Grace for the Body

**First of all, I’m happy to report that, while our monster is still a monster, we are coping with the two year old so much better.  I’m taking a nap almost everyday (which is why I have been MIA) to summon up the patience to handle Eli and putting him in his room to calm down works wonders.**

Recently I was talking to some of my girlfriends and one of them mentioned gaining 5 lbs in a day.  5 pounds!?  First, let’s be clear about the physical improbabilty of gaining 5 pounds in 24 hours; if a pound equals 3,500 calories, one would have to consume 17,500 calories over what one’s body needs to survive for the day.  Basically, this is impossible.  And yet.  It has happened to all of us.  Stepping on the scale can make us feel elated, discouraged, angry, frustrated, gratified; a medley of emotions.  As women, our bodies are constantly judged. The most surprising part of the constant judging is that the mass majority of this comes from ourselves.  Rarely ever are we noticing the flaws in others, but are constantly holding a microscope up to our own insecurities and issues.  The one major exception to this?  Pregnancy and the post-partum body.  Typically, bodies are not a regular topic of conversation, until there’s a baby in there.  Once pregnant, there will be a constant internal and external dialogue about the size, shape and weight of your body.  While I am not immune to the negative self talk and the need to control something, while the idea of treating our bodies with grace, understanding and thankfulness is noble, what we all really need is a dose of reality.

At 7 weeks pregnant, as in just barely pregnant, the size, shape and weight of my body fluctates, a lot!  This is normal, and something that happens to EVERYONE!  The need to think so poorly of these bodies that carry us through the day and help us to do all of the things has to stop.  Here is what our bodies actually do throughout the day:

image

30 minutes after making the poor choice to indulge in the donuts at a playdate.

image

15 minutes after avocado toast, scrambled eggs and a big glass of water.

There is a GIANT difference between these two pictures.  Our bodies change all day due to what we eat, drink and how much we sleep, levels of stress and level of activity.  I would like to see women accept their bodies in the same way that we accept a filtered and prefected instagram picture, finding our best side and sticking with that as the image that we want to hold as our own.  If we feel good and are physically able to do the things we wish to do, why not just realize that our bodies are just that, bodies?  They are not a definition of our worth, not a reflection of our value, they are a tool, sometimes a good looking tool, sometimes a bloated one, but no less important and vital to our lives.

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