Oh, how I’ve come to loathe the expression “get your body back.” As in, “don’t worry, it’s only a matter of time before you stop looking pregnant, because let’s face it, you no longer are.” Or, “yes, you may have a newborn in your hands, and you’re hardly getting any sleep, but let’s talk about how to look like none of this happened or is happening.”
Ladies and gents, I’ve been navigating the postpartum world, and it ain’t pretty.
In fact, it’s frustrating, because my postpartum body is, well, bigger than it’s ever been (with the exception of pregnancy, that is). The clothing I wore during my third trimester no longer fits (what the?). The other day, as I was in the changing room at the yoga studio, a well intentioned but misinformed woman asked me when my baby was due. Sure, I tried to gracefully laugh it off and she immediately apologized, but it all kind of adds up to one thing: what the hell is up with my body?
It’s easy to say, “Oh, don’t be so hard on yourself. You just had a baby, give yourself some time.” Or, “Oh, embrace what your body looks like, after all it just performed a miracle.” Of course I’m grateful for my body, but I ain’t gonna lie. More than once I’ve looked in the mirror, and sighed in disappointment. I look and feel fat. But that’s not really it. One thing is looking a little extra meaty, which I’m totally cool with. It’s quite another to feel completely achy, tired, sore, drained AND fat. My beautiful hormones are off the rack and my beautiful body is feeling and showing it.
In my case, it ain’t as simple as accepting my body and calling it a day. While I’ve come to love my thicker thighs and big belly because of how cushiony they are for my baby, I recently found out that my belly is more than just fat: I’ve got what’s called Diastasis Recti. The two sides of my abdominal muscles separated because during my pregnancy, my body was petite in relation to the size of my big, chunky baby. And now there is a gap between these muscles, which makes it look like I am still preggers. Not only that, it affects my spine, my posture, and my joints. When my physical body hurts, my emotional and mental bodies suffer. And apparently, it doesn’t just heal on its own.
I began my research on how to heal and transition in my new body. How to take exquisite self care of it. Pre-baby, my guide was WomanCode. And now, it’ll be a post-natal system called MuTu. Moms from all over the world swear by it. So I’ve decided to give it a shot.
I’ll give my full report when I complete it. In addition, I’ll also be taking daily probiotics and vitamins, because the lack of sleep is really draining my already tired body. I’ve always been a big fan of supplements, and these are the ones I am including in my self-care repertoire:
-Baby & Me Trimester III & Post
-Vitamin D3 2,000 IU
They’re all from Innate, a company that came highly recommended by my midwife, who is also a kickass naturopathic doctor. These supplements are food based and have high quality standards for purity and potency. I’m also taking andrographis, vitamin C and cod liver oil.
I am confident that all of this, along with a diet low in sugar and processed foods, and of course lots of water, should get me feeling all fabulous and mighty. Regardless of how I look. Because feeling it is way more important than looking it. And I need to feel amazing because next year is already lining up with so much amazingness. I’m so stoked to once again host self-care events in my current home state of Massachusetts, and a Bikram prenatal retreat in Hawaii (check out happenings & events for more info). I’ll also be supporting my guy as he launches his farm-to-table catering business and puts out on the market his much-coveted YumBar. Not to mention we’ll be raising our baby amidst all of this:)
These days, it’s wicked hard to take care of myself, and life just feels so unsustainable. My intention is to slowly integrate more & more self-care rituals so that ultimately, not only can I take better care of my two guys, but also of all the amazing things in our lives. And you know what, I’m totally cool if my post baby body is thicker, fuller. As long as I feel better within, structurally and energy wise, I’ll be happy.
Above is my “before” pic. In 12 weeks from now, I will post my “after” along with my experience and any other awesome post-natal wisdom I come across. If you’re a mama and are interested in doing MuTu with me, check out this link to read more about it and sign up. And if you do, be sure to let me know so we can support one another!
Thanks for reading, sending you big love!