Becoming a mom can make you ugly – really

I was just jarred by a memory that I had long forgotten, probably because the part of my brain that controls self-esteem made me forget it.

In the days and weeks after having a baby, you really can look and feel like crap.  You still look pregnant, even though the baby and all that junk that comes with it (holler if you looked at your placenta and wish you hadn’t) are out.  And you can’t really find clean clothes and remember to brush your teeth, let alone put on makeup.

Eliza was maybe two-months-old, and I had a rare moment to get out by myself and feel like a person, so of course, Greg whisked me away on a romantic date, the kind you see in diamond commercials.  Okay, no really, I went to the grocery store alone.  I started my journey through the aisles, basking in the ability to focus on … whatever the heck I wanted.  Early on, I passed a woman who smiled gently at me, making eye contact, and I didn’t think anything of it.  Then I passed her again somewhere in the middle of the store and she did the same thing again.  It made me wonder if I knew her, and I tried, in my sleep-deprived, round-the-clock nursing and pumping state to conjure up a memory of this person because I was sure my brain was misfiring.  And finally, in the freezer section, it happened a third time.  But this time, she approached me.

Now, let me set the stage by saying I am pretty sure I had changed out of pajamas, grabbed a purse instead of a diaper bag and showered that day.  In my mind, I was not someone in need of a “What Not To Wear” intervention.  So this woman said very gently and sweetly, “May I give you one of my business cards?”

I am being totally honest when I say my first thought was, “This woman thinks I look good and wants me to model for her.”  Remember, I’ve already mentioned I was beyond sleep-deprived, and, of course, on the hormonal roller coaster that is life with a newborn.  I’m sure that visions of grandeur are par for the course, perhaps as a defense mechanism.

So I said, “Sure.”  And she handed me her card, smiled really big, and I walked away.  And then I looked at the card.  She was a Mary Kay consultant.  This woman thought I needed makeup.  She didn’t think I looked good.  She thought I looked like crap.

I was devastated, defeated and disappointed.  This woman had NO IDEA what I had been through, having a child get stuck all up in my junk for 30 hours before flying out like a cannon ball on the third suction attempt and ripping what was two holes into one big gaping mess.  My moment that was making me feel like an individual who had freedom to do normal things like go to the grocery store (on a Saturday night) was stolen from me by a woman who – seriously – was not attractive herself and had on way too much makeup!  (Take THAT!)

Fast forward to now, when thinking about this upcoming weekend brought back the memory.  A friend just started a Mary Kay business and she’s going to “fix me up” on Saturday.  And I’m here to tell you that if you’re in the ugly phase after having a baby, please know that all mothers have been there and it does go away.  I’m not offended by getting made up by a Mary Kay consultant now because I’m in a totally different place.  I can safely say that my body, my brain, and my life seem so much more like my own again.  It just takes a little (or in some cases, a lot of) time.

And of course, having had several good dates with my husband since then has made a difference, even if they didn’t include receiving diamonds.

6 thoughts on “Becoming a mom can make you ugly – really

  1. No kidding 🙂 I feel like I’m just starting to feel like myself again after more than a year since Dylan was born. Makes me a little nervous about the prospect of having another one anytime soon… but what will be, will be I guess!

    I love your layout, btw! Hope you’re doing well! I miss you all!

    1. Oh my Christine!
      Not only can I remember those days, I will NEVER forget them! The Mary Kaye women must not have had children because once you have experienced the “just had a baby” look you can recognize it from blocks away. What a boring life she must have to deal with!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  2. Everything got bigger while being pregnant. Now I am stuck with a fat face, ugly hair, breakouts from stress, flabby boobs, flabby belly even though I walk 7 miles a day pushing my kid around in a stroller. The baby is gorgeous but my beauty is completely lost forever. I had trouble keeping my man interested when I looked good; now it is completely a lost cause. Now you got a baby that’s all. Maybe its a good idea to get someone who has vision problems before you have kids. They will love you the same. I should have researched beforehand.

    1. Oh sweetheart, don’t be so hard on yourself! Of course everything got bigger when you were pregnant! I hope things are better now, or at least you are feeling better about yourself. I also sincerely hope things are well with your man and he loves you no matter how you look. Focus on the beautiful gift this baby is!

  3. As a beauty consultant I have to tell you that this woman might not have necessarily though you were “ugly”. Sometimes I see women who have absolutely beautiful features and have the potential to be stunning with the proper makeup application. These women are a treat to put makeup on. Just my two cents.

    1. Thanks for the vote of confidence! I’m sure she was trying to be kind, but in that moment, all I could think of was, “I have makeup and know how to put it on, I’m just not in a place where I can!!!” Whaa whaa. 🙂

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