‘I had a meltdown in a Target fitting room. A thought entered my mind: I hate my body.’

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“I had a meltdown in a Target fitting room.

Yesterday I took a trip to Target while Lee stayed with daddy. It’s been a while since I’ve taken a leisurely stroll through any store that didn’t involve getting groceries and perusing target seemed like the perfect getaway to have some me time.

In my cart lay an on-sale T-shirt, and some plates and napkins for Leland’s upcoming first birthday party.

I had scanned through the boy clothes, shoes and home decor and had ended up in the undergarment clearance section of the store. My bras have literally been hanging on by a thread since all the good nursing bras are way out of the budget and I have been teetering between bras with one underwire missing and bras that fit pre-pregnancy me. Let’s just say that both do a lousy job at keeping these milk heavy boobs afloat.

Of course, however, the size I need is nowhere to be found in the clearance rack. Already I feel this is a losing battle, but I keep searching. Nada. So, resourceful me grabs a couple bras that are one and two sizes bigger. I make my way to the fitting rooms, crossing my fingers that one of these $5 clearance bras will be my new bff.

First, one size bigger. The cup size works but the strap size does not. Second, cup size too small but the straps contain all the comfort.

Oh, well. It was worth a shot.

Now, of course I’ve looked in the mirror recently and have seen the post baby pooch that has yet to go down, but something about the lighting and the dressing room mirror made me stop and really look.

A thought Instantly entered my mind.

I hate my body.

Now, as a woman, it might come as a shock that I’ve never had that thought before. But it’s true. I’ve never had real self-image issues. Sure, I always thought I could lose a few pounds and I’d feel better but never had I truly hated what I saw in the mirror.

My second thought was what every anti body shaming post tells you: you had a baby, whom you carried for 9+ months and have nursed since practically day one. Go easy on yourself, you’re amazing, your body is amazing.

Somehow, this statement did not work.

In those few minutes as I stood and stared at myself half naked, I so missed pre-pregnancy me. I missed how my jeans used to fit and how I didn’t have to wear spanx when I wore something fitted, I missed the way my boobs looked in a bra that actually fit me, I missed how my belly button used to be an innie and my stomach when it didn’t have stretch marks. I missed it all.

In almost a panic state and with tears welling up in my eyes I haphazardly put the bras back on their hanger, put my top back on and left the fitting room.

I’d like to say I had a Wonder Woman attitude, but the reality is I sat in my car and had a good cry.

Some of you might find this petty. Like, you had a BABY, of course your body isn’t going to be the way it was.

And you’d be right. Of course, I felt ridiculous for mourning my old body. When I see my husband looking at me with sparkle in his eye, of course I feel beautiful and he sees me as nothing but. When I’m nursing Leland and I see how healthy and happy he is with all his chubby cuteness, of course I feel amazing. I feel invincible. I feel like a real woman. When I’m searching my closet trying to find something that won’t make me feel like a popped can of crescent rolls, not so much.

Maybe I’m being dramatic. But I know what it’s like to be in good shape and have things fit right. I try not to compare myself to other women but comparing myself to me is another story.

The solution? Sleep better, eat healthy, be active? I know it’s so simple, why didn’t I think of that?

Sitting in my car crying, I berated myself for not doing just that. Then came the excuses, I can’t sleep better, eating healthy is so expensive (plus carbs, need I say more?), and in this heat, walking from the building to the car is about all the activity I can handle without needing a drink of water. And I hated the excuses, I really did. Cause insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.

So here it is y’all. I’m going to put every effort I can into being a healthier and hopefully smaller version of me. Not just for vanity sake but because Leland needs a healthy mom.

And like they say, when you’re healthy, you’re happy, right?

However, if you catch me at hypnotic doughnuts, enjoying fried deliciousness, spare the judgement.”

This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Angel Wilke. Submit your own story here, and subscribe to our best stories in our free newsletter here.

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