Well, we’re here.
I’m finally not pregnant anymore. (Hallelujah!)
On April 30, after 41 weeks of pregnancy and an intense, 1-hour labor, we welcomed our third son, Kendall Bradford. This sweet baby has been the delight of our lives these past few weeks. In fact, I’ve actually been surprised at how much more I’ve savored every second of this babyhood, compared to our other kids. It’s like I know how fast it goes, and thus, I want to chew on every last delicious morsel of the newborn glow.
Like the glorious stillness of an afternoon nap. Not a care in the world.
You may remember, I chronicled my 10 months of pregnancy in my series, A Real Picture of Pregnancy, where I took a photo of myself every month. But instead of having my makeup done, a perfectly-styled outfit and 20 photo takes in the best lighting, I took just 1 photo and posted it. No makeup, no filters, no planning. There was usually an epic mess in the house behind me, and that’s okay. Because messes are what life’s all about.
Now that the baby’s here, it feels like I have another epic mountain to climb. I’m in the trenches of motherhood, raising 3 boys under 4 years old. I’m also at the beginning of a fitness journey to lose 52 pounds of baby weight.
And I want to share it with you in the most real way possible.
While I’d love for you all to think that this is what I normally look like:
The truth is, it’s really closer to this:
But that doesn’t make it any less beautiful.
I also wanted to say hi to some of you new #glowgirls! Many of you found me through my post about why I Have the Perfect Body, which was an article I wrote at 39 weeks pregnant, to remind myself of all that my body’s accomplished, despite the stretch marks and cellulite.
I was a tad surprised to read some comments that were critical of some of my closing lines, which alluded to my desires to get back into shape after baby, including: “The baby weight will come off. The great bikini picture can come next summer.”
Here’s the deal with that.
Yes, I love myself.
But that doesn’t mean that I want to keep the cellulite and 52 extra pounds that came when I was pregnant. I love my body for what it’s done, but I also want to be as fit and healthy as I can possibly be.
The thing is, my push to get in shape after baby comes as a result of self-love, not self-loathing.
And I want to work out, eat good and feel great again because I love myself, not so that I can love myself.
That being said, I have my work cut out for me.
Click the photos below to follow my journey. (You may notice there are pictures but no links for months 7, 8 and 9. That’s because I didn’t see any progress and was super discouraged.)
This isn’t just a series about losing weight. It’s a series about getting fit while raising young kids, and loving yourself every step of the way. Don’t forget to subscribe to She Just Glows for monthly updates, and let’s do this together!