So God Made a Mother Collection ➔

 
I’m 15 months postpartum. (Can you still even use the term postpartum at this point? Probably not. Let me try again… I have a 15 month-old. How’s that?) I’ve always been fairly thin. I was an athlete in high school but never found the groove with a fitness routine as an adult. I guess I wasn’t really motivated enough. I’d do it here and there for months at a time and then life would happen and I’d completely disappear from any semblance of a fitness routine.

Even without the regular workout schedule, I still stayed fairly thin even if wasn’t putting in any work. But, there’s a difference between thin and fit. I didn’t have something that I had worked for that I could be proud of. I was just used to my body the way it was and I was okay with it.

Throughout my pregnancy, my belly grew and I gained 30 pounds but I never felt insecure about it. In fact, I loved watching my body change and I felt beautiful. Huge, but beautiful. I was told the pounds would melt off, especially since I was breastfeeding.

Two weeks after giving birth, I was within 5 pounds of my pre-pregnancy weight. So I guess in some ways, the pounds did kind of melt off. But somehow I just didn’t feel the same in my skin. What everyone failed to mention, was that even if I fit in my old jeans, I wouldn’t look the same in them.

I wasn’t happy with my postpartum body. It wasn’t what I was used to and I kept waiting to feel like myself again, thinking that it would just magically happen.

It never did.

At about 9 months postpartum, something finally clicked and I decided that if I wanted a change, I’d need to make some changes. I decided I was ready to take control of things and put the work in. Since then, I’ve put in somewhere between 30 minutes and 1 hour of time at least 4 days every week. Does my body look like Jennifer Aniston or Cameron Diaz? Not even close.

In fact, some of what motivated me was seeing everything that my body was capable of during pregnancy and then delivery. When the comparison game starts up in my mind, I remind myself that I’m not working out every day to chase a sexy figure. I’m working out every day to gain strength. I’m putting in the time to set a good example for my daughter. I’m waking up early so that I can take care of the body that God gave me. The body that I pray houses more children one day.

I recently came across a picture from 5 or 6 years before I was pregnant (thank you, TimeHop). I was standing on the beach in a bikini. Even though I wasn’t regularly working out at that point, I looked better in a bikini than I would if I put one on right now. But you know what? That flat stomach of pre-baby me didn’t require any sweat. I hadn’t worked hard for something that I can now be proud of. Now, I see physical changes in my body but I also notice that I can do more pushups today than I could a week ago. And for me, that’s what keeps me going.

My focus is on how much stronger I’m getting not how much better I look. My goal is to glorify God with what He gave me. I’m thankful that I have a body that has the ability to be pushed to new limits.

For me, consistent exercise started when I got my mind right.

Claire Hoots

Claire is a wife and mom taking on her second career. She spends her days out-and-about with an opinionated one year old. While the little one sleeps, she pounds on the keyboard. She’s a big fan of the crockpot, netflix, and gratitude lists. In her free time, she loves exercising, shopping, and reading. She believes that the perfect evening is spent drinking wine with girlfriends.

Children Don’t Get Easier, We Just Get Stronger

In: Inspiration, Mental Health, Motherhood
Children Don't Get Easier, We Just Get Stronger www.herviewfromhome.com

“This too shall pass.” As mothers, we cling to these words as we desperately hope to make it past whichever parenting stage currently holds us in its clutches. In the thick of newborn motherhood, through night wakings, constant nursing and finding our place in an unfamiliar world, we long for a future filled with more sleep and less crying. We can’t imagine any child or time being more difficult than right now. Then, a toddler bursts forth, a tornado of energy destroying everything in his wake. We hold our breath as he tests every possible limit and every inch of...

Keep Reading

The One Thing Young Kids Need to Know About Sex

In: Health, Kids, Motherhood
The One Thing Young Kids Need to Know About Sex www.herviewfromhome.com

I currently have four kids in elementary school from kindergarten to fifth grade. My kids have not experienced any sexual abuse (to my knowledge); we have been very careful about any potential porn exposure; we closely monitor their involvement with pop culture through music, movies, books, and even commercials. While we might seem to err on the side of overly sheltering them, what we have also done is be very open with our kids about sex. We have told them the truth when they’ve asked questions. And have they asked some questions! Here’s a sampling of what I’ve been asked...

Keep Reading

I Don’t Have Anxiety—But My Husband Does

In: Health, Mental Health, Relationships
I Don't Have Anxiety—But My Husband Does www.herviewfromhome.com

I don’t have anxiety but my husband does.  We should have realized this years ago but we missed it. The realization came suddenly and as soon as it popped in my mind, it came out of my mouth. “You have anxiety.” I said. He looked at me trying to determine if I was joking or serious. “I am serious, you have anxiety.” His eyes left mine and found his phone. He picked it up and said, “Hey Siri, give me the definition of anxiety.” As the virtual assistant read off the definition she may as well have been reading my man’s personality...

Keep Reading

This is What Life is Like For a Mom Who Wears Hearing Aids

In: Health, Journal, Motherhood
This is What Life is Like For a Mom Who Wears Hearing Aids www.herviewfromhome.com

I’ll never forget the time I was standing on a dock in the middle of a lake, casually draining my long hair of water, soaking in the summer heat surrounding me. Little did I know, my right breast had escaped the clutches of my bikini top; it must have popped out when I dove into the cool lake. But because I wasn’t wearing my hearing aids—I can’t wear those babies in the water—I couldn’t hear those back on land who were calling at me to shove it back in. So, there I stood, clueless of the fact that I was...

Keep Reading

Welcome to Periods in Your 30s and 40s

In: Health, Humor
Welcome to Periods in Your 30s and 40s www.herviewfromhome.com

Do you remember that day in the fifth grade when the boys and girls were separated for the “Sexuality and Development” talk? Some nice old lady health teacher came into your room and gave you some straight talk about how the next few years were going to go for you. It was awkward and shocking and you knew your childhood would never be the same. When you hit your mid-thirties, there should be some kind of Part Two to that conversation. All the ladies need to be rounded up, lead into a dimly lit classroom that smells vaguely of pencil...

Keep Reading

How Can You Love an Abusive Man? I Did—Until I Decided to Choose Myself.

In: Health, Journal, Relationships
How Can You Love an Abusive Man? I Did—Until I Decided to Choose Myself.

He walked over to the table I was sitting at with some friends and casually, yet confidently, pulled up a chair. His voice was deep and he had a luring accent that immediately caught my attention. His distinctly cut jawline along his perfectly trimmed beard made him seem older, I thought, than the age I’d soon learn he was. Our paths had crossed before like two ships in the night, forbidding us from ever quite meeting as we did that day . . . eye to eye, energy to energy He chatted with me and our mutual friends for a...

Keep Reading

I’m Not Sure How Long I’ll Need an Antidepressant to Feel Normal…and That’s OK

In: Cancer, Child Loss, Grief, Mental Health
I'm Not Sure How Long I'll Need an Antidepressant to Feel Normal...and That's OK www.herviewfromhome.com

I tried to wean off of Zoloft and couldn’t. And that’s OK. I had never really been aware of the world of antidepressants. My life has been relatively uneventful—with the normal ups and downs that most of us go through. I knew people on medication for depression but never understood. How can you be THAT sad that you can’t just be positive and make the best of your circumstances? How can someone be THAT unhappy ALL the time to need medication? I didn’t get it. I felt bad for people going through it. Then my 2-year-old was diagnosed with Stage...

Keep Reading

To the Mom With the Anxious Soul

In: Journal, Mental Health, Motherhood
To the Mom With the Anxious Soul www.herviewfromhome.com

I see you, mama. You’re the one sitting alone at the family party. You’re the one hovering a little too close to your sweet babies at the park. You’re the one standing in the bathroom at work for just a moment of quiet. Your thoughts are swirling constantly, faster and more fearful that a “regular” mama. You find yourself spaced out at times, and hyper aware at others. You’ve heard the words “just relax” and “everything is fine” more times than you care to count. Sometimes you wish you could make everyone understand why you are the way you are...

Keep Reading

I Am My Child’s Advocate—and Other Valuable Lessons a Stay in the PICU Taught Me

In: Baby, Child, Health
I Am My Child's Advocate—and Other Valuable Lessons a Stay in the PICU Taught Me www.herviewfromhome.com

What started out to be a normal Thursday ended with a race to the children’s ER with my six-month-old. I was terrified. My adrenaline was pumping. My baby was struggling to breathe. The day before, he had been diagnosed with RSV. A simple cold to most healthy toddlers and adults turned out to be life threatening to my infant.   Once we were admitted, I knew this was serious. I knew he was in danger. I could sense the concern and urgency in the doctor’s voice. I knew the gravity of that wing of the hospital he was being wheeled...

Keep Reading

To the Young Warriors Fighting Cancer, You Are Superheroes

In: Cancer, Child, Child Loss, Health
To the Young Warriors Fighting Cancer, You Are Superheroes www.herviewfromhome.com

Most people never get to meet their heroes. I have, in fact—I have met many heroes. These heroes didn’t set out for greatness; they fell victim to a terrible disease and faced it with courage, might and bravery like I have never seen before. And when we talk about this type of battle, there is no such thing as losing. whether the battle ended in death, life, or debility, each of these heroes defeated. My heroes are the innocent children who battle cancer. I high-fived, hugged, wept over, laughed and played with my heroes for 10 years as a nurse. And you better believe I...

Keep Reading

 5 Secrets to Connect with Your Kids

FREE EMAIL BONUS

Proven techniques to build REAL connections