I hate my C section shelf.
Weirdly, admitting that is not easy these days, with all the amazing women out there sharing their C section scar images and talking about how proud they are for having them, I for one feel very guilty for hating mine.
That area which I hide, which I feel embarrassed for having, which I am ashamed of almost as if I had any choice in the matter, as if it was in any way up to me how it would look after having two c sections in the space of two years.
Just to clarify, I don’t mean the scar itself.
Truth be told I can’t even see the scar because of the shelf that hangs right above it. And if we are being totally honest then the truth is I haven’t seen my vagina either in a good few years (unless I look directly at myself in the mirror and lift the shelf up a little, which frankly I never do).
And if you have no idea what I am talking about allow me to explain: the “shelf” is basically a whole lot of flesh, skin and fat that hangs down above the scar like a little (or in my case, big) droopy blanket. As the C Section cut often damages the nerves and muscles in the area, it is not uncommon to have a sort of dead section of skin that just feels numb, and in my case, one side is wonderfully larger than the other.
In short, it’s a mess.
The only way to fix it is with plastic surgery (I know this because I’ve looked into it). Sure, loosing weight and exercising regularly may help but the only way to truly get rid of it is by undergoing a massive procedure like a tummy tuck.
For me this is not an option.
In my day to day life I have learnt to dress in a way that hides the bulge I have tucked away in my granny pants. I pop on a good pair of Spanx if I’m wearing something tight and I even found a good pair of high cut bikini bottoms with support which got me through the summer.
But I would be lying if I said it doesn’t effect my life because it does.
One of the biggest challenges has been intimacy. No a big fan of “lights on” is the best way of putting it and although I know it’s ridiculous (he tell me that all the time), I just can’t stand him even looking at that part of my body.
On many days I feel like this is one of my biggest secrets. And It’s weird how although I know millions of women around the world have the same problem, I still feel alone and like I am the only one who feels this way because no one talks about it.
And although I am proud of why I have the scar itself because it is part of my children’s birth stories (which btw were in both cases crap birth stories apart from the babies at the end), I can’t help but hate everything else around it and feel guilty about hating it (which frankly is the even bigger secret).
I guess the reason I wanted to share this with you and what I am trying to say is that I am done with feeling guilty about how I feel. I honestly wish I felt differently, I wish I could run wild in a thong and my shelf dangling in the wind and not give a f*ck.
But I am not there yet (plus I hate thongs) and before I can even start to figure out a way to maybe like that area again (because I really do want to like it again), it needs to be okay to not like it and say so, and then maybe, just maybe, it can one day change.