Being a Plus Size Mom on a Wellness Journey
I’m plus size mom. Thought that in itself isn’t significant, the journey to self-love and self-acceptance is. It can be tough to juggle motherhood and societal pressure at the same time, and I wasn’t doing a good job of having a healthy perspective. Not only was I trying very hard to be a good mother, I was trying to regain the image that I had pre-kids. With each child, the pressure I put on myself to be fit and obtain my ideal weight got more intense.
Then when I got pregnant with my third child I said to myself “STOP”!!!!!!! If I was going to set a good example for my children, I needed to dig deeper. I needed to start at the basics, and that included putting my spiritual and mental health first. The issue wasn’t the weight, the issue was how I viewed myself while I had this weight.
I didn’t want to live another day not loving what I saw in the mirror. I needed to figure out how to love myself at whatever state I was in. That didn’t mean surrendering to poor eating habits or making excuses not to exercise. It meant doing the opposite of those things, no matter what I was going through, and whatever the results were I could rest knowing I did my best. So where did start?
Being a Plus Size Mom on a Wellness Journey
How Did God View Me?
I knew God loved me. I knew He accepted me for exactly who I was. I also knew that if I could love myself the way God loved me, my wellness journey would be a lot easier. However, I had a hard time getting to that point. I knew that due to genetics and how my body responding to pregnancy and breastfeeding that it wasn’t God who made me plus-size. So I couldn’t use the excuse that “God made me this way”, as to why I was plus-size. If I was truly born that way, then it would have made it easier to accept myself as I am.
So I began to pray and ask God to help me. Then I read:
31 So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.
1 Corinthians 10:31
That one verse set the course on how I was going to start viewing my wellness journey. From that point on, I would feed my body the best foods (with treats every now and then) and exercise my body. I wasn’t doing these things to lose weight, but to glorify the body that God had given me.
God loved me enough to give me this body and it served me well. It has carried three healthy children, I was able to breastfeed all of them for 12+ months, and I am physically able to keep up with them with a great amount of energy.
I was so grateful for that. So instead of focusing on why I was the way I was and hating it. I changed my view and started looking at everything I was versus everything I wasn’t.
I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. Philippians 4:11
Things I Changed
After God revealed that to me I started to slowly make changes to my lifestyle.
- I found workouts that I liked (heavy lifting and FIT4MOM)
- Fueled my body with nutritious foods
- Put more effort into how I look. There are so many cute clothing options for plus size women it is amazing!
- Started focusing more on what I liked about myself
- Made a conscious effort to smile more each day
- Lowered my expectations
- Changed my goals
Lowering Expectations and Changed My Goals
Let’s talk a little about my expectations and goals. I started to see that a lot of my self-esteem issues came from putting unrealistic expectations. And a lot of those expectations came from the outside world. When I would hear things like “snap back” or seeing other women who were to shed their baby weight quickly I felt like crap.
So I decided to change my expectations and goals based off of the stage I was at in my life. I’m a mom of three kids under 6. I’m an also a homeschooling stay-at-home mom. On top of that, I am a military spouse with lack of family support. Now, I’m not making excuses but I was just accepting this season in my life. I was aware that this season of life wouldn’t last forever, and neither would the weight.
I focused on what I could manage which was my FIT4MOM class (sometimes heavy lifting), drinking a healthy breakfast smoothie. I also tried to eliminate most processed food from my diet and focus on one ingredient food. I could do that, those were easy goals for me to achieve. I no longer focused on losing 10-15lbs or getting a flat tummy or following a super restrictive diet or working out 45 minutes every single day. Those things expectations were a little too high for that season in life.
Duty to Family
I started to see that in order for me to be of good service to my family, I HAD TO care for myself first. I needed sleep, exercise, to eat good nutritious food, and have a solid relationship with God. I started putting myself first in that way.
Eliminate The Toxins
I started learning that it wasn’t just foods that could cause weight gain and hormonal issues. There are toxins in almost EVERYTHING that was messing up my endocrine system and throwing off my hormones.
I started slowly removing these toxins from life. I started using natural deodorant (I have a review on one, but I discovered you can easily make your own). I started drinking spring water, I changed the hair products I used. I try to eat organic when I can. And since I want to have a healthy relationship with food I eat treats every now and then.
Where am I Today?
It’s been a year since I had my baby. I’m 12lbs over my pregnancy weight, but I’m 50lbs away from my pre pre pregnancy weight, and this is with doing everything that I’ve stated above. I know that in due time the weight will continue to fall off, though not as quickly as I would like.
However, this is also the best I’ve ever felt in my life! I have an abundance of energy, my anxiety has decreased, I feel joy in my heart, and I actually love what I see when I look in the mirror. To me, these are achievements that are something to be very proud of! I’ve learned to love myself no matter what state I’m in.