“Doesn’t she look so much better this time around?” murmured a Mom in the pew in front of us while chitchatting with her fellow Mom friend after church was over. “It’s like she has more energy”, she continued.
“I know, she has this radiant glow to her”, supported the fellow Mom.
They both looked at me: “You look great and so taken care of with this pregnancy”.
This is just one example of the multiple approaches people had as to how different I looked as opposed to my first 2 pregnancies. (Like my hubby’s cousin pointing out my weight difference).
The Mom who approached this topic with her friend has known me since I got pregnant with my first. As a close family friend, she has had a front row seat to the emotional and physical impacts that have resulted from multiple pregnancies, childbirth and early childhood; all in the span of only 3 years.
A little background
My first pregnancy consisted only of the excitement a firstborn brings and on that of buying all the things. So no attention was paid to how I cared for myself (or not). I was shocked when I saw myself in our first family photo (one month postpartum) and how much weight I’d put on! My second pregnancy happened so fast, that zero effort was invested in caring about my health, weight or diet, not even how I went out in public! And, omg, I weighed almost 200lbs by the 3rd trimester and I am only 5ft! I suffered so much of back pain that whole pregnancy no matter what posture I tried. Nothing helped!
Back to the Mom friend.
She has always been so straightforward and when I reached that 3rd trimester in my 2nd pregnancy, I was so over weight, she’d give me this look and be like: “You so need to watch your diet and do some squats or you’re gonna have a really hard time when labor comes!”
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So, what ultimately made me get my act together?
My self-consciousness was affected so much. I had gained so much wait, breastfeeding felt like forever having had 2 under 2, I never got a chance to wear what I wanted after having my first before already becoming pregnant again (and I didn’t even acquire pre-baby weight first).
I was fat, unfit, and always tired.
To tired to function as a good Mom, let alone as a Wife! I started to get moody and resentful of the ‘miserable‘ person I was becoming and especially how I had changed, physically.
These unideal circumstances were what ended up forcing a massive change in my physical well-being as well as my mindset when I chose to start consistently prioritizing self-care. I lost 20lbs, changed my hair, and tried new clothing styles.
And this, my friend, was just the beginning of a new journey in pursuing a genuine sense of vitality in every aspect of myself as a Woman!
Finally, my 3rd Pregnancy!
Having reached my pre-baby weight before conceiving 3rd baby was quite the head start! (In case you’re wondering, I didn’t do anything extravagant to lose the weight 2 babies had brought upon me. One year postpartum, when I saw that I had somehow lost 10lbs after a trip to Mexico, I took advantage of that to change my habits and push myself to lose 10 more!)
Finding out I was pregnant for the 3rd time, I was determined to have my healthiest pregnancy yet. And this wasn’t just in regards to my weight management. My physical, mental and emotional health was going to consist of every aspect in my well-being and the impact it would have on my overall mood and self image. So, I:
-Wore maternity clothing that enhanced my new curves
-Walked outdoors more
-Carried out 1st, and 2nd trimester workouts
-Drank 1 gallon of water per day (and detox water on empty stomach)
-Established a consistent face care routine
-Applied Mother’s Special Blend
-Took prenatals as well as B for skin generation, C for a bright, even complexion and D to help with breakouts
-Most importantly, kept a healthy diet for a belly only pregnancy
The fact that carrying out these practices can have an impact on your appearance as it is, is all great. But what I think made the overall impact on not only my face but also my energy, my mood and my vibes in general, was because of what doing these things made me FEEL!
-I cared for myself so I felt taken care of.
-I ate well so I felt healthy.
-I took pride in my appearance so I felt vibrant and it felt good to be “put together”!
-I didn’t use my pregnancy as an excuse to treat people like some nuisance, but rather challenged my highly introverted self out of my comfort zone and engaged with others who wanted to share my joy!
-I didn’t challenge being, for my husband especially, a pleasure to be around.
If you know me and anything about my authentic message on this platform, is that I don’t settle. Pregnancies aren’t an excuse to eat for “two”, or treat others like they mean to irritate you. “Mom life” isn’t a free pass for me or my house to look like I give a rat’s tail about how I look or how we live. Raising kids and doing chores is no reason to give my husband the left overs at the end of the day.
Motherhood is part of your purpose, goals and dreams. It is not the reason we don’t exercise, or eat breakfast, or why we drink soda instead of water, or why we don’t pursue accomplishing our goals.
Take genuine pride in your role, your home, your family and your body. Everything else will fall gracefully into place on it’s own if you do. I promise!
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