You Don’t Look Like You Had a Kid

I don’t know what people mean when they say this. Recently, I was at a baby shower with some pretty fabulous women, most of them moms. I was wearing a dress from the pre-pregnancy days and feeling pretty hot (in every sense of the word, I was sucking in my gut as hard as possible).
Making small talk with the elegant, accomplished woman standing beside me, she exclaimed, loud enough for the entire room to hear, “You have an INFANT at home?! But you don’t look like you had a kid!” Sigh.
About as quickly as I thought, “HELL yes, I look good,” I thought about how having this “kid” was the greatest thing my body had ever done, with a whofuckincareswhatilooklike inner monologue. I thought about the 9 long months of pregnancy it endured, I thought about the way the heart inside this body bursts with joy each time I hear my daughter laugh.

I also thought about my love handles, my cellulite, and the gray hair I’ve acquired since conceiving this “kid” – but I have yet to feel badly about any of these details, and if no one else has a problem with them, I wasn’t about to.

I thought about my toned and tight abs of yesteryear but swallowed that thought quickly, with a large gulp of my mimosa.

Yes, when I stand naked in the mirror, I am reminded, VERY reminded, about the fact that I birthed a beautiful, healthy baby girl.
When I zip up my size 27, ultra-skinny pre-pregnancy jeans, I am shocked each and every time, that I birthed a beautiful, healthy baby girl AND my jeans fit.
When I get dressed up for an event and hear repeatedly, “you don’t look like you had a kid,” AND my jeans fit AND I birthed a beautiful, healthy baby girl – well shit, put me on the cover of Maxim.
But all of the shallow amazingness aside, strangely enough, to the people who know me intimately and closely enough to judge, I DO look like I had a kid.
I look like I had a kid from the neck up, and from the inside out and for many other reasons beyond that.
I look like I had a kid from the way I carry myself. With the confident, strong and assured sense of self I’ve acquired since becoming a mommy.
I look like I had kid from the permanent smile that parts my lips and lights up my face almost constantly.
I look like I had a kid by the way I handle lifes stressors, and how I’m able to calmly talk myself down from the ledge when before, I would have thrown myself over.
I look like I had a kid by the natural way I handle this kid of mine, easing into motherhood wonderfully (if I do say so myself).
I look like I had a kid each time my eyes tear up, whenever I hear, from anyone “you’re such an amazing mom”.
I look like I had a kid by the way I amaze my own mother, and the look of pride she now has each time I’m around her.
So, to all that I say, you elegant mimosa-sipping ladies of the world, I’d like for you to really get to know me and tell me I DO look like I had a kid…

Because I do, I know I do, and I know it’s the best part about me.

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