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Mom to Mom: Stretch Marks Suck! But life has to go on.

Posted by Julie on 1/14/2013 to Mom Madness

Stretch Marks, Twin Skin and Bikinis?

Stretch marks! Wah!

With my first child I had none. I'm an only child and my mom has no stretch marks. She told me it's genetic, I felt like one of the lucky ones. I thought I had good genes...til I got pregnant with twins.

I must say, the whole "I have good genes" thing really did do a number on me. I didn't even know what a new stretch mark looked like and throughout my pregnancy with my twin sons I failed to recognize those lines and marks on my stomach as stretch marks.

Hindsight is 20/20

Because I just knew I had "good genes," I never bothered rubbing cocoa butter or any other stretch mark preventative on my stomach, I didn't think I needed to.

At 28 weeks pregnant with my sons my OB told me I was measuring the equivalent of 38 weeks if it were a single pregnancy. Wake up call? Nope, not me. Stretch marks just aren't in my DNA. lol

I delivered via c-section at 38 weeks and my twins were 6 lbs 4oz. and 6lbs 14oz. Lord only knows how big they would have been if I went 40+ weeks.

I recall the first time in the hospital that I looked at my newly deflated stomach in the mirror. It was weird looking and I was in disbelief. I knew then that what I was seeing was not going to go away. I knew then that I did have stretch marks and more.

Learning to live with them

My husband, although I hate to admit he's right on this, claims that a woman who exudes confidence can hide her stretch marks without having to cover them up. For three years I didn't believe him.

We live in Florida, it's bikini season all year long. Monokini season....that's what it became for me. I told myself I would never wear a bikini or show my stomach in public again. It made me sad and insecure and it showed.

It wasn't until my sons were about 3 yrs old that I decided to go ahead and try to act confident, to wear the bikini I secretly wanted from Victoria Secret, and to let the world (or at least everyone at the beach and all our family) see my stretched out tummy.

Where am I now?

Well now I am obviously sharing a photo of my tummy with you all on a public blog, that has to say something.

I can't say I like my stretch marks, but I am not ashamed of them and I don't try to hide them anymore. I am definitely always conscious of them when my stomach is showing. Certain positions make them look worse and I hate to say it but I do try to avoid them. Many times while having sex with my husband I have gotten a glance at my stomach and felt horrified. How could he see this and still want to be with me? For real, they've done a number on my head, but I've finally beat them.

Don't let me freak you out. I may not have your average stretchmarks. The skin is paper thin and old feeling. It sags, hangs and even has some bizarre indentations. Carrying multiples results in stretch marks that are...special. Mom's of Multiples refer to it as "twin skin" or so I learned.

My advice is...
First of all, don't assume it won't happen to you. I'll forever wonder if I had been diligent about applying creams and oils would they have been as bad?

Second, don't tell yourself that you can never feel or look sexy again. They're there, but they don't define you. Act confident and you'll be confident.

Third and lastly, don't be ashamed or feel that your stretchmarks are unsightly or ugly or that you have to hide them. They're normal, they're yours and you have to accept them. It's easy to think everyone sees them but the truth is, they don't.

Take this tip from me, don't let stretchmarks control you or rule your life. Continue being you!

Thanks for reading!
Julie, Cloth Diaper Geek