By Mwabi Kaira
Let’s face it – pregnancy does a number on women’s bodies; the weight gain, the acne, the heartburn, the frequent trips to the bathroom, swollen ankles, you name it and we get it during pregnancy. And then we hold our precious babies in our arms after they are born and we know that it was not all for naught. Some women get their bodies back within weeks but the majority of women do not. Doctors tell us that it takes 9 months to gain the weight and will take the same amount of time to lose the weight but societal pressure has us wanting that instant snapback with a quickness.
Hollywood doesn’t help. Magazine covers like to flaunt starlets in bikinis mere weeks after giving birth showing off their flat bellies. Tia Mowry Hardrict recently gave birth to her second child, a daughter, and her belly is nowhere near flat. She took to instagram to show her body after baby and the journey to embrace it. Tia captioned her picture:
“Some pregnant women after giving birth no longer have a belly after 7 weeks. While others it may take a little longer. Me, I’m the latter. I remember giving birth to Cree, my belly didn’t all of a sudden go flat. I did have a C-section (as well as with my second pregnancy) and I thought something was wrong with me. I had seen in magazines the many women on the beach a few weeks postpartum in a two piece. To be honest, it had to take time for me to embrace my new body. With this second pregnancy, I now have embraced the fact that I have housed a human being. A miracle. A life. If it takes a while for me to get back to my normal self, then so be it. This.Is.Me. And I love me.”
Tia’s post was admirable and made fans love her even more. It has resonated and has 653,403 likes and 18,445 comments. Women are happy to finally see someone in the public eye who is just like them and being honest about it. On the flip side, two women also in the public eye had babies recently as well and their bellies are close to flat. They too have taken to instagram to show their post baby bodies. Crystal Smith, wife of singer Neyo gave birth to the couple’s 2nd son two weeks ago and posted videos of her almost flat stomach to her instagram stories just a week later. Princess Love, wife of Ray-J Norwood and cast member of Love & Hip Hop gave birth to their daughter at the end of May and just appeared on The BET Awards red carpet this past weekend looking like she was back to her pre-pregnancy weight.
We are all different and it is important to remember that genetics comes into play as well. Many women have inherited bodies from their mothers and grandmothers. They barely have to work out and are a size 2. We can’t fault them for the bodies and genetics they were born with and we can’t fault ourselves for the bodies we were born with. We can just work on our bodies to ensure that they’re the best bodies and we are the best versions of ourselves. We can take a page out of Tia’s page and take her post as a gentle reminder to embrace and take care of our bodies because we only get one.
Are women being unrealistic by expecting a pre-baby body within weeks of giving birth?