I am excited to announce that Conscious Talk Magazine launched today! Head over there to read my articles that are up! I would love if you could share, comment, forward those articles if you like them! Thank you!
I know I’ve written about body image before, and talk about that a lot, but I do think it’s an important topic to address, not just once, but many times. I have typed in questions in google like, “Will he find me attractive after pregnancy” and found many many women asking that question and a good amount of men talked about how their wives being the mom of their child was a huge turn on and they loved their wife even post-pregnancy. There were some men who admitted they thought they wouldn’t be attracted to their wife anymore and would resent their wives a bit. I felt saddened by those responses. I’ve also seen so many “Mommy Makeover” posts, articles, and ads.
I have struggled with anorexia, and I have obviously had my own issues with my body but I think surgically altering what you were given at birth is one of the saddest things a person can do. How much hate must they feel towards themselves that they have to undergo the knife to make themselves feel better? I can understand surgery being necessary for health issues (like breast reductions because it’s causing back pain or shoulder pain or if suffering from severe depression stemming from body image issues). I just can’t understand surgery for purely cosmetic reasons. I know that I would hate myself even more if I had surgery to “fix” my body. Why? Because then if people loved my body they aren’t loving my body but the body given to me through surgery. It wouldn’t be me, not really.
My body has changed. I have stretch marks, and my boobs have grown 3 sizes! I hate it, but I understand that my body is not my own right now. My body essentially belongs to providing life for Xander. After birth, and breastfeeding, I am sure my body will be different and that will be a huge psychological challenge for me to face, but I will face it with Jak. I won’t be alone, and I will still be loved, even through my body changes. To me, surgery seems like a sad way to “fix” yourself if it’s purely cosmetic. I know that I will exercise, do my best to eat balanced, and just enjoy life. I rather focus on enjoying time with my son and Jak than worrying that I haven’t lost X pounds, or the stretch marks aren’t fading fast enough. It’s easy to write about now, and I know that given my anorexic struggles that “ED” voice might come back with a vengeance post-birth, but I know I have to fight it.
The thing that does worry me if I am honest, is that people I know are going to judge me or comment on my body changes after birth. I would hope in an ideal world that people would just be happy, but with some people I know with their personality and values, my body will go under criticism. I find it sad that people might tell me ways to “fix” my body whether it be magical creams to make stretch marks disappear (he!), or maybe certain exercises to “tone” up my stomach and legs. Now, being healthy is great, but doing things purely off of superficial looks? That’s not my style. I think being healthy mentally and physically is great and something to always be working towards. I just don’t want comments that are said based on purely superficial reasons. I would rather be accepted the way I am from certain people than to feel like I have to change my body to meet their expectations to be accepted by them.
Women are already under such intense pressure from society before becoming a mom. There are ads sexualizing women wherever you look, we women are always dressing up, feeling the need to compete sometimes. We also logically know we can’t compare to photoshopped images. This is all before being pregnant. The fact that society has targeted new moms to get a “mommy makeover” as if it’s something women need to stay attractive and relevant is honestly despicable. Mommy Makeovers include surgically altering breasts, tummy tucks, stretch mark elimination, and arm lifts and contouring where needed. Gosh, all in one day. Would you even recognize yourself after so much work? Not to mention the cost. Tummy tucks alone can run someone $6,000. I don’t want to know how much the entire “mommy makeover” is. Plus what about mothers who are not paid for maternity leave? The sexism in our culture is still rampant and it saddens me to know that society is making women feel less than they are on a daily basis.