When I was pregnant, I was told that my body would do amazing things--then the stretch marks came! Eeeek! While this sudden burst of epidermal expansion should have made me feel excited, I was slightly bereaved at my belly that would be no-more. The "battle scars" that arrived during my third trimester did indeed put me at war with myself. I felt like I should be in awe of how my body was adapting to its task of carrying twins but was instead filled with dismay at the ugliness that would remain once my truly beautiful babies had been born. I battled with this vanity, and still do, as the longing for my teenaged tummy sets in every now and then.
While I still doubt a thorough benevolence with my post-baby belly will ever be reached, I discovered an article last week that made me feel okay with not feeling okay. As I was perusing through Yahoo! news, I stumbled across a link to a piece on the Huffington Post by Jill Smokler, a blogger, a mother, and fellow stretch-mark hater!
Her description of the non-trophies that were accepted consequences to carrying a child (or two or three) hit the nail right on the head for me. To those women who are loud-and-proud of your stretch marks, my hat's off to you. I do admire your positive attitude and willingness to embrace yourself as-is. I feel though, as if I am doing the same for myself, at least in this case. I may be slightly cynical at times (shut it, Matt), highly-opinionated, and have a completely type A personality (my mother says I have CDO, which is OCD with the letters in alphabetical order, as it should be of course!) but at least I have embraced who I am as-is. I'm able to recognize that I'm not overtly thrilled about the physical leftovers of pregnancy that have come to reside on my tummy, and I make no apologies for my lack of enthusiasm. Like Jill said, I wouldn't trade my kids for my old belly back, but I think I'm entitled to a little fond reminiscing here and there.
Like Jill, I may not be a roarer either, but I'm definitely on-board with the hissing.