My body has grown, sustained, and nourished two tiny precious human lives. When you think about what it takes to bring a tiny person into this world its pretty amazing. How can something so wonderful come from what it does? As moms, our body tells this tale. Stretch marks take over areas of our body and sometimes in places you didn’t even know stretch marks were possible. Maybe your shoe size changed or you have a permanent stomach pouch that no matter how many sit ups you do your mid section proudly lets everyone know: I had a baby. Thats ok mama. It’s going to happen, you are going to hate your body somedays but its important to remember why you have flaws and to accept and love those flaws.
We live in a society totally obsessed with body image. How do we navigate these waters and still accept ourselves when we are subjected to so much judgement about what may or may not be wrong with our bodies. I’m still trying to accept the flaws I have been blessed with. In the last 4 years I have lost 20 lbs gained another 30lbs, lost it all and then some, gained it all back, and then lost some again. Now I find myself at a standstill. I don’t love my body how it is at the moment but I also cannot find the motivation, that doesn’t cause me stress, to have what is “right and perfect” to me. Several years ago I had impressive results from a few month stint with Weight Watchers. Upon becoming pregnant with our first daughter I dropped the diet but still found it had taught me better eating habits even when not following the program. Of course eventually I basically forgot about it all but amazingly enough the weight just melted off (thank you breastfeeding) after she was born. Fast forward a few years later and here we are with two sweet girls and more body changes later. I have since tried Weight Watchers again and failed. A few months later another program that I knew would produce results if I could stick to it but I couldn’t without placing unnecessary stress on myself between meal planning (which I hate) and finding the energy to get a work out in.
As a mom to young children I want to place my focus on them and not be losing my mind about whether or not I have balanced enough meals for the week. Today I ate a handful of trail mix for lunch because thats what I had time for between my piles of laundry, phone calls to get my appliances that seem to keep breaking fixed, and still being present for my girls. Do I want to be healthier? Absolutely. I just wish we could all cut each other some slack and realize tight and toned bodies aren’t realistic for everyone. We all have a different story about why we are the way we are. We all have different struggles for a variety of reasons but some of those struggles are somewhat the same. We are dissatisfied with this, we need more of that, or there is too much of something.
I do genuinely think physical health is of utmost importance but we are only human and I am going to eat a cookie (or three) if there are some in front of me. I don’t want a one size fits all image of perfection for myself or for my kids. There needs to be a focus on happiness that still incorporates health on a physical and mental level. If working out daily and following a strict diet plans makes you happy then why wouldn’t you. If moderate exercise and eating the best you can is most comfortable for your lifestyle then that should be your goal. Do what you need to do to sustain a happy and healthy life for yourself and others in your household. Follow your own lead!
Be happy and be healthy friends!
(Originally posted on July 6th, 2017)