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A friend of mine recently embarked on the rollercoaster journey of motherhood. In a recent conversation we had,  body positivity in postpartum was the main topic. The journey of bringing a new life into this world is nothing short of miraculous, but it also comes with its own set of physical and emotional challenges. In the midst of sleepless nights, diaper changes, and endless feedings, it’s easy to lose sight of ourselves and our bodies. However, amidst this chaos, there lies an opportunity for profound self-love and acceptance. Join me as we delve into the importance of nurturing body positivity in the postpartum phase and embracing the beauty of our evolving selves.

Amidst the joy and wonder of bringing a human earthside,some people experience an emerging or re-emerging sense of insecurity about their postpartum body… Which makes sense right?

Society bombards us with images of celebrities “bouncing back” to their pre-baby weight and routines often within weeks of delivery, setting unrealistic standards that leave many of us feeling inadequate.

But the truth is, everyone’s postpartum journey is unique, and there is no one-size-fits-all approach to recovery or the journey we may take with our  bodies after birth.

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My friend said that she vividly remembered the first time she caught a glimpse of her postpartum body in the mirror. Stretch marks adorned her belly like  scars from a battle full of struggle, and her once-toned muscles felt soft, saggy, and useless. In those initial moments, she struggled with feelings of disappointment and self-doubt.

The body she knew was gone.  She also recalls with the same vibrant memory,  the moment when she looked into the eyes of her precious young daughter that her body had not failed her, it was not broken; it now showed the effort it took to carry and nurture a life, and that was not something to feel disappointed about, but rather a feat worthy of celebration, she began to shift into the body positivity mindset.

In a world obsessed with “perfect” as the standard of beauty, it’s easy to fall into the trap of comparison, especially in the vulnerable postpartum period. We scroll through social media feeds filled with filtered images and seemingly flawless bodies, and we can’t help but fall into the comparison trap.

However, comparison is the thief of joy, and it only serves to diminish our self-worth. Instead of berating ourselves for not measuring up, let us practice compassion and kindness towards our bodies and unfollow accounts that do make us feel anything other than celebrated!

Making peace with your body in postpartum is not about achieving a certain dress size or reaching a specific weight; it’s about being present in the journey.

Whether it’s finding a moment to look in the mirror and smile, care compassionately for your c-section scar, or thank your body for it’s hard work, every part of you is worth rejoicing; this is becoming body positive.

Body Positivity is Profound Self-love and Acceptance; It’s Important to Nurture It In the Postpartum Phase

Remember, progress is not always linear, and there will be days when peace or self-love feels like a distant dream. On those days, be gentle with yourself and know that it’s okay to ask for help or take a break from being aware of your body. Neutrality is a wonderful option as well.

Perhaps the most powerful tool in our postpartum journey and our relationship to our physical being, is the support of other birthing folks who have walked this path before us.

Whether it’s through online forums, support groups, or intimate gatherings with fellow life givers, finding a community of individuals who are on similar journies post birth can provide the encouragement and validation we need to embrace our postpartum bodies fully.

Together, we can celebrate our triumphs, share our struggles, and lift each other up in moments of doubt and sincerely practice the body positivity movement, in real life!

Postpartum Essentials - a line art drawing of a mother and father cradling each other and a newborn on the father's shoulder with a beige background with green water color circle and gold glitter accents
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