My heart cringed as I opened up another Facebook message. It was from someone I barely knew, and I could tell what it was the moment I opened it up. “How would you like to lose the rest of your baby weight? Now is the perfect time to get the body you have always wanted!” That was the sixth message like this I have gotten this month. THE SIXTH.

You see, it has taken me a long time, almost three years, to really become comfortable in my own skin. Since having my kids, things have shifted and moved, lifted and fallen, ballooned and deflated. But it hasn’t been until recent months that I have truly been finding joy and pride in my body. Joy and pride in what my body is capable of doing as a wife and a mom; giving and loving life.

I know that when these “Facebook Friends” message me, they see me and the extra bit of self I never used to have as an opportunity to “help others” and “grow their business.” And I mean, who doesn’t want to lose 10 extra pounds? But for someone who has TRIED to lose those 10 extra pounds and has seen it negatively effect the way she parents and raises her babies…their offer to “help” and singling me out just opens up a gaping hole in my heart that I am already trying so desperately to let the Lord repair.

You see, my stubborn perfectionist heart struggles with finding a happy medium when it comes to my body. For so many of us with this personality trait, it’s either all or nothing, moderation is a hard thing for us to grasp. I have tried many different approaches: counting calories, doing rigorous work outs, taking classes, obsessing over every little thing I put in my body and reading up on all the latest healthy recipes until I am blue in the face. It effects my attitude, my energy level (still getting up in the middle of the night for feedings over here) and it drops my milk supply, and if the baby ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy. And every time I find myself in the middle of these “plans,” feeling like a failure and I end up asking myself the same question: Has my body become my temple or my idol? For me, eating 2 healthy meals a day and one that maybe isn’t as healthy, enjoying a Coke every once in a while, snacking over a piece of pie with my best friend, running a slow mile with my girls in tow every day, going out to eat at a favorite restaurant with my husband and staying in the Word is my healthy temple. And at the end of the day, I am still full of life and proud of the way I live it as a mom; as an imperfect woman trying to raise Godly kids for His glory.

So while I may not be able to do 5 pull ups, I can rock a sick baby. all. night. long.

And while I may be a little squishy around my tummy, my kids have more of me to hug.

And when my arm has a little extra wave when I gesture you hello, I can still play a mean game of hide and go seek. And win.

And although I don’t have a “summer ready body,” my husband still tells me I’m beautiful every day….and I believe him.

So the next time, dear Facebook friend, you ask me if I want to lose the rest of my baby weight and finally get the body I’ve always dreamed of…I will smile, look over at my babies and reply, “I do have the body I’ve always dreamed of. I’m a size mom. And that’s exactly the size I want to be.”

This post was originally published at From Blacktop to Dirt Road

So God Made a Mother book by Leslie Means

If you liked this, you'll love our new book, SO GOD MADE A MOTHER available for pre-order now!

Pre-Order Now

Lauren Eberspacher

I'm Lauren and I'm a work-in-progress farmer's wife, coffee addict, follower of Jesus and a recovering perfectionist. When I don't have my three kids attached at my hip, you can find me bringing meals into the fields, dancing in my kitchen, making our house a home, and chatting over a piece of pie with my girl friends. I'm doing my best to live my life intentionally seeking all that God has for me and my family. Follow me at: www.fromblacktoptodirtroad.com From Blacktop to Dirt Road on Facebook laurenspach on Instagram

I Was Raised by an Easter-Only Mom and I Want More for My Kids

In: Faith, Motherhood
Mother and daughter read Bible

Motherhood is not for the faint-hearted, and women tend to look to their upbringing for guidance. We may not even realize we’re doing it! But being a godly mother is even more difficult when you weren’t raised by one. The questions are endless: How do I model forgiveness? How do I set the right priorities for my household? How do I explain baptism to my 6-year-old? Is it okay to have undiscipled friends around my children? Do we have to pray over every meal? Is the occasional swear word acceptable?  These questions may be less intimidating if you were fortunate enough...

Keep Reading

Even When it Feels Like I Can’t, I Keep Going

In: Faith, Motherhood
Tired mom holding toddler

When I feel like I can’t do one more thing. When I am overwhelmed and touched out and lost in the logistics of it all. When my physical and mental energy are depleted. When the length of my to-do list needs more hours than I have. When I am so bone tired that I’m sure I just can’t go on. And there is still more to do. And the only choice is to keep going– I keep going. I dig a little deeper and find strength I didn’t know I had. RELATED: Check on Your “Strong” Friend, She’s Faking it...

Keep Reading

What Happens When She Wants Another Baby and He Does Not?

In: Faith, Marriage, Motherhood
Husband and wife, pregnancy photo, color photo

I am on my knees, folded over, with my head resting on the carpet. I am in my closet, which doesn’t see much of the vacuum, and it is the only place I can find to sob out of sight. I feel hollowed out and defeated as if I have run a marathon and was cut short at the finish line. I cry out in prayer, pleading with God to soften the heart of my husband. I desperately want another child, and he desperately does not. I take a deep breath and dry my eyes because my 4-year-old outside the...

Keep Reading

Is Your Marriage on Cruise Control?

In: Faith, Marriage
Couple holding hands in car, above view

Cruising down the road, the highway curled before us like a ribbon into the horizon. Cozy road trips are a staple for my husband and me, and we look forward to the time together. Having been married for 37 years the adventure continues! We have loved each other through the ups and downs, and we have learned a lot about relationships. We also made a point of carefully watching successful relationships and surrounding ourselves with those whose marriages flourished. Nowadays, we have many young couples ask us what it takes to keep a marriage vibrant. One of the key ingredients...

Keep Reading

Ordinary Mornings, Extraordinary Grace

In: Faith
Emily Ley holding Sure as the Sunrise book by water's edge

“From his fullness, we have all received, grace upon grace” (John 1:16). Today, take note of what brings you gladness. That which gives you pause or causes you to take a deep breath. These are glimpses of God’s goodness in our lives, brought to life through moments and things, memories and sounds. Realizations and hope. In its biggest forms: a moment you wish you could freeze in time, and in its smallest: a sliver of grace, otherwise overlooked. I wake up to the smell of fresh laundry, sheets cool against my skin. One eye open, I peek down at the...

Keep Reading

She Just Needed to be Held

In: Faith, Motherhood
A little girl held by mom, color photo

“She just needed to be held,” I texted my husband after a two-hour battle to get my 3-year-old to bed. She’s been sick. Daddy’s been gone. And she needed to be seen. Held. Loved. And in that split second, I felt God say, “Just like you.” When things are chaotic. When we feel alone. When we feel weary. RELATED: God Sees You, Weary Mama When our spirit feels sick. When it all feels like too much to carry. We need Him. To breathe life into us. To remind us of our worth. To remind us of the hope He offers....

Keep Reading

Church Should Be a Sanctuary for Neurodivergent Kids

In: Faith, Motherhood
Child praying in church pew black and white photo

We still have a lot of work to do when it comes to the acceptance of loud, energetic, and spirited children inside the church. It’s easy to preach (pun intended) acceptance of every individual as God made them, but when a 9-year-old is shouting out, repeatedly during a sermon, or a 6-year-old is jumping from one pew to the next during the prelude, that’s when reality sets in. You hear the elderly man behind you whisper to his wife, “Back in my day, children were seen and not heard, what’s wrong with kids these days?” Then the single, 30-something across...

Keep Reading

Do You Ever Feel Like a Fraud?

In: Faith, Motherhood
Stressed woman side view

Hey, Momma. Do you ever feel like a fraud? Maybe it’s just me. Here I am . . . trying to build a life and career writing about motherhood. Yet, I don’t feel very good at it at all.  When my oldest was born 13 years ago, I decided on my own that we weren’t going to spank or yell.  Then, life changed.  One child turned into six over the course of a decade. And over the years, I’ve failed to keep the commitment I made all those years ago.  RELATED: I’m Not The Mom I Thought I Would Be...

Keep Reading

The Prayer Heard Round the World: ESPN Anchor Prays On-Air For Damar Hamlin

In: Faith, Living
Dan Orlovsky prays on ESPN for Damar Hamlin

No doubt you’ve heard it said (or even said it yourself): “I’m praying for you.”  In the wake of Damar Hamlin’s terrifying collapse midway through the first quarter of Monday night’s NFL game between the Buffalo Bills and the Cincinnati Bengals, it seems the entire nation has been praying for his recovery. We saw both teams kneel to pray as the ambulance carrying Hamlin left the field. There have been moments of silence offered across stadiums in Hamlin’s honor. Hamlin’s family issued a statement thanking the public for the outpouring of support and prayer: “We are deeply moved by the...

Keep Reading

The Weight I Carry Is Heavy, but Jesus Is Strong

In: Faith, Living, Motherhood
Tired woman holding forehead by light of computer in a dark room

Some days are heavy. Some weeks, months, and years are heavy.  This year has been a hard year for my family, and it took some time for me to describe the feeling that hits me randomly every day. Today, I was sitting on my couch, putting in another grocery order, removing things yet again to fit our ever-dwindling budget and the word heavy came to mind, and it fits so well to describe this year. My heart is heavy. The weight I am carrying is heavy. The always-increasing grocery costs are heavy. The medical conditions, medical debt, and doctor appointments...

Keep Reading