I recently found out I’m pregnant…with twins. What was going to be our second child turned into #2 and #3. This is exciting, overwhelming, and terrifying, and yet part of it is me just being a tad self-centered.
How will I look after?
I’ve struggled with my body image as long as I can remember.
But honest to goodness, I remember looking in the mirror at 7 months with my daughter Bella, huge as I was, and feeling so confident about it all. The stretch marks (I got like 4 but don’t hate me – the hyperemesis I had made up for lack of them), the huge belly, the cave of a belly button (mine never popped. It just kinda stretched into a large hole…).
And this time around, it’s the same, but more. I’m having twins. So at 10 weeks I already have a noticeable belly. I have to wear maternity pants. But none of it matters right now. I really love this part of pregnancy, as rough as the other stuff can be.
What is hard is the aftermath.
I remember standing in the hospital bathroom hours after Bella was born, looking with total shock at the sagging skin my stomach had left. The bloat. The stretched out mess. I cried so hard, my hands gripping the sink as I tried to wrap my head around it all. I had no idea it was going to look like that. Or if it would ever change.
It did, not all the way back but it did change and tighten up with time.
So now I’m here again. Dealing with a twin pregnancy. I’ve worked the past 2 years on taking that moment in the mirror and trying to accept and love my body for what it can do, what it offers, not how it looks. From pouring my heart out on my blog, to connecting with other women who have that same insecurity. It’s not easy. I’m not there. I might never totally be.
I can’t imagine what I’ll look like after delivering twins – however they end up being born.
But this time, I hope I can look in that mirror with a small sense of pride and awe – even through the tears. Even as nothing fits, and I have the stomach that squishes and folds. I can look at two healthy babies in my room and know its OK.
There will be a reason for it all. Beyond looks. Beyond my feelings. My body doesn’t define me as a mother or a person. It’s a vessel to help me be the best of both.
Have you struggled with body image either during or after pregnancy? How have you learned to bounce back or cope with the new “you?”
This is an original post to World Moms Blog from our mother of 1, 2 and 3 in El Paso, Texas, Diana.You can also find Diana blogging at Hormonal Imbalances.
The image used in this post is credited to Dustin Askins. It has a Flickr Creative Commons attribution license.