As mums, we’ve all been there. That not-so-magical time when you realise your post-baby body isn’t what it used to be. But, wait! Put the brakes on those negative thoughts!
What did that same body just do? It grew and carried another human being for nine months. It gave birth to that human being. And, now you expect it to do what?
Sure, those rare genetic exceptions that we call super models may snap back after baby in what seems like weeks. But, us mere mortals aren’t all as lucky (or have the luxury of personal trainers, personal chefs and personal nutritionists). Ok, some of us do. But, that doesn’t mean we’re going to flash from a baby belly to a size 0.
Australian mum Mel Rymill went to a pro to get healthy after having her baby. When the personal trainer stated (not questioned) that Rymill obviously wanted to get back to a pre-baby weight, she didn’t exactly agree. Not only did this mum not agree, but she took to Facebook and started what has now become the badass undies movement.
Rymill, 33, and a long-time roller derby player known as Jetfire, was in strong physical shape in her pre-pregnancy days. Considered as a high risk, this mum had to put exercise on hold during her pregnancy. Following the birth of her child, Rymill wanted to get back to her pre-baby core strength. This didn’t mean she expected to also get back to her pre-baby body.
She told TODAY.com,
“I loved being active and take pride in my body, but after giving birth I felt like I needed some guidance and motivation to become strong again.”
“I looked in the mirror and started getting down on myself before snapping out of it and remembering that my body is amazing. It allows me to do amazing things.”
Feeling less than thrilled with what her trainer said (about going back to her pre-pregnancy form), Rymill posted a pic of herself in her undies on Facebook, using the hashtag
She didn’t expect her post to go viral, but it did. The photo in granny panties and a nursing bra struck a chord with women around the world, and other mums started posting their own #badassundies pics. On her Facebook page Rymill wrote, “Wow! I’m amazed to see how the #badassundies movement is taking off. I really didn’t expect anyone to pay attention to my post but it is so empowering seeing all these awesome people owning their bodies and shouting it from the rooftops.” The mum noted that it’s not about the person’s size or body shape, it’s about being real.
With thousands of shares, it’s clear that Rymill’s post (and photo) became a call to action for other new mums as well as an eye-opening for all kinds of people. Accepting your body may be more of a challenge after giving birth, but that’s not the only time a woman (or a man for that matter) feels uncomfortable or shamed for their figure.
“It’s not about whether you are big, small, lumpy, cuddly, boney, shaped like a dodecahedron, a man, a woman, anywhere on the gender scale or anything else you can think of. It is about reclaiming the world we live in and flooding it with real bodies, no, REAL PEOPLE.”
Surprisingly (or, maybe not surprisingly for FB fans), a reader reported Rymill’s post for containing nudity. After a review, Facebook agreed with Rymill that it didn’t violate their content standards and left it up. As well they should.
We can’t all look like an Sports Illustrated swimsuit model, or walk down the Victoria’s Secret runway. We aren’t all toned, svelte, slender or super-model slim. That said, Rymill’s post and accompanying photo show that it’s alright to be real. The next time that you look in the mirror and think, “Ugh! I’m never going to fit into my pre-baby skinny jeans” or, “Where did all of the cellulite and those stretch marks come from?” take a look at Rymill’s photo and read her words. Then take another look at yourself – the real you – and feel the comfort and confidence in you are!