It was all a dream; I was a comfortable size 6 while I was breastfeeding Amina. I attributed most of it to the fact that hyperemesis had reared its ugly head again and I did my best to maintain what little weight I could while I was pregnant. Even still, that breastfeeding body was something dreams were made of for me. I was able to wear clothes that I so conveniently tucked in the back of my closet or the bottom of a drawer, praying that someday I would fit it again.
I’ll be honest, J and I have a physical type. Mine is big and tall, his is thick. Yes, he’s pretty shallow. 🤣In all seriousness, while I was loving my post baby body my husband was secretly hoping I put back on a few pounds. I won’t share with you the jokes that went on in our house. Nonetheless, I was determined to keep my post baby body because contrary to what men think, women like to look good for ourselves; not them. (Most of the time)
I’m not sure if it’s just me but once I was forced to stop breastfeeding Amina, the weight seemed to come on in buckets. My diet had been the same from before I was pregnant all the way to today. I was a Vegan-ish eater who exercised anywhere from 3-4 times a week. Sure, Ill give credence to the fact that while I was pregnant and breastfeeding, I wasn’t consuming any alcohol but even with the reintroduction of a glass (or two) of wine a day I was not expecting the pounds to “pile” on as they did. Today, I am about 22 lbs. heavier than just over a year and a half ago when I stopped breastfeeding.
Of course, I’ve tried to excuse this extra weight to the pandemic but if ever there was a time to be getting a workout in, it was during this pandemic; in my mind. I was at home, there weren’t very many after school activities going on and I should have been able to modify my diet and exercise as normal and I should be able to get this weight off. WRONG! The stress of being at home with all 3 girls 24/7, the businesses we just started and the isolation from my mom and my best friend was the perfect storm for overeating, an extra glass of wine and “relaxing” instead of working out. I had fallen into a slump and was unsure on how to get out.
I also realized that my body was changing. I know many workout enthusiasts will tell you your body can be trained to do what it’s supposed to do but I just haven’t found that to be true for me. I carry my weight differently. I have NEVER had a nice butt but baby this COVID-19 booty is something different. It may not be a lot to a lot of people but for me it’s been life changing, in a good way according to my husband. When I was in my 20s and pre babies, my weight was carried solely in my breasts and thighs. Today, I definitely still carry weight in my thighs & hips but this belly fat is just down right disrespectful.
While I enjoy having this extra on my backside, I do not enjoy the dimples in my legs or this fupa that doesn’t seem to go away. It took me awhile after I realized how much weight I had gained to want to put on lingerie or something sexy for J. It had nothing to do with him but everything to do with how I viewed myself. My negative self-talk about my body was not only unattractive to J but changing the way my daughters viewed their bodies. Things were said like “Well if you’re fat what am I”? I realized that this was getting out of control mentally and physically.
This post-post-baby body is something that is brand new to me but I’ve figured out a few things that will help me get through this new transition.
1. Accept the reality – The fact is the weight is here and isn’t going anywhere unless we make some real and consistent changes. You can’t keep hoping it’s all a dream, it isn’t. This is the reality.
2. Stop negatively comparing old you to new you – I am great at digging up old photos of myself and thinking “I would love to be this size again.” Or “Oh, look how flat my stomach was as opposed to this fat belly now”. This is especially true when you compare pre-baby you to post-baby you. For MANY women, their stomachs, bladders and breasts are never the same again after having babies. Refer to #1, accept the reality of your new body.
3. Clean your closet – Ok, let’s be honest. Who has that one dress that you’ve been holding onto for 5 years swearing you are going to get back into it? Guess what… you may! I think holding on to clothes that you want to fit into again but that are over 2 years old is a bad idea for a couple of reasons.
a. Fashion changes as you age. As time goes by more than likely your style will change so you are holding onto something you probably won’t wear again anyway.
b. You’re holding onto to stuff that subconsciously make you feel even worse about your current weight/size.
4. Do something about it or stop complaining about it – Pick one! Even though my body has changed and the way I carry my weight may be different, there is still a way for me to lose the weight. But I know I have to go about it a different way than before. While cutting out carbs alone may have been the winning ticket in the past, now I have to also limit my sugar intake as well. I can either choose to do that or stop complaining about it.
5. Love yourself no matter what – I know this is much easier said than done but I am learning to embrace my new curves while still wanting to get back to a size that is more comfortable for me. Nothing happens overnight. While in my mind I tell myself that I gained the weight in a week, it took time for me to put it on and it’s going to take time for me to take it off!
The health of it all…
Vanity is the primary reason why most people want to lose weight, myself included. However, the most important thing is to make sure that no matter what size you are, you are being healthy. While I don’t subscribe to the BMI charts in this “skinny is right” America, I do believe that you need to watch your body fat and how it distributes in your body. Your cholesterol, blood sugar and blood pressure all play a significant role to your overall health. The diet you choose and your exercise activity can directly impact those levels so make sure you are doing your part to be around for as long as you can.
The post-post-baby body was the thing I never expected but also, the thing I’m learning to love each day! Also, thick thighs save lives! Don’t believe me… read this!
Love & Light,