February 09, 2013

Self-image in the reflection of my daughter

As I continue to recover from pregnancy and birth, I find myself feeling surprisingly positive. My body has changed for sure. I accept that it (much like life) will never be the same in ways both positive and negative. That was a part of the deal struck when my partner and I decided to plan our family. But it's hard to be overly critical of a body that grew, birthed (albeit with interventions), and nourished my healthy baby girl. It's hard also to harbor the same mixed feelings about my physical appearance -- those ones that plagued me as an adolescent and early post-adolescent -- when everyone says that baby girl looks just like me. She has such a sweet, lovable, curious face. Her face  indeed resembles my own baby photos closely. I cringe at the thought of her being hard on herself about her looks as she matures. And when I think about the overly critical, appearance-obsessed world in which she will grow, I worry.

There was and still is something validating about the fact that my younger sister and I look so alike. Even though I can be hard on myself, I think she's gorgeous. And I feel the same way about my daughter. My heart breaks at the thought of her or my sister being so self-critical. So why should I be  hard on myself? It sets a bad example and it just doesn't add up! It also makes me wish I hadn't put my own parents through the ringer with my own adolescent self-criticism. The idea that Emilia might someday find fault with a visage that I find so beautiful is kind of devastating.

The outfit above was my trying out options for Valentine's Day. Although the wrap fits, I know it would look way better if I steamed it and put it on over tights. It's too cold to wear it sans tights anyway and even though I'm 10 weeks postpartum I still really like the added support from control top. Still, trying stuff on without Spanx helps me keep perspective on where my body is at the moment. 

Outfit details:
DVF Greer in spring shadows print
Bravado tank underneath
MBMJ pumps
RedEnvelope necklace (c/o)


abby said...

Beautiful post ( as usual)! Give Ani Difranco's Present Infant a listen if you haven't already! Xx

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thatdamngreendress said...

Looking good, lady!  I love that Emilia has your features- one day she'll love them too!  I think in adolescence hardly anyone is content with their lot.  It's just part of the painful process of growing into our selves! You make a nice point about having been able to objectively appreciate your sister's beauty while still coming to terms with your own! :)

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loveatfirstshop said...

You look fantastic and your daughter is beautiful.... love that DVF on you!

snowymt 55 said...

words cannot express just how much I love this post!  I think we'd all be kinder if we viewed ourselves through our loved ones eyes.  less angst more love! :)

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