Sunday, January 8, 2012

I was pregnant too ...

The week after I gave birth to Luke I remember thinking, Was I even pregnant? It all seemed like a dream. It seemed like I had only imagined those nine months, because there I was - with no baby.

It's hard enough to try to deal with your own pysche that's questioning the existence of your pregnancy, but then for other's to not recognize it either...

Ten days after Luke's funeral, I was helping out at a function with several other women. One woman started to comment on another woman's amazing ability too look great nearly immediately after giving birth. She proceede to compliment this woman's ability to be back to her pre-pregnancy size in no time.

First, how insensitive to bring up such a topic with me present! Fortunately, I was at an emotionally stable place and could handle talk of pregnancy and birth, but she didn't know that.

Second, if you're going to bring up pregnancy at least acknowledge me! I may not have a baby here with me, but I was pregnant for nine months. I gave birth to a full grown baby. And quite frankly, I think, I looked good after doing it!

12 days after giving birth
In her defense, perhaps she didn't want to acknowledge me as also being a woman who's given birth, because it's a potentialy awkward situation, especially with everything occurring so recently. But then the question, why did she even start that conversation in my presence? I still wonder...

It may be different for every woman, but I know I'm not the only mother of a stillborn baby that wants to at least be acknowledged. 

And if you're not sure if someone is comfortable talking about her pregnancy, birth, or anything else surrounding the matter or not sure if she's comfortable listening to you talk about pregnancy and birth - all you have to do is ask. It's only as simple as saying, "Is it okay that we talk about this around you?" or "Are you comfortable talking about your pregnancy?" I know, for me, this would have made all the difference. 


  1. You're right! You look super amazing!! Go Shelley!! :)

  2. Seriously! That's only 12 days postpartum? Wow. Slimming down gets progressively harder with each baby, but I think I didn't look that good even after my first.

  3. Shelley - I have NEVER seen anybody look that good 12 days after birth. I am a week postpartum, and let me guarantee you: I will not be looking as amazing in 5 days.

  4. In that woman's defense maybe she did not want to take the chance that you did not want the other women in the group hearing that information from her-- as in she acknowledges you about your birth and potentially *makes* you tell the story of Luke when you weren't planning to, or possibly didn't want to. Knowing you, you were probably fine with them knowing and wanted to tell your story, but I can see how she would not want to "out" you in that situation. The appearance of the other mother probably came up without her being too deliberate and she just handled it in the least awkward way.
    I was thinking about this post after your comment to me last night and I wanted to clarify: no it's not just breastfeeding that helps a mother slim down after birth. I like to bring up breastfeeding in any way I can in an effort to support it and encourage it to other mothers. Sometimes simply the excuse that it helps you shed those extra pounds is just the motivation some women need to stick with it. And in fact the amount of calories it burns can really be the kicker for some women to loose that extra "baby bulge" I bring it up to advocate. But of course it's not the only way to loose the weight--as you can so clearly attest to! I actually think *the best* way to get back to a trim figure is a healthy pregnancy of mindful eating and exercise, which I know you (and Sherri) were strict with ;). You look fabulous, right after Luke's birth and now! Way to work girl ;)

    1. I can see your point in her defense, although everyone present knew about Luke.

      I hadn't thought of losing weight as a motivation to breast feed. I suppose breastfeeding is a challenge I'm yet to face! I'm sure if I struggle with it I'll definitely be seeking guidance from you! I love how knowledgeable and willing to share you are about all things mom & baby!

  5. Wow! you do look amazing! I agree with you! I am so willing to talk about my pregnancy and my baby but I think it's more awkward for other people. Why wouldn't I want to talk about it? There were many good memories too right? We are mothers that don't want to forget because our memories are the only way for us to remember and what better way than to help our memories than to talk about it?!