When I had twins, and first saw my stomach after my c-section, my mouth dropped to the floor. Maybe you are also feeling a bit unattractive after having a baby. You are not alone.
Here are some tips for you to accept and love the body you are in, exactly as you are.
Give yourself some grace
Your body has been through a lot. I mean you did create a human inside of there. Forget the magazine covers of celebrities walking out of the hospital looking like they never had a baby.
Forget the expectations that you will get right back on the wagon and that your body will be exactly as it was before.
That is wayyyyyy too much pressure for you to be dealing with, and you certainly don’t want to overwhelm yourself.
You are beautiful exactly as you are.
Your battle scars are what gave you your greatest gift
You certainly would not want to go to life without your beautiful baby, so why shame the body that gave you that beautiful gift.
That body that you so harshly judge in the mirror is your vessel for life. Those stretch marks signify the love and comfort you gave to your baby before even being born.
Honor that, cherish that, and give your body the respect and love it deserves.
Prioritize your physical and mental health
I am not saying don’t take care of your health, or on the flip side, set these huge expectations for your body.
I am saying make small decisions everyday to take care of you. Whether that be your physical health or your mental health.
Motherhood brings about so many new responsibilities and demands and with that, you need to also prioritize listening to you, and knowing what you need too.
It can be easy to overlook yourself. Crumble under the sleepless night, pressure and worry.
It is just as important to take care of you, as it is to take care of your baby.
So go for that walk. Make that smoothie. Take that bubble bath. Meditate. Do some yoga. Speak to someone. Go for a blow dry. Talk to a good friend. Breathe.
And know you have everything it takes and everything you need.
Stop the comparison game
Everyone’s body is different. And let’s not even get into the inundated unrealistic expectations around mothers that societies and cultures place on us.
This is not a race. This is not a who can lose it faster competition.
This is learning to love yourself. All of yourself.
The battle scars. The droopy skin. The stretch marks.
Does that mean stop taking care of your health? Absolutely not.
Does that mean love yourself throughout the process and stop being so darn hard on yourself.
Treat yourself as you would your daughter who just had her first baby
You certainly wouldn’t tell your daughter who was a new mom to buckle up buttercup and get back on that bike.
So why is it that we can be so harsh on ourselves, but give the best advice to those we love the most.
It is because we are our hardest critic.
It is because sometimes we hold ourselves to unrealistic expectations or put too much pressure on ourselves.
This is something I wrote not long after having my twins and it certainly helped me when I learned to love myself all over again. I hope it resonates with you too.
Sometimes I take a look at myself and don’t recognize the body I am in.
Truth is my body has never been the same post twin pregnancy.
It sags, it droops. It feels like a third baby.
Post c-section, my body was never the same.
But neither was my life.
It can be so easy to give up on my health or talk negatively about myself.
I can be so easy to be really hard on myself, which at times, I most certainly am.
But then I remember what two precious gifts this belly gave me.
I remember how different my life would be without them.
I remember that I earned those stripes.
I remember that my belly does not define my worth.
It is a lesson that I continue to repeat to myself until it feels real.
So to all the mamas who have matching bellies, you are not alone.
You earned those stripes.
And you are beautiful exactly as you are in every single way.