Sunday, September 8, 2013

Time for Self-image After Baby (When there's no baby)


Sometimes, when I devote myself to the art of doing nothing or "Dolce fare niente", (you have full permission to throw me a tomato if you don't ever have that, I understand.) what starts as a pinning session, inevitably ends up with watching Zachary's pictures and videos over and over and over again with some tears included. It will never get old. I always notice something different. Sometimes I see how much progress he made after his surgery, how cute he looked when he started to gain weight, and how he would  react to David's voice... lately though I started to notice something else: How ancient, depressed, overwhelmed and scared I looked. I supposed that this is somewhat normal, but even a year after his death, I couldn't help but noticing how my demeanor just seemed so gloom and doomed all around. 

I felt ancient, if there was a time where I had low self esteem it was when Zach was born. A part of me felt like a failure because I was unable to "make" a healthy boy. I felt that I betrayed my son and my husband, I felt ugly and with not much right to even try to look better. I lost the pregnancy weight fairly quickly not because I tried, but because of the stress and depression. Your body changes after a baby (duh?). You may not like your body after the baby, the stretchmarks, the love handles that don't go away, that darn crooked c-section scar... but you may stare at your bundle of joy and probably believe that it was all worth it. That's what moms do. They get up an move and even want to be and stay healthy for their children, they get back on track, or they embrace their new package as it comes. But how exactly do you do any of that when there's no baby? or when the care of your child is so complex that sleeping or taking a shower is a luxury?  

I still don't know the answer to that, and yes inside I may have become ancient, but I decided that I don't necessarily have to look the part. I recently changed my haircut and my hair color, also got rid of the last pieces of maternity clothing and nursing bras (yes, I was still wearing that... more times than what I care to admit) I got rid of the gray, black and sad grieving wardrobe  as I continue to elaborate on the fact that the amount of guilt or self inflicted pain is not proportional to the love that I have for my son. 

This is and will be a lifetime work in progress, but that's OK. It's OK to try to look good again. It's OK to take care of me again, or to think at least that even if a day is pretty crappy, my hair looks fab. Who knows I may even go all out and even work out and do something healthy like eating right and cutting down on the Diet Coke. But let's don't get too carried away for now, shall we?



Zach as a one day old. His face was bruised and very swollen,
his skull looked "abnormal", yes we were told that.
His feet were completely clubbed.  
Zach at two months old. The swelling long gone,
he became chunky,
with the cheeks that we fell in love with,
the position of his feet was getting better,
my boy fighting like a champ. 
Me looking like crap. It's almost as if Zach
was encouraging me instead of being the other way around... 
Picture taken at our last trip to Austin. I feel more at peace,
and even with the pain I can feel happiness.


1 comment:

  1. Beautiful Zach, beautiful Mom... the beauty is real and regardless of the change in the look.... the essence is always there to be loved.

    Tia Olgui

    ReplyDelete



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