Friday, May 04, 2007

The Mommy Diet

For some reason, my nurse-a-toddler-on-demand-but-eat-whatever-the-heck-I-want diet plan seems to be failing me these days. Much to my dismay, my baby belly seems to be growing right along with Henry. Maybe it is because what I want is a tub of ice cream after the kids go to bed, or four cinnamon rolls washed down with two glasses of wine.

Dont' get me wrong. I don't consider myself a binge eater--even though I have been in the past. On the whole, having children has been very good for my body image and my relationship with food. It is just that my relationship with food is--what shall we say?--a bit unrealistic. I used to have some self-discipline when it came to eating. Now I just don't.

I gained 50 pounds when I was pregnant with Luke. But then I nursed him on demand until I was four months pregnant with Henry. And Luke was a nursaholic. And I trained for, and ran, a marathon, a half-marathon, and a 10-k when Luke was little. Then pregnancy again, and nursing a hungry little Henry while running around after Luke. And then there are the runs that I squeeze in here and there, all while pushing 75 combined pounds of kid in the double jogging stroller.

So this is all to say that while growing and birthing and nursing two little people has made me respect and care for my body a lot more, it has also nurtured in me a false sense of sensible eating. Six full meals a day plus liberal servings of chocolate, ice cream and red wine have been fun, but as Henry nurses less and Luke stays by my side more, I've got to re-learn what normal portion sizes look like. In these last five years I have leaned toward the exercise-and-nurse-more-when-the-scale-creeps-up diet, but I think it is time to return to the world of normal eating.


Jenny said...


What is normal eating? I'm so confused these days--I try to eat "sensibly" and then I get faint from hunger. Let's talk more about this!


Julia said...

Hey Ser,
I read this a few days ago, and have been meaning to come back and comment. I so relate to this, even though I'm not as far along on the journey. I've talked to women that have been either pregnant or nursing for five years straight. It takes a physical and mental toll, I think, to continually be nurturing someone else so directly through the channel of your own if trying to find a proper relationship with food weren't complicated enough. It is so easy to go the three cinnamon rolls route in the name of nursing. I sometimes think my relationship with food will simplify after weaning, but then I remember that Esme is going to be old enough one day to observe my eating habits and take note of the fact that I am eating an ice cream sandwich for breakfast, so I won't be off the hook then either.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for writing this. Food has been a struggle for me after having my second (well, not food per say - the food has been quite nice - it's the weight that's the struggle). I like the mommy diet and while it worked for me with Isabelle, it isn't working this time. To make matters more infuriating, my husband has just lost 15 lbs by effortlessly cutting all non-alcoholic carbs. I would rather lose a limb. All of this to say, if you have any pearls of wisdom in this area, please pass them my way. Hope you're doing well, Paige Maddex