being body positive, body confidence after pregnancy, post-natal body, this stuff is golden,

Not So Body Positive

I’m pulling in my stomach so tight right now because I’m incredibly conscious of it. It’s staring right up at me as I sit with my laptop, daring me to let go and show what shapes my body really makes.

Forty minutes ago I finished a twenty minute post-natal cardio workout, and just about got through it. (I also had to entertain my 3 month old whilst doing it – thankfully she enjoyed watching me move around).

To work out, I pulled on my old leggings that I used to use for running. I feel like I am bulging out of them, camel toe and everything*. They are a size too small and the elastic is highlighting my “mummy pouch”.

*= TMI?

I fucking hate my “mummy pouch”. This kangaroo-inspired part of my body is the leftover stretched skin from having such a huge pregnant belly that I could barely lift myself off the sofa. It’s soft and mushy and is decorated with purple stretch marks. It’s accompanied by a five inch long C-section scar.

I’m happy that my old maternity clothes are very loose on me now, that my old jeans fit me again (yay!) and that I have a waist again. But I am still struggling with my post-pregnancy body.

I look down and I can’t stand seeing rolls. I can’t stand seeing the fat on my arms or the soft pouch on my stomach as I pinch them to show that yes, they are there.

It’s what I was brought up to despise. 90’s and 00’s role models were skinny girls. They had -5% body fat. They had a butt like an ironing board. They had skinny, non-muscular tummies with belly-button rings.

I wasn’t like that. I was a kinda chubby kid that struggled with more than thirty minutes of walking, who only lost weight because they stashed their lunch money at home to buy a new iPod.

Don’t get me wrong, I adore body-positive women (especially selfloveclubb and bodyposipanda, they are fucking amazing) – I WISH I was more like them.

If anybody said to themselves the things that I say to myself about my body, I would tell them that they were beautiful, that being healthy is the most important thing, and that being healthy doesn’t mean being skinny.

But I do not say that to myself. I feel like a piece of shit after indulging on homemade carrot cake (especially after my third slice of the day). I don’t think I deserve any more food after eating one or two Creme Eggs (but how the fuck am I supposed to say no to those things, they are delish).

One of my goals at the start of this year was to “get buff”. By “get buff” I mean get the body that IĀ fantasise about having – I want a big round butt and tiny waist*. I want that anaconda to want some.

*= My boobs are currently the food bags of a tiny human, so I’m just gonna see what happens with these two milk jugs once I stop breastfeeding.

Since mid-January (I waited til after my birthday because of cake) I’ve been trying to work out every few days, trying to eat a little less crap and snack on healthier stuff. It’s been going quite well, though this fucking snow has kept me inside and triggered some sort of hibernation instinct in me (all I wanna do is eat).

I just want to be one of those wonderful people that are proud of their bodies, whatever shape they are.

Am I ever really going to get a big round butt and tiny waist? I might if I do hundreds of squats everyday and really focus on my obliques in every workout.

But is that my natural shape? Nah. Is my natural shape good enough? Probably.

Actually yes it is good enough. I know it is. I know that I am actually a slim person who eats well and exercises regularly. My body is a healthy version of its self. I don’t push it too hard or do too little.

All body shapes are beautiful. I just need to convince myself that mine is too.


  1. Emelie

    Lauren, this post is so amazing and honest. I love how you’re criticizing and forgiving yourself simultaneously.

    Your body is incredible – and I don’t even really know what it looks like – but trust me: You’re gorgeous. And that anaconda obviously wants some: YOU HAVE A BABY. I’m assuming your pregnancy wasn’t one from the heavens, right?

    Change sucks sometimes. You’re mentally and physically still transitioning (aren’t we always?) after having a baby, but you’re doing what you can and that’s so important. I know plenty of people who don’t do a damn thing except complain all day about what they don’t have. You might be complaining, but you’re also acting – and not just on physically bettering yourself, but emotionally and mentally too! Major, major props to you.

    On a separate note, carrot cake is probably the healthier of the cakes, no?

  2. Quinn

    “I just want to be one of those wonderful people that are proud of their bodies, whatever shape they are.

    Am I ever really going to get a big round butt and tiny waist?”

    Placing those sentences one after the other is jarring. I always find it amazing how people hunger for what they don’t have – in India you see so many commercials for skin whitener, while in Ireland people are busy spraying themselves with tan. People with small butts want Kim K behinds while people with bouncy ball bottoms want lithe, ballet-dancer physiques. People with curls want straight hair whereas people with pin straight hair want long Rapunzel tendrils to wrap around their finger.

    It’s fucking insane. We’re never happy. We are perpetually displeased with whatever we’ve been blessed with.

    You are gorgeous. You are a pretty blonde with huge doll-eyes and the cutest smile. When I was a teenager I would have killed to look like you and not like wildling-haired, sallow-skinned, top-heavy me.

    But sure look, with time I’ve learned that for every time I haven’t seen a goddamn thing at a concert because of my height, I’ve had someone lift something down from a shelf for me. I’ve learned that being top-heavy means my cleavage looks great in V-necks. I’ve learned that my wildling hair can be tamed by the judicious use of a GHD and my sallow skin means I can enjoy the sun without turning into a very touch-sensitive lobster. My drawbacks can be positives in their own way.

    I still see people and think they are drop dead gorgeous. Yesterday I think I saw an actual goddess she was so beautiful. But I don’t want to look like them anymore, I just appreciate the way they look as something nice to look at; human eye candy! I’m okay with how I am. Obviously there’s always room for improvement – I would like to be able to outrun a zombie just on the offchance – but I don’t beat myself up because my hair is bananas if I let it airdry, and my nose looks broken, and my thighs feel big, and whatever else I hear being whispered when I’m feeling insecure. So what? They’re fine. They do their job.

    You are more than fine, your insecurities are a small part of you being an asshole. You know this. Now you just need to really KNOW it.


    1. Lauren

      I guess it’s just like everything else – we always want something that we don’t have!
      I wonder why that is something that us idiot humans seem to always suffer from.

  3. Bexoxo

    The nice thing about society is that we don’t walk around naked (most of us don’t at least). Take advantage of that! Wear your cute outfits and accessorize the hell out of them. If that’s what it takes to make you love your body, then do it!

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