A Turning Point?

Maybe we are FINALLY turning a page with respect to post-partum body image.

When Kate Middleton stepped out of the hospital — not even 24-hours post-partum — she stood there, cupping her still-swollen belly looking absolutely radiant … and moms around the world cheered. Here she was, looking like we all do after delivering a baby: exhausted, puffy, and still looking 6-mths pregnant.

As some other bloggers have noted: she didn’t hide her belly under a tent-like dress or waltz out in skinny jeans; she wore a figure-hugging dress that showcased her curves, all the while holding her newborn son … in heels 😉

While I am sure Kate will have no trouble losing whatever baby weight she gained, I love that she showed the world that THIS (aside from the fab hair and heels) is “normal.” And it’s magnificent.

And now Kristen Bell has come out on the cover of Redbook magazine 11 weeks post-partum, saying she isn’t going to make herself miserable trying to diet down to her pre-baby size. 

While I think Kristen looks radiant regardless of her weight, I could hug both these women for their bravery — Kate’s, for showing the world what women really do look like after having a baby … and Kristen’s, for vowing not to succumb to Hollywood pressure. Like Hillary Duff and Pink before her, both eschewed the pressure to get their “bodies back.” And I love all of these women for being so real.

Becoming a mother is hard enough as it is, let alone the added [societal] stress of losing the baby weight.

Of course, it’s a double-edged sword. I’m not going to lie: it’s mentally and physically hard to see the numbers go up, up, up each week — even when you know why … especially if you’re like me and have past body image/weight issues. But at the same time, I know freaking out about losing it isn’t going to solve anything, either. There’s no rush; it will come off eventually.

I am proud to say that with Maya, I didn’t freak out about it, and hope to keep that same calm approach this go around. While it helps a lot of women, breastfeeding did NOT help me in terms of weight loss. I had to work out and eat [mostly] right to lose the weight. I took the slow and steady route and within four months was down to my pre-pregnancy weight … but my body was never the same — I never got my waist back, for example.

And that’s OK.

Because what I gained in the process … priceless. Absolutely priceless. I would never trade Maya (or this baby) for smaller jeans … and have no intention of going nuts this time, either. It will come off in due time and my primary focus is being the best mom I can be.

Celebs like Kristen Bell, Pink and Hillary Duff have it right, and we can learn a lot from them: losing baby weight is not the be-all, end-all of motherhood. Being a great mom is where it’s at.

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