Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Aftermath of Childbirth

As many of you already know, I have two children. M is 5 and L is 2 1/2. They are my whole world. No doubt about it. Having children is such a joy in so many ways. Everyday is a new experience and a memory made. I also carry the memories of childbirth. The good and the bad. Not just the mental and emotional memories, but the physical ones too. The battle scars. The changes in my appearance. The lack of interest in being intimate. The whole shebang.

Love my little blessings!
I know so many mothers out there that are so strong and never let any of these things bother them. They are proud of what they were left with after giving birth. I'm not going to say I'm not proud, because believe me I wouldn't change a thing. I carried those two munchkins and brought them into this world! And it will always be worth it. Worth everything my body has been put through. But, I find myself lacking self esteem on a daily basis and this has been an issue since the birth of M.

I didn't get blessed with super elastic skin (although that would be a pretty awesome super power like ElastiGirl from The Incredibles!). And I have very fair skin. I gained 50 pounds during my first pregnancy and 40 with my second. My skin took a beating. I was left with stretch marks galore. I have them on my stomach, a few on the insides of my thighs and even some on my hiney! My apologies if that's TMI. But it's true. And I hate it. I can't bring myself to love my stretch marks like many women. I wish they would disappear. I tried everything. Cocoa butter, vitamin E, you name it. During and after the pregnancies. Nothing works. I was also left with saggy skin, which probably bothers me even more than the stretch marks. No matter what my weight is, it's there. Staring at me in the mirror everyday. It will always be there. I will never be comfortable in a bathing suit again. Bikini? No thank you! I can get away with a tankini if the top is long enough or just go with a full piece. But I would rather not be in one at all. And that just plain stinks.

Shrinkage up top is another card I was dealt. Some women get really lucky and they actually gain a cup size or so. I have the unfortunate problem of the exact opposite. I wasn't large to begin with, but I was happy with what I had. Now, I'm smaller than ever and have lost all perkiness. *Sigh* I am only comfortable in the Victoria's Secret Bombshell bras and they're my new besties! Wouldn't go anywhere without one!

People tell me that I look great and I know they mean it. I appreciate each compliment more than they know. But when they don't see what I see under the clothes it's hard for them to really understand how I feel. 

I keep telling my husband that one day I will have surgery. I have never been a proponent of surgery for the sake of vanity. I don't understand why some women choose to get implants that make their boobs the size of watermelons! However, I do agree with doing something for yourself if it makes you happy and comfortable in your own skin. So long as it's not obnoxious and completely obvious. I just want to remove the excess skin and perk up the ladies again! If I go under, might as well do both at the same time. Right? I promised myself I wouldn't do anything extreme and wouldn't consider it before I was finished having kids. Well, pretty sure I've hopped off the baby-making train. One of each is enough for this gal! Now I just have to wait until we can actually afford it and I can get over my fears. As much as I want it, it makes me a tad nervous. One day.

How many of you also lack self-confidence after having children? Any tips on how to overcome it? I could sure use some advice.



Amanda I said...

I feel your pain. I gained 45 lbs with both pregnancies and doubled the amount of stretch marks with #2 (I have them from my belly down to my knees, front and back). I don't mind the stretch marks (I don't love them by any means) just I make sure I wear long tops that don't ride up and own a tankini instead of a bikini. The one I have issues with is how things settled after baby #2. The baby flub stuck around, which I hate! And my breasts have gone down a cup since I've finished breast feeding.

I just try to exercise and tone the flub and I make sure I wear pretty bras (and more push up bras since they're not nearly as perky as they once were) to help me feel a little better.

Know you're not alone :-)

New GFC follower from Pour Your Heart Out

Ashley V. said...

Hi Amanda! Thanks for visiting :) And I appreciate your comments very much. I exercise pretty regularly and am in decent shape....seems the stretched skin sticks around no matter what! I'm surely not alone so it's nice to connect with women that have the same issues :)

Lady Goo Goo Gaga said...

My entire body from cankles to bags under my eyes has been deformed by my's not pretty

Shell said...

I love my kids but I do hate what pregnancy did to my body. Stretch marks and a pouch that won't go away, along with deflated boobs.

I'm learning to be okay with it. But, I still wish I could have my old body back!