Body Pressures and Expectations…

marisha-250x175After years of trying to get back to my pre pregnancy body shape, I finally realized that I was fighting a losing battle. I attained the weight I was before having children, but somehow it doesn’t sit in the same places as it did before. I work out like I’m training for the Olympics and I eat pretty healthy, but my body still doesn’t look like it did when I was in my twenties. My arms are bigger, and my boobs are smaller! How does that happen? And why does everyone have an opinion? Generally speaking, I think women, spend too much time judging each other.  We tend to spend too much time comparing ourselves to others and giving ourselves unrealistic expectations.

For example, I had a job interview and my “friend” expected me to be able to still fit the business clothes I had in my closet. I think I knew I couldn’t fit any of those clothes, but I tried them on anyway. This is where the craziness begins. This is when I realized the mirror hadn’t been lying to me, and this is also when I realized I own way too many yoga pants!

Because I worked in corporate America (before I decided to stay home) I still have a lot of business suits. Unfortunately, they didn’t fit the way I once remembered. To be more specific, the zippers wouldn’t zip over my rear end. From the front, I looked great! Oh, I could do big things as long as I didn’t turn around. From the back, I looked like I had squeezed myself into one of my 6 yr old daughter’s skirts! I’m almost positive my butt was swollen, because I don’t remember it being that big! The weird part about this, is the waist of the skirts all fit! And the suit pants fit as if they were bell bottom leggings. They were legging tight around the butt and thighs, and then they flared at the knee.  These clothes were all still in style, it was my body that had changed. Mentally I know I still wear a size 2 ,it’s just that a size 6 would feel so much better.

The number size doesn’t really matter. We know that women come in all shapes and sizes. The important thing is what you see when you look in the mirror. When I looked in the mirror I saw everyone else’s disappointment.  I saw all the pressure and expectations from other people.  The pressure to not gain too much weight during my pregnancy (even though I had twins). The pressure of losing all the baby weight; and the expectation of being super sexy when my hubby comes back from deployment.

The truth is, everyone else’s opinion of me is their business, not mine! I like feeling like I won’t be blown away in a wind storm.  I like my new found curves, and oh my goodness, I love Spanx!  There is something beautiful about the perfect imperfections of a woman’s body, especially those that have children. My “muffin top” is reminder of how I successfully carried twins to term, turned around and had another baby when the word miscarriage was written in my file way too many times.

I say we should embrace our physical differences and try and find peace with it. Change what you want to change, but do it because you want to, not because it’s expected.  Hell, the only thing I’m changing is the date of my interview so I can go buy a new suit that fits!

Do you embrace yourself the way you are, or do you feel pressure to make physical changes?

 

 

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  2. Erica Jones

    I might not be a mom but I do feel very pressured. I feel like people avoid talking to me because of my size. I am a out going bubbly woman but no one will give me a chance and be my friend. It’s like oh I’m plus size so that makes me a bad person? Uh no!! And I’m also starting to wonder if my size is the reason why no one will hire me. I mean Taco Bell told me they hired someone who was more qualified!! Come on!! I’m not crazy lol!!

  3. Robyn H.

    I am learning to better embrace my body as it is now. I know I’ll never get back to the size I was years ago, although I do want to get to a healthy weight/size. I am learning to love my body as it is and to love myself more. People are cruel and quick to judge but you know, as long as my husband loves me the way I am and my daughter loves me and I love me, no one else really counts. I do want to lose a few pounds, I want to get in better shape but I’m not going to hate the image I see in the mirror anymore, I’m not going to wish for a body I had so many years ago. I do wish I could find better fitting clothing though! :)

  4. I’m all for embracing what we have and feeling free to change what we don’t like… especially if we’re doing it to please ourselves. But you may as well know right now that the grandest mother of us all, mother nature, has her own take on it, and she has a very cruel sense of humor. I know this for a fact because for most of my life I fell into the skinny, flat chest, straight up and down category until well after my last child, who I had at the age of 40. Finally I started to gain a little weight but I still didn’t see any curves unless I count my boob job at 40-something, so the extra weight was really just bigger feet and arms. Now I’m in my mid 50s and I have put on a little more weight… nothing to be alarmed about, I’m now the size I’ve always wanted to be and wearing the hell out of a size 6. But all my years of dissatisfaction and body dysmorphism were just a waste of time because Mother Nature had and will always have the last word and the last laugh. I finally have a body I can proudly strut with a face that needs a damn walker.

  5. This was a great. I too feel the pressure. I feel like I can’t be happy with myself and it’s mostly me doing the judging of me. I am 20 pounds short of my goal weight and it just won’t go anywhere. I give up on exercising because when I exercise I gain weight which is bizarre.

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