In December of 2017, I weaned Little Bug from nursing. It was a slow process that we started in early November, and was mostly due to the fact that I was going to be gone for a number of work trips over the next several months and I was completely uninterested in pumping during those trips to maintain my supply. I also got my tonsils and adenoids removed the day after Christmas last year (stayed tuned for a post about what that was actually like). As a result, I gained almost 25 lbs over the next few months. For the past year I have been trying to come to terms that this is likely what my body is going to be like now. I have always been on the thicker side with powerful legs and arms, so I probably should have expected my body to settle into a normal that was not exactly my ideal image.
I struggled for a lot of last year with trying to diet and having no success. With my intestinal issues, losing weight is a struggle because of my limited diet, and the fact that exercise triggers episodes. I am also perpetually exhausted because my body is constantly in a state of distress from the IBS. I can usually walk, do yoga, or occasionally ride my bike, but even these activities sometimes trigger an episode. I know that this is partly a mental thing too, like my body is in flight mode just in case I start to have an episode, so I am pretty much always on alert during exercise. I also have one other fun element that makes exercise difficult; I have a histamine reaction during exercise in the colder months. Basically my body has a histamine reaction when my skin is cold and my blood is pumping. For a really long time I thought that this happened to everyone, but when I mentioned it to my doctor about three years ago, she had me do some testing and my body does some weird stuff when it is stressed.
So where does this leave me now? In a place where I am trying to accept the body I have now, even though it is not exactly what I want. I am learning to dress myself better, to accentuate the areas of my body that I am pleased with (my hips, my butt, my shoulders) and to avoid accentuating the areas that I am less thrilled about (my mom stomach and my back area). This also meant that I had to accept the clothing size I am wearing now, which is about a size and a half bigger than where I would ideally be. I’m sure many of you have also seen the Netflix “Tidying Up” special with Marie Kondo. And this has helped me so much to accept my size. I had been keeping clothing that I was sure I would fit into again at some point, and it was so freeing to just let all of that go. I opened up a Poshmark account and I’m selling a lot of these pieces on there. The rest I donated to a local charity and even that brings me joy (Thanks Marie!) because now someone else can love those clothes, even if I no longer do.
As a result of this new me, I’ve been trying to come up with a new wardrobe that makes me feel good about myself and is also comfortable. Some of my go-to wardrobe items now are: