“Welcome to the Milk Mama Diaries Carnival (December). For this month, we want to honor breastfeeding for having enriched our lives and blessed us, maybe even empowered us, in a way that only breastfeeding can. Please scroll down to the end of this post and check out the other carnival participants.”
I was a fat kid. I wasn’t cute, healthy, or big boned. I was just plain fat.
As a child, I would always get clothes from the pre-teens section. As a pre-teen, from the teens section, and as a teen, from the ladies department. My only saving grace was that I was tall for my age, so I didn’t look that horrible.
Then one day, when I was in grade 4, I stepped on the scale and saw that my weight hit a whopping 140 pounds. To put it into perspective, I was 60 pounds heavier than the average girl my age. My weight was the equivalent of almost 2 11 year olds!
It was at that point that I decided that I needed to lose weight. Yes, at 11 years old, I went on my first diet. I also tried sports – there was a new taekwondo class being offered, and I decided to enroll.
It took a while but eventually, I started to shed the pounds. From then on, I was always on a diet. Here’s a picture of me on my wedding day, I think I was more or less at my thinnest then:
At this point, I was 10 pounds less than my ideal weight according to those height and weight charts. However, despite being underweight, I never really felt thin. There was always a body part to tone, a bilbil to get rid of. While I knew in my mind that I was no longer my grade 4 self, I was always afraid I’d get back to it if I let myself go.
Then Meia happened. When we decided to have a baby, I promised myself that I would start dieting right after I gave birth. I would eat a lot during my pregnancy but that was okay, there was a little one inside of me that I was eating for as well.
Then I decided to breastfeed. This is what I didn’t account for in my get-back-into-shape-right-after-giving-birth plan. Dieting was a big no-no, as I would feel weak and dizzy if I didn’t eat a lot. Exercising wasn’t an option either — while some websites say that it’s okay for me to exercise while breastfeeding, I realized that it severely affected my milk supply.
Today, nine months in, I’m still 10 pounds away from my pre-pregnancy weight, and light years away from my pre-pregnancy body.
What I’ve realized during the past year is that my body is no longer my own. I am in charge of taking care of it, of making sure that it’s healthy, but it’s not mine alone. I currently share it with Meia, who is getting her milk only from me. Because of that, I realized that I needed to push away my fear of being fat and concentrate on nourishing Meia for the time being. So what if I have a pooch in my belly? So what if I still don’t fit into any of my favorite prepregnancy clothes?
Don’t get me wrong. I still feel fat every now and then. But you know what? It’s more than worth it because I have this in return:
Breastfeeding has freed me from my fears. It has made me realize that my body is beautiful because it has performed and continues to perform a beautiful function – it has produced the most wonderful baby in the world and continues to nourish her even outside the womb.
Do take the time to check out all the posts in this month’s carnival:
- Gretchen – Breastfeeding Gifts for Christmas
- Carol – The Gift of Miracle
- Jenny O.– The Gifts of Breastfeeding
- Anne – The Gift of Breastfeeding
- Nats – We Wish You Merry Nursing
- Jenny R. – If the Magi Were Queens
- Em – The “Breast” Gift
- Isis – Got Milk?
- Armi – Breastfeeding Gifts
- Liv – My Breastfeeding Journey
- Laya – Time in a Drop of Milk
- Mec – The Gift of a Changed Man
- Marnellie – From a Donee to a Donor
- Icar – Breastfeeding Gifts