Speaking of self love and confidence. There's something that women talk about and are oddly, pretty open about during pregnancy. Their changing body. It's clear that swelling takes place, growing in all directions seem to sprout after every meal, and the fact that recovery may take a lot of time. I'm currently having the hardest time right now. It started a couple months ago and I hope that it doesn't last until March, but it could continue until after baby. You see, when I was 250 lbs, I was self conscious--I didn't want to wear cute stylish clothes because I didn't have the confidence to pull of the style or trend. When I was heavier, I was closed off to different experiences because I felt like I didn't match what I felt like underneath. Sounds weird, right? My personality had to change and become timid because I was afraid of embarrassing situations that would arise because of my weight. When I lost almost 90 lbs...I became free. This confidence returned, I remembered it when I was an early teenager. The old Chelsea came back and I was more likely to try new experiences because I felt strong, confident, empowered.
These days, I'm still sick...yes, you heard me. Almost 18 weeks pregnant and I'm still sick if not every day, every other day. (I recently just had two glorious days of no symptoms besides exhaustion and I was on cloud nine). You're welcome to leave a comment on what worked for you, but I can bet money that I've tried it and it might have worked for a day or two, but no more. Being sick these days, I haven't been able to workout. I do walk or take the stairs more often and do some prenatal yoga on the occasion I feel well enough to simply get my heart rate going. I have often thought maybe I am feeling like I'm getting bigger and bigger because I miss the gym? That could be part of it, truly. Let me explain something; I used to focus on a number on a scale. It is what motivated me to lose my first 50 lbs and then it became this unhealthy habit that I had to destroy. So, I started ignoring the number. When you're pregnant, everything is about numbers, levels, and panels. Although I told myself and my midwife that I plan on following her advice about weight gain (if I were to start gaining rapidly), I wasn't going to stress until she brought it to me as a concern. We agreed and she was quit happy to hear that. Here's the truth...I've lost 15 lbs (was 17) since June 29. Yes, it's because I'm sick and it could be partly muscle, I understand that. However, it looks good on the charts, so I kept telling myself "you're doing okay, you're fine." The truth? Just like when I was losing weight and my body would look smaller and there was NO change on the scale...it's the same when you're pregnant...only OPPOSITE. There hasn't been a change in the scale yet my body doesn't look like mine. Okay, I take that back. It looks like the old, overweight Chelsea...almost. There is a cute bump and I can see my hips are changing as well, but my body just...doesn't feel like mine.
I found myself comparing myself to women on Instagram or even I know in real life who are or have been pregnant. On Instagram I have this guilty secret of looking at all the pictures with the hash-tag "#17weeks", "#16weeks" just so I can compare and look at other women's growing bellies. That's pathetic, right? I think it is because I never compared my weight-loss journey to anyone else. I never compared my body to another womans when I was changing my lifestyle. I was PROUD of my body and posted it all over Instagram as a place to record my progress and show women they could do it and that they didn't have to be shameful of being overweight, extra skin, or fading stretch marks. So why is this so hard for me to embrace this beautiful life growing inside of me; that just so happens to make the world "ooh" and "ahh" over?
This may make some people really mad or you may think I'm a self centered brat who needs to be grateful for the gift I have. I'll say this once, and if you don't like it...move on, please. I am so thankful for what God has given me, but this gift doesn't come without many emotional, mental, and physical barriers that I'm supposed to learn how to climb. I truly believe all of this is just prep work for becoming a mother. If you've been in my shoes, I'm glad you can relate. If you enjoyed every moment of your pregnancy and felt like a sexy cheetah on the prowl...I'm so incredibly happy for you. Any secrets you want to share? PG13 appropriate, of course.
I don't have an insightful, beautiful message to myself and other women who are struggling with the same issues as a closing. But, I plan in the next coming weeks to seek my heart, mind, and ask God for guidance and peace. Then, I'll be sure to post my realization or the process of how I've come to embrace just this tiny piece of the puzzle. Trust me, I'm a first time mom and I've never had so many thoughts, emotions, fear, questions, uncertainties. I'm hoping to be able to share them with whoever takes the time to read this, and maybe also have this beautiful journey of a story to share with my child one day. I'm sure he/she will be aware of the emotional and erratic mother they were assigned to, so there won't be much surprise. Baby, I do love you and love that you're this strong and captivating presence in my life already and I'm excited to meet you. Don't ever doubt the love I have for you. No matter how down I'm feeling or sick I am, when I feel those tiny flutters, I smile and try to trace your movement.
I'm sure you'll hear from me in 13 days...when I found out if Baby Wayne is a little girl or boy. Until next time, be kind to one another & compliment each person you meet with a smile.