The term snapback is defined simply as: returning to your pre-baby body or pre-baby weight. The significance of a snapback is the lightening speed at which it happens for some women. At 1, 3 or 6 month post-partum many Mamas are 100% back to their pre-baby body!
OK Mamas, is it just me or is the pressure to snapback at an all time high? We also live in the age of the internet MACHINE which is both amazing and creepy at the same time. I’m “coincidentally” bombarded with adverts and offers regarding my post-partum body on Instagram, Facebook, Google – you name it. The adverts are catered directly to me and depending on the day, can really cause some mental and emotional stress to a sleep deprived Mama of 2 boys!
When I’m cluster feeding one baby boy and simultaneously attempting to help my older son prepare for a spelling test – the last thing I want to see as I spell check a word in google (in this particular situation, seeing the word ‘tomorrow’ 19 times you have absolutely no idea if you’re making up the spelling or if tomorrow is even a word), the last thing I want to see as an advert is how to turn my mama belly into tight abs!
I’ve also seen my fair share of side-by-side images of women showing their pregnancy and post-pregnancy bodies, dates included. It’s quite impressive. Especially because I was NOT thinking about a full body photo at 4 days post-partum. Let me add here, I’m not a hater (usually) these Mamas look amazing and I’m (usually) inspired when I see these pictures. But to be honest, I am left looking down and examining my body afterwards because….well, I still don’t recognize it!
Let’s take a moment and discuss the different types of snapbacks, shall we?
The Natural Snapback: You wanna thank your Mama for a snap like that! (Read that again but rap it Salt’s verse from Salt N’ Pepa’s Shoop). Mothers who simply have “it” in their genes, they can sneeze day 2 post-partum and the SNAP happens instantaneously!
The Passive Snapback: These mamas are the ones that can do absolutely nothing major, a plank here, a salad there and in two months BAM…They’re snapped!
The Breastfeeding Snapback: I really thought I’d be her! The Mama who just breastfeeds. We know, we know, we know that breastfeeding burns calories. These Mamas simply breastfeed (like many of us) but for them, the natural side-effect of breastfeeding is the SNAP!
The Food & Fitness Snapback: I respect these women and would love an ounce of their discipline. So, these are the ladies who have a plan and stick to their plan no matter what. They know the SNAP will only come if they work for it, and work for it they do!
Okay okay, to be honest, I’m likely – well I mean…I’m not working for my snapback as hard as many other Mamas. At the same time, I’ve been quite hard on myself and overly compared my body to other Mamas. What’s crazy about that is I would never negatively compare my baby to other babies or my 6 year-old to other kids. They are beautifully unique and lovely little individuals. So, I’ve been working on taking that same gentle love for them and directing it towards the way I see and love myself!
This is entirely a completely different blog post for another day, but I have to constantly remind myself how amazing my body is! It’s carried, nurtured, protected and birthed two beautiful and healthy babies. My body is a blessing and I need to look upon it and think about it with a lot more kindness!
A snapback for me does not come naturally, passively, or from breastfeeding. I’ll have to work hard for it if I want it. The question then becomes do I really want?
What I’ve realized on this journey called Motherhood is…we need to love ourselves more as Mamas and do what’s best for us as individuals! Let’s refocus our snapback to simply loving ourselves a bit more and doing things that we enjoy. Mamas, after babies our lives are usurped by a tiny human and it never stops, it just consistently changes. So for us, it’s not often we have free time to do things that we (as Mal, not Mom) want to do.
So I repeat, do what’s best for you! If you enjoy a spin class, take that class! If it’s a quiet corner in a cafe with a book, tell us where you found a quiet cafe in Hong Kong! If it’s a daily nap, Mama take that nap! If it’s a post-natal Pilates class, have fun at that class!
I’m worrying less about my snapback and focusing more on loving myself. I hope you do the same!
Mallori, known as Mal, is the creator of 852 Mamas. Originally from California, Mal has lived in Hong Kong for close to 3 years. Mal and her husband of 10 years, David have two beautiful boys: Levi, born 2011 in Abu Dhabi and Malachi born 2017 in Hong Kong.