This is what I have. This is why I can actually say, “Having kids wrecked my body.” And it hurts. It hurts in a lot of ways. It hurts when I look in the mirror and my “image issues” scream, “Oh my goodness! Are you 6 months pregnant?!” It hurts about midway through the day when I’ve been on my feet awhile and my stomach muscles start to feel the strain. It hurts when one of the children knees me rough-housing and those muscles that are supposed to be protecting my internal organs don’t do their job because there’s a big gaping hole in the middle. It hurts.
I didn’t “bounce back” after Aiden was born but it wasn’t because I didn’t try. It’s because my muscles literally didn’t move back where they were supposed to. And they won’t. Well, maybe not.
They haven’t moved back on their own and losing weight didn’t help. The move made it a thousand times worse. Completely packing a house myself and unpacking most of the new house, lifting boxes, moving boxes and furniture, and my children (because I’m the only one lifting them at home)…..there have been days when I literally couldn’t move without real pain — real, postpartum (14 months later) pain.
What is it?
Rectis diastase is something that actually happens in a lot of pregnancies. It’s when your two, central lines of abdominal muscles decide to split apart (like the picture). It’s not cool — not at all. It makes it hard to sneeze. It makes it hard to exercise. It just makes it hard.
How do they go back?
They don’t. Well, not usually and not on their own. Essentially the muscles splitting can cause a hernia. In fact, every time I sneeze or cough or even laugh too hard, the organ behind those muscles herniates (protrudes) and it’s very painful. Unfortunately that’s not a true hernia. Unfortunately because, if it’s not a true hernia you can’t have surgery to fix it (and expect insurance to pay for it). Fortunately (but not fortunately) it may ACTUALLY truly herniate one day, I’ll be in extreme pain, and they’ll operate. See some issues with that logic? Me too.
What else can I do?
Well, I’m thinking of trying out a yoga class but I want to find someone who’ll spend the time necessary to research what might be best for me to do because many yoga moves will make this worse rather than better. I need someone who’ll find THE right moves to pull these muscles back together without further straining the muscles and moving them further apart.
Well, I’m pretty tired of it. Lifting my own children strains the abdominal muscles and makes it tricky. I’m only 30 years old and shouldn’t be so slowed down by this silly thing. I’m about to hit Amazon and see what kind of postpartum band I can find to help hold those muscles back.
I’d love to say, “Don’t let this happen to you,” but really, there’s nothing you can do to prevent it.
Ugh. Hurting today.