I just spent the weekend with Katie, one of my favorite friends. She came to meet Chloe. Katie brought her own toddler, Evie, along.
It was a phenomenal experience getting to watch Caden (22 months), Evie (14 months), and Chloe (5 weeks) all interact. Though technically close in age, their bodies and capabilities span huge stretches. It’s really a marvel to see how quickly children grow and change when they’re that young.
Interestingly, the same is not true for my body! (Although I certainly grew and changed at warp speed while pregnant with Chloe.) Changing back, on the other hand, is a different story.
I realize I’m only five weeks postpartum and I certainly don’t expect any miracles, but I’ve got one heck of a jiggly belly this time around. I remember after I delivered Caden, I was surprised at how long it took my belly to shrink down from looking pregnant to just looking fat. It took at least a month, and then it took about a year to lose the rest of my pregnancy weight. I don’t remember being very jiggly, though.
With Chloe, I gained exactly the same amount of pregnancy weight as the first time—38 pounds. I’m already down 15 pounds from that, though Chloe counts for eight of those pounds and another couple go to my placenta and fluid and “stuff” that came out.
As my husband once told me, “It took nine months for your body to get this way … makes sense for it to take nine months to undo it.”
So, fortunately, I’m in no big scramble to knock off the pounds. After all, a nursing mother needs to welcome those calories!
Still, it’s a little rattling to see friends of mine like Katie, who went back to her pre-pregnancy-double-zero size virtually the day after giving birth (not really, but you know what I mean). You can look at her slim frame now and wonder how she ever carried a child.
My trick to not letting it bother me—in fact, to loving my lumpy, post-baby body, is simply holding Chloe close to me. I’ve shown her my tummy and talked to her about how she lived there. I tell her how I miss feeling her move inside of me and having her with me every second of the day, but how it’s so much better getting to hold her and talk to her and especially to look at her.
I guess you could say I’m fine with flaunting my curves at all the skinny-girl magazines. That includes my new double chin and somewhat floppy arms. I’m sure I won’t be singing the same tune a year from now if I haven’t lost more weight, but for now, I can honestly say I’m proud of my ultra-mommy shape.