Saturday, January 8, 2011

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Not You Again

I thought going through puberty once was hard enough. I hated being ahead of the curve. My chest began blooming in the fourth grade and I was one of two in my class with the extra friends. This was long before knowing how to use them to either get attention or free admission to clubs and parties so I was really awkward and very self-conscious. I liked big sweaters and refused to stand with a straight back. Then, the summer before middle school (6th grade) I got my first visit from the monthly nag. I was already nervous about starting middle school (8th grade boys, oh my!) and now I was going into it a "woman." Let's not even get started on how self-conscious I was going to be wearing pillows as pads because my mom only believed in using the thickest ones. Years later I started smuggling tampons into the house because my mom believed they would tarnish my precious virginity. And so puberty hit, I hated it, and it took a full 15 years to feel really happy and comfortable with my body. My cycles were regular and I'd grown into my boobs (being called "the rack" in high school was not fun).

Then I got pregnant.

I knew pregnancy would change things. I knew birth and breastfeeding would change things. I went from a D cup to DD during this time. I got my first visit from the monthly nag when Cati was 6.5 months old (so much for not ovulating when breastfeeding!). I thought that was just a fluke and expected my system to still be off. Five weeks later I got another visit and then another visit 30 days after that. I stopped breastfeeding and hoped my system would go back to pre-pregnancy normal. Still waiting. Things are so off and unpredictable, but the point is that I feel like I am going through puberty all over again; I don't know what to expect out of my body. All those years of confidence building have gone to waste because now I need to get comfortable with this new normal.

What set me off was a recent bra shopping trip. I knew things had shrunk once I stopped breastfeeding and I knew of women who went down in size after breastfeeding. I didn't think that would be me. I honestly thought my body would bounce right back. After all, I did lose all the baby weight. But no, my pre-pregnancy D cups have gone down to a post-pregnancy C cup. I don't mind, I just hate having to get used to something new, especially something that's with me 24/7. I hated trying on new bras trying to find that balance between right fit and pretty to look at. More than anything, I hated really having to look at my body.

I already went through this. It wasn't fun the first time around and it isn't fun now. I wish someone would have told me about this post-pregnancy puberty so I could have prepared better for it mentally.


Katrina said...

Definitely not one of the perks of having kids--all that. ;)
I have an IUD for birth control--I almost don't have periods at all, so it's pretty nice. The most I ever need for a few days is pantyliners.
I know, TMI, but I thought it was good info when I was wondering what to do next.

Alexandria said...

Sucks for you (and for Alex lol)! You know I did sit-ups for the first time today postpartum and was blown away at the lack I muscle I now have. It's so true how people sometimes say once you have a kid, your body is never the same. Let's hope it doesn't take another 15 years to be comfortable once again with your new (mommy) body.

Momof1 said...

Thanks so much for posting this! I too am struggling to come to terms with my new PP body...glad to know I'm not alone!