It takes 10 long months of bodily changes, shifting organs, and stretching skin for a woman's body to grow a human being. To expect a woman's body to immediately snap back into its pre-pregnancy state after giving birth is ridiculous. With that said, it's pretty common for new moms to be sporting what looks like a six-month bump for several weeks (and even months) after delivering their babies. And yet, there are still people in this world who feel the need to ask women with belly pooches the dreaded question: "When are you due?? While it's tempting to tell off rude strangers who dare to ask such a personal question — especially when you're not pregnant — this mom's response to getting asked when she's due 5 weeks after giving birth is perfection.
Australian blogger and mom of three, Laura Mazza, recently blogged about an awkward experience that likely would have infuriated plenty of people in the same situation. See, Mazza delivered her third baby about five weeks ago — and yet, just the other day she was asked the question every woman dreads when she's not pregnant: So when are you due? Instead of ripping this woman a new one, Mazza simply replied, "October!" She went onto explain it was "because I'm an idiot and didn't want her to feel bad." Which is noble and all, no doubt. However, it's what Mazza shared next in her now-viral Facebook post that is so powerful.
"But you know what? I wasn’t upset. I wasn’t sad. I wasn’t embarrassed. I didn’t feel bad. I still look pregnant, and really, why the f*ck wouldn’t I?" Mazza wrote on Facebook and in her blog post. "I keep having babies two years apart. I’ve grown their bones, their eyes, their little noses and toes and I’ve created their little beautiful hearts." She continued:
My organs squished down to allow them to grow and my muscles separated to let them grow bigger. I birthed them from my lady garden and my sun roof and I fed them from my body. I stayed up all night feeding them. I am watching them grow and nurturing them and looking after them from a place of pure exhaustion. A place where I open the door to the postman and my right boob (I call it my Power Tit) is hanging out, my hair matted because I haven’t had time to brush it and wearing maternity leggings...but I look at them, the little things I’ve created and think they’re beautiful, truly beautiful amazing little things.
The insightful mom went on to share that a friend of herself confided that she was upset she still had her "mum body" three months postpartum. But here's the thing: Why should she? "I mean why do I, or she have to worry about hiding the evidence of all that we have achieved? All that we have made?" Mazza wrote. "Why should we feel bad? Why should anyone? On our death beds, are we going to be talking about how we looked after giving birth, or are we going to be talking about the people we gave birth to?" She concluded:
So if you’re still looking pregnant, if you’ve been mistaken for being pregnant, if you got this delicious overhang like me... embrace it! It’s okay to want to change your body but don’t spend one more second hating it in the interim, it’s done something wonderful, it’s made life.
Just for the record, it takes between six and eight weeks after giving birth for a woman's uterus to return to its normal size, according to BabyCenter. Add to that the very real possibility of having a condition called diastasis recti even after your uterus is back to normal, and remnants of that pooch might stick around for a lot longer. According to Parents, diastasis recti is "a gap in between your right and left abdominal wall muscles that can result in a rounded, protruding belly 'pooch.'" And guess what? About two-thirds of pregnant women develop it. So yeah. Chances are, you're going to still look pregnant for at least a little while after your baby is born.
So can we all agree that no one should be asking a woman when she's due unless a baby is currently in the process of coming out of her? Because you never know what people are going through. Maybe she recently suffered a miscarriage or a stillbirth. Perhaps she has a medical condition that causes bloating, or she just carries extra weight in her mid-section. Or maybe the thing she desperately wants most in this world is to be pregnant — but she's suffering from infertility. Perhaps she recently given birth, as in Mazza's case, and is just trying to survive those early weeks wrought with sleep deprivation. So unless a woman has divulged that she's pregnant, it's probably best not to make assumptions. Otherwise, you risk looking like a huge *ss — and potentially ruining someone's day.