Iconsider myself to be lucky; God has given me many gifts: a loving husband, my health, a job that I love, and most recently a beautiful, healthy baby boy.
My little man is almost 17 months old and full of vibrancy and life. We’re still not sure who he looks like more, but I know for sure he’s got my laugh— full, loud, and fantastic.
For the past 17 months, I chose to focus on my little man rather getting back to “pre-baby weight”.
Although I’ve never struggled with an eating disorder, I continuously have to remind myself to fight against the pressure to look a certain way.
For some reason I thought that the pressure would ease up after having a baby— I mean, I just incubated a little human for 9 months and then pushed those 7 lbs, 15 oz out of a very sensitive area of my body. Clearly, my body deserves a break, right?
I thought wrong.
In every mom group I join, women discuss getting back to the “pre-baby days.“ Or worse, the high school weight. Some of the women closest to me discuss their current diets or what they’re doing to get ready for summer. Even if they aren’t directly talking about my weight, a battle still goes on inside my mind as I listen to what they say.
Today, I was working during my planning period. One of my female coworkers walked up to me and asked, “When are you due?” In my shock, I politely told her that I wasn’t pregnant and that “oh, no, it’s okay”…
But it isn’t okay.
I’ve spent more energy today thinking about those four words than I’d like to admit. As I tried to wrap my brain around how I was feeling, I wrote the following poem. It was the only way I could find my voice.
A Poem: “Are You Having Another?”
Trying to do my job,
Trying to be present for others.
But all I can think about is:
“Are you having another?”
Is this what people notice,
when they’re looking at me?
A smiling face
but a round, fat belly?
I try to be happy
with what my body has done.
But when stuff like this happens
all that happiness is gone.
Are you passive aggressive?
Or just made a mistake?
Doesn’t really matter,
it’s still more than I can take.
Don’t know if I’m angry
or if I’ll let you reduce me to tears.
Don’t know how to love me
and still fight through these fears.
I used to be confident.
To my body, I used to be true.
Wish I could focus on what’s important to me
and not what’s important to you.
You put me in the position
where I have to choose:
do I worry about fat
and care what society views?
Of course, I end up caring,
today you took away my joy,
but that doesn’t matter
because I’ve got the best baby boy.