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Learning to love my body again one day at a time. (Rachel)

Hi there,

I am going to start at the beginning. Well I had always wanted to be a mother I had my first baby at the age of 22. I didn’t plan it and it took me and my partner of three years by surprise.

I had a beautiful boy 11 years ago weighing 9lb 9oz. It was an induced labour and i ended up with a 3rd degree tear into my bottom and over 50 stitches. Times were hard. It would seem that the healing process was more than I could bear and I suffered with post natal depression for 2 years afterwards.

I was too scared to try again for another baby for 7 years because I kept having flash backs to my first labour.

We had a lot of love to give and after 3 years trying to conceive and and operation to help with fertility we were blessed to have a beautiful 9lb 2oz girl.

We decided to try again for another baby and 6 months ago we had a boy 8lb 11oz.

I have always had low confidence my belly in particular has upset me over the years. It hangs especially if I am on all fours or over the top of clothes. I have been working out 3 times a week for the past 3 months to try and lose weight but I know that loose skin is forever a part of my journey and the journey many of us take to become a mother.

I think being a Mother is one of the most unselfish things a person can do. I am learning that my body is an amazing thing. It nourished and grew three beautiful babies. It is the only body I have and as I look around I see more and more people like me.

In some ways we are all warriors. We are braver than I knew possible and have all earned our stretch marks loose skin and wobbly bits. For every time you dont like your stretched belly there would be someone else who would give anything to be a parent regardless of how they look, someone who wishes they could be a mother as well.

I would have never dreamed of showing my tummy or lifting my shirt in public but if this helps just one other person with their journey to self acceptance then it was all worth it. It is ok to not like what you see in the mirror at times we all feel like that but dont lose sight of the person you are on the inside. Youre a mother and probably a damn good one be proud!

My photo is 6 months post partum after baby #3 x

061615-rachel-1

in Belly, Infertility, Mom over 30, Positive Body Image/Words of Enouragement, Postpartum, Submissions, Third Pregnancy

5 comments… add one

  • AnonymousAndSad Tuesday, June 16, 2015, 8:11 pm

    I’m so sorry, but this website is not nearly as helpful as I thought it would be. Everyone who writes and shares their pictures on here is perfect! And then the commenters tell them what I can already see, which is how beautiful they are, and it makes me feel all that much worse. Knowing that even in the realm of post baby bodies – im still not good enough! I’m ugly, and will always be.
    I am very ugly compared to each and every woman who has posted here. I’m not fat, but I am a size 10, which is considered fat by today’s standards.
    I found this site after Googling “I wish my husband found me appealing.” He says he does, and he tries to tell me he thinks I’m pretty, and he loves my body, and he loves me so much, but I know he doesn’t because our lack of intimacy screams otherwise. If we have sex once a week he’s happy. How can I feel beautiful when I know most husbands wish their wives would give them more, I’m very willing, and he doesn’t want more?? The answer is that I must not be attractive enough for him. So I wish he’d stop lying and telling me how pretty I am. It’s cruel and painful!
    Then finding a site like this, and expecting to see pics of women like me, and seeing all of these perfect, flawless beautiful women, I can now understand why my husband no longer desires intimacy.
    Thank you for listening to me vent. On a positive note, you all ARE beautiful, and although I am envious and there’s a part of me that wishes I could look like all of you, I am very happy for you.

  • Shannon Wednesday, June 17, 2015, 5:25 am

    I think you look absolutely beautiful! You look so tone to me. Yes, you have some loose skin, but you look very fit to me! Congrats on your 3 children. I am sorry to hear about your traumatic 1st birth. That is a large baby to birth for a first time mommy :) Be proud!

  • Kim Thursday, June 25, 2015, 9:18 pm

    Hey Belly Buddy! I also grow big babies. My first was over 11lbs, and the other 3 kids ranged from 9lbs to 9lbs 14oz. First two were c-sections and then I had 2 vbacs. I had a 3rd degree tear with #3 and had stitches everywhere so I made my doctor wait to deliver #4 because I wanted an epidural just in case I tore again. #4 popped right out with only 3 stitches :-) My tummy looks just like yours – have you ever tried sweetlegs? They’re a legging that’s all the rage up here in Western Canada and I know you can order them in the states. The waistband is magical – it’s not too tight and not too loose and doesn’t make a muffin top. So I just pull it up over everything that flaps when I need smooth lines and go on my merry way. I also wear a bikini because I’m too old to give a crap what other people think about how I look, and I have friends who would give anything to have a body like mine because I was able to grow a baby…. Just like you said :-) Rock on and thanks for sharing!

  • Rachael Thursday, July 9, 2015, 5:16 am

    Hi ladies its me Rachael the belly photo yep that one up there above. Dear sweet anonymous and sad. I will let you in on a little bit of info hope this helps… me and my partner are lucky to be intimate once a month. Thats right… In between the exhaustion of three kids and the opposite shifts we work its crazy we are like passing ships in the night. I am also an Australian size 14. I think this was just the best angle of my tummy that I could get and with me being a bit terrified of sharing it i wanted to use the best photo in retrospect though for all intent and purposes i should have maybe picked another. I am sorry you feel your partner is not as attracted to you. I bet you are the most wonderful person and he loves you and your precious baby that you have together. I bet he still finds you attractive and extremely sexy. Sex after kids is a lot different too in many ways other than the physical perception of how we see ourselves theres also little different sounds and things feel a bit different too. At first it can be a little weird and self esteem takes a while to build back up. I remember missing my old tummy i used to have a really sweet belly button. Oh it was pretty darn cute for a belly button but these days it looks completely different and thats ok. It is what it is and I used to mourn my old self but the older I get the more accepting of imperfections I have become. I find women of all ages all shapes and all sizes attractive and though I like men I can admire the beauty in other women. Theres something really beautiful about mothers. The person I was before becoming a parent was not a very nice one. I was so self centred and focused on my looks my clothes my everything. I dont like that woman I used to be. I like the mother I have become. The one who has flaws but has so much love to share. How time has helped me to learn to love. I hope you find peace within yourself and time makes you feel better trust me I bet youre worth every little bit of kindness. Take care. To all of you thanks for your responses and have a beautiful day. Xox

  • Katrina Tuesday, July 14, 2015, 6:25 pm

    I have big babies, too! And I have all the loose, stretched skin to prove it, LOL. My smallest baby was 8.1 pounds and my biggest was 10.7 pounds. I have birthed NINE babies. And I’m currently pregnant with my 10th. After this one is born, I will post a picture of MY body…and I believe it will just about make everyone on here LOVE their post-pregnancy body! Because, yeah….ten. Ten is a lot of stretching over the years ;)

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