I love babies :) Something inside me just swells up when I think about babies. I can’t describe it as it deserves, but motherhood is very fulfilling and wonderful to me. Sacrificing my sleep, my sanity, and my body are really small prices to pay for children… but one thing I don’t think should be sacrificed for babies is my confidence. I think that children thrive when they have a mother who loves herself… and that includes her body. Here is a list of things that have helped me to love my after baby body in spite of and because of perceived imperfections.
1. Remember that you are strong. You carried your baby for nine months. You went through labor and delivery to bring your baby into this world. You are not only strong, you are amazing!
2. Thank your body. Your amazing body made it possible for you to be a mother. Take the time to be grateful for the strong legs that carried him, the soft fat that cushioned him, the wide hips that opened so he could enter the world, the breasts that feed him, the arms that now carry him. I get chills thinking about all the wonderful things I can do because of my body.
3. Don’t spend too much time in front of the mirror. As women we tend to look only at what we think is wrong with us rather than what is beautiful.
4. Don’t pull out the pre-pregnancy clothes too fast. You’ll just feel bad trying to squeeze into those tiny pants.
5. Get dressed every morning. I’m not suggesting elaborate hair care or make up every day. Just put on some clothes that make you feel pretty – it will make a big difference – even if no one else sees it, you will, and you’re the only one who matters when it comes to feeling good about your body.
6. Talk about it with someone you trust – It’s OK to miss your pre-pregnancy body, talking it out can help you feel better. I found talking to my husband made me feel better – he listens without judgement.
7. Take care of yourself. I always feel prettier when I eat well and exercise.
8. Pray about it. Heavenly Father loves you. He made you. He thinks you are beautiful and if you need help loving your body, he can help you do it.
9. Lose yourself in service, this is easy to do when you have a new baby to serve. When I focus my energy on my children and serving my family body issues don’t even cross my mind.
10. Remember that you can get back to normal. Some things will always be different, stretch marks and other badges of motherhood don’t go away, but you can lose the extra weight and firm back up as you take care of yourself.
11. If body issues go beyond just body issues (postpartum depression) get help.
These are the things that helped me go from looking at my body with disgust right after Little Lion’s birth to looking at my body with sincere gratitude right after Little Jaguar’s birth. So what about you? What has helped you love yourself, or do you even have trouble with this in the first place?