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Don’t Call Me “Lucky” (Anonymous)

I am 10 months postpartum from my second daughter’s birth. She was a c-section after I had complications following a (successful) home birth with my first daughter. I am happy with my postpartum body but it frustrates me to no end that people assume that I just got lucky with my postpartum body, as if there are only two categories of moms – – lazy lucky ones that look good and lazy unlucky ones that don’t. I worked really, really hard following the c-section – I didn’t snap back like people assume! I got my doctor’s approval and was at the gym 6 days a week (30 minutes on the elliptical machine, he said it was okay because it was no impact) two weeks after my c-section. Åt 6 weeks, I got the okay to start running again. I gained 48 pounds with my last pregnancy and 50 with my first. I am happy to say that I have lost all the weight — and you can, too …. even if you aren’t one of the “lucky” ones that don’t have to make an effort :P I wasn’t!

The first pictures are me 2 days after my c-section, taken the day I got home. You can see the yellow glue still on my side from the spinal. The next pictures are 4 weeks postpartum, and the last picture is 8 months postpartum. I’ve made some more small improvements since the last picture but feel it’s representative enough to post!

~Your Age: 24
~Number of pregnancies and births: 6 pregnancies / 2 births – one vaginal / one c-sesction(4 miscarriages)
~The age of your children, or how far postpartum you are: 3 year old and 10 month old

in Belly, Cesarean, Homebirth, Postpartum, Second Pregnancy, Submissions
56 comments… add one
  • Charlie Thursday, September 30, 2010, 8:05 am

    I’m in the early stages of pregnancy and my worry has been what my body will look like after – you have given me hope! You look beautiful. Congratulations on the results of your hard work.

  • KatieM Thursday, September 30, 2010, 8:20 am

    Wow you look amazing! I get called lucky too, and like you I gained 50 lbs and work my booty off to stay in shape. We can’t fix everything but if you really wan’t it you can get back into shape.

  • suzanne the shortcake Thursday, September 30, 2010, 8:31 am

    good job, you look great
    i cant help but feel this is an invitation for people to compare themselves you and that is a bit nerve wracking. for me. i have been going to the gym, seen a doctor for labs (not my thyroid!), worked with a trainer to little affect. ???

  • Mary V Thursday, September 30, 2010, 8:36 am

    Looking good mama! And good for you for working off your baby weight, I recently started running almost daily and I have seen a huge change in my body after only 3 weeks! I hope to look as good as you soon :)

  • Katie Thursday, September 30, 2010, 8:55 am

    Congrats on your babies and weight loss! You have worked hard and deserve the body you have, however, that does not mean that you aren’t “lucky”. There are women who work that hard and still have lots of extra skin to deal with, that no amount of exercise will change. So while I agree that your hard work got you where you are and that you wouldnt look like that without it, don’t assume that those that have a big of extra tummy skin don’t work hard as well! And your 4 wk PP pics look better than any 4 wk PP pics I have ever seen…there has to be some amount of good genetics in there!

  • Heather Thursday, September 30, 2010, 9:00 am

    You give me hope! I gained so much with my second (55-60 pounds) and I am 2 months postpartum and I still have 25 to go. I started running last week and am hoping it’ll slowly get better.

  • liz Thursday, September 30, 2010, 9:10 am

    you look great and your hard work certainly paid off! i agree that it takes diligence, i hit the gym hard after my baby and lost the weight easily in a few months (50 also lbs. fun fun!) however, when i tried to show off my hard work at the pool i got questions about why i had so many stretch marks(even lot’s on my legs!) and so many wrinkles on my tummy. i wasn’t genetically gifted in the skin department. i took great care of it while preggo but ended up covered in deep marks in the last two weeks of pregnancy. i was overdue big time. it wasn’t just about the weight for me. so yes, you worked hard but that skin of yours, i’d say you should feel lucky about it. and that’s not a bad thing:)

  • Kat Thursday, September 30, 2010, 9:37 am

    You look awesome!! All your hard work has paid off :) I had a successful home birth with my third (incredible experience) and I appeared to “snap back” too. Its hard When you get those “looks” as if you didn’t even try when you worked your butt off. I worked out the whole pregnancy and ate right. After, I ate vegan and worked out. I agree that it’s not fair for people to assume you are lazy and lucky. I am back to my pre preg clothes 3 months later, but it hasnt been easy. Congrats on your babies! Thank you for posting this!

  • Shannon Thursday, September 30, 2010, 9:39 am

    First off, you look great, and good job on the hard work.That being said, when I say good job on the hard work, I mean it from a health perspective…not a “you don’t look like you have 2 kids” perspective. We should work out to keep our bodies healthy…not to be cocky. Lots of women work hard after babies (like me) and still don’t look “great”. Does it mean we are “lazy”? NO. It simply means we have less elastic skin than you…so you are “lucky”. Why do we all strive to look like we haven’t created life? Why is it a bad thing if you can tell that we have? People may see me and think “she has a lot of loose skin and stretchmarks…she must be lazy…”. Well you know what? That’s wrong…all of our bodies are different AND beautiful.

  • Tracy Thursday, September 30, 2010, 9:47 am

    You look great :) “Lazy, unlucky one’s that don’t,” thanks. I see no extra loose skin on you, lucky or lazy?

  • sarah Thursday, September 30, 2010, 10:05 am

    You look great mama!

    Hey suzanne, good for you! Working out makes you feel good about yourself,and it is harder for some to lose weight. Don’t beat yourself up-congratulate yourself for taking the first steps!
    I am two years pp and am just now losing the last of my weight-I figure by summer i will have my old tummy back.

  • Bryana Thursday, September 30, 2010, 10:33 am

    You look stunning, and it is because of your hard work! And I am glad you can say that!
    It drives me nuts when people say that I am ‘lucky’ too. Because quite frankly, I’m not. It takes hard work to reclaim your body! Does it mean we are perfect? Absolutely not! But it just means we want to be ourselves again! :)
    You look beautiful!

  • Jamie Thursday, September 30, 2010, 10:47 am

    Wow!your hard work has payed off! You look amazing!

  • Jan Thursday, September 30, 2010, 10:49 am

    I know how you feel, I too had 2 kids, the first at 25 and the 2nd at 28, I am tall and slim so everyone thinks I just got lucky too, well I ate very clean and did not sit on my butt and do nothing, I worked out until the 8th month and kept myself healthy and it paid off, I didnt get stretch marks and my stomach is flat as a board, no one would guess I had kids. Iam 30 as well and I get compliments all the time, but I also get you got lucky and you are tall..well I know a few tall women who didnt eat clean or workout and they gained alot of weight and because of that did not come out of pregnancy unscathed. It really is about how well you eat, what you eat and how much physical activity you do, yes genetics plays as roll but you must also put forth the effort as well.

  • Jan Thursday, September 30, 2010, 10:51 am

    why is always that larger women who gained alot of weight and havent gotten rid of it after the baby always think we are trying to make ourselves feel better by comparing our bodies to ones that did not get solucky…we work HARD!!! not everyone hates and has self laothing about their after baby body, just sayin.

  • alexis Thursday, September 30, 2010, 12:12 pm

    As an athlete and mom, I love the fact that your doctor supported your exercise. I am due with a boy in a few weeks and I was so mopey because I miss running so much that my midwife stepped out and came back with a flyer for a 5k 8 weeks after the baby’s due date. She said she would run it with me, and promised that I would be fine to do it.

    While some women, very few, over do it after giving birth, the overwhelming issue with women after birth is that they are not encouraged to do enough. Walking, ellipitical, swimming (if you like it) are all great for your mind and body.

    My husband is already telling me that he would be MORE than happy to play with the baby one-on-one while I hit the gym for some personal time with the elliptical or nautical machines :) I get to spend so much alone time with the baby even now that my husband is longing for his own special time with the baby. And he has been talking about how excited he is to stand at the finish line with our son at the 5K.

    My body is very different from yours – but I’ll post pics after the 5K just to show different versions of athletic mamas!

  • Regina Thursday, September 30, 2010, 2:27 pm

    but you had no extra saggy skin or stretch marks. add that and without surgery you could lose all the weight you want and tone to perfection but your body will still look a mess. no…actually i can not do it too.

  • Amy Thursday, September 30, 2010, 6:48 pm

    You look great! Congratulations!

    Weight has always been an issue for me. I was running 5 days a week, on Weight Watchers, and drinking more water than anything. It took me 4 months to lose 8lbs. I pretty much gave up, though after my 3rd pregnancy I feel more inspired to try again. I was overweight when I got pregnant with both my 2nd and 3rd babies, and at this point I’m about 65-70lbs overweight. It’s frustrating.

  • Melissa Thursday, September 30, 2010, 8:08 pm

    You look fantastic! I agree with you to an extent…people shouldn’t just assume that you did nothing to look as great as you do. But I’ll echo a few others here that to some (like me), you do seem lucky. Or maybe I’m just unlucky? I’m nearly a year postpartum, have been running three to four miles a day while doing pilates AND eating 1500 calories. I’m back to my prepregnancy weight but it’s not even close to my old body. My stomach still has four extra inches – of skin. I had a condition that gave me too much amniotic fluid in my pregnancy and my stomach is destroyed. I work very hard but will never have my old body back.

    Not to take away from your hard work because you deserve to feel proud of yourself and no one should forget that. But I’ll still call you a little lucky, if that’s ok. ;)

  • Sunshine Thursday, September 30, 2010, 9:14 pm

    Wow! Fantastic results. Did you do weight lifting or cardio? How did you flatten your tummy? Any ab exercises that you suggest?

  • mel Thursday, September 30, 2010, 10:41 pm

    this makes me want to cry. i worked so hard and thought i had come far but if anyone saw me without clothes they would think i was “lazy.” no one would ever call me lucky. i dropped the weight with hard work and exercise. but will my stomach ever look “normal” again? i don’t think so. genetically gifted? is that an ok term instead of lucky? cuz you do look great!

  • kelly Friday, October 1, 2010, 4:35 am

    you look great!! quick question , love your bikini, where is it from?? :)

  • Kerry Friday, October 1, 2010, 5:08 am

    You look really good, way to go with working out! I also work out a lot but I will never look like you, why? Because my baby spread my belly out to the point of no return.I wouldn’t change it for the world, but it’s just the facts that without getting skin removed there’s no physical way I’d look like you. I know it can be tough staying on a strict regime though, so kudos to you! :) Btw I think your hips are very feminine and beautiful!

  • Anna Friday, October 1, 2010, 5:38 am

    I don’t know too many “lazy” new mothers. I don’t know any. Most I know are caring for newborns and craving sleep.

  • Anna Friday, October 1, 2010, 5:48 am

    When it comes to stretch marks some women do get lucky. I’ve known mothers who put on far more weight than I did and have a few to none. I was in great shape after my first at 25 even covered in marks, but now everything just looks so much worse and more wrinkled. Really, the only thing to offer women with stretch marks is a bit of compassion, we get beat up enough,

  • Ali Friday, October 1, 2010, 6:27 am

    OK- First things first! Congrats are certainly in order. You did a great thing and should definitely be proud of yourself, and your strong, healthy body.

    I think what the majority of the other commeters are saying can be summarized in this way: There are no nice, defined, categories we can stick mommies in as far as WHY their bodies look the way they do after baby. Each of us are individuals. We have our own unique story to tell, our own personalities, support or lack of support, financial resources, time resources, pregnancy/birthing/baby experience, etc. that shape not only our selfs, our lives, but also our bodies.

    No one can look at another mommy, who might be over her pre-pregnancy weight, or have loose skin and/or stretch marks and decide “Oh, she was lazy/didn’t work out/didn’t use lotions/ didn’t drink enough water/it’s her fault/she’s not healthy” OR ANY OF THESE THINGS. Who’s to say she didn’t do everything in her power to keep the same, pre-pregnancy body, OR that she tried to but was on mandatory bedrest, or going through some type of emotional strain like divorce or a death in the family, OR is a single mom who has to work two jobs with literally no time for working out. And finally (most importantly), who is to say that she is not a healthy, happy, lovely mommy, and PROUD of her new body?? After all, isn’t that why we are here! Mommies PLEASE stop judging the bodies of others in a negative way; particularly when you do not know their story. HUGS TO ALL- LETS SUPPORT ONEANOTHER

  • Ali Friday, October 1, 2010, 6:35 am

    I also meant for my comment to reflect the same types of judgements about the skinny, “didn’t seem to change much” post-partum mommies. They have their own story to tell as well. As the original poster puts it- no one will know how much anything played a part in why they hold a similar shape OR their feelings towards it. We can’t make those kinds of assumptions. This is not a do X Y and Z and end up with Body Type 1, or fail to do X Y and Z and end up with Body Type 2.

  • jen Friday, October 1, 2010, 10:38 am

    In response to the above comments by Ali, I completely agree. Here’s a story of mine for you all to consider…. I got pregnant at 19, during some wild partying days. I smoked weed evey day, I drank a lot on the weekends and I did ecstacy numeous times a month. I got pregnant by my boyfriend and he offered to pay for an abortion, and when I refused he dumped me and harassed me constantly telling me that my baby was going to be deformed because of my early partying. I was depressed, horribly depressed but I made my first motherly decision. I stopped partying and I moved into a maternity shelter, I completely cut off all my friends (who were hard partyers, I didnt want ANY temptation), my parents disowned me and I was ALONE. I cried a lot, ate too many cookies, and I gained 70lbs. I got stretchmarks on my tummy despite using all the cream in the world. You might call me lazy but I did all that I was capable of doing at the time. Staying clean! I now have an incredibly healthy, smart, most loving 9 yr old son and he saved my life! Do I regret gaining so much weight that resulted in stretch marks? Not really cause my only goal was to create a healthy baby and I accomplished that goal. I’ll take the weight gain and stretchmarks any day……..

    To the poster: You look amazing, and I really admire your waist and hip shape! Congrats on the hard work but I do have to say that I consider you lucky to be in a healthy emotional/mental state in which you can focus on your body… Not everything is as it seems, lets not assume things about why women look the way they do…. We are mothers and we would do anything for our children…Thats all that matters….

  • Tiphanie Friday, October 1, 2010, 10:39 am

    You look great, and I totally understand your point of view. And, while Im not a lazy mother,, I HAVE been lazy lately when it comes to eating right and working out. I have to admit that im probably pretty lucky. Stretch marks are cool and extra skin is completely normal and with some unavoidable. I am 31 and had my first child not quite 5 mo ago via an unplanned c sec. I am about 7 pounds away from my pre pregnancy weight, and for the last two months have done NOTHING about it! I eat french fries about 5 X’s a week , along with cheeseburgers and candy bars!!! and havent been working out!! NOT GOOD!! So, thanks for the inspiration to work out and not just for the looks, but to TAKE CARE of myself for me, AND my daughter!! Congrats,, and for the weight and health you’ve worked hard,, but as far as skins we ARE lucky!!!

  • suzanne the shortcake Friday, October 1, 2010, 11:38 am

    @ jan
    i am not a larger woman, i did not gain allot of weight, i dont hate my body…?

  • Sarah Friday, October 1, 2010, 12:08 pm

    You look beautiful and I really love your cute little pregnant belly.

  • nirinleant Friday, October 1, 2010, 12:21 pm

    first of all you look really great.. and also it is also true that if you work out hard you may get that body back..but it did not happened with me ..i gained 45 pounds during my pregnancy then gave birth to the 8 pounds baby ..after 2 weeks pp i looked just right before pre-pregnancy..could wear all those clothes..people always said i look great..could not even tell i had a kid etc..but who knows that underneath my clothes i got a ton of stretch marks,extra skin,and wrinkle tummy..who knows it destroyed and so i worked out a lot..5 days a week.. ate healthy..blahblahblah..

    so i think it is not fair to think that just work out hard it makes you look good..actually it is not..because sometimes it is your genetic that really play the roles.. and you are the LUCKY one…because there are a lot of women who worked hard and did not get the skin back…

    but every women here are beautiful and so are you..

  • Luce Friday, October 1, 2010, 1:43 pm

    You look absolutely phenomenal; congratulations on your efforts.

    Not to diminish your results, but you appear to have had a waspish waist before pregnancy, and any weight loss–I imagine–shows there quite obviously. Though I am skinny (5’7, 120lbs), and a competitive runner, I have never had a waist like that, never will, as I come from a long line of “apples”. I’m not even pregnant yet, but I am under no illusion that I will come to resemble my mother who, at 61, has the most amazing legs, narrows hips, but a stomach riddled with folds and stretch marks.

  • Colleen Friday, October 1, 2010, 2:43 pm

    You look awesome! I have to say I admire your dedication. Two weeks after my c-section I was lucky to make it through the day without pain meds (and I had no complications whatsoever)…working on wasn’t anywhere NEAR being on my mind. Good for yo ufor striving for what was important to you (in my case, it was sleep, lol).

  • anon. Friday, October 1, 2010, 3:50 pm

    Thank-you Ali, you said it best. This site is supposed to help women in need of comfort and compassion when they do not feel it for themselves and yesturday when I read this I wanted to cry.

  • Jill Friday, October 1, 2010, 7:19 pm

    You look amazing congrats!

    @ JAN- “women who didnt eat clean or workout and they gained alot of weight and because of that did not come out of pregnancy unscathed. It really is about how well you eat”


    Jan…Get A LIFE, please. NO one cares how many compliments you get. Everyone is different, you cant work off extra skin which is what alot of women have. You have issues seriously, Dont pick on Suzanne and dont ASSUME she is a LARGER WOMAN because I clearly don’t remeber her saying that. GET A LIFE. YOU are the one comparing yourself to other people…you must be really miserable and bored in life….. OH, JUST SAYING.

  • Elissa Friday, October 1, 2010, 8:30 pm

    First off, I never got stretch marks and I will say YES I AM VERY LUCKY! Secondly, my weight did come off easier than others that work a lot harder than me….Therefore I am lucky….I worked hard but I know other mothers who work harder at it than I do and cannot lose the weight. Yes, I am very lucky that my body worked with me instead of having a thiroid problem like a friend of mine…She lost all her baby weight right after her baby was born and then a year later it reversed and caused her to gain weight…For all you other mothers who feel you got the short end of the stick…I will tell you coming from a mother who faired well after having a child…Nothing is more beautiful to me than a mother who sits down and has a little roll or two over her tummy while she is cuddling with her little ones…nothing is more sexy than soft tummies and breasts….Stretch marks and scars left over from life you gave are breath taking…As a child I knew the soft warm spot where I loved to lay my head….My mamas tummy….Her scars from the side effects of carrying 7 children in her womb, no stretch marks…But her galbladder had to be removed because it worked overtime having all those children…Beautiful….The flat butt she ended up with that we all still tease her about…All these things are beautiful to me…You know why? Because when I look at most mommies I see love and joy in them when they look at their children…I see women who know that being perfect or having the old body they had before their children means the life you can’t understand anymore…The life you lived so selfishly and foolishly…This life you have with your children is different…You wouldn’t change a thing…Not even for that old body…Why? Because you know more important things matter now than perfect hair, makeup, hips, breasts and skin…You are someones hero, you are important and needed…Someone looks to you for guidence and insperation…You are the light and answer to everything to these wonderful little gifts your bodies carried…ALL THESE THINGS are reasons mommies need not get down about how another mommy looks….Every single last one of you are beautiful and special…All of you have someone that sees these things in you…And you need to know that even children see every flaw you have but know you are the most beautiful person in the world…:) I think my mother is beyond the wisest woman their is…Wise, strong, sweet and like I always say…Inside is what counts…I have many beautiful friends that could be playboy models…Do you think men would desire them over me? No, even with all my pregnancy wounds I am the favorite to look at…I smile, I laugh, I know what’s important and I do not care what giggles on me and infact I joke about it…I will wear a bikini even if someone can’t stand the couple of dimples on my thigh and less than perfect behind…I am comfortable in my skin because WHO the eff cares…My husband finds me sexy and that to me is all that matters…If he didn’t find me sexy after I gave him his child then well, he would have to find a new wife because the beauty a woman gains in motherhood is more beautiful than you could imagine….You gain a lot of wisdom and strength you never knew you had…Just remember to always remember…Beauty lies in being kind, happy minds and love!

  • ANGW Saturday, October 2, 2010, 2:06 am

    Congratulations on your achievements. But, please note that many more factors determine how your body looks after pregnancy; which is why we all look a little different. Losing baby weight and getting definition back into your stomach region isn’t always easy, even if you are exercising everyday. Age, size of baby, amount of weight gained, genetics…you get the picture…

  • nirinleant Saturday, October 2, 2010, 6:45 am

    I am completely agree with Ali too..seems like she knows the facts like everyone of us knows that how hard some skinny,, seems to be working out hard and eat extra healthy food like Jan picking up on the moms who also worked out hard and did everything they could to get thier bodies back but it never SNAP BACK..That we are LAZY..
    Give us a break Jan.. If you think saying those kind of things make you feel better..Get lost..nobody wants to be beat up by unkind woman ..

  • tallmama Saturday, October 2, 2010, 9:11 am

    Jan – I am 6ft 1 inch tall – worked my butt off during pregnancy, ate well- so based on your logic i should have a wash board stomach right?? WRONG!!!!!!! I had a 10LB baby 2 weeks overdue (plus husband is 6ft4 so not really a surprise.
    I have a lot of strtech marks and loose skin and comments like yours DON’t HELP!!

  • Sara (Original poster) Saturday, October 2, 2010, 1:19 pm

    To the poster that asked, my bikini was from Victoriassecret.com — it is actually on sale right now :)

    To the several people who commented on my skin – I did get stretch marks, you can see them in the first picture! They did fade considerably though.

    @Luce – yes, I don’t tend to store fat in my stomach but rather my hips and butt. I’ve never liked my thighs.

  • Anna Saturday, October 2, 2010, 5:28 pm

    I was one of those genetically blessed skinny girls before I had kids. Still am in a way, no matter what I eat I never get obese. However I was def not lucky in the stretch marks department, but most certainly consider myself lucky in the thin genes department. No way would I judge any woman regarding her weight, skin, etc…it’s just mean and ignorant, way too many factors. I mean really, why kick anyone in that position?

  • Nikki Sunday, October 3, 2010, 6:20 pm

    You make stretch marks look good, gir! My stomach is very similar and I find that motivating. Great job and thank you for the example of hard work paying off.

  • Rachel Tuesday, October 5, 2010, 7:33 pm

    You look fantastic!! Man do I wish I could be in the same boat. I get the frustration about having worked your booty off to bounce back and you want and deserve recognition for that and at the same time I can understand why people would refer to you as lucky. As others have mentioned, sometimes the elasticity is just shot and will not tighten back up or the stretch marks extremely noticeable so that’s wonderful that maybe genetics were on your side (the lucky part) that your skin has great elasticity and the stretch marks weren’t vicious. Sadly genetics and what not have not been so kind to me. Just one baby and it seems I used up all the elasticity my stomach had to offer and it is absolutely awful looking.

  • Meghan Saturday, October 9, 2010, 7:29 pm

    what is your diet like? do you count calories?

  • Jesee Wednesday, October 13, 2010, 11:30 am

    You look great! Any advice for new mommies? My problem is finding time between two children under the age of two, taking care of housework, and being a full time student. I barely have time to get rest or use the bathroom in privacy…Congrats to your accomplishment!

  • Tiphanie Sunday, October 17, 2010, 9:09 pm

    I re read this post and a few of the comments! I actually find it very positive and encouraging,, if you are “hating” on her,, you might’ve just taken this post the wrong way :) She said “AS IF” there are only two categories,,, not calling anyone lazy. Skin and spreading of hips aren’t fully in anyones control,,, but 90% of the time , weight can be,,, i applaud all mothers who take care of themselves and their babies,, no matter what you look like to the world.

  • Amy Monday, October 25, 2010, 8:59 am

    you look fantastic, but perhaps you ARE slightly lucky. some people (like me!) work every bit as hard as you’re describing and i will probably never look like you do without some serious surgery (which i would never do). we’re the same age, so it doesn’t have anything to do with that. you must have very fortunate genetics skin-wise, lol. mine is saggy and probably will never tighten back the way yours has.

    that said, congrats on the hard work and payoff. :-)

  • Jinx Saturday, October 30, 2010, 9:04 pm

    Gorgeous! I’m admittedly jealous lol. But your results didn’t come without hard work, and I can appreciate that.

  • Tracey Friday, November 5, 2010, 7:53 pm

    I’m sorry, but you did get lucky. See no stretch marks or loose skin. I got lucky with my first pregnancy. No stretch marks and 40 pounds gone in 4 weeks with no effort at all and no loose skin. BUT then I got pregnant with my second, when my first was 5 months old. I have stretch marks, still carry extra weight and will have loose skin if I can find the time to exercise. It’s not easy with 2 kids under 2.

    This site is supposed to be supportive. Good for you that you look great, but don’t you dare insinuate that those of us with extra weight are lazy, because that’s just not nice.

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