Back in the day, it was so easy to differentiate a single lady who had no kids from a mother but now, most times, you might find yourself referring to a mother as though she’s a single lady.
Here’s why, it’s a big deal for women to snap back into shape after the birth of their babies.
My aunt, after having her first child, didn’t wait an hour before jumping into her tight denim trousers and walking around the hospital, while people stared at her in admiration. ‘She’s like that, she loves to act as though she’s a power woman’, when visitors came to see her at the hospital, they kept exclaiming at the way she had snapped back immediately after childbirth because she was on a tight pair of trousers and a loose shirt.
I once interviewed a popular Nigerian celebrity, who is a mother as well, and while we were fitting her for her first look, I couldn’t help but draw my attention to her belly. ‘You’ll never believe that any child had hopped out of there’ and she has more than one child. When I asked her how her stomach remained so flat after childbirth, she said;
“My dear, I eat, drink and sleep exercises as I never want to wear spanx”
To be honest with you, the celebrity never wears spanx, even on the red carpet, and she’s always on the red carpet.
Now to Chioma’s story. Chioma is a classmate of mine who recently birthed a beautiful boy.Before she gave birth, she was the Instagram freak, as she would post different pictures on social media in a day. She could post pictures of herself on the same spot in three different ways. Chioma is beautiful and is lucky to be blessed with a lovely figure, so her followers on Instagram multiply by the day. When she was pregnant, she did so many pregnancy shoots and we all thought she’d never get enough as she was so beautiful being pregnant.
So, on the day she had her baby(she had him through c-section), she was so irked at the sight of her stomach which protruded as though she was six months pregnant. The doctor had even advised against early work-outs, since she had her baby through caesarean.
One week passed and progressed to one month and Chioma was growing bigger, she was breast-feeding and was getting too hungry so she ate a lot, and her baby ate a lot as well. Soon, she noticed that her followers on instagram began asking her questions like;
“You haven’t posted any pictures of yourself after childbirth.”
Some even stopped following her on Instagram as they moved on to other hotter girls pages. This wouldn’t have disturbed some proud mothers, but it disturbed Chioma ooo. One night as I was preparing to sleep, she called me.
“New mummy…” I tease.
“Abegjo…leave that thing…” She said to me.
“What do you mean by that?” I asked.
“I need to get back into shape…all my clothes don’t fit anymore and my Instagram followers are dropping.”
“Are you seriously kidding me? Chioma! Instagram followers? Seriously?” I ask incredulously.
“Yes jo….I need to start working out and snapping back into shape…” She said.
“So, what do you want me to do?” I asked.
“I want you to register with me at a gym, I need us to go to the gym together.” She said.
In order words, she wanted me to be a kind of support partner.
“Okay ooo…but you know that you should give yourself time…” I say.
“What time? It’sone month already and I hate my shape right now…” She said.
I agree to register at the gym with her even though I really hate the gym. The next day, Chioma and I head over to the gym to get registered and on our way back, we saw some ladies running down the Ikoyibridge.
“Hmmm….we should do that ooo…”Chioma said to me.
I laughed in response, soon her phone beeped and she got engrossed in it, I was focusing on the road and didn’t hear her sniff back the tears. While I was just about to drive into her street, I heard her bawl in tears.
“What is it?” I asked.
“Ada…I am finished ooo…these people are insulting me…” She cried.
I parked the car at a corner and took the phone from her. Under one of her pictures on Instagram, someone had written.
“Chioma face it! You haven’t snapped back into shape after childbirth and that’s why you haven’t posted any recent pictures. I bet you’re as fat as an elephant.”
Another commented below; “Chioma abeg prove him wrong this minute and upload a picture of a shapely you.”
The first commenter said, “Story! Let her upload a picture of herself holding her baby ooo or with her baby in view before she uploads an old picture. Hahahaha….”
I was hurt by the words and no matter how hard I tried consoling Chioma, she couldn’t be consoled.
Life puts so much pressure on us, when we are single, people keep asking, ‘when are we coming to eat rice?’ as soon as we get married, they ask ‘E don show? Should we prepare to come in the next nine months?’ After having the baby nko ‘Nne nawaoo…you are too fat jare…get back in shape!’ Is there no limit to the pressures in life?
However, seeing that life presents to us at different times of our lives, targets or deadlines, I feel that as long as we aren’t the architects of our lives, we should move at our own pace and refuse to be bullied to do otherwise.
Join the conversation with any of our TTC and Pregnancy Groups here