Today was an exceptionally hard day for me mentally. The strange thing is that I woke up on the right side of the bed and started my day with my usual routine.
Normally my house is awake between 6:30-7:00 a.m. I like to bring Gia in our bed once she wakes up for a few minutes of morning cuddles and giggles before heading downstairs for breakfast. Once we’re downstairs we get the coffee going and I start making Gia some eggs, or whatever is on the menu for that particular morning. When Gia has eaten her fill, Craig and I head to the gym together with her. (It’s nice going to the gym together on his days off instead of taking turns – more time for us to do things together the rest of the day.) Gia loves playing at our gym’s child care – today I went in to get her when we were ready to head home and she didn’t even notice me come in! That was a first.
Here’s Gia having a blast and not even noticing me snap her picture:
After getting my cardio in on the stairclimber and lifting upper body, we got home and put Gia down for her nap. The plan for the day was to get cleaned up and ready to go while she was sleeping, then head to Napa to pick up our Fall wine shipment and our champagne shipment. (We became members at Artesa – we got engaged there – and Domaine Chandon last Fall.)
This is a shot of Gia and I during her first trip to Artesa:
As soon as I got out of the shower and started to look for something to wear, things quickly went downhill for me. I couldn’t decide what I should wear, which isn’t usually a problem when my everyday attire consists of workout clothes or something comfortable. I wanted to feel a little bit more presentable today….you know, have my hair done, throw little make up on, wear a cute outfit that I never get to wear, because I’m usually chasing my child at the local park. Not too much to ask, right?
I grabbed a pair of tailored white shorts and decided to throw them on. There was my first mistake. These shorts didn’t quite fit the way I wanted them to. They were slightly more snug than I liked, which sent my mind spiraling out of control. That damn pair of shorts was the catalyst for what was to come the rest of the day.
I tore the shorts off and immediately felt defeated. My mood turned sour and I went through the script that many women know all too well. “I have NOTHING to wear! I look terrible! I don’t want to go out today anyway!”
Once I was finished saying nasty things to myself, I thought that if I went on our outing to Napa I would not be a pleasant person to be around. I told Craig that I did not want to go pick up our shipments and he could go ahead without me while I stayed home with Gia. Obviously he wanted to know what was wrong and why I didn’t want to go.
Where do I even start??? I’m sure you’re wondering how a stupid pair of shorts could turn my day so upside down….
I’ve had a tough time dealing with my postpartum body image ever since Gia was born. While I was pregnant I was so scared that my body would never be the same and I’d never be fit again. Well, my body is not the same – I carried a healthy baby girl to full term and had a natural birth that was fast and furious. (Gia was born in 30 minutes!) I’d be crazy to think that after having a child my body would be exactly the same as before.
This is a picture of Craig and I, just days before I gave birth to Gia:
I do have to say, I worked my a** off – literally and figuratively – to achieve the fitness level that I’m at now. I lost all of my baby weight by eating nutrient rich foods and training like a beast. It’s amazing what our bodies are capable of. Even with all that said, my body is still totally different. I think that my hips shifted to accommodate such a big, healthy baby, and my ladies lumps…..well, let me tell you that they were enormous when I was preggo and now they aren’t quite as perky! I’m more than okay with all of that because I have an amazing child to love for the rest of my life.
Even though I’m okay with that, I still have my days where I think I look as terrible as I sometimes feel. On top of these ridiculous feelings, I had more ridiculous feelings that I was a bad mom for letting Gia go with her dad on an outing without me. Wouldn’t people wonder where this little girl’s mom was when they saw her only with Craig? Wouldn’t my husband think I was being selfish for needing some mental health time? Why do I have all of these feelings, but all of the other moms that I see look like they’re perfectly fine with their bodies, with their ability as a mother, with life in general?
The answer is that other moms do have these feelings. They just don’t always talk about them. My mom told me something today that really resonated with me – what you see of others is only a snap shot – it does not mean that they don’t have tough days. Most people feel shame and choose not to talk about it when their days are like the one I had today.
I’m sure some of you who have actually decided to read this far are thinking, “boy, she’s making a mountain out of a mole hill.” Maybe I am, but this is my reality and sometimes it doesn’t feel so good. I’ve mentioned before that I’m an over thinker and that I’m hyper-critical of myself, especially as a mother. All of it stems from a good place, but it ends up making my mind spin in circles.
Now as I sit here with a glass of Artesa’s Pinnacle, I’m reminding myself that I’m a work in progress. Tomorrow will be a better day and I will have more tough days too. The next time one of these tough days rolls around I’m going to take my brother’s advice. I’m going to say, “Get out!” Get out to all of the thoughts that my head just doesn’t have room for any more. I’m letting go of my need to be perfect and trying to embrace my humanity. I hope you can too. 🙂