Body image is something we as women often struggle with, some more than others. It was always a constant battle for me when I was younger and when I got older it got a little easier. Fashion blogging brought some of those insecurities to the forefront, especially when the most popular bloggers don’t share the same body type as me and sporting the latest clothing and trends can be a challenge. But awhile back I vented, came to terms with it, and began to accept the fact that my size 16/18 self was what was going to make me stand out of the crowd and not exclude me from it.
So there I was at the beginning of 2012 gearing up to achieve the goals I set for myself as a blogger and I was feeling much more confident in myself than I had in a long time. I was getting things done, having fun with my new camera, and I was going to push my blog even further.
Then everything came to a screeching halt the day I found out I was pregnant.
Having a child wasn’t something that wasn’t in the plan, I just didn’t see it coming. Not this soon anyway.
What else I didn’t see coming? Just how much my body was going to change.
A few days later came the morning/any-time-it-felt-like-it sickness. I was so bloated and swollen that what fit me today wouldn’t fit me tomorrow. I couldn’t even wear my wedding band anymore after week 8. I had acne on my skin and face that I never experienced before in my entire life (and because of the pregnancy, topical acne treatments are out of the question). Even my hair was acting crazy, becoming dry all the time and harder to maintain. Constant fatigue and loss of appetite didn’t help things either. It seemed that overnight my body was morphing into something I didn’t recognize and every single insecurity I had back in the day came back in full force. My camera started to collect dust. I was reading less and less blogs on my reader. I felt so disconnected from the blogging community I loved for the past three years. How could I take outfit pictures being so bloated and swollen i could barely get into my clothes? How could I take beauty shots when my face was breaking out like crazy?
Don’t get me wrong. I am extremely overjoyed and blessed to be able to bring a child into this world (and finding out last week it’s a girl just puts so more icing on that cake! Can we say blogger-in-traning?). However I’m a firm believer that one’s honest feelings are never wrong and shouldn’t be pushed to the side in favor of what the world thinks you should be feeling. And honestly I felt very unattractive. All the confidence I had in myself, my writing, my appearance was gone in what seemed like days.
Now that I’m five months along and feeling a whole lot better, my head was clearer and I can look at those inner voices that drove me crazy and made me sad with a fresh perspective. Life is forever changing. Nothing ever stays the same. At times it gets so much better and others it can seem to go downhill at 100 mph. But the truth remains that it still changes. And the same goes with your body. The figure you had in your twenties will not be the same one you have in your thirties, forties, or fifties. That doesn’t mean it’s all doom and gloom! Whether you have a baby, gain some weight, get wrinkles, or gray hairs, it’s going to change. That’s why it’s important to remember to cut yourself some slack, don’t hold yourself to wha the media standard of “beautiful” is, and most importantly love yourself.
There’s a freedom that comes with loving yourself.
That’s the best way to describe how I’m feeling now. I can finally embrace my awesomely changing body that so freakin smart it knows how to make a baby. How cool is that?? As I sit and type this, I can feel my face starting to break out again and honestly, I could care less! I went to a pool party over the weekend and me and this baby bump donned a tankini swimsuit and did some swimming. And if you checked me out in Instagram, I went to work sans makeup for the first time in a long time just because I can.
What really helped me get through all this was that it was okay to feel how I felt. It was okay to have that moment because it was just that – a moment. I would come back around to loving my body again and enjoy the crazy freedom to just be myself that comes with it.
How do you overcome your moments of insecurities about your appearance?