I could try to write around it, wax poetic about things with baby No. 2 being different ... harder. In the end, though, it would all boil down to the fact that I am not happy with the way I look.
I feel round ... soft ... heavy. I look in the mirror and see thick legs, a double chin and arms that flap in the wind. I feel a spillage when I squeeze (rather than slide) into pants.
I've tried to do things to improve the situation. I track my intake as best I can on MyFitnessPal. I exercise regularly. And I've given myself plenty of challenges – no sugar for a month, no sugars and no grains for a month, one dessert a day, drink 5 bajillion jugs of water before every meal. But in the end, I'm still 5 pounds above my official starting weight at the doctor and 15 pounds above where I would like to be.
The worst part? According to the BMI chart, I am overweight. I am unhealthy by this standard.
To add insult to injury, there have been a few things to really hammer that sentiment home. So if you are feeling as if you want to take your self esteem down a notch – or 5 – here are my tips.
1. Give yourself permission to give up. When I really tried to rein in my diet, more than my weight dropped. My milk supply did, too. And I'm not one of those magic milk unicorns who lose 30 pounds and pump 500 ounces. So instead of getting neurotic about every ounce I wasn't pumping, I decided to give up any real weight loss effort until the shop closes down. Of course, that doesn't necessarily translate into eat all the sugar ... but I let it. You know, because the weight will fall off when I stop nursing. #sodelusional
2. Stop weighing yourself. The number on the scale is just a number ... blah, blah, blah. While I know that's true – to an extent – I'd really like to see a certain number. By not weighing myself, I don't have to be reminded that I'm not there yet. Genius! But, I also lose sight of what I'm working toward and hence allow myself to eat all the sugar.
The only shot from our anniversary. Full-length photos were not allowed.
3. Don't try clothes on; just buy the size you want. I wanted to look hot for my anniversary night out with Mark. I originally looked at slinky dresses then lacy skirts and finally settled on a cute top and black skinny jeans. I went to Old Navy, armed with a $35 reward and sweet coupon, ready to find something sassy. Except the available sizes were 0, 4, 10, 16 and 18. I am not those sizes. My ego told me to try on the 4 (though my gut should have said 10). The mid-rise curvy style fit. Sort of. Well, I could pull them up with a shimmy, shimmy shake and zip them. So, yeah. A win. I decided that I would do myself a favor and dig for a 6. As luck would have it, I found a pair. Petites, 25 percent off because they don't carry that size in store. I grabbed them and headed to the register. I went to put them on Saturday night and barely got them buttoned. The jeans were not the vanity-sized, forgiving-cut, full-of-stretch pair I had tried on. I felt like a stuffed sausage – just the way I pictured a night out on the town to Mark seven years of marriage.
4. Gather photo evidence. Si was doing this really funny thing the other night. He would get super excited, rocking in his Bumbo, every time I gave him a bite of turkey rice soup. When I gave him a bite of Gerber pureed peas, he'd scrunch up his face and shiver. I told Mark to take a video for posterity. While he failed to get the action (Si got camera shy), he managed to capture the black circles under my eyes, frizzy hair, bloated cheeks and double chin. I instantly deleted it. Even if Si had given an Oscar-worthy performance, it still would have went to the trash can.
5. Wear sassy pants. And by sassy pants, I mean patterned workout tights. I was already into them when I joined the AMR challenge but my participation took it to a ridiculous level. I bought two pairs from Kohl's during Black Friday week. Though cute, they do my legs no favors. I look shorter, heavier and what should be stars look like Miles colored on my leggings.
6. Book it. My company receives media review copies and promotional materials but our ethics policy prevents us from keeping anything we've been sent. At the end of the year, the items are priced at a fraction of the MSRP and sold to benefit charity. This year, I bought "The 17-Day Diet" and "Bikini Fit: The Four-Week Plan" under the guise that they might refresh my memory or provide inspiration re: planning group fitness classes. Instead, they were just ways to make me feel bad about myself. According to "The 17-Day Diet," my plan to lose 15 pounds (at some point) is a bit conservative. I need to lose 25 to 30 pounds. Just when I thought its chart was a bit unrealistic, my co-worker said she fell in the range.
So 25 pounds it is. #passthecelery
After the holidays.
When I'm done nursing.
And all the cereal is gone.