Arrielle Temple (27), Mahoney (5), Roslin (3), and Kellan (1)
Photographed in Seattle, WA
Arrielle shares -
"I've always been tough on my body. Like most women, it's been hard to see the things I'm most self conscious only get bigger after children - especially my breasts. I've tried to lose weight before and my milk supply went with it. And just about the time I felt okay to lose weight I was expecting the next baby. It's hard to appreciate a body my whole family loves when I just see the flaws.
With my first it was all just a shock. I always heard I'd be tired and I was but I wasn't prepared for just how unprepared I'd feel or how lonely I felt. We had a fairly easy transition once I let go of what I "should" do and did what felt right. It was still a challenge but I felt more confident. Plus, she's such an easy going and laid back child which helped.
My second postpartum period was great - she was born at home in our living room. Her birth moved quite quickly and easily. Nursing and sleeping all started off well. I'll say I was little more anxious after her. She's our only child we actively tried for and I was so nervous to have chosen to bring a life into world when it can be such a scary unforgiving and unloving place. Lucky for me, that passed when I realized the spirit she carried in her.
My third was hard - I experienced postpartum depression for the first time. I had trouble connecting to any of my children and my husband. I stopped interacting with friends. I was anxious and depressed my whole pregnancy. I then had a difficult labor. When my son was three months old, my husband broke his leg and that pushed me over the edge. I just struggled in so many ways. Now 13 months postpartum, I'm feeling myself and able to connect with and love my family and enjoy this goofy silly guy I was at first so reluctant to meet. I can't imagine our family without him.
It's okay to not love every minute it's okay to have a bad hour day or week. Do the best you can with what you have. Being a parent is hard and none of us are perfect. Take time for you, you can pour from and empty cup.
My body has really changed over the last 6 years. After a really difficult pregnancy and postpartum period with my last I wanted to celebrate all the ways I'm making it as a mom and how awesome my crazy brood is. Somehow, someway - I have something to do with that."