[TIGER STRIPES & LEOPARD SPOTS- The Realities of Postpartum Recovery] .
Apologies for the belly on your news feed (swipe if you dare!), but this is what many mamas live with in the early weeks postpartum: red angry stretch marks, fluid-retaining bellies, & for anyone who ticks the boxes for potential blood clot risks like me, self-administered Clexane needle bruises (not to mention all the non-visible after birth pains and injuries!) Then there’s alllll the medication for pain & thyroid & supplements to try to get my iron levels up after my massive blood loss (swipe right to see my morning pill line up). I really had NO IDEA what I was in for... .
When I first fell pregnant, I was kinda happy that my growing belly would grow into my existing stretch marks & that the weight roller coaster from health issues throughout my life had prepared me for a body positive pregnancy after losing 12kgs just before I fell pregnant - how very wrong I was.
Instead of my baby bump growing nicely into the existing stretched skin, to my absolute horror, the old faded stretch marks grew angry again & sprouted MORE stretch marks in opposite directions. #nofair .
So many changes happen to our bodies throughout pregnancy & postpartum, and (if you’ve been reading about my birth trauma and post-birth experiences) then you’ll know there has been a lot going on for this first time mumma. For those of you who know me personally, you know I was bullied for my weight as a child & that scarred me in so many ways, affecting my body image & sense of worthiness well into my adult life. .
I did all the diets, hired personal trainers, did Zumba, even CrossFit, & still I was never happy, even at my fittest and slimmest. Now I’m on the other side of Luna’s birth & my first pregnancy and my sore, bruised, stretched, needle-marked, & slowly deflating body is the way it is, I’m seeing it all in a different light: I feel so sad that I spent 29 years loathing my body, only to go through so much now & wind up finally learning a lesson of body positivity and self love through trauma.
My pre/post baby body will always be my best before & after. And Luna is WAY better than any cheat meal! 👼🏼✨