Thursday, July 2, 2009

The cat's out of the bag

Happy Thankful Thursday, wonderfully loyal readers (all four of you:))!!

It's no secret that I have a severely messed up midsection. My skin does not stretch well. After my first pregnancy I had a bit of skin that just couldn't shrink back to normal. No biggie, and easily hidden. However...this last pregnancy I housed two little people inside of me. Not only do I have LOTS of skin that is still too shocked at what it had to endure and won't go back to normal, but I have complete separated stomach muscles. These two things combined lead to a number of problems. My bad posture has become worse now that my stomach muscles can't do as efficient a job of holding me up. My back hurts more often (I didn't know that could happen because of a faulty stomach; it's a completely different side of your body for pity's sake!)

Sadly, the hardest part of this for me has not been the physical aspects, but the vain ones. Yes, what concerns me most is that I have an ugly stomach that the rest of the world can see. This isn't just stretch marks that can be hidden with a shirt or one piece swimming suit. I will forever look four months pregnant, in a saggy sort of way.

In most pants, I muffin top. I know. Eek. I've tried higher cut pants to keep everything "tucked in," but everything comes back out the very first time I sit down or bend over. I'm sorry if this is too much information.

I know I shouldn't let this get to me. I shouldn't be worried about how the rest of the world perceives my stomach. I should be grateful that because of what my stomach went through to get this way I have three wonderful sons. And I am. Really!

I go through stages of acceptance. Some days I feel like I've completely come to terms with my one hundred year old looking stomach that is the consistency of pizza dough; I don't mind it a bit and I wear whatever clothes I want to, whether it shows or not. Most days I feel slightly self conscious and wear looser fitting shirts. But there are the days where I want to look pretty, feminine, womanly, etc. To wear something that makes me look female instead of the same width from shoulder to hips.

And so we come to the point.

To those of you who think that I "look great after having two babies," I confess.

I fake it.

I cheat.

I use one of these:

Call it whatever you like. Shapewear, corset, torture!, etc. I prefer to call it my girdle. I mean, come on, isn't girdle just an awesome word?!

It's really quite good at what it does. I can put it on and suddenly I have a waist again! It doesn't make me skinnier by any means, but it sure does take away that muffin top. It even improves my posture.

But I can't wear it all day. For one thing, my position as mother of three puts me on the move so often that it's just to uncomfortable for everyday wear. It's really not torturous at all. I only have issues when I try to sit down because it becomes a bit tight. If I wear it for more than three or four hours it starts to get uncomfortable. I mean, let's face it. The stomach and ribs were not meant to be all constricted like that. But it's perfect for an evening out, or those days when I just want to go out in public wearing something that is more fitted than a t-shirt.

And so today I am thankful that I have access to a girdle. That because of this little contraption, I can feel less self-conscious on those days when I'm having a harder time accepting my stomach.

What are you thankful for today??

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