Postpartum weight loss pressure is toxic and can be dangerous

 

Postpartum weight loss pressure is toxic and can be dangerous

 

One of my favourite mom blogger, Heather from @mothermoonstruck shared this picture on her stories from @feedinglittles and I just couldn’t shake the outrage I felt the more I thought about it.

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After only a couple days of giving birth to my Instagram account inbox BLEW up with these messages from women promoting postpartum weight loss, diet pills, keto coffee, programs, shakes ,wraps, you name it.

Most messages I just didn’t respond to and a lot I made the point of saying that I wasn’t interested in loosing my baby weight at the moment but thanks anyway. Man now reading this and truly taking the time to reflect back at how frustrating it was to constantly get those messages and honestly the insensitive or the lack of knowledge and experience regarding “health and nutrition” now blows my mind.

I’m a constant advocate of women supporting each other and being kind to one another and the more times that I read this picture that was shared the more I realized that this is a topic we should be discussing even at a level as high as challenging Instagram’s Community Guidelines regarding harassment and bullying.

I felt EXTREMELY harassed by these women trying to sell their pyramid scheme products to me constantly throughout my day and now having many unfiltered conversations with other mothers and women regarding this issue I will completely back that it is 100% bullying.

For the rest of my life I will be in a constant battle and working towards living a happy, fulfilled and balanced life with my Depression, Anxiety Disorder, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, and currently Postpartum Depression.

I know that if I didn’t have the support I had when I first gave birth to my son and wasn’t as balanced as I was hormonally and mentally, these messages would have severely affected my confident and inner thoughts.

As a new mom you are already dealing with SO much emotionally and mentally and are getting used to yourself, this new body that created this perfect angel, but everything is foreign and everything is really tough , stop adding one more thing to push a women off the edge mentally and can be harmful for her health , mentally and physically.

When thinking about writing this piece I reached out to my followers (mostly made up of the most AMAZING women and mothers) and a few mom bloggers who I knew would have awesome opinions and stories to share to help spark confidence and inspire us to love ourselves just the way we are!

Jessica Chiarello is a first time mom to a beautiful baby girl, Valentina. I reached out to Jessica to see if she would be interested in giving her advice and opinion on this subject being a fitness professional and focusing on her clients health before weight loss.

The biggest issue that I have with these women contacting us about weight loss is that there is such a lack of knowledge about the health aspect and no ounce of gueniune caring and support on the subject. You feel that its all about the bottom line ad the sales pitch and I’m sorry we aren’t here for that.

When you are feeling ready to dedicate some more self care and time to work on yourself mind and body, please reach out to professionals, who are educated and have good intentions about your health and well being, like Jessica does.

This is the piece Jessica wrote :

As a new mother and a health and fitness professional, I know the importance of postpartum recovery. Not only physically but mentally. The last thing a woman needs after giving birth is to have someone making them feel like they need to lose weight with a magic pill, tea, wrap or whatever product that is trying to be pushed. It is a time to recover and nourish your body. Not time to be looking for a quick fix or trying the next fad diet. Eating healthy, whole foods, proper rest and slowly integrating the right types of exercise for postpartum recovery is what the focus should be.

I personally haven’t been bombarded with too many messages as such. Probably because my Instagram bio states that I am a trainer so these companies know not to bug me! I do however get all sorts of offers to join groups or teams so I can “help” other women (or jump on the next pyramid scheme band wagon) which is just as annoying! Although social media can be a great place to advertise and promote any business, I think it’s time we shed light on this issue and let women know that they don’t need to fall into these traps when they are in one of the most fragile states of their lives.

If you’re seeking guidance, my best suggestion is do your research and look for a coach with experience who can make a custom game plan for you based on your specific needs and goals. They should be based off your personal stats including weight, height, activity level, health history etc.. If a coach isn’t screening you first and asking these kinds of questions, that should be your first red flag. There are so many “coaches” out there who sell generic programs, meal plans or other products that claim to get you results in an unrealistic timeframe. In reality, weight loss should be the last thing you’re worried about after giving birth. If you’re taking care of your body and eating well, the weight will naturally start to come off in good time. Your main concern should be repairing your pelvic floor and core muscles and stretching as I elaborate on in my most recent blog post: https://fitmamasblog.com/

As for anyone else being targeted for fat loss gimmicks, keep in mind that if you’re just starting off, a trainer should be helping you learn how to move properly and perform primal movements correctly before decreasing body fat % or building muscle as the primary focus. Yes, these are the result of eating well and exercising but the main focus at first should be mobility and proper movement patterns.

All that being said, don’t feel pressured to lose weight because you’ve been targeted with this type of cyber bullying. Be kind to yourself and love your body no matter what.

Jessica Chiarello
Personal Trainer and Lifestyle Coach

Blog: https://fitmamasblog.com/

Instagram : @fitmamasblog

 

I also reached out to Heather from @mothermoonstruck, who shared this post on her Instagram. I loved her point of view and opinion on the subject and she was more then willing to be apart of this important conversation.

This is the piece that Heather wrote:

I’m very thankful that I’m mentally strong and I’m able to just brush this targeting off without another thought. I’ve been solicited dozens of times during my two pregnancies and post partum periods and it sickens me every time. My heart goes out to the women who are struggling postpartum and aren’t able to just brush it off. Pregnancy and early postpartum are such an emotionally hard time and especially when women have issues with PPD or are working out issues with their partner or families, this type of targeting can be so detrimental to their healing and mental state. It is absolutely not okay for someone to tell a woman that they are not good enough when it comes on their body or anything else. THIS is exactly why women can develop eating disorders, low self-esteem, and why they can end up passes these things onto their children as they grow.

Heather.

Blog: mothermoonstruck.com

Instagram: @mothermoonstruck

 

I recently started following Kristyn from @mrsdingman.mama for her AMAZING attitude towards loving her post partum body and she wrote a piece for this post!

 

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Kristyn wrote:

Many people can relate to the daily messages sent by coaches, ambassadors and others who target those of us who promote positive body images. Every day, a new business reaches out to get me to join their weight loss program (aka pyramid scheme). Sure, you have a business to run and it’s your job to seek out potential clients, but at what cost? Why do you feel the need to prey on women who are empowering themselves? It has come to a point where it’s not just annoying — it’s extremely insulting. If these people did some research and were genuinely interested in getting my business, they should take a look at ONE of my posts which clearly expresses how in love I am with who I am. Every curve, stretch mark and pound I have is something to celebrate and is worth so much more than your diet pill and shakes. I am enough and I love the skin I’m in.

Kristyn.

Blog: mrsdingman-mama.weebly.com

Instagram: @mrsdingman.mama

 

 

I had many women message me that preferred to stay anonymous, that said how upset these messages and proposals to loss weight make them. One of my friends who’s a nurse and 7 months pregnant already has been propositioned to buy product that she said in her pitch “snap back” right after birth, my friend told her to fuck off!

The thing is some women who are selling this products I’m sure don’t have bad intentions and are just trying to make extra income to support their families and hit sales quotas, but in the end I think an open discussion is overdue with Instagram sharing how detrimental  this can be to women’s mental health.

I propose that anytime we receive one of these messages in our inbox’s and it evokes feelings that are anything but support, body confidence and health based, report the message and account for harassment and bullying.

I’m looking forward to this journey I’ve started to completely LOVING and being KIND to my wonderful body that gave me our son!

I’m partnering with an AMAZING mom of three and entrepreneur Denne, owner of Endless Temptation’s a fabulous ETSY store.

https://www.etsy.com/ca/shop/EndlessTemptations

I’m sooooo sad I didn’t find her shop while I got engaged for my bridesmaids gifts , they are stunning and at SUCH good price points. She has beautiful robes and swimsuits that can be customised ( again at AMAZING prices) for us mama bears!

These are the two swim suits Denne so gracious is gifting me for my upcoming trips down south and I working on getting up the courage to rock this bikini with the confidence of Queen B herself!

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In the next coming months I will be starting a body positive campaign showcasing real life Ottawa moms, their beautiful post partum bodies with their beautiful babies beside.

Get your post partum swim suits now and contact me to join this movement and join in on our photoshoot campaign to help empower all those gorgeous worthy mamas out their who may be struggling with their new mama self image!

 

 

 

 

2019 – The year mamas need to make time for selfcare

 

I have always chosen to live my life pretty openly to those who have wanted to listen, and one of the major subjects that I feel is not only important to me to be open and honest about but I think is important for helping to slowly eliminate stigmas against is mental health.

I have a long list, a resume if you will, of mental health diseases that I suffer from. Clinical Depression, An Anxiety Disorder, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, and Postpartum Depression. My brain (like many others) is chemically wired in a way that has been a beautiful home for these diseases to flourish and grow.

I have spent the better part of my life coming to terms with my mental health as well as combating it. When you give yourself the proper tools (whatever those may be) to work with, instead of against your mental health disorders, you become this crazy empathetic badass. There have been a couple key moments and thoughts that have helped me in those, why me moments. First, I’ve always believed that everything does happen for a reason, it could be to teach you a lesson, bring you joy and laughter, make you stronger, smarter and wiser, every experience that we face will eventually have an outcome that will add value to your future life. Second, when you have experience with the struggles of mental health you view other individuals with a lens of empathy, and this is a huge part of who I am, I care a lot about other people and their happiness because I know how it feels to feel the opposite and how painful it can be.

Since the birth of my son I have struggled many a times with the feeling of loss of self. It’s a truly horrible feeling to one day truly not recognize any part of you. I would stare into the mirror and see greasy hair, dark circles, dry skin, no bra and saggy boobs, all that comes with new motherhood and then I would try to look deeper and all I would see was a shell of a person caring for a little human. My whole prior existence and 27 years of life felt like it disappeared and shifted into this reality that was so simple and at the same time ever consuming, that completely revolved around my son. There seemed to be no more room or time for me, a person I’ve spent a lot of time, hard work and money (in therapy) to get to know and love.

That’s when it happened, it came in a beautifully wrapped present on my front door step. Post Partum Depression. My husband was just finishing his concrete season, his hours were long and crazy, everything was falling on me, then a family member fell ill and passed suddenly at the same time another diagnosed with terminal cancer. With all of this going on and me very much struggling and holding on by a string, inside that box of PPD was a side gift called Compassion Fatigue.

Caring too much can hurt. When caregivers focus on others without practicing self-care, destructive behaviors can surface. Apathy, isolation, bottled up emotions and substance abuse head a long list of symptoms associated with the secondary traumatic stress disorder now labeled: Compassion Fatigue*

The only thing that can help reverse compassion fatigue is to start taking care of yourself. I need to block out time in my days that are solely focused on me as an individual. What brings me peace, joy and happiness. Working on getting myself back into a more balanced and happy life is important for not only me but my family and those in my life. Eventually if you give too much of yourself you do end up with nothing left, and its scary.

I’ve begun to realize through therapy and some amazingly inspiring super moms that I need work on getting rid of this mom guilt and be able to take time for myself.

This year I am starting it off with a daily drawing challenge. I’m creative and being on maternity leave that has really been lacking in my everyday. Being able to express myself creatively is therapeutic. Follow my Instagram account and join in on this January Drawing challenge to help hold you accountable and take time for yourself everyday or evening if that too brings you joy.

Mama’s lets work on taking care of ourselves first, making time for ourselves as individuals so we can be the best moms, wife’s, girlfriends, friends, and versions that we can be.

* site passage from http://www.compassionfatigue.org

5 Postpartum Care Musts For Mom

5 Postpartum Care Musts for Mom

Okay in all seriousness society doesn’t put enough emphasis on women’s postpartum care. I mean in every way our bodies are a being put through hell during and after pregnancy so in my opinion this needs to change!

What our baby body terrorists put us through during pregnancy;

  • Hormonal changes ( Big ones, that make us nauseas, swell up like Violet Borigard, fluid retention, memory and vision changes, sweats, and so much more…)
  • Weight gain, regardless of the number that we see start increasing on the scale,  your body is GROWING and STRETCHING, like a lot, for 9 long ass months!
  • Sensory changes, vision, taste and smells can all change and become affected.
  • Breast and Cervical changes, breasts grow in size and become more sensitive ( I went from a size 38 DD to a 40 H!)
  • Changes in hair, skin and nails.
  • Stretch Marks (hello warrior scars, I got those in the last week of pregnancy, and I haven’t exactly embraced them yet)
  • Mole, Freckles and skin tags. ( I ripped a small skin tag off my nipple in the shower, do not do that, I repeat do, not rip a skin tag off your nipple, there will be blood!)
  • Rashes, Boils, HEMORRHOIDS ( I had internal hemorrhoids rupture during pregnancy that hurt as much as when I was in labour or worse even!)
  • Circulatory system changes, shortness of breath, feeling dizzy, changes in blood pressure.
  • Changes in body temperature, so fuckin hot or so fuckin cold, there is NO in-between.
  • Dehydration.
  • Circulation issues, I had Vulva Varicosities and was on bed rest from 24 weeks. I know you will probably google that, if you want to save some time it literally is painful varicose veins on your vulva!
  • Gestational Diabetes .
  • And the list goes on and on…..

What our baby body terrorists leave us with when they’ve finally surrendered our bodies back to us

Vaginal Birth(which I had) and Caesarean:

  • Birth Pains, I have endometrioses and these cramps were much worse, its literally your uterus shrinking back to its normal size, its happens very quickly considering it spent a whole 9 months stretching!
  • Blood clots.
  • Breast engorgement or blockages (mastitis)
  • Cracked and bloody nipples.
  • Swelling.
  • Hemorrhoids and severe constipation.
  • Urinary problems.
  • NIGHT SWEATS ( you literally wake up in a pool of water drenched, I recommended sleeping on a towel or better yet a SHAMWOW!)
  • Fatigued ( well that’s an understatement especially depending on post, during and after delivery everyone is different)
  • and again the list goes on and on…..

As you grow closer to your due date, people will suggest things for you to do after you give birth and in your eight ish almost nine month state of mind you will say to yourself, “ya, ya okay I will” well I’m telling you here and now that, YA, YA OKAY YOU NEED TO!

There is so much emphasis put on the baby, I mean yes there does need to be, this little girl or guy is going to need to do ALOT of firsts in those 24 to 48 hours that are crucial for survival I get it, but there needs to ALSO be wayyyyyyy more emphasis on taking care of mom, mind and body, as well as educating on what needs to be done self care wise when they go home. I don’t know if it was just me, but probably the first thirty minutes that I was at home I WANTED TO GO BACK to the hospital and get another epidural for recovery! As a mother we will now and as long as we are living, just automatically be putting everyone else’s needs before our own but during the first couple weeks after birth we need to be selfish, I started almost hemorrhaging because I wasn’t, it can be very serious if you aren’t taking care of yourself!

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In my opinion, these are the 5 most important tips you should be following and practicing postpartum….

*Warning in advance, some of these will be really hard to do because you don’t want to upset or offend anyone, I mean a new baby that’s born is so exciting for not just you but for everyone around in your life, so on that note that I say may the force be with you…..

  1. NO VISITORS!

This will be one of the hardest ones to put into action. My husband and I are both from big Italian families and have an amazingly huge support system. In the first 48 hours of Amadeo being born, in the hospital and when we first got home we had ALOT of visitors. That wasn’t the only issue, it was that we had visitors till REALLY late at night. Butttttt my body started getting really pissed off that I wasn’t resting and trying to heal, so I started loosing baseball size blood clots, like a lot of them, and from that point on my OB’s orders were NO MORE VISITORS until I was fully healed. You and your partner have just brought home a whole new teeny tiny human that you need to learn how to keep alive, give yourself time for your body and for all of the emotion of coming home to settle in before you open the flood gates.

2. Sleep when the baby Sleeps

Every person you see before you give birth will tell you that you need to sleep when the baby sleeps, but my god do you ever need to do it and here’s where I’m favour of woman in this scenario who either just pushed a baby out of her vagina or had one literally cut out of her, WE NEED MORE SLEEP THEN YOU DO DADS! Can I say it again for the people in the back! Yes your husbands should and will need sleep and rest, its been a lot for them physically and mentally as well, but no where near what you and your body are going through and have been through. Let’s just be real they don’t need to recover physically from birth unless you broke their hands from squeezing so hard! So dads take a shot of espresso, drink an energy drink, take a cold shower, do something, anything to just get some extra energy, this will be the first time you need to be stepping up as a dad and supporting your partner so she can physically heal from birth. You will see mamas, you will already be using so much energy that you wont have in the first place to even just learn how to feed your child if you try breastfeeding and pumping so SLEEP as much as possible!

3. Self care

So its actually all fun and games until this child exits your body and makes its appearance, because they will leave your body bloody and broken, girlfriend you need to help it heal. I have spoken to some women who are just good to go from either vaginal or C-section but I can tell you that’s not the norm. I wish that upon all of you but lets just prepare ourselves for the higher chance that you will have a painful wound to heal.

Here’s the essentials for postpartum self-care;

  • You need to shower every single day! Keeping your stitches clean and bacteria away is very important, plus it will have you feeling mentally and physically refreshed, if only for a couple moments.
  • Take your pain medication! I wasn’t keeping proper track of this and when you wait to long it’s AWFUL ! We set a timer and I took Tylenol and Advil at the same time to help eliminate the chance of forgetting to take one.
  • Eat and stay hydrated. This is a BIG ONE especially if your breastfeeding or pumping. If you’re not eating or drinking enough fluids it will affect your milk supply and mood!

4. Take time to bond with your baby

After you give birth its like an emotional and hormonal hurricane that will hit you really fucking hard! Everything is new, your exhausted, you don’t have a lot of patience, you can experience a lot of overwhelming feelings of happiness and sadness within seconds of each other. All of that is a normal part of postpartum, and a lot of time we forget or are unaware that one of the most important aspects to help regulate your babies circulatory system as well as our own is just by bonding. Having PTSD I spent a lot of time in therapy working on how different factors after you’ve given birth can effect how you bond with your child. I found those new born cuddles and skin to skin were like a drug in the first couple of weeks. I would feel like I had nothing left inside of me and then literally get a whiff of Amadeo’s sent and it would all go away and everything felt right in the world again. It’s unexplainable really. Just remember to step back from all the craziness that your learning for the first time like , changing diapers, feeding etc and just enjoy some of these first moments and take that time to soak it in and embrace it.

5. Have your partner off with you for AT LEAST two weeks

I say partner because my husband is the only person that I am truly myself with. I don’t bottle things up to protect his feelings or tip toe around things because we know each other under all circumstances especially how we work under stress. I’m my authentic raw self with him and when there is soooooo much physical pain and emotional craziness going on you need to be around someone who will not fault you for being just whatever you need to be in that moment. The Canadian government is finally recognizing how important having both parents home during the first 6 weeks postpartum is, that come June 2019 a 6 weeks additional paid parental leave will be granted for the other parent not on maternity or paternity leave. This time is so important for your relationship, to learn how to take care of this little human that’s come into the life you’ve built together. I know in those first two weeks of having my husband home with Amadeo I saw so much strength and love from within him that was so different and I hadn’t experienced before in our 9 years together. You will become such a strong unit and team, after supporting each other, so soak up every minute of it, the good, bad and ugly.

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I have reviewed a product that http://www.basicbabyco.com carries that take care of all the postpartum care needs! I would have LOVED to get this as a present after I gave birth and will be gifting these in the future for my soon to be mama friends!

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birth baby
From: $102.00
The postpartum package: it may not be pretty, but it sure is practical! This bundle is all about supporting postpartum recovery for those parents that will be giving birth to their baby. While it is easy to get caught up in preparing everything for baby, don’t forget about you! Vaginal bleeding, hemorrhoids, tearing and stitches, having a baby can takes it toll on your lady bits! So, we’ve done the research, canvassed Moms who have given birth, and have created a complete and useful package to support your healthy postpartum recovery.

  • I reached out to the company and they are offering a 10% discount to my followers. Discount code: MYLITTLELAMB
  • this is not an affiliated product

” I had no idea it would be this much. I had no idea that I could handle it. I had no idea how beautiful and worth it all actually is.”- unknown