This morning I was looking through the news for a parenting story to perhaps write about for you on this here website. Unfortunately, when I clicked on the parenting section of a popular news site, I was met with not one but two articles where a celebrity was talking about “getting her body back” after having babies.
And you know what? It made me mad. Because it’s stupid.
Let me be clear: being fit and healthy is not stupid. Although I’ll be honest, you’ll never see me post anything with the #FitMom…I think by the current standard it just does not apply.
What’s stupid is longing to have the bodies that we had before we had children. What’s stupid is pressuring moms into thinking that they need to be a certain size or look a certain way, and that their body should look as if they have never had a child.
I have a body that has worked three miracles. I don’t want my old body back. That old body was full of potential, but the body that I have now has reached that potential three times and is much more special to me. I am much more proud of it. So I don’t want a body without stretch marks, a C-section scar and breast forever um, compromised (LOL) by nursing three babies.
When I was pregnant with my first child, the arches of my feet fell and I had some serious pain in my feet and knees. I now have really flat feet, but I don’t even want my old feet back. The fact that I can’t go barefoot without my left leg going numb is a reminder of my precious son. After I finished nursing my second child my straight hair became wavy. After about nine years it’s finally going back to straight…and I am kinda sad. Straight hair is easier but those wild waves were a constant reminder to me of all the amazing ways my daughter has changed my life.
One day, my mama friends, my house will no longer be filled with children. My body will be older and saggier then it even is right now at age 40. But on that body will still be the reminders of the fact that I gave birth to three beautiful children. And when they no longer live in my home, the lines on my stomach will be a reminder that they will always live in my heart. I can look at those lines and hear their laughter, I can place my hand on what I fondly refer to as my “C-section gut” and remember them kicking inside my body. I can comb through my gray hair and fondly remember which of their antics turned which strands of my dark hair a paler shade.
Mamas, I don’t want my body back. And it’s OK if you don’t either. Don’t let anyone tell you that your old, pre-kid body should be your goal, and as you look in the mirror, or wash yourself in the shower, give thanks for each part of you that brought a child into this world.