My son will be 10 weeks old in a couple days and I’m at a loss for words because I can’t believe it has flown by so fast. I feel like it was just yesterday he was born. It was my first pregnancy so I was eager to follow all the guidelines to being pregnant including eating healthier than I normally would, taking my vitamins every day and taking care of myself as best I could. The one thing I had no control over was the rapidly increasing amount of stretch marks that started to cover my body slowly taking it over. I was never really in love with my body to begin with. I’ve been self conscious about myself and my weight since I was in middle school. My weight always fluctuated throughout the years and it seems like I was always on a diet trying to lose weight. I loved being pregnant and being able to feel my baby move around inside me. Knowing that he was depending on me to grow him, care for him, and protect him made me feel important. But the way my body was changing and getting bigger made me hate myself even more. I hated the way my stomach was covered in stretch marks. I would never take a belly picture without a shirt on. I tried everything to prevent them- from Palmers cocoa butter, Palmers tummy butter, Palmers oil, organic coconut oil, and exfoliating consistently and nothing worked. And I never thought back then that it could get any worse, until now. The loose, saggy, wrinkly skin that hangs down from my stomach makes me feel so depressed. I know it was worth it because I get to be the mom to a beautiful little boy that loves me so much. At the same time though, I don’t feel happy with myself. I can’t imagine ever feeling beautiful again. I’m jealous of the girls that think they’re fat but take for granted their flawless skin. I would love to be that girl again. You can always lose weight if you you aren’t happy with your size, but you can never get rid of the deep marks scattered over your skin. If there was a clean unmarked area of skin on my body it is now tagged with the marks of having a child. They’re literally everywhere. I wouldn’t be caught dead in a bikini, or any bathing suit for that matter. I am just trying to accept the fact that this comes with having my son and there is nothing I can do about it now so why waste my energy focusing on it? I wish I could be truly happy with myself and finally love myself, stretch marks and all.
# of pregnancies: 1
Age of child: 10 weeks
4 thoughts on “My New Body (Melissa C)”
I had my first baby five months ago, and I understand where you’re coming from. I hope you get the love and support you need because you’re beautiful, and you created life, which is the most precious thing our bodies can do. I struggle with acceptance at times, but I know that we have to give our bodies time to heal after something so major. Pregnancy can be traumatic, I know it was for me, especially after losing 60 pounds, and then gaining 40 back during those 9 months. I try to look forward, knowing that my life has changed forever. I treat myself to a haircut once in a while, a nice piece of clothing, take away coffee, anything that will shift the focus to what truly makes me feel good about myself. I’m a work in progress, but from this point, I know things will never be the same, but they can still be just as good. I hope you make peace with yourself, you deserve it.
Don’t despair 10 weeks out from pregnancy. I emerged from mine at 21 with purple stretch marks on my breasts, thighs, hips and lower abdomen. I remember feeling exactly the way you say you feel. You may not ever look exactly the way you did before pregnancy, but you may be surprised by how much your body will bounce back in the next year. It took me two years to feel like anything other than MOM in my body. Now my son is five, the skin has tightened up, the marks have faded out, I feel like myself. Be nice to yourself, give yourself time.
Being critical of myself has always been an ongoing battle I have struggled with. Never having the “perfect body”, always being the tallest/heaviest/stockiest/most muscular etc girl at school made me unhappy when people reminded me of how I just didn’t seem to fit in. I lost a substantial amount of weight prior to falling pregnant and when I became pregnant I put on half of my total baby weight in the first 2 months. Getting told by my doctor that I needed to watch my weight was a complete blow to me considering I had spent so long losing weight to be a “healthy, normal” BMI for my height. Anyhow, I am in my third pregnancy (1 birth) and again I had put on a stack of weight initially. From my first pregnancy I had a saggy belly for well over 18 months. The muscles in my abdomen did not knit properly together without constant gentle exercise and time. Give yourself a break. Your body does many things you cannot control while pregnant and in the time after the birth. Try not to beat yourself up about any of it. Your body is an amazing tool and you should be in awe of its miracles. Stretch marks fade and gentle exercise will help with saggy muscles and skin. Be kind to yourself.
I looked just like you pp with baby #1. My stretch marks were horrific. It does get better though, I promise. I still have excess stomach skin but the marks have faded considerably. Weight loss is helping me cope with the excess skin. I’m currently 13 months out from baby #3, so I’ve lost and (somewhat) regained my body a few times now. Just focus on taking care of yourself. Eat right, drink water, get activity in and get as much sleep as possible (what’s that tho, right? Lol). I usually tell moms to give it 2 years before feeling back to your old self. You’ll get there.