Every October my heart swells. It has become my most favorite month of the year. I've always loved Halloween, and fall leaves, and the weather in NY in October is often perfection. But in 2008 I gave birth to my son on October 21st. Three years later I gave birth to my daughter on October 20th. October is our month. We love it. We prepare, we decorate, we bake cakes, we fit in all of the fall fun, and we celebrate until we drop on November 1st.
This year I felt a shift. Life has settled a tiny bit. Both of my kids go to the same school, they just turned 6 and 9, which is exciting and heart breaking all at once. We have a system and it's going well. But the biggest shift has been my body. I struggled for years after my daughter was born. I was uncomfortable in my own skin, not that I hated my body truly, but my body was uncomfortable, almost painful, but in a different way than my usual aches and pains. I couldn't feel it the way I once could, my connection to my core was lost, I couldn't engage, it was like there was a piece missing and it drove me mad!! I suffered from Diastasis that I didn't allow to heal before I started demanding things of my body that it wasn't ready for. As a dancer I can be too demanding of my body at times, and I forget that I'm not 20 years old, and I've carried and birthed two babies!
I had a baby that wanted to be close ALL OF THE TIME. I miss it now, I miss the suffocation all night long (although my husband is a cuddler too and I joke with him that I would prefer separate beds due to his need to be up in my s#!t all night long, but that's for a different blog). She needed to be in the carrier instead of the stroller, she was attached to my front or back for long commutes on the subway to work and school drop offs for two years.... TWO YEARS! My son was three, he's a boy, he's active, we ran around, climbing, jumping, never ever resting, oh and she was still in the damn carrier! And in between I was rehearsing with two companies but not doing any other training, I DID NOTHING TO HEAL! I demanded a lot of my body when it needed to heal. I feel like I barely survived. Within this time there were several times that my back went into complete spasm, so much so that I couldn't even walk! It's true, I barely survived.
When I think back to that time I remember how hard it was, and I felt a little destroyed. My body is my work, and I couldn't use it well, and when I used it I felt like garbage. It was a really hard time.
About three years postpartum I started to focus more on me. I stopped breast feeding. I had a little more sleep. I chipped away at the project of putting myself back together. I started doing MuTu System to heal. I started and stopped several times. I got better, I got worse, it went on for a while. And then I met her, Wendy Powell of MuTu System®, and everything became more clear. She was real and genuinely sincere, and everything she said made sense. I was truly empowered. I finally did the MuTu System 12 week program, and I experienced its true brilliance.
Don't get me wrong, it was not an overnight magical transformation. I worked hard, and was still dancing, and parenting, and running a business. BUT, I began to heal, and hormones began to shift, and my body began to feel like mine again.
Here I am, 6 years postpartum, and I made it. I feel really strong in my body again. I can do things with strength that I thought I may never do again. I'm proud of my body because it healed and it is strong. I still work hard on it, and sometimes I do nothing with it and I suffer the consequences. I still have work to do, but I can say that I am myself again.
This might not seem encouraging to the mom who is 6 months in, or to the women who have yet to embark on this journey. 6 years?! That's a long time. But it's my honest journey. It doesn't have to be yours, in fact I'm here to help women make sure that it doesn't take that long. I'm really happy to be here and I'm proud of the work that I've done. I can honestly say I feel good and comfortable in my body. I'm forever grateful to MuTu System for being the one thing that worked. I tried many other things that did NOT!
It might take you less time, it might take you more. You might be in your 60's and you haven't yet healed from your 30 year postpartum journey. You might have healed really quickly and walked the runway 6 weeks postpartum. (Heidi Klum you are not human are you?) My point is there is always time for healing, and there are a lot of life realities that contribute to your healing or to the delay in your healing. Your body can do it, but have patience and be persistent. Listen to your body and give it time. If you can't focus now, do what you can, just do something, and wait for the window to open when you will have a little more time and really go for it.
This is why I am doing the work that I do. Pilates Movement Nutrition for moms. This is what I do. I am here for you, no matter where you are in your journey. If you are preventing, maintaining, healing, whatever moment you are in, I am here to help. I want it to be a better journey for you.
Now I am here, I am me again, and every day I still think of doing it one more time. Especially in October, I feel like I'm meant to be giving birth! This probably seems crazy to many, but again it's my honest thought process EVERY DAY of my life. I'm perfectly happy with our beautiful family, and if this is our complete creation I'm very happy, proud, and excited for it to blossom. What I will say is that before I feared my body couldn't do it. Now I know I can, I know I can do it with strength and I will eventually get back to myself again, and it doesn't have to take 6 years. It will be hard and not always easy, not ever easy really, but I know I can. We shall see what happens. I honestly have no idea, so that's exciting! I was never the type to plan really, it's just how I roll.
To all the moms, know that this is a journey. There are the amazing moments, and then there are all of the dark twisted moments. It's ok, we all have them. Chapped nipples, loose skin, weird belly buttons, deflated tits, peeing when we sneeze, stretch marks, bellies that just won't go,loneliness in a full room, tantrums, screaming, whining...it's our reality. But the magical beautiful fun moments are what keep us in love with these little monsters that we created, what a miracle! Our bodies are amazing. Only we can manage it, and we do, somehow. Even if we send total crap for lunch in a paper bag instead of a damn bento box, we make it all happen. Be proud. You are amazing.
October, I love you dearly, and I will await your return. In the meantime, I will enjoy all of the moments between now and then.