Sunday, July 08, 2007

Weighty issues

According to the scales at mum and dad's house down in hobart I am now back down to my pre-Patrick weight. My whole pre-pregnancies weight has a lot longer to go. I'm loving the opinion that the length of time it takes you to put it on should be the approximate time it takes to take it off, so from the time we first started trying I've got at least another year, which is quite achievable, really.

The breastfeeding/losing weight thing... I'm slowly, oh so slowly losing weight. Veeeery slowly. I realise if I actually did regulate my diet I may actually seriously lose some weight, but I'm still stuck with the daily milkshake habit and also an ice-cream with choc-top and nuts after dinner thang. I blame my veggie diet for leaving me low in calcium which I am now craving in the form of dairy goods.

Or I'm just a slack tart.

Personally I think any weight loss is from all the weight lifting we seem to do all day every day. Madonna's toned arms? Bikram yoga, pilates, some kind of celebrity trainer- my arse. Motherhood. Pure and simple. My arms haven't been this toned since I was an athlete.

The thing that has really had me stonkered is the way my whole shape has changed.

I've never, ever been 'slim', and I never expect to be. My figure, post-childhood would have to be described as 'athletic'. I remember vividly a photo of me and my cross-country athletics team when I was in about grade 9. Everyone else is all stringy and rangy, like any good distance athlete should be, and then there's me, all deltoids and quadriceps. And I was the second fastest in the team. I changed schools at the end of grade 10 and we couldn't find a blazer to fit my shoulders; we had to have one made especially. I was a state champion oarswoman; I rowed in an international schools competition. In Med school I started c ycling to competetive level. I was as fast over the local Hobart circuit as many of the men. Every time I see one of the Williams sisters I see my 'old' figure (minus their impressive gluteals!).

So what I suppose I'm trying to say is that I have always been 'larger' than normal, but in a very healthy way. I got very used to dressing to show off my slim waist whilst trying to hide my shoulders, thighs and calves. Then when I got fatter, I again learned how to make the most of my figure. I was quite good at it. It used to make me feel good that shop assistants would hand me size 14s (that was my 'athletic' size).

But the game's changed now. The clothes I used to look good in no longer suit me. I'm confused because the things that I see should flatter me no longer do. The breasts are one thing, the sagging tummy another. I'm starting to get used to my now-enormous feet.

It's just one of the ways in which my whole self, my idea of who I am is so fundamentally changed. I'm someone's mum.

(Interestingly, I note that advertisers give this new status as qualifications for expertise for all sorts of things: dairy products, cough medicine and hazelnut chocolate spread to name three. So now I can use my authority; "As a mum, I think that the washing up should be done by someone other than me".)


Blogger Mermaidgrrrl said...

The body change thing is totally bizarre. I'm back to my TTC weight but in a totally differnt body - wider hips, horribly sagging gut, smaller rib cage, thinner face and neck. Strange! I hate hate hate my gut - in fact it's now officially an apron. There - I said it. I have an apron. Blech.

8/7/07 23:47  
Blogger jen said...

does panniculus sound any better? That's what I'm calling mine (it's called a panniculus adiposus- meaning "fatty apron").

I remember one famous psychiatric admission from when I was a student that went along the lines of "Patient is attired only in a fatty apron"

9/7/07 04:58  
Anonymous J-Le said...

i am definitely a slack tart when it comes to restoring my body to its former glory (ha!) after pregnancy. i lost 12kg in the months before i became pregnant and was the skinniest (if you can call size 14 'skinny') i am ever likely to be for the rest of my life. now i'm back to mid-way between my pre-weight-loss weight and my 'skinny' weight. if i could just lay off the chocolate, coconut slices, iced coffees and welsh rarebits i could probably drop some more kilos. but being the slack tart that i am (mmmmmm.... tart....) i'll probably keep munching away.

but this has inspired me to enquire today about the mother/baby exercise classes at my swim centre.

9/7/07 14:34  

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