When I was newly pregnant, I used to go through the postpartum hashtags on Instagram and spend lots of time checking out the before and after pics. I’ll admit I’m a bit of a pregophile, I can’t get enough of looking at baby bumps! There’s just something so magical about them. But I was also really interested in knowing if my body would ever be the same again.
So far it’s still too early to have this answer for myself yet. I lost the “baby weight” pretty quickly, as I recall I was only about 10 lbs away from my pre-pregnancy weight at my 1st OB appointment after leaving the hospital. But I also lost a lot of my muscle, which isn’t cool. I felt like living, breathing veal picatta.
Unfortunately most of that rapid weightloss was probably due to my postpartum depression as I could barely eat. I was still making enough milk (somehow) for my baby who is the hungriest little effer on the planet, but I started to supplement with formula a couple times a day to make sure he was getting everything he needed. So, yeah I lost the weight quickly, but I would have preferred a little extra padding and a lot less anxiety in those first few months!
Every time I’ve posted pics of my very pregnant belly on Instagram I get asked what I did to prevent stretch marks. I’ve heard these are mostly hereditary, which makes sense for me considering my mom got none with any of her pregnancies. Although I do have some on my hips and butt from growing when I was younger, so I don’t know what the hell that means. I did do some stuff the prevent them, although I have no idea if they helped or not.
For one, and I think this is the most important, I drank a TON of water. That can be hard because you already feel so “full” and lots of women feel sick throughout their pregnancies. But it’s nothing but beneficial to drink lots of water while pregnant.
I also would swallow a spoonful of coconut oil a day, as well as take omega 3s and vitamin E supplements.
And last, but not least, I exfoliated my belly and hips a couple times a week. I made my own sugar scrub which I LOVE! It’s so easy, it’s basically just 2 parts coconut oil, 1 part organic granulated sugar, mix it by hand or in an electric mixer. I also like to add a little epsome salt to mine to give it the extra exfoliating and anti inflammatory properties. And I put either the pulp from a real vanilla bean, or a couple drops of essential oil to make it extra decadent and heavenly.
BUT HERE’S THE TRICK! Lots of people say to stay oiled up while pregnant, so you would merely rinse the scrub off and leave the oil on your skin and go about your day. But I found that leaving this heavy oil on my skin made me insanely itchy! Pregnancy was quite an itchy business no matter what I did, truly. And nothing worse for skin when you’re trying not to strain it than scratching at it. So once I rinsed the scrub off, I also lathered up after and washed off the oil. If you use a gentle soap (I use Arbonne baby body wash), just enough of the oil will remain to make you feel soft, but not itchy. And I put a little bit of very light lotion on my skin after the shower.
No matter what though, flat tummies, fluffy tummies, stretch marks, broken blood vessels, weird veins, c section scars, strange, rouge hairs that grow out of even stranger places, whatever your “new” stomach has going on, your body is a fucking work of art! I get so much more pleasure from dressing up my little dude than I ever did from wearing a crop top.