Monday, November 4, 2013

My Thoughts on Food and the Post-Baby Bump

I have previously spoken a few times about my experiences and issues with food (here and here). I talked about how I dealt with these thoughts and ideas during the beginning and end of my pregnancy. Now that our little nugget is here and I have one of those "post-baby bodies", I thought I would give an update about how I'm feeling and coping with some of these new thoughts, feelings, and body images.

During most of my pregnancy, I felt pretty confident in my body. I was gaining weight, just like I was supposed to. Many people told me "you're just all baby!" Well, after the baby came out, turns out that your stomach doesn't look the same as it did before a baby was in there. These are things people (and books) tell you, but I thought things would be different for me. I was physically fit before the pregnancy. I ran for more than half of the pregnancy! I thought I was going to bounce back and be in my pre-pregnancy jeans in no time.

Turns out my expectations did not quite line up with reality. I have a little pouch and not many of my pre-pregnancy shirts fit and none of my non-maternity jeans fit. I had a baby 7+ weeks ago and I'm still wearing maternity clothes. As it turns out, this is completely normal. Some/many women wear maternity clothes for months after having a baby. Hearing about this and experiencing it are two different things. At first, I was a bit upset about my post-baby body. But then, I look down at my little nugget (in my opinion, she happens to be extra adorable) and it makes me smile. The little pouch was worth it. I'm not so down on my weight or waistline. It is only a few pounds. Right now making sure I get enough calories so I can keep breastfeeding little Patsy is most important. (Dropping my caloric intake can affect my milk supply. Life is all about priorities.)

In the end, I'm still not in love with how I look, but I'm in love with my little baby who was so worth it. I know I'll have confidence in my body again some day, I just need to give myself some time. I know I'll get there eventually.

And because this post needs some photos of my adorable little nugget... Here are some photos from her first Halloween! In case you were wondering, Patsy was Princess Leia and Pepper was Chewbacca. :)

17 comments:

  1. it can take 2 years for your body to go back to normal or never, as in my case :(

    ReplyDelete
  2. Having a baby is a huge life change in so very many ways - I can't even imagine all of the various mental adjustments that happen. I've felt bad about my body more than a few times in my life, but as a non-mom I guess I feel like, at least you did something amazing to make your body the way that it is. Mine was usually just too much fast food/snacking/ice cream, etc. But I have several mom friends who have felt that way too, so I think what you're going through is probably pretty normal. Just keep putting it in perspective of your adorable little nugget, and I'm sure your confidence will come back soon enough.

    ReplyDelete
  3. First, you look beautiful, Kelly. I know it's really hard to see changes in our body - there is a lot of post-baby pressure to get your "pre-baby" body back. There's a lot of body-image struggles that new moms go through that doesn't really get enough discussion imo because we focus so much on snapping back instead of being comfortable in our bodies. So I want to reiterate - you look lovely. You look healthy, too.


    But second, even from a normal birth it takes more than 7 weeks to snap back and as much as the celebs who get to spend all of their time "snapping back" might look different sooner, pregnancy and birth are physically traumatic and you look like you have come through to the other side of that journey SO well - it took 9 months to stretch and it will take time re-settle.



    But what I really wanted to say is - the expectations from recovery for a c-section are even more different. The little c-section pouch DOES go away eventually if you go back to taking care of yourself (which you are) but it takes more time because in addition to pregnancy stretching you, the healing from major surgery is very traumatic for your body. You look incredible for having had major stomach surgery!





    And all that said - I still totally understand your feelings. Even on my second baby and second pregnancy and second c-section staring at the little pooch has me going bleh Even though I know all of this. I totally get it!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Thanks for writing about this. I think there's such pressure for women to gain just the right amount of weight and then immediately look svelte and fabulous (Beyonce, Kelly Ripa, Gwen Stefani and Madonna are freaks). I loved that Kate Middleton got out there right after having her baby and was shocked the world was surprised she GASP! still looked pregnant the day after giving birth?! It isn't realistic to think that you spent nine months growing a child and will suddenly be the same immediately. Way to keep it real, other Kelly.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Well, too much fast food/snacking/ice cream is also a factor. Lol. I was eating a lot while running, then I was eating a lot while pregnant, now I'm breastfeeding and still eating a lot. I don't want to go on a diet bc I'm worried how a lack of calories would affect my supply. Therefore, I'm going to just keep doing what I'm doing and get some nice "inbetween" clothes in the mean time. :) My little nugget is pretty much the best and was totally worth it. Talking about it on here really helps me :)

    ReplyDelete
  6. Oh yeah. The celebrities that have bodies that bounce back... I really don't know what they're doing.. probably hiring a nanny, nutritionist chef, personal traitor, and not to mention all the photoshopped photos gracing the cover of magazines. Ah, I digress.


    I figure that more people can relate to my feelings of the post-mommy-body blues. I didn't really have a reality check from anyone before the baby was born. I think it was one of those unspoken things that no one really talks about until after it happens. Well, I'm here to tell you the truth! Thanks :)

    ReplyDelete
  7. That's good to hear! Maybe clothes that fit you better for the time being will help you feel a little better too? And this is a perfect time to get a few "in between" things anyway, with all the holiday sales (see, bright side!). As long as you and Patsy Rose are both healthy, I think you're making the right choice! I guess if it really starts to bother you, you could probably talk to a nutritionist or your doctor to see if you can adjust your diet in a way that won't affect your supply, but she'll only be a baby once. It seems like she's worth it :)

    ReplyDelete
  8. Thanks Heather. With the unexpected c section, I think that has also added something to it, like you said. It really is crazy how much pressure we put on ourselves (and society has us put on ourselves as well).

    ReplyDelete
  9. Thank you for bringing this unspoken topic up. I can't imagine how hard it is to struggle with "not bouncing back" fast enough (whatever the eff that means) after having a child. WTF is wrong with our society!? Anyways. It seems you have a healthy mindset about everything and will find balance soon. I appreciate your honesty and willingness to talk about these issues that no one seems to want to share. I struggle with food and the 5lbs or so I've gained since the marathon, I can't imagine how having a child would make me feel. Your nugget is so freaking cute and ms Pepper too. :) keep on keeping it real Lady! You look amazing btw.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Thanks so much! I hope that I can bring a perspective that I never really found until AFTER I was already pregnant and/or had the baby. I always try my best to be honest and truthful here on the ole blog, glamorous and not. Thanks again! :)

    ReplyDelete
  11. Katie @ Live Half FullNovember 4, 2013 at 7:19 PM

    You have SUCH a healthy attitude. I will be tapping you for advice later in life. ;)

    ReplyDelete
  12. I'll be here! I've noticed that lots of relatives and friends seem to remember things differently that how they happened. Temporary amnesia. I think it is kind of like marathoning. The fun and rewards that follows makes you forget all the bad stuff. :)

    ReplyDelete
  13. So I'm not sure if I'm just feeling more sentimental and/or emotional today but that post made me a little teary. I'm glad you think that baby Patsy was so worth a little baby belly post-pregancy. It's so true. I would give anything to have a little nugget of my own some day. How very special motherhood is! Don't think about the "belly" (Of which really is very very itty bitty, you look great!). You will be able to work out like you used to before you know it and you will fit into those jeans! I <3 baby Patsy!

    ReplyDelete
  14. Thanks for sharing this! Like many of the others said, I think it's easy to have ridiculous expectations for ourselves based on what we see in the media! You are doing what is right for you and for Patsy and that is what is most important, not whether those clothes fit right now! :)

    ReplyDelete
  15. You should be proud of your body - it has done something amazing, and it makes sense that it would be different. It made a life, and continues to nourish your daughter. That's awesome. And powerful!!

    ReplyDelete
  16. Amanda - TooTallFritzNovember 13, 2013 at 10:02 AM

    Sorry, I missed this post the first time. I've been having some "issues" at home and in addition to that extra fun stuff, work has been ridiculous. Anyhow, I'm here now. :)
    It takes some people a year to feel better/normal and get their body back to where they were before the baby. I also believe that it's a solid year before your running returns to "normal". Girl, I remember my first run after Michael like it was yesterday. I can see, no FEEL myself running down the road, I can even feel the sunlight on my face and what I remember the most isn't the joy I felt to be out running but rather that fact that my axx & "pooch" jiggled the entire time. I've never been particularly slim. I've always had a bit of a pooch. BUT I can't ever remember the feel of my body JIGGLING during a run. I almost stopped. The jiggling was more upsetting than my cramping & bleeding during those first runs. LOL!
    Keep your chin up. Things WILL go back to normal. I promise!! And #PatsyRose is definitely worth it! HUGS!!!!!!

    ReplyDelete