"Bounce back." Those are two words no new mom ever needs to hear. The idea that a woman who's birthed a human should be able to bounce back to her pre-baby body within a certain time frame (or ever, for that matter) is antiquated and clichéd. And it's damaging to even the most confident of new moms. So when Chrissy Teigen was reminded she "just" had a baby during a yoga recent class, the mom of two had an understandably strong and relatable reaction.
Teigen's millions of followers on social media might see her as someone who is super confident. Someone who knows how to shut down critics and trolls who come after her for a myriad of ridiculous reasons as though it's a sixth sense. But in a recent tweet, the Cravings cookbook author — who shares 3-year-old daughter Luna and 18-month-old son Miles with her husband John Legend — shared that she was a little hard on herself during a recent yoga class. Her instructor, however, reminded to her be gentle with herself, considering she gave birth to her son, Miles, in May 2018.
"I started yoga this week and my first class, after giving myself some belly complaints, the instructor said 'well didn't you just have a baby!?' Teigen wrote on Twitter. "And I said 'no, like 18 months ago' and she said 'that's JUST' and let me tell you, true or not I could have cried."
The fact that Teigen, who was once a Sports Illustrated model, nearly cried over her yoga teacher's gentle reminder that she had "just" had a baby resonated with many women on social media. Some mothers reached out to Teigen to comfort her by saying they "just" had a baby eight years ago, or 11 years ago, or 24 years ago, and they haven't gotten their pre-baby bodies back. Such is motherhood for many people.
The reality is that giving birth changes your body in so many ways and expecting yourself to simply get your pre-baby body back after it has been so transformed to grow a human is not realistic for everyone. Or maybe anyone. And Teigen has opened up about coming to terms with her own changing body several times in the past, like she did this past March with a tweet celebrating her weight gain after giving birth to Miles.
"Basically I am 20 pounds heavier than I was before miles. he's 10 months old, I never lost the last bit because I just love food too much. Just coming to terms with my new normal, when I had this certain number for so long!" she wrote on Twitter in March. "the thinnest I've ever been was right after Luna. Postpartum depression. I'LL TAKE THESE POUNDS AND THIS FEELING!"
Chrissy Teigen is doing more for moms than I think she realizes. Simply by sharing her own insecurities with the world about her postpartum body, she is reminding other moms that it's OK to struggle, and it's also OK to go easy on ourselves. And, perhaps most importantly, that there is no time limit on when a mom "just" had a baby.