Postpartum: The Weight Can Wait
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Hello, my name is Jaleesa and this is my daughter, Alisa a.k.a Bean. This picture was taken on Saturday, November 3rd (exactly 10 weeks postpartum (after birth)).
While people tell you all the things to do to get ready for baby (baby proof, baby shower, babymoon, etc), they aren’t quite as vocal concerning postpartum and the feelings attached to it. They say, “sleep when she sleeps” but when your family leaves and you don’t have as many hands around the house that turns into “wash the dishes while she sleeps”, “fold clothes while she sleeps”, “bathe while she sleeps”.
Now before you say it... Yes, I am married and my husband is a very hands-on father. HOWEVER, I also try to take into consideration that he is the only one working so I don’t want to overload him as soon as he walks in the door.
I said all that to say, with all the changes that a woman goes through during and after pregnancy, people should really take into consideration the things they say to moms.
I vividly remember, while pregnant, someone made a comment about “not letting myself go”. The person went on to talk about the physical appearance of pregnant women and how they need to do this and do that. First of all, this was a man. Bruh, carry a child for 40 weeks then come holla at me. Some days it was painful to walk across the room let alone spend hours trying to do extra so those around would feel comfortable with my appearance. Some days I curled my hair and put on makeup and some days I put on a ball cap and lip gloss. Neither one of those looks changed the life that was growing inside of me! I remember when I had gotten to the point in my pregnancy when I couldn't even shave my own legs...if you don’t get out my face lol.
Shout out to hubby who helped me do things that I won’t name because I don’t think my readers want to know lol.
Anyway, where do we get the idea that we can tell another person what they can eat, wear, or do?
Comparison is a killer. I remember sharing a post about my stretch marks as encouragement that while this process is beautiful the side effects may not be. Essentially to say, I’m owning all of this even the things I can’t change.
I had someone say “well my stretch marks were way worse”...sooooo now we’re comparing stretch marks....ok lol.
Before Alisa, I weighed 269 lbs. Not proud of that number but that was my reality. In my first trimester, I dropped almost 20 lbs due to morning sickness. In the third trimester, I gained 2-3 lbs. It was so annoying when people would say, “ oh you’re so small” “you don’t look pregnant” etc. But what does looking pregnant really look like? By the time I gave birth I was 254. I was smaller pregnant than I was pre-pregnancy. So when those family members (who mean well) commented on my weight, it made me feel terrible. So tell me how you really felt about my before baby body (or you can just keep it to yourself lol).
I wanted to exercise during pregnancy, had plans to try yoga, swim, and walk but due to complications with my cervix halfway through my pregnancy, I was put on bed rest. Not to mention emergency surgery.
After having Alisa I had an appointment less than a week later. When I stepped on the scale I had not even lost Alisa’s weight. So in other words, my child was 6 lbs, 10 oz and I was not down her birth weight...not to mention the weight of the placenta, etc. The doctor said I was possibly retaining fluid hence the reason the scale was not reflecting the fact that I just had her.
Postpartum is nooooo joke.
All I’m going to say is I’m so thankful for those ice packs and that water bottle lol.
What they don’t tell you about postpartum
They don’t tell you how painful sex can be, how you don’t feel desirable, how you feel like less of a wife because the house isn’t as clean as it usually is or less than a mother because maybe your milk isn’t coming at the rate you thought it would. How sometimes you feel like a bad friend because instead of answering the phone you watch it ring because it’s the first time you've had silence all day. How you feel guilty for wanting a break but you don’t want to be a burden to those you love. Or how your hair falls out and your hormones are still changing.
It’s some psychological and emotional healing that needs to take place not just physical. Let’s not forget how if you’re breastfeeding you’re ALWAYS HUNGRY. So while that family member is sending articles about how to snapback in a matter of weeks you’re wondering if there’s something wrong with you because you feel like you can’t eat enough.
Maybe this wasn’t your story. Maybe your milk came in perfectly, and your snapback was everythinggggggg. Maybe your support system did everything for you and you still have frozen meals to pick from. Maybe your house is spotless and you continued to be a porn star for your hubby as soon as the doctor cleared you. But for some, that’s not the case, and that’s ok too.
One thing I will say that’s kind of off subject but so worth an honorable mention...taking showers postpartum is like an all expense paid vacation to Dubai...EVERYTIME! I don’t know what it is lol
Anyway, back to the blog. So instead of asking a new mom how much weight has she lost. Ask her these things instead:
- How can I help you?
- Do you need me to throw some laundry in the washer while you nap?
- Have you eaten today?
- Would you like me to hold the baby while you shower?
- Would you like me to watch the baby while you and hubby go on a date?
- Do you need to get something off your chest? (Communication during postpartum is so important).
This blog is not to say that just because I had a baby 10 weeks ago I can eat everything in sight and I shouldn't care about my physical health. What I am saying is my mental health is more important than the number on the scale. I am saying that if I'm still hungry I'm going to eat and I don't care how that makes you feel. And I am saying Thanksgiving is around the corner and I'm not hiding my plate lol. What I'm also saying is I will work out every chance I get but not at the expense of my mental health or so I can fit the mold of what others think I should be. Healing (and health) is not one size fits all so don't compare your journey to others. Do you, boo!
Anyway, I'll eventually write Alisa’s birth story and all the emotions around that beautiful experience but for now, I need to sleep while she sleeps lol.
So I wrote a book...I hope I see you guys at my book event next month. See details below.
To order my book, shoot me an email to email@example.com or to purchase tickets to the event visit coachjaleesa.eventbrite.com
Love you guys,