Love and the Postpartum Body

I love my stretch marks. I am not kidding around. I do. I love them. In fact, I would even go as far as saying I love yours too. I love stretch marks. I love the beauty in them, and it makes me sad that more people don’t see the beauty in them as well.
It makes me sad to hear you say that you wish you could get rid of them. It makes me sad to hear you say that you will never be able to show your tummy in public again. It makes me sad to see you so self conscious of them. It makes me sad that society tells us that stretch marks are imperfections. Blemishes. Seriously? How is the evidence of something so amazing a blemish?

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My belly right now, 4 months after giving birth to our fourth baby

It makes me sad when women are comparing their stretch marks and its a competition to see who has the ‘worst’ marks. Using words like bad, horrible, disgusting to describe stretch marks makes me see red. We should admire each others stretch marks the way we admire each others hairstyles. Everyone’s marks are as unique to them as their hair is.
Stretch marks are beautiful. Every single one of those lines on your body is beautiful. The ones on your arms, your boobs, your belly, hips, thighs, calves… Each and every one of them.

Stop fretting about getting your ‘pre baby body’ back. You won’t. You can’t. Your body, like your heart, will never ever be the same. You can lose the weight, you can tone the muscles, but your body will forever be changed. Forever. Embrace it. Accept it.

Those stretch marks are like laugh lines. They tell your story. They tell of the love that grew within you. Look at them and remember. Remember the wiggles, the kicks. The first time you heard that sweet sound of your babies heartbeat. Remember the first time you seen that little alien looking thing on the ultrasound screen.

Those marks tell of your body growing and accommodating a little human. They tell of the amazing thing your body created.
I beg you, please stop looking at your stretch marks in disgust. Stop viewing them as something to be hidden or modified. Stop searching the internet for ways to get rid of them. Stop viewing other women’s stretch marks enviously or in pity. Embrace the beauty. Please.

Love, hugs, and more to come later
Lynn

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The Mom Pledge

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Recently on Facebook I started following a page called ‘End the Mommy Wars’  I joined it because, quite frankly, I am sick and tired of being bullied for the choices that I make as a Mom. Through this page I heard of ‘The Mom Pledge’ I have decided to take the pledge. 

The Mom Pledge

 I am a proud to be a mom. I will conduct myself with integrity in all my online activities. I can lead by example.

I know my children learn from my attitudes and actions. I promise to model respectful, compassionate behavior.   It starts with me.

I pledge to treat my fellow moms with respect. I will acknowledge that there is no one, “right” way to be a good mom. Each woman makes the choices best for her family.

 I believe a healthy dialogue on important issues is a good thing. I will welcome differing opinions when offered in a respectful, non-judgmental manner. And will treat those who do so in kind.

I stand up against cyber bullying. My online space reflects who I am and what I believe in. I will not tolerate comments that are defamatory, hateful or threatening.

 I refuse to give those who attack a platform. I will remove their remarks with no mention or response. I can take control.

I want to see moms work together to build one another up, not tear each other down. Words can be used as weapons. I will not engage in that behavior.

 I affirm that we are a community. As a member, I will strive to foster goodwill among moms. Together, we can make a difference.  

 

I know I am not perfect. But I also know that I am perfect for my kids. I have used different methods for each of my three children. Because, like every other child in the world, they are all different. I have co slept, taught my children to self soothe, baby wore, used baby led everything and encouraged a schedule. I formula feed my children, but my best friend plans to breastfeed and because of that I have educated myself on breastfeeding and learned how I can support her through that journey. 

All Moms and Dads deserve to have support for their choices. Even if it’s not the choice we would make for ourselves. 

 

Love, hugs and more to come later

Lynn