This Mom Shared Photos of Her Cellulite and Stretch Marks to Talk About Postpartum Self-Love
Her account is overflowing with inspiring body-positivity.
Influencer Meghan Boggs used to spend her mornings doing what she thought would help her finally love her body: weighing herself and obsessing over the number that stared back at her. She was convinced if she got to a certain weight, she would have the confidence she needed to become a mother. But that confidence didn't come–until she actually did become a mother, that is.
"I used to weigh myself every morning. I would always make sure to go to the bathroom first," Boggs wrote in a recent Instagram post alongside a photo of postpartum stretch marks on her stomach. "There would be a rush of anxiety as the scale blinked while I stared down in anticipation. It was the moment that would depict how I approached my day."
She went on to explain if the number was .1 pound lower than it was the day before, she could be positive and embrace the day. But if it was .1 higher, she would angrily brush her teeth and punish herself by saying she could eat only a salad that day.
"It was destroying me. And I was completely convinced that this was the only way to be happy," Boggs wrote. "This was the only way I would get to where I was supposed to be in order to become a mother."
In her mind, skinny equaled happiness. So she lost weight. But to her surprise, it never felt like it was enough. No matter how low the number on the scale got, she always felt like it needed to be lower. (Related: 7 New Moms Get Real About How They Learned to Love Their Postpartum Body)
Then, one thing changed everything. She brought her daughter Maci into the world. "For the first time, I felt thankful for my body," she wrote.
Boggs remembers a moment in the hospital bathroom, just before she took her first postpartum shower. She stood in front of the mirror in her robe, which she remembers so vividly because she had avoided mirrors for years, she wrote. She let the robe fall as she kept looking at her reflection.
"I saw me for what felt like the very first time, but after another few seconds, I closed my eyes," she wrote. "This moment was just the beginning of my self-love journey. It doesn't happen quickly. But it never would have happened had I not tried." (Related: 19 Women Sum Up What Postpartum Depression Mean to Them In One Sentence)
Now, Boggs documents her relationship with her postpartum body on Instagram to show other new mamas they're not alone.
In this post, she says when she first came home from the hospital, exactly one year ago, she thought her body would never be the same. "I walked slowly and couldn't even think about exercising. It seemed impossible."
But four weeks later, she attempted to move her body. Another month later, she was moving it even more, and by the time summer rolled around, she was even passing personal records from her "skinniest" days pre-pregnancy. (Related: Influencer Reminds Us That for Every Woman Unhappy with Stretch Marks, There's One Wishing She Had Them)
"I was changing, but the mirror wasn't," Boggs wrote. "What I saw in my reflection wasn't looking any different than the day I looked at myself in the hospital bathroom mirror for the first time. My stomach still hung down low and frustrated me."
She had two options: give up and cave under the pressure of self-doubt or accept her body for all of the new ways it was amazing. She mustered up all of the strength she could and kept working at her goals, and she's sure glad she did. (Related: 9 Things You Should Know About Postpartum Exercise and Probably Don't)
"I am stronger right now in this moment than I have ever been in my entire life. And that right there is more than enough for me to celebrate. Stomach flab, muscles, and all."
This story was originally published on Health.com by Samantha Lauriello.