Last week, I read an article in which Jessica Simpson stated that she didn’t understand why, after giving birth to her baby girl, that her body didn’t immediately bounce back. The body she was in now (after birth) clearly, wasn’t her own and now, no longer pregnant, she felt trapped. How many of us can identify with that? We go from pregnant to an empty shell in a matter of minutes. Hours of hard labor to have the baby born and then what…..we are deflated. The beautiful being that is our newborn is placed in our arms and it is heaven…but inside we have a dark, vacant room in a body that just worked so hard for the past nine months!

I loved being pregnant, I felt that I had that pregnancy glow…but really, it was just sweat, because I was a beached whale that didn’t just eat for two. I ate for an entire family. Before babies I was always dieting, sometimes to the extreme, and with each baby I gave myself the green light to enjoy and give in to any and all food cravings. I remember leaving the hospital with that beautiful baby in my arms thinking, “Okay, body….now what?”

On November 12th 2011, I decided it was time to diet. I had given birth that June to my second child and was tipping the scale at about 295 pounds. My large non pregnant body was still foreign to me and I wanted nothing but to get rid of it, and so it began. Now, one hundred and twenty five pounds less than I weighed last fall…. I am still unsure of the body I have. It had once been so *literally* full of life (which is still evident in the larger hips and stretch marks) and the weight loss has certainly added to the “deflated” look, not that I mind seeing my collarbones for the first time in years!

But, what I want to tell Jessica Simpson, is that your body after a baby may never feel like it is yours again. SOMETIMES you might catch a glimpse of that “body” you used to know when you are FINALLY  able to button those skinny jeans. But the truth is–is that for those 9 months your body belonged to someone else. Someone so special…an incredible little person that has (or will) literally pass right through you. We so willingly give up our hips, our boobs, our stomachs, our entire selves for our children! It is such a blessing and an incredible honor that some women can never experience. Carrying a child and giving birth is one (if not THE) most amazing experiences on this earth. Why do we try so hard to get a body back that we had before them? We shouldn’t feel trapped in our post-partum bodies, we should feel accomplished. We should give ourselves a pat on the back. We should give ourselves a break. You will shed that baby weight. You will begin to feel like a real person again. The idea that you are trapped in a body that isn’t your own–is true–think of who it belonged to, think of who you gave it to. Think of who you created. Remember that special time in your life the next time you look at that empty baby belly and rejoice in it.