My Body Made Me a Mom

My Body Made me a Mom



 

It’s summer.

 

Which means that clothing is out and skin is in.  Nearly everywhere I look (online, on TV, and even out my bedroom window), I see people with tanned skin and fit bodies.  People who are running, exercising, and sunbathing…all while showcasing their near-perfect figures.

 

Having just had a baby 4 months ago, I am doing none of these things.  In fact, I am trying desperately to wear as much clothing as I possibly can while still staying cool.  Because, I can say with absolute certainty, nobody wants to see what lies beneath.  Maxi dresses and denim jackets are my new best friends.

 

Having my third baby and now being thirty, this baby weight just wants to hang on.  My stomach (which used to be flat) has become “squishy” at best, my thighs have expanded with each pregnancy (despite the fact that I am running), and my arms will occasionally wave back at me when I excitedly greet a friend or neighbor.  Oh, and I think I have lost enough hair to rival a whole family of cats.

 

To add insult to injury, the universe seems bent at reminding me of my monumental failure at being fit by showcasing moms on blogs, on TV, and on Facebook who look better than ever having just given birth a few weeks or months earlier.

 

This is not my reality.  My reality is that I can only workout one or two times a week (if that) and I am currently about as pasty white as a ghost

 

My reality is that I can try my very hardest to eat healthier and “count calories”…but that Dr. Pepper each morning is my one guilty pleasure.  And I am convinced it helps me make it through the day.

 

My reality is that I don’t have the time or energy to focus full-force on my body.  I have a husband and three kids to take care of, a relationship with God to foster, friends and family to encourage, a blog to run, and a church to attend.  I could probably get back into my pre-pre-pre-pregnancy size 4 jeans if I really wanted to…but my body is not my top priority right now.  My kids are.  My husband is.  My relationship with God is.  My friends and family are.

 

My reality is that my body has made me a mom.  Rather than cursing it for all the things that currently irritate the heck out of me, I can be thankful that I was healthy enough to carry three precious children within me.  This is a privilege I do not take lightly.

 

my body made me a mom

 

Every pound I have gained has provided nourishment for three beautiful children.

 

Every stretch mark on my stomach a reminder that life was once formed there.

 

Every hair I have lost a memento of the thousands of prayers that have been prayed for the health and well-being of the three precious miracles that God has entrusted to me.

 

I’ve finally resigned myself to the fact that I’ll never get my body back.

 

And that’s okay with me…my body made me a mom, after all.

 

And I wouldn’t trade that for the world.

 

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If you are reading this and you have become a mom through the beautiful act of adoption, please recognize that the same sentiment rings true for you as well.  Your body has enabled you to take care of your children and to put the needs of your family ahead of your own wants and desires (even that of a fit and fabulous bod).   :)

 

 

 

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Filed Under: A Lesson Learned

Comments

  1. says

    Thanks for this post, Jenae. Our daughter is 5 months old now and I am definitely staying far away from bathing suits this summer. After five babies in 6 1/2 years and a body that’s close to turning 37, I hardly recognize my body below the neck (actually I do recognize it… it’s my mom’s). I have much more peace with it than I ever thought I would, but I am also trying to figure out the way to take care of myself and balance everything else. As an older mom I will already be less energetic than my kids’ friends’ moms… I want to be as healthy and in shape as God allows. Where’s the balance? I’m still trying to find it, with God’s help.

    • says

      It is so hard to find the right balance! I definitely agree that we need to take care of our bodies…but trying to live up to society’s expectations of how our bodies should look after having birthing multiple babies is just a bit unrealistic (in my opinion, anyway). I don’t want to use this reasoning as an excuse to neglect my body, but rather recognize that for this season of life I will be content with an imperfect body (while still striving for a healthy one). :)

  2. Jessica says

    Oh my goodness…you made me cry! I read through your whole post and through it all I thought even though I did not give birth to my 3 beautiful boys, my body has taken a beating AND then you did it! You remembered those of us who did not give birth but who are still mommy’s through adoption! I wish I could give you a hug because that meant the world to me!!!!! thank you and God bless!!!

  3. Angela Cole-Mota says

    Thank you for such a wonderful post. It’s very easy to see all the beautiful bodies and compare ourselves and find ourselves less than, while forgetting the blessings that brought us to that point. It’s nice to be reminded of what is important! I am a Dr. Pepper fan as well! Have you tried Dr. Pepper 10? Awesome stuff, and I don’t feel too guilty after having one (or 3) :)

  4. says

    Thank you for this! I am in the same exact boat. My 3rd is 3.5mo. Old and he was my first in my 30’s I’ve been struggling as I adapt to this new body. I’ve been blessed to carry 4 lives in this body 1 for such a short time but your words are wonderful truly a time to remember to love our bodies and what they have made possible! Thank you!!!

  5. says

    Thank you! My third is 2 months old today, and I should know better that this body is beautiful post baby. I have struggled the last month with how swishy my tummy is. Your post is a good reminder I am not alone, and my body is amazing for birthing 3 beautiful babies.

  6. Melanie says

    I love how you talked about priorities. I tend to the person who tells myself “If I just tried harder….” and then beat myself up for just not being able to have it all together. I’m learning how to focus on priorities and also how to give myself grace and this post was so encouraging. I’ve had three little ones in a little over three years and I’m showing it! But I know that this is just a busy season that will soon be over. There will come a time soon enough when I can focus more on fitness.

  7. Amanda Martin says

    You are so beautiful and such a smart woman/mom. No doubt your family thinks so, too.

    I do want to share an additional thought. I got started with children later than you. I had my second at 30. And I had a good deal of back and hip pain that started after Baby#1. It wasn’t until I focussed on flexibility training and strength training that that pain went away.

    So while I firmly agree that our amazing bodies changes with the blessing of children. I also have to say, for me, exercise has made me a more comfortable mom. There’s no reason to be in pain if you don’t have to be!

  8. Kara says

    Thank you so so much! I really needed to hear these words from someone else and know that I am not alone. Thanks for the encouragement.

  9. says

    Thanks for sharing this. Thanks for remembering me to feel proud of my body and how it made me the mum I am today.
    I send you a big hug from Spain
    Cris

  10. Aly says

    Thank you for a beautiful post! I have never realized how hard it is to find time for yourself when you are a mom, a working mom especially, until I became a working mother myself. I am still hopeful however, that I will make time to work out at least 10 minutes a day… One day soon :) I only wish to rid of this never ending guilt of not spending enough time with my child, which definitely trumps the guilt of not looking your best. I guess it is all too about priorities, and my child will always be my number 1 priority. Your post made me feel like I am not alone in all my “mom” guilt battles with myself, and it is okay not to have it all. Thank you for sharing your feelings and a reminder that our bodies created the most important miracle of all, life!

  11. Laila says

    Your blog is a breath a fresh air. Thank you for your honesty and the wonderful insights and ideas you bring. It is a huge help to a first time mom like myself. God bless you!

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