Thursday, June 30, 2011

The Baby Weight

I have a new theory.  Before I share, let me clarify a few of my beliefs.

1.  I think childbirth is a picture of Christ on the cross--the agony, the pain, the laboring, and then the new birth--I bring forth a baby; He brought forth the Church.

2.  I think women stress too much about losing baby weight (self included).

3.  I don't believe there is a certain time frame in which you must lose it (Ignore that "9 months to gain, 9 months to lose" lie.).

So, my theory?

I think a pregnant body and a postpartum body is beautiful.  Even though I sometimes struggle with the way I look now (usually a result of comparing myself to others), I do truly think it is a beautiful thing.  Why?

In the same way that Jesus' body was battered, bruised, torn, tattered, bleeding, gushing water, heart exploding, so does mine.

Now, I know you may be thinking that I'm crazy to compare the pains of pregnancy and childbirth to a crucifixion, and I get that--just hear me out--I, in no way, think I have EVER physically suffered even close to what my Savior endured on that cross.  But look at the similarities:

1.  He had stripes on his back from being whipped (cannot fathom that kind of pain).
     I have stretch marks.

2.  His body was torn by the cat of nine tails.
     Mine was torn by babies.

3.  He had blood pouring out of his body.
     I did too.

4.  When he died, they stabbed him with a spear, and blood and water gushed out.
     When my bags of water broke, the water gushed out.

5.  He labored to breathe.
     I labored with measured, meted breaths.

6.  His heart finally exploded.
     Mine exploded in JOY.

Now, I realize I may be reaching with this one, but I thought of it the other day after I'd been asked if I was pregnant with #6 (and I'm SO NOT)...which doesn't HURT my feelings, really, because I know my abs LOOK pregnant. And this has happened to me many times because twins just destroy the abdominal muscles.  But, I was mourning my pre-baby body, my pre-TWINS body, and then this thought occurred to me:

After Jesus arose, even His glorified body still had scars.  Why?

As proof?  For Thomas?  For me?

So, when I stand in front of the mirror and see my twin-skin, the stretch marks, and the separated ab muscles that could only EVER be repaired with surgery, I am going to remind myself of what I accomplished--

I brought forth NEW LIFE.

And so did He.  And for that, I am ever grateful.


  1. Love the analogy here. I encourage you to give yourself much more time. I know it is hard and I was asked the same question about being pg, in fact, one person told me I looked as if I was about to pop and I had already had the twins. :( You are beautiful inside and out and so are those precious boys!!

  2. @HBThanks, HB! I've got a lot of work cut out for me. Having three and then having twins (and not exercising in between!) really did a number on my abs. Dave thinks if I do enough lower back and ab work, they will flatten, but they won't grow back together. I am bothered by it, just out of vanity, but I am redirecting my thoughts!!!

  3. I've had to come to realize that my body will never be the same, and most of the time, I'm okay with that! I will never look like I did in college, but I would never have these three precious gifts if I did. Motherhood is a sacrifice, in many ways, because you love others. Which is what Christ did for us. We should glory in our stretch marks! :)

  4. "After Jesus arose, even His glorified body still had scars."

    So. powerful.

  5. @dunlizzie Maybe he has them so that in eternity we will always look and remember. I don't know why He still has them, but I love them.

  6. @Jennifer Rogers Jen, I am sure He glories in his nail-scarred hands. How could He not? It's so hard to not be vain in this world! He must count them valuable; so should we! I actually just got rid of some clothes that are so small I can't fathom wearing them ever again. It felt good!

  7. HaHa! Amanda, Tim tells me the same thing about ab work and losing weight. When I explain to him how my body has changed beyond repair, he tells me to exercise and lose weight, and I'll look better than I did pre-pregnancy, since my hips have widened. I have come to accept my new shape as my gift to my children, although I will still do my best to lose my baby weight and gain more muscle tone after this one comes.

  8. Ok, I've missed out on months of your blog, but thank you for being so inspiring and spiritually candid! I needed that! I'm so glad you didnt' close your blog, I need to get on here more!

  9. What a beautiful way to look at it. This might be TMI, but what I have the hardest time with is with the sagginess in my, er, chest region post-nursing. I've always tried to tell myself that it comes from nourishing life, but I never, ever thought about the fact that Jesus, even in his glorified, resurrected body, still showed his scars of love. I will definitely be reminding myself of this post whenever I get tempted to mourn my pre-baby body!

  10. @Elouise82 My husband encouraged me with this tidbit--sagging breasts have zero to do with nursing. It is pregnancy that causes it--the hormonal laxity of your ligaments. Those particular ligaments are referred to as "Cooper's Droopers." Seriously. So if anyone ever says that they don't want to nurse because they don't want their breasts to sag, then correct them and say that they should then not get pregs because IT IS GONNA HAPPEN. :) We're just joining the ranks of mothers ahead of us--all sharing the saggyness together!!!

  11. @Tia It's good to see you here! I was thinking about you recently! I don't get over to check on xanga too much, but I hope you're well! Glad you enjoyed the post!

  12. Love this one! I accept my body too. After 4 babies, I'm certain it will never be 2-piece worthy again (not that I ever even wore one), but I love that what I see represents the beautiful babies I now hold. My kids often refer to my "squishy belly." Who cares?! Have you read "Flickering Pixels?" It's a good read about how much media has transformed how we see life, and even how we see our faith. Talks a lot about our body-image and how new of an issue for humanity that is.


Let me know you stopped by! I love reading your comments!