I love reading other blogs and the corresponding comments. One of my favorite blogs is Ivy League Insecurities. Aidan, who writes ILI, recently had a baby, her third. Although she had the baby just six weeks ago, she’s eager to get her body back and posted about this. In my line of work, this is totally normal. At the 6 week mark, most women are cleared for exercise by their doctors and starting to emerge from the new baby fog. Yet, Aidan was somewhat reluctant to share her desire to downsize. In her words “I feel a bit embarrassed and ashamed that I am writing about something that is admittedly so much more superficial than other things I could write about.”
I chimed in and told Aidan she’s shouldn’t apologize for her interest in “losing it.” How we feel about our bodies influences how we feel in general. Taking control of your body, after carrying a baby, or after gaining weight for other reasons often has a carryover effect. Taking the reigns, as I see it, is a good thing and about more than simply fitting in your “reference jeans”. If Aidan had been writing about confidence or carving out time for herself she might feel it was less superficial. Weight loss is as much about that as it is getting physically smaller.
Another commenter had a very different opinion of the post. Someone named Mary said “when I saw the title my heart dropped a bit and I was saddened… sad because with a newborn and 2 littles you were already dissatisfied with yourself.” Now I (vaguely) recall those early days after each of my boys were born. I remember staring at them amazed that they had been inside me for nine months. Yet, this infant adoration didn’t blind me to my post baby pooch. I don’t know if I was “dissatisfied” with myself, it was more like I wasn’t my, physical, self.
Aidan closed her post indicating she should honor her body more. She asked readers “when it comes to your body and your own appearance, are you forgiving or exacting?” I don’t think these qualities are mutually exclusive. There isn’t a day I go for a run that I’m not grateful that my body works. Having lived with a parent who was an amputee later in life, I do not take health for granted. I would say I absolutely honor my body AND like my jeans to fit.
Do you think it’s sad to want to lose weight? Should we be thinking and writing about more “important” topics? What would be your answer to Aidan’s question, are you “forgiving” or “exacting” when it comes to your body?