As quickly as women are celebrated for being pregnant, in the next breath, they are told all the negatives of how the body changes because of pregnancy. No longer are women’s bodies celebrated for what they can accomplish or the fact that they can create and carry life. Instead, how quickly they can bounce back from childbirth is what is considered a testament to how successful they are as a mother. Something that is completely disjointed thinking. And yet, people continue to tell newly pregnant women or even those who have just delivered that their bodies will never be the same. Which should beg the question, why should the body be the same after doing something so amazing?
There is no end to the barrage of celebrity mothers who have amazingly bounced back to their pre-pregnancy weights in a mere matter of weeks. For some women, this is their genetics, and they are simply able to resemble how they looked before they became pregnant. Others have to battle to get to their pre-baby weight and may have to battle for the rest of their lives.
Many other mothers still enjoy worrying taking their time to let the physical effects of pregnancy fade, noting about what they look like. And at the end of the day, it should be up to each individual mom to determine what is right for her, rather than hearing how doomed their physicality is after delivering a baby.
Here is why everyone says your body will never be the same after delivery.
How The Body Physically Changes After Birth
People will state that the body physically changes after birth because, for some women, it does. However, some women do not look any different after pregnancy than they looked before becoming pregnant. Both are fine and both should be accepted versus just looking at the negatives that come with delivering a baby.
According to HealthyWaythe ways that the body changes after delivering a baby include:
- Change in foot size
- Soreness that may stick around for quite some time
- Leaky bladder
- Loss of modesty
- Hemorrhoids could become a new normal
- Hair becomes thinner
- Change in breast size
Yes, it is true that the body can change permanently from giving birth. But it does not need to always be looked at negatively nor should it be dwelled on. It is a new normal and how women choose to address that normal is up to them and them alone.
How The Body Mentally Changes After Birth
While there may not be physical changes, there are mental changes that can happen after birth as well. Many of which are great changes to be had.
According to Healthline, the mental changes that happen after giving birth occur because of a loss of gray matter. Something that sounds scary. But there are positives to this happening. Those positives include:
- Greater attachment to babies occurs the more gray matter is lost
- Fewer negative feelings toward newborns are felt when gray matter is lost
- Mothers are better able to interpret babies’ needs when they lose gray matter
- Threats are better able to be detected
- Stronger bonds are made to those close in mothers’ lives, including babies when gray matter is lost
The bottom line, per the publication, is that while some cognitive area of the brain is lost as a result of delivery, in the process, it becomes “stronger.” Something that helps both mothers and their babies have the strong attachments to one another that can last a lifetime.
Why Comparing Does Not Help Anyone
Every new mother is on a journey of her own. As such, looking at pictures of what it is that mothers want to share of themselves and in which light is nothing to compare oneself to. Instead, living the best life as a mother to a new baby is what should be focused on instead.
According to Becoming Minimalistwhat happens when mothers consistently compare themselves to others includes:
- They compare their worst thoughts of themselves with the best appearances of others
- Comparisons waste precious moments of the day that could be better spent elsewhere
- Mothers can begin to resent others if all they do is compare
- Mothers can begin to resent themselves if all they do is compare
- Comparisons do not add anything to life but can deplete it of joy
The next time that moms begin to compare themselves to others, these things should be taken into consideration. Then it may become apparent just how unnecessary comparisons are.
Ways For Moms To Feel Good About Themselves
For those who are experiencing body changes they are not comfortable with, that is no reason to shy away from life. Instead, moms feeling this way need to find ways to feel good about themselves.
According to Lancaster General Healththe ways moms can feel good about themselves after delivery of babies include:
- Focus on what the body has done to bring a baby into the world
- Aim to feel neutral about the body then negatively about it
- Reframe negative body thoughts into positive ones
- Take time getting back into pre-pregnancy clothing
- Stop body checking
- Trust the body to get back into shape when it is ready
By keeping these tips in mind, women may feel better about the changes that have happened and may even be able to accept themselves because of them.
At the end of the day, mothers need to keep their perspective on what it means to “bounce back” after delivering a baby. It is not just about the physical and mental changes. It is about life changes and how life has a more complex meaning to it with little ones being a part of it.
According to Johns Hopkins Medicine, life will never be the same as it was before having a baby. With becoming a mother comes “learning curves” that will come consistently. But with those learning curves comes a version of life that is “filled with thrills and wonderful memories.” And something that never could have happened if bodies did not change to bring babies into the world.
Source: HealthyWay, Healthline, Becoming Minimalist, Lancaster General Health, Johns Hopkins Medicine