Solenn Heussaff's life took a 180-degree turn the moment she gave birth to her daughter Thylane Katana.
She weighed four kilos heavier than her pre-pregnancy weight and her hips grew four inches wider, the Kapuso star said in her YouTube vlog on Aug. 2, 2020.
But she noted, "I am very happier now."
Ten months after giving birth to her baby, the first-time mom continues to empower other women and remind them that they are not alone in the struggles of motherhood.
She revealed undergoing the same battle in an Instagram post on Nov. 11, 2020, where she shared a photo of her pregnancy body and wrote, "Though pregnancy is the best thing I have experienced, there is a lot you go through people don't always talk about—Postpartum aka your mental health and state."
She continued, "I couldn't look at myself in the mirror, didn't want people to come visit me, wanted to diet but couldn't because feeding my baby was a priority, being conscious about the dark spots on my tummy, the way my armpits looked.”
The 35-year-old mom also admitted feeling useless “because no matter how much I ate, my baby was crying from hunger because of my low milk supply," among many other things.
“All of these feelings are normal, but I hated myself for feeling this way because I felt I was being selfish,” she stated. “No one truly understands it unless they go through it.”
She advises other moms going through the same challenge, “Mental health is real, and it is important to talk to people about how you feel and to be okay with it. YOU are importantn her latest Instagram post.
Solenn Heussaff’s road to recovery
Heussaff delivered her baby on New Year’s day this year via Caesarian or C-section. Unlike natural childbirth, it requires longer stay in the hospital and recovery at home. Discomfort due to surgical pain and abdominal soreness can also last for several months. The mother’s inability to move freely could also affect her physique.
"Your boobs sag. Your nipples change. Some nipples become as big as the coaster for your beer,” Heussaff said in her YouTube video last August.
"Boobs are uneven. My left is super lawlaw and my right is nice and perk. A lot of things change in your body, and it already is difficult as it is because from a normal body, you look at yourself in the mirror and you do not recognize yourself."
To overcome distress and bouts of depression, Heussaff soon began pouring out her energy on yoga, breathing exercises, and walking. She urged other mothers to do the same in her fitness journey that she has been posting online with the hashtag #RoadToMe.
"If you have a treadmill at home, walk at an incline, uphill, and you will lose weight really quickly that way. If you can't, just try to walk like three to five kilometers every day. Without even dieting, you will lose weight and you will start feeling yourself again,” Heussaff said in one of her blog posts.
She also underlined, "We are all born in different bodies and we heal in different ways. So while the process that I'm sharing worked for me, it might not work for you. And that's fine. Your journey is your own, and it's just important that you listen to your body and also to what your OB-GYN says."
Aside from slowly getting back in shape, the new mom eventually learned to shun other people’s perception of her.
"Ever since I got pregnant and ever since the lockdown, I am way happier now. What I mean by I'm happy is that I care less about the judgment of other people,” she shared in her YouTube vlog in August.
"Obviously when you're C-section, you know things are 'misplaced' or just moved around. Feeling that core again isnt going to happen right away, so just know that that is normal. You need to know that getting back [in shape] isn't simple. It will take time."
She also reminded other moms, "I hope a lot of moms out there will also embrace the way they look now because I don't think many people can give birth to another human being. You guys are powerful in your own way."
Photos from Solenn Heussaff's Instagram page.