Finding Myself : Feeling Body Positive After Pregnancy


This has to be one of the most widely covered topics that a lifestyle / parenting blogger will cover, a day doesn't go by when one doesn't pop up on my feed. So today I am going to be a cliche and write about exactly that. And actually I have written about it before - but I felt a little differently back then.

Finding Myself : Feeling Body Positive After Pregnancy


But this last few months I have felt a change in myself. Actually I would say since having Alex. I have never felt completely down on myself since having children but I have from time to time struggled to find myself, find my comfortable zone with my mind but also my body. Pregnancy changes us in weird and sometimes wonderful ways. My skin isn't what is used to be across my "stretched" areas and I am not as full as I used to be either. To be expected though, and actually now i am in the right mind set something I am very proud of my body for. I gave birth and fed two babies, not something to turn your nose up at!

I have wanted to get up and go out to the gym for some time, for me. I had been a member at the local gym for almost a year and except for swimming lessons and things I could count on one had the amount of times I had been there for just me. About 6 months after having Alex I decided that needed to change, I wanted a bit of me back, as in to feel good about myself but I also wanted that release that exercise alone (without babies) would give me. It is amazing what 40 minutes away from the home can do for you.

Finding Myself : Feeling Body Positive After Pregnancy


But I learnt you can't force something if you really are not interested. Before then I wasn't at the point where I was feeling fat, had loads of weight to move or needed to get rid of my mum tum after having Alex. But that doesn't mean I was happy with myself but it also didn't mean I wanted to get stuck into the gym life again.

If I look back I lost confidence in my self, in my body. After having Daisy I (I hate this term but can't find a suitable replacement) "snapped back" fairly quickly, and before long didn't feel much different to how I had felt pre- pregnancy. But after Alex it was different. I was looser, softer and just didn't feel like I owned my body anymore. I wasn't hating on it but I certainly wasn't pleased with it entirely either.

I wasn't at a point where I was hiding away under bin bags but I was feeling nervous at the prospect of a bikini for my holiday. Dressed I am happy but slightly exposed, not so much. Before our last holiday I took to going to classes, helped by a friend and it didn't take long until I started to see a little definition again. I am never going to have abs and I am never going to be super lean, I love food too much and I am just not THAT dedicated. But I am happy.

And actually I am enjoying it. I feel like me again. I feel nice. And I am not sure if that is because I have the confidence from shaping myself up a little or the fact I am doing something for myself, having time out and releasing any tension of the day. Either way I will take it and ride with it, and keep at it.

The lovely Fi from Beauty Baby and Me has let us know when she thinks too:

Body confidence is such a huge issue now and there is so much pressure on women to conform to the bloody Mail Online and the celebs who manage to snap back into their bikinis within three weeks. The important thing is remembering the difference between them and us; not many of us have dedicated personal trainers who can come to our houses, create diet plans and training schedules. And quite frankly, so soon after birth, I wouldn't want that. If I recall rightly, I couldn't even fathom getting myself properly dressed in the couple of weeks after I had Josh let alone eating kale and going for runs.

However, I do think confidence in ourselves is an important thing. You have to remind yourself how amazing you and your body are. One thing I am glad I did is taking a photo at the end of the pregnancy - I believe it was a couple of days before I had Josh. I still look back at this, at how stretched my body was, how I had grown and nurtured this little being who arrived into the world just a few days later.  It is incredible when you think about it.  Believe in yourself; ignore the labels ("real woman" is the one that grates me the most), and remember what your body has grown, produced and gone through. You and your body are amazing.

Hayley x

3 comments

  1. Exactly - our bodies do an incredible thing and that shouldn't be forgotten. I had my second daughter 12 weeks ago and though I have stretch marks galore I don't mind. I have them because I grew our beautiful daughters :)

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  2. I'm proud of my body and amazed at how clever it it. But, I don't like it!

    It has grown 5 beautiful babies and kept them safe. It has delivered 3 vaginally and recovered well after the first section. However, right now, I probably am hating on my body thanks to a large hernia I've developed since my second section.

    One day I'll like it again, I hope.

    I hope you don't mind but I'm going to add your post to the #FeelGoodLinky I host.

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  3. There is so much pressure on us these days to conform to what the Daily Fail thinks is 'normal'.You as a person need to feel happy in your own skin, it isn't about what your neighbour down the road thinks about you. I do love my time away in the gym with my buddy - who is a size 6 - but on the otherhand she has her own body hang ups too. I can't see me ever being entirely happy with my body, as you say, having children really does change us (for better and worse) but I know I will get to the point where I am body confident and will love my stretch marks. Thank you for linking up with the #FeelGoodLinky and hope you can join in again! Sim x

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