I have to tell you, as I sit here rocking our new baby girl back to sleep, I can’t help but think of the almost-romantic session we had last night. And I need to say I’m sorry.
I’m sorry that my lips, the lips that used to whisper sweet nothings to you late into the nights, and kiss your lips tenderly, now kiss our three children more than they kiss you.
I’m sorry that my hands, the hands that used to constantly hold yours when we’re together, are always busy. Busy cooking or cleaning, fixing boo-boos or wiping bottoms.
And that my arms, which used to frequently be wrapped around you, are now always holding a child.
And do I dare even talk about the rest of my body? The one you fell in love with 11 years ago?
My breasts—that have never been spectacular, in my opinion—have been mostly off-limits to you for the better part of the last seven years, since I’ve either been pregnant or nursing.
I’m sorry that my six-pack abs are replaced by my six-week postpartum belly. It is currently serving as a daily reminder that God chose us to to get to be parents to our newest miracle. The one I am feeding with this body. This body that is not the same as the 23-year-old version you married.
But can I tell you that the girl you fell in love with had no idea what her body could do? I was vain—I thought the body was a thing meant for beauty. But now I know.
Now I know the true meaning of beauty.
Beauty is discovering the strength it takes to labor for HOURS in worse pain than can ever be described to someone who hasn’t gone through it. Beauty is finding the courage to endure said
pain in order to experience the greatest moment of your life (three times).
Beauty has a new meaning to me now. Beauty is seeing that your body is capable of more than you ever thought.
Beauty is true joy when you see your child’s face for the first time.
So, husband, I am sorry. I am sorry that this body does not look the same as it used to. Three pregnancies and nursing three children have certainly re-arranged things a bit.
But I am not sorry that the changes come from growing and nourishing our children. I hope that when you see my body, it reminds you of my strength. And that my strength shows you my true beauty.