I've been stewing over this topic for awhile but it was really brought to light to me yesterday. As all mothers know, your body takes a beating during pregnancy/birth. While you are pregnant (and believe me, I was guilty of this too), you worry about what your body will be like after having the baby. In most "normal" pregnancies, this is probably one of the #1 thing women worry about besides the actual delivery process. At least I did. I worried about stretch marks, fitting into my favorite pair of jeans again, if Dan would still find me attractive post birth, etc. I never once worried about losing my baby. I had fleeting, nervous thoughts every once and awhile but it never consumed me. I thought, like most "normal" people, that other people lost babies. My pregnancy was 100% normal, no complications, perfect ultrasounds, etc. so I was in the clear. Losing my baby was not something that could ever happen to me. To say I was naive is an understatement.
When Naya got sick and was rushed to a hospital across the state, I was 5 days post-partum and still recovering from her delivery. I literally had the clothes on my back and my purse and didn't come home for 2 months. I had nothing and was still healing and dealing with my new and very sore body. Granted, we had people from home come visit us and bring us clothes, books and other little things but I didn't have the luxury of easing back into the world in the comfort of my own home. None of my clothes fit me and my maternity clothes were just too depressing. I lived in sweatpants for a month (how I must have looked!) until I finally dragged myself to Old Navy to buy a pair of jeans that were two sizes bigger than I wore before getting pregnant. I looked and felt fat, tired and miserable which only added on to the emotional hell I was in.
Most women take awhile to return to their pre-pregnancy size, if they ever actually do. What makes it okay is that most women have a baby to show for their pregnancy. They can look at that tiny, perfect little human that they created and forget about their stretch marks and the fact that their ass is two sizes bigger than they ever thought humanly possibly. Not so for someone who has lost their baby. Our fat asses have nothing to show for our pregnancy except huge medical bills, a cemetery plot and a broken heart that will never fully heal. Granted, my body is getting back to normal a lot faster than I expected it too but that's what happens when you lose a baby - you have a lot of time on your hands and exercise is a fantastic way to work through your anger.
So to all the women out there stressing about your post-pregnancy body image issues:
STOP. Take a look at the wonderful gift your body gave you and view those stetch marks with a sense of pride. If those physical scars are the only thing you have to worry about, please realize how lucky you are and how much worse you could have it. What happened to me could happen to anyone.
PS - I can't wait for the day that I can proudly display my fat post-pregnancy ass with a new baby in my arms. I am going to wear those rolls with pride.