May 17 2020 – Gianna Shawley
We are all in a different part of our journey to #holdbabieslovebodies. Sam tells us about how her daughter’s birth story and her postpartum recovery led her to #holdbabieslovebodies:
I feel like people prepare you for the worst during labor and compared to that seemingly last leg of the race, the rest wasn’t too bad.
“My reality was the complete opposite.”
The journey through my trimesters were some of the most challenging moments for me physically more than anything. I had most looked forward to those weird late night cravings that I would make my husband fulfill. However, I had difficulty holding down anything for very long. Instead of enjoying the taste of food, I found myself forcing myself to eat and at least drink water for any kind of sustenance. I’m not usually the most pleasant person to be around when hungry, so its only imaginable how much those emotions were amplified over a prolonged period of time; not to mention also while growing a small human being.
When my water broke, and Lily was ready to say hello to the world, I was just as eager. I was so hoping I could enjoy food once again, and physically overall achieve my norm.
Surprised and praised by everyone at how quick delivering our first baby was, I was feeling confident it was the green light I had long awaited for. When we got home from the hospital, I was in high spirits and in full supermom mode. Getting laundry done in between night feeds, cooking and pumping, etc.
“Soon enough, I found myself in an ambulance on the way back to the place I had just left.”
I was so hell bent on getting back to my “original” self, I neglected what my body was telling me in those moments. Instead of accepting and honoring this new version of myself, I never gave it a chance.
That event forced me to look closely and pay attention to all the changes my body had taken on for the first time. What I discovered was hard, and I realized subconsciously why I initially didn’t want to take the time to learn about my body postpartum.
“Even though I was extremely conscious about my new self awareness, what forced me to be kinder to myself was my shift in priorities.”
No matter how I looked, what came first was taking care of this beautiful little human we created and help her along the 4th trimester (which also no one thought was important to tell me prior to).
Through her growing chubby cheeks and baby laughs, I discovered amazement in my body for just keeping our baby alive and growing every day. Even though my body isn’t exactly where I want it to be, the movement towards an attainable goal is more organic. Exercising has become a fun activity for us both as of late, and also a newer reason to love babywearing. She thinks its a fun ride for her and added body weight for me!
When I first saw hope&plum do a smaller version of this campaign on Instagram I also wanted to join in, but I wasn’t able to follow through. My intentions then wouldn’t have been in alignment with the message. I am grateful that they chose to feature this campaign again where I could more confidently and genuinely take part in.
It’s definitely a daily process, but I continue to learn about my body daily and find things to love about this new version of myself.