I’ve never been perfect. I know this. But for most of my life I’ve been satisfied with my body. As a teenager I had a wonderful body in my opinion. No, I never fit into those size 0 jeans, but I was curvy, had a pretty flat stomach, and all of this was done with no effort. I could pig out all day for weeks on end and end up losing 5lbs. I adored my 36-26-36 hourglass figure.
I got pregnant with my son when I was 18. I absolutely loved it, but my body didn’t. My sedentary lifestyle wasn’t cutting it anymore and I gained a total of 60lbs before all was said and done. I managed to make it until my 8th month before the stretchmarks started coming, but when they did they came on full force. Suddenly I was covered all across my stomach, my hips, my butt, my thighs, and even on the back of my knees and calves. It was horrendous! After having my son I felt anything BUT sexy. And it didn’t help that I had him by c-section, so my confidence in my body was already shot down because I didn’t even feel like a woman anymore.
I lost a little of the weight but the stretchmarks remained behind as reminders of the wonderful little boy I carried for 9 months. Over time I gained more confidence and soon the stretchmarks faded from red to silver. But my body was still foreign to me and I’ve never felt quite comfortable in my own skin since…
Then almost 2 years later we decide to have another child. I kept my weight gain at a good 38lbs, only got a few more stretchmarks, and for the most part was happy that my body wasn’t falling apart again on me. I had a wonderful successful natural VBAC and regained the confidence in my body and how it worked. I wasn’t broken anymore.
But even that lift in spirits over the mechanics of my body still can’t override my dissatisfaction in the way I look. I keep telling myself that I’ve just given birth 2 months ago. That my body is a result of the beautiful children I’ve brought into this world. That I am beautiful. But every time I look in the mirror I see differently. I see the sagging breasts that have nourished my kids. I see the stretched out, saggy, loose, scarred stomach. I’m no longer that 36-26-36 I used to be. Now I’m 39-39-42. I’m fighting a war with myself. I’ll never be like I used to be and that’s fine with me. But I need to be comfortable at least. I can’t go on afraid to be sexual with my husband or avoiding mirrors when I change clothes. This has to stop.
So I’m traveling down a long hard road on a journey to find myself and the confidence that I used to have in my body. I’m not sure where or when I’ll find it, but I’m working on getting healthier and into shape. One day I’ll finally feel like me again and I can’t wait until that day comes….