We took a family trip to the gym and dropped the short one off at childcare so we could work out together. Our workout of choice was basketball, which we both suck at. Well, me more than Matt. We shit talked each other like we were NBA all stars and had a lot of laughs along the way. And I was sweating, which was the point. Successes. Count the little ones with the big. It was the most fun I’ve ever had exercising.
After our friendly game of basketball we picked Quinn up and parted ways so I could take her swimming for the first time this year. I really want her to be comfortable in the water so I want to expose her to as many opportunities to be in the pool as possible. Plus, she has the most adorable swimsuits and a swim cap. I. Die. Retro baby!
Not one time did I feel the least bit self conscious. A few years ago I would’ve been mortified. Now? Don’t care. My kid was going swimming and that’s all I cared about. A few years ago I would’ve been focused on sucking in and not pointing the back of my legs towards anyone. Now? Fully focused on having fun with my daughter.
It feels good to feel this way. Comfortable. Do I wish I weighed less? Of course I do. Do I feel like a failure? Sometimes.
I “met” another mom in the pool. I use this term loosely because girl was super antisocial. I tried to engage in conversation because her kid was splashing mine in the face and I thought we should be on a first name basis. She didn’t think enough of our conversation to introduce herself despite my efforts. Sigh. Making friends in Atlanta is hard. So she’s just “Girl in the pool” from here on out. Anyway, in the brief conversation we had I found out that her daughter is only a few weeks younger than Quinn. We made small talk and Quinn started pulling on my top and asking for milk. She sometimes does this outside of her normal feeding times when she’s in uncomfortable situations like the girl in the pool’s older kid splashing her in the face and crowding her space. I told Quinn not right now and she mentioned that she’s still nursing her daughter, too. They swam away, thank God, because it was about to get really awkward if one more splash happened. I hate having to say something to someone else’s kid because their parent doesn’t. The worst is “Sweetie, don’t touch her face/mouth/eyes please!”. I mean, really. While I played with Quinn I thought about the myths of motherhood. People tell you that breastfeeding will make the weight fall right off.
The girl in the pool was overweight, too.
I have nursed Quinn around the clock for over a year and still struggle. Do I regret nursing? Never. It’s been such an amazing way to bond with our precious daughter.
I’m kind of pissed at the world for generalizing what happens after you have a baby. And I’m super pissed at celebrities that give us all these unrealistic images to look up to. And I’m pissed at genetics, well, because really that determines whether your baby weight will just “fall” off or not.
I wish someone would come out and say “Look, you just had a baby and your body has been through a lot. You may never feel normal again. Your hormones will be crazy and nothing will feel the same. You will have to choose between taking a nap or working out. Honey, take the damn nap! You will have to choose between eating a plain old normal sandwich (what sounds good to you anyway) for dinner or preparing some kind of super healthy time consuming meal to determine whether or not you have time to play in the floor with your kid before bedtime. Make that sandwich, mama! Play with that baby! And when your baby is sleeping and you think you need to do some super strenuous workout DVD because you’re feeling down on yourself, run a bubble bath instead. Because your body is amazing and capable and deserving of a damn break. And please, for the love of all things, please do not get up at 5am to go to the gym when you’ve just a month ago had a baby. SLEEP. Celebrate the little things and allow yourself to let go of the pressure of bouncing back to some unrealistic goal right now. You had a baby! That makes you amazing!”
I wish someone would say that to every mom who’s ever felt the pressure. Every blogger who’s ever felt that need to jump right back in it for fear that they’ll let their audience down. You are enough just the way you are.
So am I, y’all. So am I.