Postpartum bodies is a sensitive subject for so many moms. On the one hand, they leave many women feeling badass and powerful, a reminder of the amazing things our bodies are capable of. But on the other hand, they can leave many women feeling insecure and depressed, a reminder that our bodies are nowhere near where they used to be. I've been through every emotion under the sun about my postpartum body, and I've come to one conclusion: I don't care anymore. I'm 37, I'm a mom of two, I have a very imperfect body, and I'm still going to rock the hell out of a bikini this Summer.
I know I look damn good in a bikini, and I refuse to let myself feel self-conscious about it.
As I inch closer to my next milestone birthday — the big 4-0 — I know that my body will continue to head south. My boobs will continue to droop, my skin will only become more saggy, and my arms will flap with the Summer breeze. I know that in 10 years, I'll look back on photos of myself right now and wish I had the same body. So instead of wishing things would change or I could nip this and tuck that, I'm going to embrace my flawed body. Why? Well, like I said, I don't care to waste my time beating myself up anymore, and also for my daughter.
I try to maintain a healthy lifestyle by working out and eating reasonably healthy (Monday through Thursday, that is). I try to eat my veggies, avoid carb-loading, and dodge sugar — you know, all the boring stuff. But I also like to live life. I don't sacrifice every single day, because life is just too short not to enjoy beer, brownies, and freshly baked bread. And it doesn't matter how long I can hold a plank — that skin underneath my belly button will never tighten. The cottage cheese behind my thighs and ass? Nope, that's not going anywhere, either. But in some weird way, I feel more confident about my body today than I did when I was younger. Maybe it's because expectations are lowered after you have kids, or maybe it's because you acquire a little wisdom with age. Either way, I know I look damn good in a bikini, and I refuse to let myself feel self-conscious about it.
Whether or not you wear a bikini or a one-piece this Summer, embrace it — our daughters are watching. It's vital that they see what a real body looks like, and not what they observe in magazines, on social media, and on TV. If they see you owning that bathing suit with that beautifully flawed body of yours, they'll mimic that same dance. They'll see that to be confident in your own body doesn't mean your body needs to be perfect. In fact, it means the opposite — loving yourself just as you are is where it's at.
So I offer you a challenge this Summer, moms. Take off the cover-ups. Don't even give it a second thought. It's terrifying but so, so liberating and powerful. You'll feel confident, and you'll teach your kids a lesson in the meantime.
See you on the beach!