A brief summary: we are renting, and yes we're throwing away all kinds of money every month and yes that's super annoying but it's the same amount of money every month, regardless of whether, hypothetically, your garbage disposal, master shower, washing machine, built-in vacuum system and dishwasher all stop working at the same time. Hypothetically speaking. So, so sorry, landlords.
This morning was rough circa 4 am on, but once I heaved my angry body out of bed at 7 something to the tune of Joey thundering back and forth across the hardwoods screaming "I just need to be free!!!" (why why why) I made an executive decision, ran it by my commander in chief, and sprinted for the nearest exit for some alone time. At Great Clips.
I have ridiculously flat, straight hair that is super easy to cut (and more importantly, hard to screw up) so color me white trash, but my stylist is generally whomever is available for the reasonable tune of $16. I then proceeded to buy some Paul Mitchell shampoo and conditioner before trotting off to everyone's favorite couture boutique, Elderly Army, where I bought some oversized post-preggo bump-hiding tops. And a great pencil skirt.
|Ah, the glamorous minivan selfie.|
I have to say, the most obvious effect of the Wellness Project thus far has been the quieting of inner critic. And actually, my outer critic. She isn't silent, but she has certainly piped down, and that's been really freeing.
The other day I caught a glimpse of myself in one of the full length mirrored panels of our bedroom closet (how's that for sadistic?) and the thought immediately sprang to mind: I look like I had a baby recently. And what followed wasn't a wave of disgust or even frustration but rather, a very reasonable Yep, I had a baby recently.
I was texting with a friend who is newly pregnant with number 2 (yay!) and lamenting the sad fact that in our culture, pregnancy is only acceptable for 9 months. Why, when such a profound bodily experience has transpired, is it not okay to look like something huge and important and massively disruptive to the norm (see what I did there?) has occurred? It's fine to be big and cute and round and even huge by the end, but it's suddenly shocking to be stretched out and recovering even one month after the event. To other people, maybe, but more to the point, it's shocking to ourselves.
Every one of my girlfriends, almost without fail, have at one time or another been self-critical in my presence of their beautiful, hardworking and yes, altered postpartum bodies. And I'm sorry for not having been more firm with them in my reassurances that they looked beautiful, and that recovery takes more than a handful of weeks and a stretchy pair of yoga pants. I've always cringed at the expression "9 months on, 9 months off," but I'm beginning to see the truth in it. And maybe it's 12 months. Or maybe 15. Maybe after every baby your body changes a little more, is altered uniquely by the new and unrepeatable person who has been nurtured and grown within it.
God, make me more merciful toward myself, and toward other women whose appearances I've judged or been tempted to judge.
Also, isn't there just something about a new haircut? Even if it was obtained in a strip mall.
Hope you mamas are kicking back and don't forget to head over to Bonnie's to vote. If you want.