Six weeks after our baby was born, I got the all clear. I could pick up my 5-year-old again, have sex, workout, carry the vacuum up and down the stairs to keep a spotless house… you know, be supermom.
Never mind the fact I’d had major abdominal surgery and a massive adjustment to my entire physical being.
Apparently, this is what the world expects of us.
But is this reality?
In my experience, life at 6 weeks postpartum is more accurately summarized like this:
“Some days dinner is goldfish crackers, and you aren’t sure when you showered last, let alone tried to get a workout in.”
We’ve got sleep deprivation, a new pouch of loose belly skin, a baby relying on us 24/7, healing from a major ordeal, some interesting food habits retained from pregnancy, and a slew of hormones pulsing through our bodies.
That’s a lot to overcome.
For me, six weeks was not enough time to jump back into trying to workout and lose the baby weight with all that going on. It was too challenging, and I didn’t have the energy to support it.
Instead of feeling guilty about it, I decided to focus on my eating habits. I was struggling to eat enough healthy foods and not feel ravenous from breastfeeding. So I made a plan and stuck to it.
I also started buying pre-cut veggies, pre-bagged salads, and easier meals (*gasp*). While this isn’t my normal standard, it was better than shoveling goldfish in my mouth whenever I got two minutes to eat.
So I let myself be ok with not cutting my own veggies for a few months… or a year, to be honest.
Maybe your struggles are similar to mine, or maybe they’re completely different. Either way, I think the expectations we place on ourselves to be supermoms are unrealistic.
Your body has gone through a lot, and you have long nights ahead of you (this is true no matter how old your kids are).
Start with ONE thing you want to change and work on adding that to your routine.
If you want to tackle working out, start with just moving everyday. Go for a walk, play with the dog or kids, or whatever motivates you.
If you want to start eating better, pick one thing that supports that decision, as opposed to arbitrarily cutting foods from your diet. It could be adding a salad to your day, or including veggies at breakfast, or amping up your protein game.
You may not be able to get up and run 5 miles, or lift a lot of weight right now. But starting with little steps will get you to your long-term goals.
There’s no reason to feel guilty about that.
What one thing will you do?
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