Nobody ever told me what to expect after pregnancy…it really isn’t a topic that is discussed socially or in the media. In fact, if it were even commonly heard of, I have a feeling a lot of young women would do everything in their power to keep their ‘bikini bodies’ in tact.
I found out I was pregnant when I was 19, I had my daughter shortly after I turned 20. She has been the biggest blessing in my life, but I always look at my body and it brings back a woosh of emotion. Mainly sadness.
I was always a very attractive and desirable girl… flawless skin, size 1, flat tummy, & a good heart. I was never vain. The only body issues I had every had was I felt my breasts were too small, since early on in high school I’d stuck with a size 34B. I weighed 115 lbs. pre-pregnancy, one year after birth I now weigh 120. It’s an extra 5 pounds that are here to stay. After my pregnancy, I had attained a few stretch marks that were silver the whole time, I did not realize I had them until after I gave birth, it was very disappointing to discover that I did have them when I thought I had made it threw with none. My boyfriend kept reminding me throughout my pregnancy that if I did get stretch marks, he would not be attracted to me sexually anymore. I feel that his cruel, thoughtless remarks are the reason that I held postpartum depression for so long. Many other flaws that probably nobody else would even notice: my belly ring hole had stretched out, I have a pouch and a crease that makes me appear as though I had had a c-section even though I delivered vaginally, my weight redistributed [I now have size C breasts which solved my breast insecurities; they are not as perky as they once were, but that doesn't bother me], but along with that came wide hips & a lot of loose skin which makes it extremely difficult to find a pair of jeans or a shirt that fits me just right that flatters. Along with my new breasts, I gained a big booty after my pregnancy. And I like it!
Amongst many negatives and few positives, my metabolism slowed down dramatically making me prone to weight gain, which I am struggling with at the moment. It’s been extremely difficult for me to adjust from having a fast metabolism, eating what I want, when I want, to having to count every single calorie and carb to keep myself at a steady 120.
I know I have a lot to be thankful for, but I also can’t help but look at my appearance so critically. I am not who I used to be… no longer desired and flawless. So hard when all that men are programmed to appreciate is outer beauty and us women like to judge and compete for perfect figures. I have a beautiful and smart baby girl, and it seems so selfish to be worried about my appearance. My head tells me to knock it off & stop worrying about what others see because nobody is as critical to you as yourself. People say you come to terms with the changes, but I don’t think you do, you just learn to live with it because that is all you can do.