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Wednesday, July 17, 2013
The Adventures of Pregnancy - Body Image and Body Change (an article for all!)
I didn't share my story during the process because I was trying to keep my life as close to "normal" as possible. I didn't want sympathy, I didn't want people to caudal me (well until the last few weeks ;), I wanted to be me (best described as an independent functioning person!)
During my nine-month journey, I have experienced so many "new things"with my body as well as body image. I've always been pretty close (we all get to exclude freshman year of college, right?) to my "recommended" weight so I was concerned how well I would take weight gain. Honestly, when you follow the guidelines of weight recommendation during pregnancy it isn't all that bad and it is for the sake of a healthy baby. What bothered me more than gaining weight was the fact that everyone else was concerned with my size. "You aren't gaining enough, now I can finally tell you are pregnant, when are you due...no way you can't be that size". It really made me feel self-conscious about my body and it made me feel for people that endure this or feel this way their entire lives. It is something I feel our society can work on...worry about your own image.
The other lesson I've learned is the aches of pains of life, literally. This portion of this post is going to hit home with a lot of people and I don't mean it to be offensive, but I want to use it as a way to enlighten people to the fact that there is a better way to live life (physically). I've gained nearly all of my pregnancy weight in my stomach which means several things: my back is so tight it feels like my muscles could rip in half at any given point, I can't see my feet and struggle to put socks and shoes on, I can't bend over and pick anything up very easily, I struggle to breath in general but it is really bad when you involve a flight of stairs, and simple tasks make me tired. I'm not mentioning these so you'll get the violins out and play me a sympathetic song (remember, I don't want that), but what I do want to note is these "conditions" mentioned are also associated with being overweight. As I struggle each day with them I think to myself, why would anyone want to live this way on purpose? The next thought in my head is "I wonder if they have forgotten what it feels like without these conditions?"
From this experience, I am now motivated more than ever to help people feel better physically and feel better about their body images. I didn't do anything special or over the top to only gain the needed weight for pregnancy. I gave up caffeine and all the pregnancy no-no foods and exercised regularly, but not excessively or as hard as I had once imagined I would (once my body started changing, it eliminated a lot of options!). My point? It doesn't take any special program, shake, supplement, etc it takes a little self-discipline and motivation (I have to say I feel their is some genetics involved, but that is for a different blog). These are the same principles I will use to remove the pregnancy weight and if you want to...join me! I'll share my tips along the way along with my struggles as I'm sure they will occur in my sleep-deprived state.
I'll keep you updated and let you know when we will be going full force again!