It’s been 21 months since my son was born. That’s 649 days to be precise, as I sit here writing this. Almost two years since he came crashing into our world. It was a bumpy start for both of us, separated in different special care units. He was due in July but my blood pressure was becoming increasingly unpredictable and difficult to stabilise so after various hospital admissions it was decided to get him out at the end of May. A 4lb bundle of loveliness was delivered. We both battled and eventually came home a few weeks later.
It was far from the idyllic pregnancy and birth that I would have requested had I been able to, but nonetheless it was MY birth of my baby.
So why am I telling you this when the title is about weight loss? Well because I am struggling to lose my baby weight and yet people are still saying to me ‘you’ve just had a baby’, ‘it’s not been that long since you were pregnant’ or ‘you have young children’ and other similar platitudes. When I point out it’s been almost two years since he was born the emotional card is thrown back at me – ‘but you had such a terrible time’, ‘you were both so unwell’, ‘give yourself time to recover’.
So when is it time to lose the baby weight? I’ll warn you now, I don’t have the answer here, but what I am learning is that although every mother is different, weight loss knows no differences. The weight issues that have dogged me all my life are still here. Pregnancy, birth and motherhood haven’t ridden me of them, in fact they seem to have exacerbated them … they are still there. It is my daily battle and my night time demon.
But can I still use the baby weight as an excuse? And for how long? Two years? Three years? Ten years? Forever? Is it right to put my insecurities at the door of my pregnancy, which produced my two incredible, magical, amazing, challenging, perfect and imperfect children?
My mother did that. Unintentionally, but she did and I don’t want to repeat that pattern. It’s all too easy to blame past generations, my challenge is not to try to be the skinny mother I’d so like to be, but to try not to let those age old demons manifest themselves in my children – their freedom from them would be my success, a success not measurable in dress sizes and on scales.
So somehow I need to ditch the excuses and simply move more and eat less.
If only leaving a lifetime of issues behind were that easy….