My post-pregnancy body: Accepting that my shape has changed

It has been almost twenty two months now since I gave birth to my second daughter and I always believed that with time, when I finally got the chance to focus on my diet and do some exercise, that I would be able to lose the baby weight and regain my shape. But it is only now that I am finally beginning to realise that my body may never go back to the way it used to be.

I always clung on to the hope and belief that once I had the time and energy to really get back into exercising that I would begin to slim down and tighten up all of those loose bits (of which there are plenty), and I would finally fit back into a lot of my clothes that are still sitting on hangers gathering dust.

Then there are the other items of clothing that I have that I can fit back into but still don't wear because they just don't look the same on me anymore. They sit differently now because my shape has changed - my hips are wider and my chest is bigger so very few things look the way they used to. And I have to admit that it really does make me feel sad inside at times. I miss my old body.

Before I had my children I was always so body confident. I was a bit of a fitness fanatic, working out five times a week. Whether it was strength training in the gym, running out on the road or heading to my spinning class, I was always doing something. I had all the time in the world and a big chunk of it was spent on exercising. It was my absolute passion. 

Now today, five years and two babies later, my body tells a very different story. It has endured two pregnancies and as a result has now changed and looks pretty different. For one it has widened – yes, that whole pelvic area really took the brunt.

Muscles that were once firm and strong are now loose and weakened. I now have no problem filling out a t-shirt as I have gone up a full cup size in the bra department – yes being flat-chested is no longer an issue for me. And my once flat and tightly-packed abdominals are now stretched and often, I think, resemble my granny after she has taken her dentures out.

As much as I would like to have my old body back, the truth is that most days once I have finished taking care of my two little ducklings and tended to the other ten million things that have to be done each day, I simply don't have the time or energy to squeeze in exercising. And as much as I would like to think of myself as some sort of super-mum who can manage it all, I can’t. Sometimes I am just plain tired.

However, having said all that I am not one to give up easily. I may have all the obstacles of motherhood going against me but I am still going to try. Try to get my runners on each day and get out there, even if it is just for a walk. 

I think it’s time to stop grieving the old body and start embracing the new one, the one that worked so hard to carry and deliver my two beautiful little girls. So I’m ready to move on and accept that things don’t always have to look perfect all of the time.

I may never fit into my skinny jeans again and I have a rack full of skin-tight dresses that may never see the light of day either but I am going to be happy and I am going to keep trying to take care of myself.

Tracey Carr

My name is Tracey Carr and four years ago I stopped working to become a stay-at-home mum to my two little girls, something which has been a rollercoaster ride to say the least. My blog is a quest to try and re-discover myself as I journey through motherhood and to hopefully help redefine the whole concept of what we know a ‘housewife’ to be.

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