Friday, March 14, 2014

I Love My Body

I had a doctor’s appointment on Tuesday, and like usual, my blood pressure was too high at the beginning of the appointment, but totally settled down at the end.  Thankfully, my doctor is smart enough to measure twice.  Now I have strict orders to tell the medical assistant not to take my blood pressure until the end of the appointment.

Why is my blood pressure high at the beginning of the appointment?  The weigh-in is first, of course, and even though I KNOW that I will gain weight, a lot of weight, I am always hopeful.  I’m hopeful that eating healthily (I seriously eat less pregnant than I did non-pregnant and it’s almost all good stuff… right now I’m munching on a snack of cucumber and bell pepper slices) and working out hard three times a week and walking the dog for 45 minutes five nights a week will keep me from somehow using every calorie I ingest to add to my girth.  Alas, it is not to be.  I am healthy, I am fit, and I weigh 180 pounds… 35 pounds more than I did pre-pregnancy.  My hips and pelvis are loose and wide, my butt, thighs, and arms are big, and I’m beginning to get softer in the face.

It’s difficult.  It’s tough to look in the mirror and be happy.  It’s hard to try on something as innocuous as boots and realize that my legs are too large for them.  It’s painful to know that there are people who will look at me and wonder why I “let myself go” during pregnancy, when in reality, I am fighting as hard a possible to stay fit and firm.  I’m just losing.

But the worst thing I can do, the absolute worst, is to let myself get into a funk about it.  I am fat.  I will remain fat for at least a year after giving birth.  And someday, when I’m not so close to my pregnancies, I’ll look back at the photos and I won’t cringe.  And when I finally get rid of all the size 14 post-pregnancy clothing, I’ll celebrate.  In the meantime, I’m doing my best to feel good about myself.  Some days I succeed.  Some days I don’t.

In an effort to be positive, I decided to write down everything I love about my body.  Imagine if we made every pre-teen and teenager and adult do this once a year?  Self confidence starts with self acceptance and self love.

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I love my body.

I love my body because it has held me upright for almost 33 years on this planet.  It has carried me to foreign places and new experiences.  It has skied, sledded, mountain climbed, traversed cities, biked, swam, and danced.

I love my body because at 22 weeks pregnant with my third child, I can still run a half-mile without stopping.

I love my body because it has carried three successful, healthy pregnancies.

I love my body because the sum of its parts is amazing.  But the individual parts are pretty amazing, too:

I love my eyes because, even if they need a little help, they see the world around me, including my children’s lovely forms, my husband’s brilliant smile, my dog’s happy face, and all the people who mean so much to me in my life.

I love my hands because they are large and strong and can hold fast to crying babies and my children’s hands.  They wipe tears and knead bread and pet the dog.  They type quickly and surely.  They enable my life.

I love my arms because they are strong.  They help me do push-ups.  They carry my children.  They wrap around my husband as we share the couch before bed.  They open car doors and carry heavy bags and dig for buried treasure in the sand.

I love my legs because they are powerful.  They can run and jump and carry me and my swollen belly all over the place.  They support me when I am tired and they stand strong while I am cooking or cleaning or working.

I love my feet.  They are big and stable.  They help me keep my balance so that I can catch children running into the street or dance with those same children in my living room.

I love my nose.  It can smell my delicious cooking and my son’s disgusting socks that he left on the floor.  It can smell my babies’ heads and their sweet skin.  It can tell me which way the wind is blowing (cows from the east, ocean from the west), if the flowers are blooming, and who needs his diaper changed.

I love my mouth.  It can taste good food.  It kisses my husband and my children.  It smiles at people and pets I love and even at strangers.

I love my body.

I love my body because it is mine.  And even though I sometimes look at myself and sigh, or feel like crying, my body doesn’t give up.  It doesn’t wither under my tears.  My body keeps going, stays strong, and helps me bounce back.

I love my body.

photo 2 (17)

4 comments:

Julia said...

Hugs hugs hugs. Keep trying to stay positive and tell yourself affirmations. It's tough when our bodies take control when we're pregnant and decide to Gain. All. The. Weight, despite what we're doing correctly. I know, I've been there too. You look fabulous, you really do. :)

Tiffany Crain said...

Amelia you are such a great writer! I packed on pounds when pregnant! I now know it couldn't have been avoided because I was hormonally clogged. Many people think when women gain a lot of weight when they are pregnant they are lazy and eating too much. I know that is not the case! Fortunately, not all people think that. It is all about hormones. I moved to Skagit County 5 months after having Brooklyn, and none of my newer circles know me as what I think of my "usual" self. On the outside, I mean. I am usually fairly trim, and always have been more curvy. If I wore smaller sizes when I am at my trimmest I'd have to shop in the pre-teen or teen department. I am getting reactions more and more now that I am nearing getting back into shape FINALLY. Brooklyn is two the 30th of March, and this is the longest it has taken me to bounce back. Thanks for encouraging me to love my body more as I get healthy again! I truly think you look great, and am looking forward to seeing your newest addition!

lose-weight said...

you donot seem overweight ..and never use medicines/or any weight loss suppliments when you are pregnant

Amelia said...

Thank you! I'm focusing on being healthy- I don't use weight-loss anything in my non-pregnant life, so I'm definitely not doing it now :)