20 May Not Fat, Simply Pregnant
As someone who has battled being overweight since childhood, pregnancy brings unique challenges to how I handle body image. Shifting my thinking to accept weight gain as necessary and even good becomes a consistent struggle.
Old fears that I thought I had dealt with resurface. Longing to gain God’s perspective on this special season in my life drives me to know Him more. It is a time for the potential of tremendous growth in my journey to see myself and my body as my Father does.
I have spent so much of my life fighting against gaining weight. How can I possibly be expected to suddenly shift gears and see weight gain as a wonderful thing?!? Yes, I know that I am gaining weight for the baby growing within me, but how come that additional weight shows up on my scale? I have long been a critic of the practice of weighing a pregnant woman at each checkup. I know I am gaining weight. Please just trust me. I have also taken my share of teasing because I will not weigh without taking my shoes off.
Amidst this battle to accept that weight gain is actually a good thing, comes the old familiar accusing whispers of the enemy that I will never be able to lose the weight again. Regardless of how many times I may successfully lose the baby weight, there remains a nagging fear that this will be the pregnancy that leaves me fat. During an early pregnancy, my doctor refused to allow me to use the word fat when describing how I felt. She would simply remind me that I was only pregnant. I still remember her words and find them quite liberating.
As I again face my own brokenness in this area of body image, I sense my loving Father calling me to something so much better. It is a call not to view pregnancy as another weight battle but as a privilege to walk for a brief time in the footsteps of my Lord and Savior who gave His life away. I have the opportunity to sacrifice my body that the precious little one within me might live. It is a beautiful picture of Christ that I would completely miss if I remained focused on something so trivial as weight gain.
Pregnancy can be a challenge for someone who struggles with weight gain and body image. So many changes happen to a woman’s body in such a relatively short period of time. It is so easy to focus on myself, but God is calling me through this pregnancy and every challenge I face in my life to fix my eyes on Jesus.