Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Being Proud of Our Bodies: Part 1

As women, especially after having children, it's easy to see the flaws in our bodies.  The extra sag, the stretch marks, the bags under our eyes, the hair that has been rinsed in the sink for a few days, the makeup you haven't taken out of the case in months.  It's easy to get caught up in the fact most moms don't look like supermodels do after they have a baby.  We aren't a size 2 with perfect breasts and a tight stomach six weeks after birth.

My last pregnancy I felt better than I had in years. I gained over 30 pounds, which for me is a big deal, and then in a moment that still amazes me, I pushed her out in my living room.

However, this isn't about my whole body. Just my breasts. I know it may seem strange, but it's hard to appreciate my new body when I take everything in at once.

When I'm nursing or pumping, I thin down fast but look like Pamela Anderson when I'm engorged. Even nursing they aren't perky anymore and each time my milk comes in and then I stop nursing or pumping, my breasts are a bit flatter and a bit saggier than before. Think of two empty wallets, barely big enough for an A cup.

To help love my entire body, I've decided to think of all my breasts have done.

I nursed my first daughter for nine months, and then again for one month 29 months later. I exclusively nursed her for four months, and pumped when I went back to work when she was six months old. I grew her, inside my body and then outside.

I gave birth to a baby at 13 weeks 5 days, and three days later my milk came in. I went on to exclusively pump for two and a half months and donated to three babies in need.

My rainbow baby was born after Thanksgiving, and I have exclusively nursed her for 14 weeks 2 days, even with the rough first six weeks we had.  I have also in the last two months pumped to donate to very good friends.

In the last almost six years, I have pumped a total of just under 12 gallons of milk to donate to what will be seven babies, and then topping out at 15 gallons when I add what I pumped when my first daughter was in the NICU and when I went back to work when she was almost six months old.  I have grown two babies through nursing, the second even has the most amazing chub.

My breasts may be covered in stretch marks and not perky, they may be tired and battleworn, but they have done so much.  I may not look like I did seven years ago, but they are serving the purpose they were made to serve.  For that, I can love my body even more, and be proud of the work it has done.


Brenda said... [Reply to comment]

You are amazing. Your body is amazing. And I know for a fact that your DH thinks your breast are amazing.

Heather said... [Reply to comment]

You've done amazing things for others and that is something that you can definitely be proud of. Our boobs go through a lot breastfeeding, and it's hard to be comfortable in your own body sometimes, but looking back, it's something we know we can be proud of.

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