Just Chill Out, Moms


There is a meme circulating around Facebook these days about how much easier motherhood must have been back in the 1970s & 80s when “all moms had to worry about was remembering to roll the car window down so their kids didn’t breathe in too much cigarette smoke” (or something to that effect).  The author of the post goes on to say how she has spent 45 mins researching what kind of vitamins to buy her kids & how they are going to cost her an arm & a leg but she feels like she has to have the “perfect” ones or she’s somehow going to damage her kids for life.organic food cartoon

I get it, ladies, I really do.  Moming is hard work these days.  Everywhere we turn there’s some new post or ad telling us “you need this” or “your kid will get cancer or die if they have this.”  But the truth is motherhood has always been hard.  And frankly we are making things so much harder on ourselves because we buy in to the hysteria about having to be perfect about every little thing.  Do you think the average dad is anguishing over whether his kids are eating all organic non-GMO food or using phthalate free body wash or taking the perfect blend of vitamins?  Um, no.  Ladies, why are we doing this to ourselves?  Being a mom is hard enough as it is.  I for one refuse to obsess over every tiny little thing, thereby making my life even more difficult- & far less enjoyable- than it already is!

 

mom cartoon

We have enough to worry about as moms.  Let’s stop adding to it by obsessing over every tiny detail.

Here’s the thing, y’all: we are all going to die someday.  As a nurse I have lost count of the number of times I have seen people die.  It’s just part of life.  Am I saying we should give our kids sodas & McDonald’s on a regular basis?  Hell no!  I believe it’s very important to feed our kids a healthy diet to help prevent early-onset diabetes & all the other myriad health problems that come with obesity.  But obsessing over everything being organic, non-GMO, etc, etc- give me a break!  I for one don’t have the time or energy (or money) for all that.dont compare

At the end of the day, this is what I know: my child is loved & cared for.  We read books to her on a daily basis, usually multiple times a day.  We take her on walks around the neighborhood so she can enjoy some fresh air & get some good old fashioned Vitamin D.  We feed her a reasonably healthy diet (probably very healthy compared to most kids but by no means perfect).  We take her to the doctor for her regular check-ups & make sure she’s meeting all of her developmental milestones.  She has a loving sitter who cares for her on the three days a week that I work.  While she’s there she gets to play with other girls around her age which is teaching her a great deal about socialization.  She sees her grandparents on a regular basis & has built a loving relationship with them.  At the end of the day, these are the things that matter.  These are the things she will look back on some day & be grateful for.  What more could we want?  everything kills.jpg

If nursing has taught me anything, it’s that life is way too short to be unhappy.  And I for one cannot be happy if I am obsessing over every little ingredient in every product I buy or torturing myself over what kind of multivitamins I give my child.  I don’t have the time or energy for that.  As someone who has struggled with anxiety for years, I find it very ironic that people frequently tell me I’m such a “chill” mom.  But I am (most of the time- trust me, I have my freak out moments like anyone else) because I know life is way too short to obsess over things that aren’t going to matter in the course of a lifetimecourse of a lifetime

Moms, if I have one piece of advice for you, it’s this: just chill out.  Hug your kids, give them a kiss, & stop worrying so damn much.  

“Am I the Only One?”- Mom Edition


Hello, moms of the world.  Does anyone else feel like they just don’t relate well to babies & toddlers?  I love Rachel with every fiber of my being & there are some things I absolutely love about this age (18 months) but I also have to admit that sometimes I really struggle.  The tantrums are starting &- just like she did with her screaming fits as an infant- she reserves the vast majority of them for me.  I know in some ways this is a compliment because it means she is most comfortable with me.  After all, even as adults we typically save our “tantrums” for our spouses or significant others because they’re the people we feel the most comfortable with & we know they won’t just kick us to the curb even if we aren’t our most lovable.  But it’s still hard, especially since I’m a very logical, pragmatic person & babies & toddlers are anything BUT logical & pragmatic.motherhood not for sissies

Sometimes I just can’t help but look at other moms & feel like I’m on the outside looking in at all these women who just naturally know how to relate to babies & toddlers, meanwhile I’m over here like “I have no idea what I’m doing.”  I know that we all struggle some days & no one is actually perfect, but I constantly hear moms say how the first few years are the “best times” & I just can’t help but feel like that isn’t going to be true for me.  Trust me, I LOVE my time with Rachel.  I am in no way rushing things.  I know I will have loads of wonderful memories from these early years (I already do).  Yet I just can’t help but feel like my time to really blossom as a mom is going to be when she’s a bit older.  And is that really so horrible?  I don’t think so.outsidelookingin

Trust me, I love watching Rachel explore the world around her & find so much joy in the simplest things like twigs or leaves or blades of grass.  I LOVE it.  But I also can’t wait to be able to take her hiking in the mountains & to concerts & to really explore the world around us in a more adult way.  I know she’ll lose her “innocence” as she gets older & while that is hard to accept I think it’s worth it because she’ll gain so much more.  And is that really such an awful thing?  I think not.Anxiety mental health symbol isolated on white. Mental disorder icon design

Please tell me I’m not the only one who feels this way.  My anxiety likes to convince me that I’m crazy & that no one else feels like I do, but logically I know there have to be other moms out there like me- even if we are the minority.

5 Lessons from My First Year as a Parent


I’ve been meaning to write this for about a month now but the past month has just been so busy, not only with the holidays & traveling to see our families but also with a lot of big changes in Rachel’s life.  Allow me to do a quick life update.

The second weekend in December my husband & I went to a wedding in Maryland for one of his college roommates.  We spent the night after the wedding which was my first time away from Rachel overnight.  Before the trip she was down to nursing only twice a day & as I had met my goal of breastfeeding her for a full year, I figured the 36 hrs or so I was away from her would be an easy way to end our breastfeeding journey.  So that’s what I did! lll 1 year badge

Rachel handled this change extraordinarily well.  I don’t think she’s missed nursing one bit!  It was definitely bittersweet for me but mostly I’m proud of myself for accomplishing a goal that for a while I thought was going to be impossible.  Also I’m excited that after 9 months of pregnancy & 12 months of breastfeeding I finally feel like I really own my own body again.  How women have back to back pregnancies blows my mind.  Not only can I not imagine handling a baby & a toddler at the same time but I also know I just need a little “me time” between kids, even if that is just in the form of not being pregnant or nursing for a while. pinterest mom

Anyhow, not only did I wean Rachel from nursing but I also weaned her off the bottle at the same time.  As I’ve done with all major changes in her life (moving from sleeping in the rock & play to the pack & play, then from the pack & play to the crib, etc) I tried to make these changes as gradually as possible to make them easier on her, & I’m happy to report that she has handled them all very well.  This leads me into the point of today’s post.  I’d like to share some of the greatest lessons I’ve learned in my first year as a parent.motherhood-quote

  1. It gets easier with time.  I know, I know, a lot of people love to say parenting only gets harder as kids get older.  But so far I have found that to be completely inaccurate for me.  The older Rachel gets, the easier things are for me.  Now maybe this is just because of the personality I have (I don’t like people being super dependent on me- hence one of many reasons why the newborn stage was NOT my favorite), but I also think it’s because of the confidence that comes from knowing all that I’ve survived so far.  I find that nowadays when I face a parenting challenge it’s much easier for me to stay calm because I can think back on all the challenges I’ve faced so far & how I’ve survived all of them, even the ones that seemed impossible at the time.  To me that confidence is worth so much & really does serve to make this whole parenting gig much easier.this too shall pass
  2. Everything is a stage.  The old adage “This too shall pass” has never been more accurate than it is for parenting.  Whatever stage your child is in, whether you love or hate it, it will pass.  The older Rachel gets, the more I’m learning to embrace the positives of each stage because I know each one will pass faster than I can imagine.  On tough days I remind myself “The days are long but the years are short.”  That saying has brought me so much comfort over the past year.  And it is so true.  I feel like just yesterday I was the exhausted new mom who felt clueless & questioned everything about myself as a mom.  Now I realize that our pediatrician really was right about me being the expert on my baby simply because she is MY baby- & it makes me feel like a whole new woman!

    'My god, he's insane.'

    Sometimes I wonder if Rachel thinks this about me.  Ha!

  3. Make changes in your baby’s life as gradually as possible.  As I talked about earlier, when you’re making a change in your baby’s life, try to do it as gradually as possible.  At least for me I have found that this makes things MUCH easier both for your baby & for you.  For example, when I was trying to switch Rachel from sleeping in the rock & play to the pack & play, I started with naps.  After she did well with that for a couple of days, I started having her sleep in it at night.  But I knew she was harder to get to sleep at the beginning of the night so instead of putting her in the pack & play then, I waited till after her second night time feeding.  I knew she usually went back to sleep pretty easily at that time, so one night I started putting her in the pack & play after that feeding.  Then a few nights later I did it after the first night time feeding, then a few nights later I put her in the back & play from the beginning of the night.  It all went much smoother than I anticipated & I really think that’s because I did it so gradually.phase moon cartoon
  4. Find what works for you & your child & rock it.  I’ll be the first to admit that I am not the best at following all the “rules” of parenting.  Obviously we need to exercise common sense to keep our kids safe, but within reason I think sometimes we have to just ignore the experts & find what works for us.  Perhaps more importantly, we need to remember that there is not one right way to parent a child.  What works for your friends might not work for you & what works for you might not work for them. We are all different people & our children are all different people as well, so we can hardly expect one style of parenting to work for everyone.  Also, no one is perfect, no matter what their Instagram or Facebook profile might lead you to believe, so learn to forgive yourself when you inevitably don’t live up to your own expectations for yourself as a parent every single day.mom stretch mark
  5. The good times makes the hard times worth it.  When Rachel giggles & grins at me, which is a ton these days, it makes all the screaming fits & meltdowns from her younger months so, so worth it.  I keep reading that she’s at the age to start throwing tantrums but so far she’s only had a few mild ones here & there, & most of the time they’ve been when she’s in the thick of teething.  Sometimes she gets upset if I take away something she shouldn’t be playing with or if I put her inside the baby gate for a bit, but I’ve found that if I just give her something else to play with or ignore the screaming she usually calms down within a minute or so.  Anyway, I’m sure she may throw some real tantrums in the coming months but I know that even then the times when she’s happy will make the hard times totally worth it.

Dear New Mom


Dear New Mom,

I know you’re in some ways happier than you’ve ever been, soaking up all those newborn cuddles & feeling your heart expand to give out a kind of love you never before knew possible.  But I also know you’re struggling under the weight of what feels like an obnoxious burden that was thrust on you just when you needed to rest & recover from birth.

Sigh.mom guilt

Being a new mom is HARD.  So hard.  And what often times makes it even harder is all the people telling you exactly how ecstatic & blissful you should be.  Please remember this: most of the people saying that haven’t had a newborn to care for in YEARS.  They have largely forgotten how INTENSE this phase of life really is.  Yes, it’s wonderful, but it’s also REALLY FREAKING HARD.

I’ll be honest with you & admit that I probably experienced a mild to moderate form of postpartum depression.  I didn’t fully realize it at the time but thankfully I was already on Prozac for anxiety before & during pregnancy & was quickly switched to Zoloft after giving birth because it is considered better for breastfeeding.  I believe this kept any PPD I experienced from completely devastating me.  But even so, trust me I had my moments of utter despair & confusion.  Moments of loneliness & uncertainty when I questioned why I had ever thought I should be a mom.  Moments when I had to step out of the room & just cry or scream so that I could be sure I wouldn’t hurt my baby. PPD_Graphic.jpg

But that’s exactly what they were: moments, nothing more.  They didn’t define me as a mom because I didn’t let them.  Even on my worst days/nights, I somehow managed (most of the time) to give myself a little grace.  That & venting to some truly wonderful friends (most of whom were already moms) is how I survived those first few weeks of motherhood that were in so many ways like one longgggg march of fatigue & confusion.

Here’s what I think you really need to hear as a new mom: it gets easier.  Yes!  It does!  It really does!  There is light at the end of the tunnel.  And it may come sooner than you think. pema chodron quote 2

If you’re breastfeeding, there will come a time when you don’t spend every waking moment with a baby attached to your chest.  It WILL happen.  I promise.  Trust me, I was so, so close to giving up so many times.  But I held out largely because so many women had told me that everything would get magically easier around six weeks.  And to my great surprise they were right.  I made a vow to myself that if it didn’t get easier by six weeks I would quit for the sake of my own mental health, but I am eternally grateful that it did get easier.  But if that isn’t true for you & you feel like you need to supplement with formula or switch to formula entirely, DO IT!  A mentally stable mom is the single most important thing a baby needs, so (within reason of course) do whatever you need to do to achieve that goal.pema chodron compassion

The next time someone says “Oh, just wait till she’s crawling all over the place” or “You’re going to miss this when he’s talking back to you someday,” just smile & nod & know that that person has not one clue what they’re talking about.  Or better yet, you can be braver than I am & tell them to mind their own damn business.  Because the truth of the matter is you may not miss the newborn stage.  And if you don’t, there is NOTHING wrong with you.  I know I don’t miss it!  I have only come to love my daughter more & more the older she has gotten, & I have learned that every stage has its advantages & disadvantages.  Thus the best thing we can do is try to relax & enjoy each one as best we can.  Easier said than done of course.  motherhood-quote

The truth about motherhood, especially the newborn phase, is that it is the most intense emotional & physical experience of your life.  There will be moments you love, moments you like, & moments you hate.  But they’re all just that: moments.  Give yourself the grace to experience every emotion that crosses your mind.  And trust me, in those first few weeks every emotion known to man (or should I say woman?) will definitely strike your heart- often times many all at once, some of which may be contradictory.  Just allow yourself to experience them all & remember that this will get easier.  As time passes you will have more arrows in your quiver, so to speak, so even if the challenges you face seem “bigger” you’ll have more ammunition to throw at them.  And you’ll have the confidence that comes from knowing you have survived every challenge you’ve faced so far.  And that, my friend, is worth a lot.birth-of-mother

If you’ve made it this far, congrats!  Who knows how many times you had to stop during the course of reading this to nurse your baby, make a bottle, or change a diaper?  But just know this: it gets easier, it gets better, & you can do this.  If I can, anyone can.

So What if I Don’t Love the Baby Stage?


There is something about Russian classical music that speaks to my heart in a way that nothing else can.  I’m listening to Rimsky-Korsakov’s Russian Easter Festival Overture as I’m typing this, & I swear my mood lifted within the first ten seconds of the song.  I actually played this piece in my high school marching band a little over a decade ago, & I’m not sure what made me think of it today but I am so glad I did.  If you’re having a rough day (or a great one for that matter), take a few moments to listen to this gorgeous piece & allow its beauty to enrapture your soul.

Now that I’m a little more sane I just wanted to write that today I am struggling, struggling with motherhood & just with life in general.  There are days when I feel like there just isn’t enough of me to give, & this is one of them.  I’m not sure why I’m feeling this way today, but I am, & that’s all that really matters.  Actually it’s probably because Rachel has been fighting sleep all day long & is FINALLY napping for more than about 20 minutes which is why I’m taking advantage of this time to try to clear my mind.

Lavendar hanging from an old vintage door, room for copy space

Anyway, it’s days like this when I get so frustrated with all the people who constantly tell me Rachel is such an easy baby.  I know they mean well & in many ways maybe she is an easy baby, but the truth of the matter is there ARE no easy babies.  All babies are challenging!  And maybe, just maybe, they’re a little more challenging when you don’t have any family nearby & you had no real experience with babies prior to being a mom & you have your own preexisting anxiety issues, as is the case for me.  I’m not looking for sympathy here.  I’m just saying it’s really frustrating when people tell me my baby is so easy because then when I find myself struggling, like today, I inevitably start wondering what’s wrong with me & how I’ll ever manage if I have another baby someday who is actually “difficult.”motherhood-quote

People also frequently tell me that I’m going to miss these days in the not so distant future.  But the truth of the matter is I’m not so sure I will.  And of course that makes me wonder if I’m a bad mom.  But I’ve jut never been a baby/toddler person & being a mom hasn’t really changed that.  Trust me, I love my daughter more than life itself, but I don’t think the baby/toddler stage will ever be my favorite.  So in the future when she is older if I don’t find myself longing for these days, is that really such a bad thing?  I don’t think so.  guilt

Well, that’s all I’ve got today.  I’m just trying to clear my mind so I can be more rational once Rachel wakes up again.  I also figured maybe there is another mom out there somewhere who is struggling & wondering if she’s inadequate because she isn’t totally loving the baby stage.  If so, please know you’re not alone, & you’re not a bad mom.  Some women are baby people & some of us aren’t.  And neither is better than the other.  We just are.  Lastly, I’d like to send a huge thank you to all the moms who frequently take the time to encourage me & remind me that I’m doing a good job, even when I sometimes feel like I’m just not up to par.  Thank you, thank you, thank you. I hope someday I can encourage other moms the way y’all have done for me.

 

The Negative Emotion-Guilt Complex: Mom Edition


Woah, I’ve been wanting/needing to write for a couple weeks now but between working two days a week & caring for an increasingly needy & grumpy baby there has simply been zero time for blogging.  I am desperately hoping I can get enough out in these few minutes while Rachel is sleeping to clear my mind & try to save my sanity.  Warning: this will definitely not be an eloquent post.  It will most likely just be word vomit.  But I’m not writing this for anyone else; I’m writing it to try to save myself from my own mind.

One thing I’ve learned very quickly about motherhood is that it makes your flaws become glaringly obvious- at least to yourself.  And I have long been aware that my greatest flaw is feeling guilty for any kind of “negative” emotion (e.g. frustration, sadness, jealousy, anger, etc).  I thought I had made a great deal of progress on this issue but being a mom has been made realize how much more work I have to do.  Furthermore, I swore up & down I wouldn’t let myself become a victim to “mom guilt” but damn if I am not just as vulnerable to it as everyone else!  mom guilt

The first six weeks of Rachel’s life were undoubtedly the most difficult to date.  But the past two to three weeks have also been extremely challenging, perhaps more so in some ways because I had gotten used to her being so happy most of the time.  Between teething & being in the middle of a huge developmental leap, Rachel has become extremely grouchy the past few weeks.  And because she naps so little these days I think that is making things even more difficult for her & thus for me as well.  Everyone tells me I’m so lucky that she has started sleeping through the night more often than not, but frankly things were much easier for me when she was waking up once or twice at night to eat but then napped more & was in a MUCH better mood during the day.  Besides, just because she is sleeping eight to ten hrs straight a lot of nights doesn’t mean I am.  I’m still getting up to pump, not to mention I’ve never been the kind of person who can sleep more than about five hrs straight anyway.  (Hell, even as a kid I remember waking up at least once or twice most nights.)  In any case I’d gladly sacrifice some sleep to have my happy baby back.  parents quote

Anyway, the point of all this is that I am really struggling right now.  For the first time in my life I am actually jealous of moms who work full time because they aren’t stuck at home with a screaming infant more than two or three days a week (not all day anyway).  And for the first time since giving birth I am truly missing my pre-mom life.  By no means do I regret becoming a mom of course, but at the same time I do miss the freedom I had to go out & do whatever I wanted whenever I wanted (within reason of course).  I knew I was going to lose that when I became a mom but honestly I didn’t start missing that freedom until these past few weeks when Rachel has become so grumpy that even going to the grocery store has become a serious challenge.  Not to mention I miss my alone time when no one needed anything from me.  It’s so hard being needed ALL the time . . . empty cup

Here’s the thing: Rachel has in many ways been a pretty “easy” baby.  Once she got over the ridiculous cluster feeding she did for much of the first six weeks, she has been, all things considered, a pretty happy, “simple” baby.  And compared to some babies, maybe she still is.  But see, half my problem is that I’m constantly feeling guilty for being frustrated because I know that “so many women have it worse.”  In case it isn’t obvious, this leads to a serious boatload of guilt because I’m constantly feeling guilty for “complaining” or feeling overwhelmed when I know that others are facing “bigger” struggles.negative-emotion-motivates-change-dan-rockwell

But the truth of the matter is there are no easy babies!  As a dear & wise friend said to me today “Someone basically handed you a tiny stranger & said ‘Here you go; she can’t communicate either but good luck figuring out everything she needs while you have no time for yourself & are coming to the end of your rapidly fraying rope.'”  Amen!  Furthermore, constantly telling myself I should be grateful because others “have it worse” is incredibly unhealthy.  I thought I’d matured enough to realize that there are no negative emotions:  there are just emotions & then there’s what we do with them, the latter being what really matters.  But apparently I am still struggling with this as much as ever.  The truth is, especially as new moms, we can & do experience a multitude of emotions all at once.  And it’s ok to feel overwhelmed, frustrated, angry, & jealous while also being grateful & in love with the tiny human you’ve created.  In fact it’s not just ok, it’s NORMAL.pema chodron quote 2

It also occurred to me today that I’m doing something that almost no one in my family has ever done.  I’m living in an urban area & one that is several hours away from my family as well as my husband’s family- & trying to raise a baby to boot!  To be clear, I’m not saying I’m better than my family because of this, not at all.  I’m just saying raising a baby is never easy but it’s probably even harder when you don’t have anyone who is “obligated” to help you who is close by & can babysit for you or just help out on a regular basis, even just for 20 minutes so you can clear your mind.  That being said, I am very glad to live where we do & to raise Rachel in a different environment than that in which we were raised, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t come with its own unique challenges.  guilt

It has also occurred to me lately that my husband & I haven’t had any true alone time together (as in away from the baby) since Rachel was born other than a quick trip to Target when she was a few days old & my parents were in town.  And that hardly counts!  Not to mention the amount of true alone time I have had is incredibly small.  And as an introvert alone time is not just precious to me, it’s crucial.  So no wonder I’m feeling a bit frazzled!pinterest mom

One of my friends in college told me several times that I’d make a great Jewish mother because I always had so much guilt, most of which was completely baseless.  Unfortunately he was right, & unfortunately I haven’t made as much progress on this issue as I thought I had.  However, my hope is that writing all of this will help me to remember that whatever I’m feeling right now is valid.  Just because my situation is “easier” than some others doesn’t mean it’s easy.  And it’s ok for me to be frustrated & tired & even angry sometimes.  In reality I’ll be a much better mom if I can just be honest about how I’m feeling & stop feeling guilty about it.  Because as long as I’m constantly stuck in a quagmire of guilt, I’m not actually processing my emotions– & that’s a recipe for disaster.  And I’ll be damned if my daughter grows up to feel guilty for every so-called “negative” emotion she experiences!  So that means I need to stop this guilt train right now & just admit that this stage is hard but that doesn’t make me a bad mom or a bad person.  It just makes me a human being. kidney stone

Anyway, I’ve written all that to say this: I’m in over my head.  But I’m doing the best I can & I know this phase Rachel is going through right now is exactly that: it’s a phase which means, by definition, it will pass.  I’m reminded of the phrase “It may pass painfully like a kidney stone but it will pass.”

I Love My Baby But I Hate My Stretch Marks


I’m not sure if anyone checks this blog regularly enough to wonder why I’ve been so absent for a good month or more now, but in any case the reason is that I started my new job a few weeks ago so between that & the everyday adventures of caring for a baby I’ve been a bit busy.  I’m only working two days a week which is perfect for me because it gives me just enough time away from Rachel to really miss her but not so much that I feel like I’m really missing out on these momentous days of her early life.'I can't even get rid of my own stretch marks. Any other wishes?'

Anyhow, I’ve been coming across a lot of articles lately about loving your postpartum body & learning to embrace your stretch marks & less than flat tummy, yada, yada, yada.  Maybe it’s because Spring just started & thus we’re coming up on bikini season but I for one am struggling a bit with loving what I see in the mirror lately.  Logically I know I am doing about as well as I could hope considering I’m just under 4 months postpartum & I’ve lost, depending on the day, all but 3-5 lbs of my baby weight.  I’m going to the gym on the weekends when my husband can watch Rachel, & I’m taking walks around the neighborhood at least three days a week.  I’m even lifting weights at home occasionally, though I could definitely step up that game a bit more.  Furthermore my husband certainly doesn’t seem to have a problem with my postpartum body.

'I seem to have lost the body I had before I had children.'

In reality, I don’t look THAT different, especially in clothes.  But things definitely fit differently these days, that’s for sure.

But no matter what logic tells me, every time I see the stretch marks on my not so flat tummy I’m less than thrilled.  Please don’t take this to mean I don’t appreciate my daughter; without a doubt she is worth every stretch mark a thousand times over.  But that doesn’t mean I have to love them.  Unless these “tiger stripes” fade considerably (which I know they probably will with time) I’m quite sure I’ll never feel comfortable enough with my body to wear a bikini again, at least outside of my fenced-in backyard.  To be clear, feeling comfortable wearing a bikini in public is not high on my priority list.  But I have to be honest & admit that every time I see a picture of a mom with a flat stomach & no stretch marks, I feel a pang of envy.  And I’m not talking about celebrity moms because I’m perfectly aware that they are not living realistic lives.  I’m talking about moms I actually know.

mom stretch mark

It totally is but that doesn’t mean I like my stretch marks.

I know the body positivity movement tells me I should embrace my “imperfections” & part of me wishes I could.  Even though I’ve never worn much makeup or been terribly interested in fashion I have always valued looking decent.  To be clear, I’ve never been one to expect myself to look like Victoria’s Secret models or movie stars or anything like that because I’ve always realized most of their pictures are highly photoshopped anyway, not to mention they don’t exactly live “normal” lives like we plebeians do.  Nonetheless I have to admit I’m not as happy with the way my body currently looks as I’d like to be.  Now this isn’t a huge deal; it’s not something that’s seriously affecting my overall happiness or life satisfaction or anything.  After all, with Rachel around I have more reasons to smile than I ever have.  And being annoyed by stretch marks certainly isn’t going to stop me from having another baby someday if/when I decide the time is right.

magic eraser stretch mark

HA!!!

Before anyone tells me I’m being selfish & that thousands of women would be happy to have my body (either because they’re significantly bigger than me or because they’re struggling with infertility- or both), yes, I am perfectly aware that all of this is a bit superficial, & trust me I do feel guilty for thinking about this enough to bother writing about it.

But even so I admit I wish I liked my postpartum body more than I do.

I’m not really sure what the point of all this is other than to clear my mind a bit.  But I’m sure I can’t be the only mom out there feeling this way, right?