I know you. I know what you are going through. I know because I am you!
I have two beautiful children. They are pure treasures in my life and I would do just about anything for them. I have embraced my role as their mama and I thank God for choosing me and for trusting me, but I admit I have struggled to accept the changes I have found on my body when my kids came.
Extra weight. Stretch marks. Saggy skin. Hair falling out. Dark spots. Discoloration. Wrinkles in places I didn’t know got wrinkles.
My clothes are too tight and too loose. They cut off circulation, fall down, irritate. My wardrobe has significantly shrunk and I get anxiety if I have to dress up.
Every day I am walking around in a body I am not familiar with and along with it I am carrying a heart of shame. No one handed me the shame, no one forced it into my arms. It is almost as if I picked it up and put it in my heart myself. A safe place so my arms were free to hold my babies.
You understand me, don’t you?
You want to hide too. I get it.
Frustration builds up anytime you look in the mirror, have to get dressed or are invited by your husband to be intimate. Things are just not the same.
I need to share something with you. Please listen up.
If you have had children and your body has changed…whether it changed with one itty-bitty hidden stretch mark or has been traumatically altered…we all need to be reminded of a few things…
Firstly, that the pressure we feel to be perfect is a lie. Our culture and every advertisement we see tells us that we are not perfect, but that there is hope for us if we just…
get this product, buy these clothes, choose that surgery, get this lifted…and the overwhelming list continues.
Let me set you straight with some truth: YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL! AND WHAT YOUR BODY HAS DONE IS MIRACULOUS!
Those stretch marks, that extra weight and sagging skin, the pain, the trauma…all of it is miraculous…because you gave life!
There is nothing in comparison to the beauty found in the way God designed our bodies to give life. The purpose our bodies have is invaluable. And the changes you have noticed are evidence of God’s incredible design.
You are beautiful and the world needs your beauty. Please don’t hide. The next time you have to get dressed, take a deep breath, remember you were created with marvelous purpose, pick something out and wear it with dignity. Wipe your tears and embrace the new you, changes and all. Let your changes remind you of God’s precious gift of life. Let your understanding of God’s design be your confidence. Embrace your whole self and set the example for your children so that they are encouraged to bravely embrace themselves. Wrinkle and all.
Because the truth is…even if you do try and hide, your children will be at your side. You can’t hide from them and my hope is that you wouldn’t ignore the message you are sending to them.
Push away the thoughts that you are not good enough, that you don’t measure up, that you are ugly, fat, gross, used, broken, stained. Throw away the shame. You don’t need it anymore.
Embrace the truth that you were made with purpose, that you were made by the hands of a perfect God. Tuck that away into your heart and let it satisfy you.
Last of all, I need you to know that you are not expected to be perfect. You don’t have to strive to fit that bill. You will fail. There is only one who is perfect and even He doesn’t measure up to society’s standards. However, you can determine in your heart to be a good steward of your body. Eat healthy, exercise, don’t stress and spend time reading God’s Word. Do this and you will feel better. Not just better…fulfilled, satisfied, loved.
Love God and love yourself, then you will be able to truly love those little ones entrusted to you.
Embrace the truth friend. You are beautiful.
One mama to another.