So, one super fun result of my twin pregnancy was something called diastasis recti (separation of the abdominals). This is pretty common with twin pregnancies, but mine was severe. I had a 4 centimeter abdominal split. (Get it? Holy split??) I had a pretty good idea that my abs had separated right after I had the babies. I learned about diastasis recti while studying to become a personal trainer, and I have had clients with it. I knew it was common with a twin pregnancy, but just like extra skin and stretch marks, I was hoping that I would get by without it. Well, no such luck on all fronts. After all, this is what I looked like a week before I had the babies. Believe it or not, I actually was bigger than this at the end.
I mean, how could my abs not have split? Diastasis recti is something that you can live a normal life with. However, for my lifestyle (and profession), I can’t. Workouts need to be modified (especially core work) or you could just make it worse and end in a hernia. The worst part was yoga. Any kind of heart openers (back bending) made me feel like my guts were breaking through my skin (okay, that was a little too gross even for me). But that is what it felt like. There was a crazy bump between my abs where the split had occurred. I went to the doctor and he explained that he normally does not do an abdominoplasty (the procedure had fixes diastasis recti) on someone unless they are done having children. (We are keeping our options open). But 4 centimeters was really severe, and under the circumstances of my life and lifestyle choices, I couldn’t wait. I can still have kids if we decide that is what we want to do down the road.
I was upset that I had to have the surgery, it’s painful with a pretty long recovery, and I have two sweet little girls to take care of. I was PISSED. Pissed that I was going through this. Pissed that my stomach wasn’t going to go back to normal the way all my friends did. It looked like aliens were taking over my stomach. I showed a handful of people what it looked like, and I’m pretty sure they had nightmares about it and I may have scarred them for life. After my shower everyday, I would put on my lotion and get ready in my closet so that I didn’t accidentally get a glimpse of my stomach in the mirror. This all may sound vain to some people, and I guess it is vain. But I worked my ass off through diet and exercise to lose the initial 50 pounds after college, and I’m working my ass off through diet and exercise to lose the double baby weight (almost there, and maybe one day I’ll publish how many pounds I ended up gaining).
This is something that can’t be fixed with diet and exercise. It was devastating. Then I checked my Facebook newsfeed, and saw this picture.
This is my friend from college, Regina Kassar. She had twins 6 months before me. I saw this picture and cried. I was MAD! Mad at her for not having to go through this. Pissed that her body bounced back and mine didn’t! How irrational and psycho is that?!?!?!? After I felt sorry for myself for a day or so, I realized how happy I am for Regina. She looks better than ever! She’s made a major life transformation, and she’s done it in the midst of raising twins! She has even become a Beach Body Coach, and she is helping other people make the same kind of transformation. Check out this link for more info on the program http://www.teambeachbody.com/VTmama2. I can be jealous of her and happy for her at the same time! It is so important for moms to support each other. Everyone’s journey is different. Maybe there were things in this process that were hard for her and easy for me. I want to support her (and anyone else) through that. Regina has been great to me throughout this whole twin thing. I’m always asking her for advice on all things twin related, and she has been such a great resource and support system along the way. It’s completely ridiculous that I would even have that psycho, irrational moment. I’m proud of her…I’m inspired and motivated by her. Look at her, how could you not be?
So I had the abdominoplasty almost 3 weeks ago. It was pretty brutal. My mom came to save the day and help with my recovery and the girls, and Miles was able to take the first week off for double daddy duty. I got to get rid of some extra skin and stretch marks in the process, so there is a silver lining. I’ve been able to walk, but I won’t be cleared for normal exercise until the 6 week mark. After three major surgeries and a twin pregnancy in the last year and a half, my body has been through the ringer. I’m excited to put this last surgery behind me and really get back to feeling like myself.
These babies were TOTALLY worth it. I mean, look at these precious little Halloween flowers. The cuteness is hard for me to take. I couldn’t ask for anything more.