Emily over at The Beetle Shack wrote something the other day that really stuck with me. She talked about being a stay at home mother and the exhaustion that can often follow that role. Sometimes its easier to share about Miles then open up about my personal life on here and while reading what Emily wrote I found confidence in her honesty to share something private about myself.
My body is a big mushy pile of paleness right now and it makes me a little sad. Im sure some of you are calling bullshit on my complaint but I know my body and this doesn't look like it. My entire life I have had some serious body image delusions thinking I'm larger then I am and as foolish as that may sound it has caused serious anxiety for me. I have struggled with getting dressed for as long as I can remember. My mom tells me stories about me being close to a year old climbing up my dresser to open drawers just so I could change what I was wearing multiple times throughout the day. I swear to you that occasionally it takes hours for me to get dressed to leave the house. In that time I have changed my clothes dozens of times and I can't begin to explain the crippling anxiety that starts to overwhelm me. Over the years it has been especially frustrating for my family and Steve who have to wait and wait and wait around till I'm finished. Part of this problem is how I view my body. I have always been a thin healthy girl but have really struggled to see that in the mirror. In junior high it hit me really hard and I started to only wear long sleeve shirts and jeans to cover my arms and legs because I thought they were too big. Trust me they weren't and it really breaks my heart how much I focused on these issues as a girl instead of having fun with my friends. The reason why I started getting tattoos were to cover my arms and give myself confidence to show them off. During the end of high school and my early twenties I started to direct my focus towards friends and dating versus my obsession with weight and clothing. I don't remember being too hard on myself then, I think having a busy social life kept me occupied. During my pregnancy I actually felt really great about my body. In total I gained around 35 pounds and schlepping a huge belly around helped distract the extra weight I had gained. My post pregnancy body now has been a real kick to the head but I got to say that It hasn't bothered me as much as I thought it would. I think being so googly eyed over my boy has helped me cope with all of the new body changes. I'm not too far off from my pre baby weight but everything just feels and looks so different. My hips are certainly wider, my legs are much softer and my round stomach shows off a few stretch marks and don't get me started on the boobs. Honestly, I'm really trying to either embrace this body of mine or actually do something about it. There are days that I wish I wore a smaller pair of jeans or didnt have to worry about my flabby stomach but Im actually starting to be alright with my new curvy self. Certainly once the weather warms Miles and I can get back to walks to help tone my legs but for Christs sake I have to remind myself that only four months ago I was carrying a gigantic baby in there. And as far as the endless clothes changing goes I've had to have a selfless big old kick in the ass. There are times where I still struggle in getting dressed but I am diligently working on a change. With Miles in my life I really just cant justify obsessing over my outfit when theres this adorable little boy that I can simply go cuckoo over for hours instead- screw clothes. I do want to say that being with Steve has helped me find confidence in myself. He loves my curves, big tush and all and wouldn't want it any other way and I really really love him for that. I'm not saying a man praising your ass is the ticket to better self esteem but I know for myself having my sweet Steve love me the way I am right now sure can make a girl feel grand.
When first becoming pregnant a year ago, I discovered a slew of amazing blogs about motherhood, crafting, baking, design and I am so thankful to now be apart of it. I dont have very many close girlfriends in Portland to get crafting tips and rap about motherhood with (besides endless phone conversations with my sweet sister) and reading these blogs daily has become such a joy for me. Having other ladies out there who expose honesty about being a woman, a friend, a mother or a wife has really helped find a stronger confidence in myself that has nothing to do with how my body looks.