Have you ever caught yourself saying, “well you shoulda seen me back in my prime”? I have. In fact, I caught myself saying this just the other day. A friend and I were chatting and we were discussing our high school years. I can’t remember the exact context but I just remember telling her something along the lines of, “Girl, you should have seen me back in my prime. I was like a size zero and I was always showered and had killer makeup. I looked good!”.
Now, while I don’t see any harm in reminiscing fondly about the past and our pre-mommy bodies, I have decided that I take issue with referring to this time in my life as my prime.
The reality is, unless you struggled with your weight before kids or have some kind of killer work out routine now, you most likely don’t have the same body now that you had before kids. I know I don’t. A part of me wishes I could look like that again (especially if someone could come up with a way to work out while I sleep),however I believe I am doing myself a disservice by referring to back then as my prime.
The reason being? Because I am in my prime now! Sure, sure, my body may have been rockin’ back when I was 16 and I could eat carbs for days and somehow lose weight. *sigh* I miss the endless carbs. But, you know what I didn’t have when I was a skinny minnie teenager? I didn’t have my children. I didn’t have the pride and joy of being a mother. I didn’t know what it was like to love these little people with the unconditional love that comes from being a parent.
My body may have taken some hits along the way, but c’mon, it was for the best reason ever. I mean, I grew three humans inside of my body! It would be kind of weird not to have repercussions after something like that. And the way my body looks now shouldn’t be something I feel insecure about or depressed about or hate about myself, but it should be something I show off proudly! I am a mom of three! My body is the proof of that.
Now, don’t get me wrong. We can and should be taking care of our bodies. I will be the first to say that I have not been doing well in this aspect of my health. However, our Love Yourself month series truly encouraged me and now I have been attending our local YMCA and working out and I plan on implementing healthier eating habits as well. There is nothing wrong with deciding that you’d like to take care of your body better and to stay healthy.
But what’s not right is to constantly compare our current bodies to how we looked back before we had children. Honestly, it’s not even a realistic goal to set. What you can do is embrace the body you have. The body that you have, gave life to those little blessings that run around destroying your house and yet have somehow taken over your heart. The body you have now was the vessel that delivered you into the best time or your life – your prime. This is your prime.
In addition, if you aren’t happy with your current health status, then you can make a plan to change it. But it shouldn’t be in hopes of returning to your pre-mama body. Let’s face it. Our bodies can do amazing things, but some things just can’t go back. My hips, ribcage and feet will never be the size they were before I had kids. It’s just not possible. But I can decide that I would like to get into better shape and make new goals to improve upon my prime. My prime is here and now and going forward, I can do better, but it won’t be because I’m looking back at where I’ve been.
I encourage you to celebrate the body you have. It brought your beautiful babies into this world. Don’t be discouraged and don’t let yourself be convinced that you miss the days before your little ones came into your life. Now is your prime and the body you have got you here. If you want to improve upon your prime, then I wish you all the best and am proud of you for making healthy choices, but never let the motivation be that you want to return to your prime. You’re in it Mom. Your prime is now. Enjoy it!