Postpartum Pep-talk

Today was a big day. I had 2 blissful hours to myself for the first time in almost 8 weeks. My hands were free, no one was napping on me and my boobs were tucked away. It was amazing.

Initially, I was overwhelmed with the possibilities of how to spend my time, but decided to visit the gym and do some gentle exercises outside of my living room. It felt so good to move my body again and break a sweat that wasn’t attributed to postpartum hormones (holy night sweats!)

While I’ve never regretted going to the gym, today was trying, and I needed to give myself a pep talk afterwards - one I give my clients all the time:

1) Be patient. You just spent 10 months growing a human and then birthing that human. Your body needs time to recover and now is not the time to push it.

2) Your body has changed. Not for the better or the worse. Some things are bigger, some things are smaller, some things have disappeared and some things are new. Certain aspects may go back to how they were pre-baby but others won’t.

3) A little extra weight never hurt anyone. If you’re nursing, your body stores extra fat to help with milk production. Stop thinking about the cookie you ate yesterday, it’s not the reason you look a bit softer in the mirror. You are the primary food source for another being.

4) Don’t push through. If something doesn’t feel right or if something hurts, stop. I suffered from pelvic girdle pain during both pregnancies and also have a condition called Osteitis Pubis, which is inflammation in the public bone. Certain everyday activities and exercises can cause it to flare up so while my instinct is to push through, I need to listen to my body.

5) Stick with it. Much like all things parenting related, consistency is key. Don’t give up because it was hard, next time will be a little easier. To quote Elmo from this morning’s episode of Sesame Street - “it’s not that you can’t do it, it’s that you can’t do it yet.”