids?! Wow! I hope I come away as lucky as you. I’ve been afraid to have baby #2, but if I could look as good as you… I’d be so lucky!

  6. kimber Says:
    April 28th, 2010 at 4:34 pm

    this hits home for me, thanks for this post. you look fab and i guess i do too but how do we make our brains truly believe that?

  7. Jenna Says:
    May 5th, 2010 at 11:25 am

    You really do look good. I have some of the same fears as you do, but really, our partners DO love how we look.

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