Missing: My Butt

22 Jul

Something's missing here.

While we’re admitting things we’re not proud of, I’ll just go ahead and share that I think about my body a lot these days.  Probably way too much.

When I read the word “PREGNANT” on the white stick last August, of course the first thing I considered was the tiny little Seabass swimming contentedly in my lower abdomen.  But just behind that thought was a more sinister one, lurking deep in the shadows: You’re going to get fat. And then, to its logical conclusion: The fat might never go away.

Thankfully, I only gained about 30 pounds during my pregnancy – truly a miracle considering how I put away tri-tip sandwiches and muffins for nine months.  Also very thankfully, I have lost all but five of those pounds due to breastfeeding and the God-given grace of good genes.  But that’s not to say I look the same.  Uh, no.  Not even close.

You see, I appear to have lost my butt.

It first became clear that my butt had gone missing about two months into the pregnancy.  “Does my bee-hind look different to you?” I asked Jake, turning to give him the best view.  Having learned his lesson years ago, he replied, “No, you look beautiful as always.”  Smart man.  And a liar.

I probably wouldn’t have asked him or even noticed it myself if my undergarments hadn’t started acting differently. To explain…hmmm…how can I put this delicately?  It suddenly felt like I was pulling my underwear out of my rear 24 hours a day.  There was no longer anything of substance to hold it back.  The elastic looked for something – anything – to cling to, but there was no hanging on.  It just slid across that flat surface and happily wedged itself right in the middle.

Afraid that my Mom Butt (a real condition) would lead to the inevitable wearing of Mom Jeans (a real product), I consulted with friends who’d already had babies to get the inside scoop.  “Don’t worry,” they reassured me.  “Your butt’s just hibernating.  There’ll be junk back in your trunk the moment Seabass is born.  You’ll see.”

But I’m not seeing anything yet.  My trunk remains junk-less, and I’m still playing tug-o-war with my undies on a bi-hourly basis. To make matters worse, my stomach looks like a Shar Pei puppy and my shoulders are permanently slumped from holding the baby.  I’m like the friggin Phantom of the Opera.

Let’s just get this out of the way: I know I should be patient with myself.  I know, I know. And I know that Hollywood has given me an unrealistic expectation for my postpartum body.  I know, I know.

Perhaps more helpful to me right now is knowing that my body has done something for which it was made.  I grew a beautiful, healthy baby and birthed him, all by myself.  Shouldn’t my body look different after a feat of such enormity?  If it took nine months for this body to grow with Seabass, shouldn’t I expect that it will take another nine months to shrink back to size?

Yes, I should.

But I think some of this crazy-making comes from my refusal to accept that I look like a mom.  I may not wear Mom Jeans (yet) but I carry a diaper bag that requires its own zip code.  I can’t wear most of my cute pre-preg clothes because they don’t present easy access to the boob for nursing.  I mean, I drive a little SUV for crying out loud.  Anyone who looks at me can easily deduce which phase of life I’m in, long before the baby comes into view.  And maybe that scares me a little.  The no-question-ness of it all.

So for the time being, I’m putting up little signs around the neighborhood that read: “Have you seen this butt?  Last seen August, 2009.”  I’m checking between the cushions on the sofa.  I’m peeking in the dryer and under the bed.  My tush has to be somewhere around here, and I’m not giving up until I find it.

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19 Responses to “Missing: My Butt”

  1. Bethany Watts July 22, 2010 at 9:36 am #

    Jaime! You give me hope in pregnancy. While you miss your behind please think of me and all the trouble you’re avoiding… My badonkadonk is constantly running into things & keeping me from squeezing between tight spaces! I have a serious case of bull-in-a-china-shop-syndrome thanks to my rear end! I will gladly lend you some tush to get you started on the road to booty recovery, and I know Nate will love “one more reason” that we should have a baby… RIGHT NOW! 🙂

  2. Sara Nesper July 22, 2010 at 9:48 am #

    You are stinkin’ hilarious. I love reading your blog. It’s a window into a world I may someday be a part of, but am very timid about diving into. Although, I’m thinking I won’t be so lucky and I may have enough butt for the two of us. If yours is still missing at that time, I’ll be willing to share.

  3. Travis Avila July 22, 2010 at 10:20 am #

    Oh girl, I TOTALLY relate! You have no idea how much my body has changed since the Bubba came into this world. My hair has gotten shorter by necessity, and I’m whiter than Edward Cullen having had to go without my spray tanning for three years. And don’t get me started on my butt. I feel like every time a baby is born, Beyonce’s ass grows just a little bit. Heaven forbid something happen to her, but if she were – I don’t know – taken out by an AH-64 Apache attack helicopter, maybe baby’d get back. The worst part though is the effect parenthood has had on my wallet. Do you have any idea how many martinis it takes to keep daddy happy these days?

  4. Jacob July 22, 2010 at 10:40 am #

    These are all lies – you’ve still got a great butt sweetie!

    And Sara’s comment is gross.

  5. Grumpy Baby Blog July 22, 2010 at 10:50 am #

    If it’s any consolation, I’ve been missing my brain since September.

    Love this post!

  6. Megan July 22, 2010 at 11:44 am #

    Just wait until you stop breastfeeding….you’ll be on the lookout for two more things 🙂 Jaime, you’ll never be anything but gorgeous, butt or no butt!

  7. Megan July 22, 2010 at 2:12 pm #

    Look under the dryer. Keep your back straight, feet shoulder width apart, and bend your knees to 90 degrees. and look about 25 or thirty times 3 or 4 times a day. Your butt is under the dryer, and if you follow the aforementioned protocol, it will magically appear in a couple months. Promise. (and referring to my comment in the ‘peeing’ post, your butt will show up, and you will also quit peeing without trying to. 🙂 )

  8. bcomingnoahsmom July 22, 2010 at 2:54 pm #

    Just a cute post this is! 🙂 I love it.

  9. Loll July 22, 2010 at 3:45 pm #

    I love your style of writing Jaime, fantastic blog!!

  10. DB Landes July 22, 2010 at 7:50 pm #

    You’re missing your butt. My feet grew 2 sizes, one size for each child.

  11. geiska July 22, 2010 at 8:50 pm #

    thank you for putting into words the missing butt syndrome. the baker’s have never been lack for booty except between month three and twenty of pregnancy. but girl – you are a mom – why the shame over having the best job in the world? OWN IT!

  12. photosheri July 23, 2010 at 4:34 am #

    Haha, love your post! I don’t have the butt problem, but my daughter seems to have made room for herself by pushing on my ribs, which now stick out at an awkward angle right below my now deflated boobs.

  13. Ashley July 23, 2010 at 1:17 pm #

    Hi, Jaime. Love your blog. I’m currently 18 weeks along, so love reading all this stuff. And I actually have the opposite problem! I was hoping pregnancy would be me a bigger butt!

  14. Tio July 23, 2010 at 6:20 pm #

    Your butt will come back once you finish breastfeeding. Promise! Until then, sit on a cushion.

  15. judy July 24, 2010 at 9:23 am #

    Hi Jaime, I came across this site, http://www.webmd.com/fitness-exercise/slideshow-build-a-better-butt?ecd=wnl_wlw_072410. This might help. =)

  16. judy July 24, 2010 at 9:26 am #

    /Users/judywatkins/Desktop/Picture 7.png

    This is what I wanted to share. =)

  17. judy July 24, 2010 at 9:29 am #

    Still didn’t get where I wanted to go. Any who, go to the picture on the link I sent you to the amazing butt shaper in a array of colors, this one being in white. xo Judy

  18. Laura July 28, 2010 at 9:39 am #

    Oh my god I am crying laughing and absolutely love your way of facing the lows in this period.

    I wish I could donate some of my “back volume” to you…that would make 2 people extremely happy. Even if I don’t have suggestions regarding the butt issue I have a suggestion for your shoulder and back posture. You sould check out the Franklin method at the following links:

    http://franklinmethod.wordpress.com/
    http://www.franklin-methode.ch/content,6,r,_Ez.html

    I have been practicing some of these exercises within my dance class and it is amazing. If you are interested I can teach you a couple no-effort and no-sweat posture exercise to relax and improve shoulders, back and pelvis posture. There is also a balance exercise that is kind of fun and might help with the Shar Pei belly, since it makes your deep abdominal muscles work.

    Let me know if you are interested and we can work on a way to get in touch.

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