The 7 Stages of 'Body After Baby' No One Likes to Talk About

Linda Sharps | Oct 22, 2013 Being a Mom

wrinkly puppy sha-pei

I've lost some weight recently, thanks in part to a gym class that involves flipping giant tractor tires as if we're all deranged Real Farmwives. While I'm thrilled to see actual muscles tentatively emerging here and there from my flab-reserves, I'm dismayed at what is happening in my thorax region. Specifically: my breasts. The lower the number on the scale drops, so go my boobs. What I'm saying is I'm dealing with some pretty serious gravity/deflation issues, and soon I imagine I'll have to shovel each breast into its bra cup with a kitchen tool of some kind. Perhaps a spatula.


This is an aging thing -- I'll be 40 next February -- but I suspect it's also a body-ravaged-by-children thing. Bizarre things happen during pregnancy, and despite what all those celebrity "HOT BODY AFTER BABY!" articles would lead you to believe, some of us never completely recover.

To illustrate my point, I've put together 7 visuals to tell the tragic process of my OWN body after baby.

More from The Stir: Getting Your Pre-Baby Body Back Is Harder Than It Looks

postpartum body changes

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  • Immediately after birth: PUFFY AND FRACTIOUS


    Kate Middleton is living proof there are actual humans who can emerge from the hospital with a beatific smile, perfectly groomed appearance, and ADORABLE eetsy little belly. Not me, Jack. I was enormously swollen from head to toe, had entire sets of luggage under both eyes, and my mental state was ... um ... let's just say I wasn't exactly even-keeled during those early days.

  • The first week: DOLLY PARTON SYNDROME


    Engorgement is NO JOKE. Like having two giant red-hot boulders stapled to my chest. I didn't even know my boobs could GET that big, and while things eventually receded, well. You know how when you stretch out a sweater, it never really looks the same? Yeah.

  • The first couple months: WEIRD REDISTRIBUTION


    Once the baby weight started coming off, I couldn't help but notice that things weren't quite like they were before. My butt was flatter, but my feet were bigger? My face was slack and drawn from exhaustion, but my belly was a jolly plump expanse like Santa's bowl full of jelly? My ankles were skinny, but my RINGS didn't fit?

  • The first several months: GELATINOUS GOO


    Turns out growing a human then enduring major abdominal surgery can really do a number on your overall fitness level. Or maybe it was the sleep deprivation and medicinal pints of Häagen-Dazs. Who can say for sure?


  • A year and more later: WRINKLES 'N' FOLDS


    I bet KATE MIDDLETON's midsection doesn't look like this.


  • 5 years and counting: TULIP BOOBS


    Yeah, you know what I'm saying here.



    Skin tags! Wrinkly belly skin! A C-section paunch that defies crunches, plank holds, and kettlebell swings! Boobs that will likely be puddled around my feet in the next five years! A dicey lower back! The inability to sneeze without preemptively grabbing my crotch Michael-Jackson-style! Ah, parenthood ... in so many ways, it truly is the gift that keeps on giving.

postpartum recovery postpartum weight