Parenting

Would you post a picture of your Mummy Tummy on the Internet?

Urgh. Am I the only one who hates the “Mummy” tag? Slummymummy, Yummymummy, Mummyblogger and now Mummytummy.

The Mummytummy discussion is hot at the moment, due to the magic cream that supposedly gets rid of the post-natal bulge. There are websites that encourage their users to post photos of their midriffs to show that they are proud of their Mummytummy as it shows that they have given birth to their children.

While I agree that the media obsession with the latest sleb to slim down to pre-baby weight just after the birth is horrible, I am not going to be posting a pic of my tummy anytime soon.

It is surely not a secret that the recovery after the birth is not due to any miracle sleb juice or creams, but to hard work and determination. For women like Heidi Klum and Denise Van Outen, this is eased by the fact that they likely have access to childcare and personal trainers. For normal women it is much more difficult to juggle having a new baby, perhaps going back to work or the school run for older children, with a diet and fitness regime. Not to mention the fact that for those of us not reliant on the shape of our body to get work, like models and actresses, it is not really a priority in those first hazy days and sleepless nights.

A flat tummy is down no genes and determination, not gloop out of a tube.

I also have a problem with the whole Mummytummy thing in that it gives the impression that there is nothing to be done, that it is all part and parcel of motherhood.

After the birth of my second child in 2004 I put on a fair bit of weight. In 2005 I lost it, and with regular visits to the gym had as close to a flat tummy as I have had for years. Over the past few years I have put on weight again. I would like to lose that weight as I know I would feel better about myself but it is not the hook that I hang my self-esteem on. At the moment I am pretty damn content with my life.

If and when I lose the weight, I may still have a small tummy. I can live with that but I won’t blame it on the fact that I gave birth. As if being a mother gives me absolution.

The final point I have to make about the whole Mummytummy debate is that I hate the fact that women are again being reduced to their status as a mother. My tummy belongs to me. I may have carried a couple of babies in there, but it is mine and not theirs.

I am a mother but it does not define my whole being. 

I am me.