*Please note this post contains some photos that you might…
One of the most incredible things my gastric bypass surgery gave me was that for the first time in my life I felt happy with my body and completely comfortable within my own skin. I had never, ever felt like that before and being happy with my weight and not having a weight loss goal forever in the back of my mind was liberating. I’ve lost a bit of that since my pregnancy because my body has changed and it sucks.
I think my body feared quite well throughout my second pregnancy. I never felt that I got to the point where I was unnecessarily large and, in my opinion, I looked pretty good the whole time. I was convinced that most of my weight gain had gone to my stomach and boobs and didn’t feel like much else grew. I had expectations that my weight would plummet after giving birth and I’d easily be back to my pre-pregnancy weight pretty quickly. Since I’m a month postpartum I thought it would be a good time to reflect on where I’m at.
In the first couple of weeks after giving birth I didn’t think or even really care about my body and what state it was in. Since then, so for the last couple of weeks, I’ve started weighing myself weekly again and nothing is happening. I’ve lost seven of the 18 kilos I put on while pregnant and while that’s great, I think I had unrealistic expectations that I’d have lost a lot more of them by now. Quite possibly my body is pausing and taking stock of where it’s at but it’s annoying me more than I would like to admit.
I had been wearing size 12 maternity shorts throughout the end of my pregnancy and they did fit me for a week or two after giving birth but now they just fall down all day and drive me nuts! I went shopping for some normal shorts, since my tummy isn’t sticking out that much now and was horrified to find I only just fit into a size 14. It’s two sizes above where I normally sit at a 10 but I really don’t like it.
I know on an intellectual level that it’s really not that bad and one month after giving birth I should be happy with it. I have already started planning my return to exercise and know exactly what I need to do but it so easily brings back the feelings I had when I was morbidly obese and clothing sizes used to torment me. No matter how far I’ve come, physically and mentally in the grand scheme of this lifetime battle with my weight, I still can get back to that shitty place so quickly.
I’m finding I’m being picky about what I wear because I don’t like how I look in some things. None of my pre-pregnancy clothes fit me, the bottoms because my butt has got so big and tops because my boobs are ginormous again. I tried to wear a dress out one night and could not do the buttons down the front up! I look at photos from a year ago and think, oh my god I was so skinny! I don’t really know exactly what I expected after giving birth but it wasn’t this. The silly thing is I don’t mind how I look, if I dress well I think I look pretty good for four weeks post baby but it’s literally the number on the scale and my shorts that’s getting up in my head.
Generally, I’m amazed at what my body has done, I made a whole person! My body is now keeping that whole person alive and that’s an incredible thing. I think I thought it would shrink down quicker than it has and it’s messing with my head that it hasn’t. I’m making an effort not to be so hard on myself, there’s nothing like setting ridiculously high expectations for yourself is there, but it’s a challenge.
I need to get my eating in order. Pregnancy and to some extent breastfeeding have made me hungry again for the first time since my bypass surgery and I need to get my snacking back in line and eventually cut it out again. Since I have been so tired I haven’t had the same hyper vigilant focus on making sure I get my protein in each day and if I can make sure that happens on a more consistent basis everything else will be easier.
I never thought it would be the case but I can’t wait to start exercising again. I really miss feeling fit, strong and the mental clarity and space that exercising gives me. I’m going to launch back into it slowly and just start walking because it’s been quite a while since I’ve done any purposeful exercise. Watch out six weeks post birth, it’s on!
I don’t really know how to wrap up this post, it’s mainly just a brain dump of all the conflicting things whirling around my head at the moment. I think my main takeaway from writing this is that no matter how far you come, it doesn’t take too much to bring things back you thought you’d well and truly left behind. The one difference now is that I know I can do this, I’ve done it before and I now have the benefit of an amazing tool. Needing to lose 11kg is far, far less daunting than needing to lose the 70kg I had spare when I started down the road of weight loss surgery.
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