Well the bottle of wine I just drank, in part.
But also an issue that has been on my mind for a while. I've debated whether or not to bring it up here as it's kind of a controversial subject - and by that I don't mean controversial as such, rather I mean that I'm worried about how shallow it will make me look. But I've now decided that, I am me and this is an issue that concerns me so into the blog it goes.
Long time readers (well one!) will know the continual issues with appearance and specifically weight that I have. The stupid teenage eating disorders, the difficulties I faced during pregnancy caused by the idea of weight gain (for someone whose entire issue with weight is mostly based on being able to control it, the complete lack of control you have during pregnancy is nothing short of terrifying) and now, the (as yet) unmentioned issues I have with my 'post pregnancy' figure. To the untrained eye, my figure these days (bearing in mind that I only carried to 34 weeks, which in itself seems to be cause for some kind of underlying 'guilt issue' with me) is probably not all that different to my pre pregnancy one. Certainly I wear most of the same clothes as I did before. I would apologise in advance to anyone who thinks I am complaining about things that are trivial... I am not overweight, nor do I claim to be. There are deeper issues involved here.
However, for someone who has scrutinised every inch of their body since they were not much more than a child (yes, sadly this is the culture we live in) like I have, the hardships of pregnancy, however small and unnoticeable to anyone else, are a huge deal to people like me. The minutest hint of a stretch mark, any weight gain not specifically restricted to the 'bump' area or anything less than a 'Hollywood' approach to pregnancy is, embarrassingly, a cause of major stress for me (and probably many others). It's not that my appearance is everything to me (although it is important), or even that I regret having my baby (which I one million percent don't), it's just that it can be... hard. The idea that the sexy girl you once were (or thought that you were!) has been replaced with someone who might have chunky thighs, stretch marks, saddlebags or even a wobbly belly. All these things are proof that you've been through the most amazing journey a woman can ever go through... but that doesn't stop you perhaps *wishing* you could have your pre-baby body back. Although... I've started to think it might not even be as simple as having your body back. It's more a kind of wistfulness for the person you were and the life you led, before you were a mother. The way you imagine that people (especially partners) saw you before you were a mother. But like it or not, you're not the same person and no amount of dieting, work outs and clothes shopping will change you back to the way you were.
But then... would you really want to be anyway?