Do you remember two or three words that completely turned your life upside down? “You’re hired.”, “You’re sacked.”, “I love you.”, “Hello Pavel.” No? Well, we’re sure you’ll agree when we say that you’ll always remember the words, “You’re pregnant.”
Three little words that will come as a surprise to many, make others happy, and some of us sad. But we all have one thing in common. We are going to be mothers and that’s something new. What can we expect? What should we prepare for? Do I have to stop smoking? Should I start taking vitamins? What about my favourite glass of wine with dinner? How much should I eat?
I’m sure you remember all the excellent advice you received from the people around you. “You can eat anything you like now. Have some more, you’re eating for two. You mustn’t exercise, you could harm the baby!” And because it was all so new to us, especially in the beginning, we accepted all this advice from the people around us. Your tummy wasn’t visible at first, your breasts grew and became firmer and you would have felt beautiful if not for the exhaustion and morning sickness. In the second trimester, most of us no longer suffered from morning sickness, the fatigue disappeared and our tummies began to show. We were basically fine. All we had to do was loosen the button on our favourite trousers and our tummy looked quite sexy under our favourite t-shirt. “You have to moisturise your tummy so you don’t get stretchmarks.” And so, we dutifully applied cream, or didn’t because our mothers never applied any cream either, but they had excellent genes and we have them too, so we’re not at risk of getting stretchmarks. We knew we’d be able to get into the jeans we wore before we were pregnant right after giving birth, just like our mothers.
The third trimester could be called the trimester we pay the piper. We peek at other mothers out of the corner of our eye when we go to our doctor’s appointment and measure how big their stomach is. We look in amazement at those who arrived in trousers without an elasticated waist. How come?! We compare ourselves with others. “How much weight did you gain” is a question we hear every day and we feel like murdering someone when we hear “Are you expecting twins? Why does everyone feel the need to comment all the time?! We’re tired, ungainly and we knock our colleagues hats off with our protruding belly when we attempt to slip past their chairs at work. But at least we enjoy our food. And so, we apply cream to our stomachs, send our partners to the shop for chocolate or ice cream, put our feet up and wait and wait.
And then the time comes. Birth, a baby in our arms, tears of happiness, boundless love and unending worries. The post-partum period is certainly not like we dreamed it would be. Wind, sleepless nights, hormones, mood swings, tears and that love...that enormous, amazing love. Before we know it, we see a completely different person in the mirror. There’s no chance you’ll be able to stuff yourself into your favourite jeans. Your stomach is a bag of jelly, your breasts are enormous and you can’t hide the grey bags under your eyes with even the best corrector. And why is all your hair falling out? You feel like you’re breastfeeding every few minutes, you have no time to eat, you’re afraid to leave your little one alone, so there’s no chance of going to the hairdresser or the gym. You’re so tired, but you don’t want to drink coffee. Thank God for sugar. No one said you couldn’t eat sugar. You lose the extra weight slowly or not at all, but your friends said it would disappear with breastfeeding.
Everything settles down after a few months. You’ve lost a little weight, but you still don’t feel like the same person. You’re no longer afraid to leave your baby alone with its father, so you start going to the gym. Your leggings don’t fit and you choose a loose t-shirt...hmmm, not that one, so you take your partner’s and set off. Within a few minutes you find that you’re not as fit as you used to be and that this will be much harder than you thought. You force yourself, cajole yourself and return in a worse mood than when you set out. What am I going to do?
You’re certainly not in the mood for sex. You’re tired, your spirits are low and you feel fat. Your partner initially tries to do everything he can, he helps where he can, or gives you space. But that doesn't change the fact that taking your clothes off in front of him is the worst part of the act itself. You know that your stomach is nowhere near as firm, your skin hangs loosely and the breasts he loved so much when you were pregnant hang like a pair of “dog’s ears”. Even when he says he doesn’t mind and that he thinks you’re still attractive, you know he’s only saying that to make you feel better and because he loves you. And when you finally get intimate, you certainly don’t enjoy it, because you can see parts of your body that weren’t there before and they get in the way. You’re sad, frustrated and your partner is in a bad mood.
In all honesty, none of us expected this. Our previous life has completely disappeared. We have less time for ourselves than we had in our entire lives and we certainly don’t decide what to do with it. Our confidence has dwindled to zero, we’ve become addicted to sweet things after breastfeeding and our old clothes hang sadly in the wardrobe. We exercise, but the weight doesn’t want to shift. The doctor has diagnosed us with abdominal separation, which we made worse by doing the wrong exercises or we have loose skin on our stomach, which we simply can’t exercise away. It just hangs there, like it belongs to someone else. And your breasts......oh those breasts!
Fiction? Not even close. Up to 96% of us has experienced this or a similar scenario. 16% of women suffer from abdominal separation (diastasis recti) after birth, 13% of women experience this issue after the birth of their second child. 38% of women don’t like the appearance of their breasts after they stop breastfeeding, 35% of us suffer from an overhanging tummy and 32% of women don’t manage to get back to their pre-pregnancy weight.
At our clinic, we’re mothers too, so we want to tell you that we know what you’re going through and that you’re certainly not alone. But we want to assure you that you don’t have to feel this way forever. We’ve had the same experience, so we can empathise with your situation and help you find the right solution. Breasts, abdominal separation or loose skin on your stomach? Everything has a solution. Individual procedures can actually be combined to not only save time, but also money. If you’re still unsure, make an appointment for an informative consultation free of charge. We look forward to seeing you.