“It all began in the delivery ward. Reading all the possible books and having regular sessions with my gynecologists never made me at ease. Being a first-time expectant mum made me anxious. The early days with my child were extremely tough, and I suffered severe body size issues,” says Prerna, a professional model currently living in Berlin.
The female body undergoes such enormous changes over the course of pregnancy and childbirth, it’s difficult to expect it to just bounce back. It would be an illusion to say that a book or a health care provider can ever fully prepare you for motherhood. It’s just a sphere to better navigate and provide visibility to the process after birth.
Metamorphosis after childbirth
“Heavy bleeding, drenched bedsheets with night sweats, thinning hair, engorged breasts. I have faced it all throughout my pregnancy and childbirth, but for me, my body size has been the toughest one to come to terms with. I am a model by profession, and my body has completely changed after childbirth. My physical metamorphosis has been bang since the day I became pregnant and have entered the ‘overweight mom’ territory! But oddly enough, the reality is enormously different from what I read in books over these months. If I had to say I don’t miss my body, that would be a sheer lie and I didn’t expect my body to develop this much, either,” says she with a grin.
Prerna adds that it’s hard and still she is coping with this reality, but cannot live in denial anymore. After being surrounded with constant disgust, she sees a ray of hope that arises from within her body. “I accept my body as it is and now I am the happiest I have ever been. I have now accepted this new transition. After all, it has given me the joy of my life. My daughter! Now what my heart holds is gratitude and acceptance. Growing her!” Prerna nods.
We wanted to know the most unexpected thing that happened to women during their pregnancies and childbirth. Our team interviewed some women, and you just read what Ms Prerna, a model by profession and a writer by passion, shared with us.
Accepting post-baby body
To have peace with your body just after your child’s birth is hard to accept. The secrets of postpartum bodies are difficult to have good relationships with. Certainly, new mommies rush like crazy to exercise in deliberation to get back to that black dress. It is nothing less than a crossroads when you face your postpartum self in the mirror each day. You notice a subtle metamorphosis each passing day.
There are two choices you got, ladies! You can either keep living in denial, shaming yourself, complaining constantly, counting the lobes on your thick loose tissues, post-baby voluptuous boobs, or hate those scratchy silver lines spread almost all over from your thighs to tummy, and convince yourself you are not beautiful. “Full stop,” or take progressive steps of acceptance.
Accepting that there won’t be any “magical transformation” overnight. You won’t get back to fitting into that black dress with a bottom lace soon. An acceptance that you can still walk the ramp with the new experience you got.
Most of the changes mentioned above are hormonal shifts which will be better with time. So, stop blaming yourselves. And you are not alone in suffering from post-baby body issues. The majority of women go through it.
What helps you bounce back
Well, here is how you can exactly come to terms with your uncharted post-baby body territory. Take a break for yourself. It might sound ironic how can you take a break when you have a newly born life to take care of, but it is possible. Many moms we talked to went on short trips with their babies after 3 months. And their experiences are worth sharing.
If you are a shopaholic person, then why not try buying new clothes for yourself. Take baby steps to embrace motherhood. Appreciate your body that you have finally done this. You should be impressed with your body and the biological facts associated with it. It must have exhausted you physically, now it’s time for your body to heal.
Don’t hesitate to practice yoga, take long relaxing walks and start postnatal exercises to maintain metabolism, and take out some “me” time. Even if it’s for an hour or two, do what you love doing. And do not leave your women’s club.
Your identity is much beyond a wife or a mother. You have trained yourself for nine months and here you are now. Believe it. It’s worth appreciating!
Don’t let your body hang-ups prevent you from feeling good about yourself. Take it from Anchal, who says that when she had her daughter, everything finally clicked: “why should I waste my time and energy to worry about the imperfections that I (and probably only I) will see. I earned those stretch marks and extra jiggles! I am a beautiful woman and a beautiful mother.” Enough said.
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