“Loving your body ONLY when it is in perfect shape is like loving your kids ONLY when they’re well-behaved.”
My postpartum body is not something I am in love with. Sadly, there is not much to love when your boobs sag so much they could be confused for your knees. Or when your tummy never looks flat, no matter what position you’re in. Or even when your skin hasn’t bounced back to how healthy it looked pre-pregnancy. But, maybe the truth is that I have it all wrong. Maybe there’s a lot to love about my body; this beautiful human-carrying, growing machine. Maybe I should simply accept and appreciate my new appearance.
For today’s post, I am delighted to welcome Brigitte Evans, Cosmetic Skin Care Consultant and contributor to highstylife.com. Brigitte offers some perspective on how we can view our postpartum body; here are her great tips…
Having a baby changes everything, and while most of those changes are amazing, some are difficult to cope with, primarily the ones that affect your body. This is perfectly normal since, for nine months, your body wasn’t quite your own. Gaining a few pounds and sagging in places you weren’t before may not be quite what you’ve expected, but those are natural consequences of carrying a new life in your body. It is also natural that you want your old body back, but that can’t happen overnight.
Try not to judge
The first couple of weeks after giving birth can be very difficult. Most of the women are swollen, sore, flabby and emotionally exhausted during that period. The abdominal muscles are still stretched out and the uterus hasn’t had the time to shrink to its pre-pregnancy size. The worst thing you can do is let all this affect your confidence. Your body has a long way to go before it gets to its previous (or resembling the previous) state, and how long that will take depends on your genes, fitness level and other factors.
Don’t rush back into the hyper-active lifestyle
If you are eager to get back to your pre-pregnancy lifestyle in the first month after giving birth, maybe you should reconsider that. Your body needs to recover first, which requires a lot of sleep and rest. Only when you feel like you are ready can you ease back into your old activities, and even then, begin with some light exercises, starting with walking and stretching.
Put a smile on your face
Nothing brings back a girl’s confidence like a bright white smile on her face, and there is no great-looking body that can replace that. Unfortunately, pregnancy can cause dental issues in some women, such as gum problems, and the sweet cravings can lead to tooth decay. If the pregnancy took its toll on your teeth, that can also lead to a lack of self-confidence. Dental veneers can transform your smile without damaging your teeth.
Adapt your style
It can be some time until your body finally returns to shape, and instead of sitting in your house and waiting for that day to come, you can adapt your clothing style to your current figure. Shopping has always been the cure for bad mood, and all you need is a good friend to follow you in this endeavor. Make sure to get a few clothing pieces that hide your flaws and enhance your best assets.
Do something that makes you feel attractive
Besides shopping, there are plenty of other things you can do to regain your self-confidence after pregnancy. You can get your hair colored or cut. Put on makeup every time you leave the house. It helps when you feel like you have a reason to get out of your pajamas and get ready. Consider getting a manicure, pedicure, spa day, etc.
Finally, try to accept who you are now. Yes, you are a woman, but you are also a mother, and you have been through a lot and endured it all. Bravo! You will get your body back, sooner or later, but you will always have a reason to love yourself.