*The items I’m wearing were sponsored by Lane Bryant for promotion on my social media channels, all opinions are my own.*
The struggle to embrace your body post baby can be real. There is an enormous amount of pressure placed on women to have a certain body type and somehow it gets worse after you’ve had a baby. The time when you’re the most vulnerable and dare I say emotionally unstable, there is pressure for you to #bounceback. Why? We see it on tv, magazines and all over the gram…. #whatbaby, #snapback, #mombodygoals, etc… All these posts and tips and tricks about how to erase the fact that you just created a life.
Erase the fact that you just spent 39 weeks (speaking for my self and all 3 of my pregnancies) sharing every fiber of your being to create another person. Just pause and take a look at your baby for one moment and ask yourself why would you want to do that? I’ve struggle to embrace my body post Luke (if I’m being completely transparent I did the same thing post Zoe). Before the last month or so I hated the idea of shopping. If you’ve know me for a while that should strike you as odd… because shopping is what I do best. I kept telling myself that I didn’t want to blow a bag on nice clothes because I would lose weight and no longer be able to fit them.
No need to waste money right? So all spring/summer I complained about having anything to wear, walked around looking like a frumpy ragga muffin and only bought clothes if I had somewhere important to go. Somehow thinking that eventually I would get sick of not being able to fit my old clothes and use that as motivation to get back into them. The only that did was make me feel worse.
Money isn’t the issue for me. It just sounded better to say it that out loud. I was punishing myself. I was punishing myself for gaining weight, for changing… for creating a human. I was telling myself that I only deserved nice things at a size 6 or at 130 lbs. I was telling myself that I was somehow less than worthy of something other than gym clothes because I am plus sized. (size 12 and G cup… it’s not up for debate). What changed? I choose to honor my body as it is, right now, no exceptions! Sounds simple right? Well, it’s much easier said than done….Here are some thing you can do to honor your body as it is today:
Affirm yourself by saying things like: I will honor my body with my thoughts, my words and my choices. I am grateful for my body and all that it has helped me through. I am grateful for a body that fought sickness, that survived trauma, *fill in the blank with your thing*.
Regardless of what it is, be grateful for it! Say it out loud every day. Put it on your computer. Write it on your mirror. Put it on your phone screen saver. Say it and read it over and over until you believe it.
India Aire reminded us that we aren’t our hair… and sis, you aren’t the number on the scale or the size of your jeans either! We live in a society where “thin” is in and some days it’s hard being force fed thin examples of beauty. Be intentional about what you show yourself by flooding your feed with women of different body shapes, colors and sizes. Why are you following a bunch of size 2 fashion blogger when you wear a 14? Make it make sense. There is beauty in diversity!
Make a list of your morals and all the value you add to the world/other peoples lives. The value you add to your family, your employer, your friends, your church, etc. Do you respect people at all times? Are you a person of integrity? That’s who you are. Resonate on those things.
**side note: If you are constantly falling into the comparison trap, consider therapy as an option so you can get to the root of your need to compare yourself to others**
Did you create/feed a human? Climb a mountain? Get better at a run time? Kill a routine at the gym twerk class? I mean… thick thighs are out here saving lives everyday. Celebrating your body for simply getting you through the day without quitting.
I’ve been a sleep in t-shirts kinda girl for as long as I can remember but it’s okay to stop being frumpy every now and then. Cacique has been game changer for me post Luke. I seriously had no idea what bra size came after DDD until I visited a store. I love that they are inclusive with their sizing and I don’t have to feel “banished” to the bigger girl store.
I am wearing their Scalloped Lace Boost Balconette Bra the support is amazing, the light padding has the girls sitting high and its super comfy. I paired it it with the Floral Hipster Panty and the matching Floral Robe. I actually gasped when I looked at myself in the mirror. I’ll leave Jameses reaction to the imagination but just know that I’ve ordered more.
There are tons of brands that cater to all shapes and sizes. Between Google, Pinterest and Instagram they shouldn’t be hard to find. Some of my favorite shops right now are BooHoo, Asos and Maurices. When you look good you feel good. Order something cute whether its for work, girls night or date night and rock it.
Stop aiming for your 18 year old, no kids (including men), no bills, no stress body. It’s just too much pressure to put on yourself. More so, I’ve accepted that I’ll NEVER have my pre-baby body again and I don’t want to. I don’t want to change/erase the fact that my body birthed the three most beautiful beings in the world.
What I do want is to able to give myself and my babies the best version of me. So instead of an ideal weight, I have an ideal body fat percentage. Or a goal to be able to smoke my son in a foot race before he becomes a teenager (because it’ll just be a lost cause after that, lol). Or to simply run and play soccer with my kids without struggling to breathe. After you decided what your goal is for your new body, let your food and exercise choices support that.
We are all a work in progress but life gets a little sweeter when you can appreciate yourself in the moment. You are beautiful and loved no matter what your body may be going through right now. If no one else is telling you this, I am telling you right now and you need to start telling yourself. Embrace your body where it is right now. Love on your body… it’s the only one you’re going to get!
If you are currently expecting and struggling to embrace you body as it changes, check out the post I wrote on maintaining body confidence during pregnancy.