Sunday, December 1, 2013

Remembering the Undies

Fotballfrue via Instagram

I stumbled across this photo of Norwegian fitness blogger Caroline Berg Eriksen this morning, looking fab and fit in nothing but her underwear just four days after giving birth to her daughter Nelia. 

Berg Eriksen is the wife of a Norwegian football player, and pens a blog called Fotballfrue (which literally translates to Soccer Wife, or the Footballer's Wife, depending on which translation program you use, but it's all just splitting hairs). 

If you've been offline reading a good old-fashioned book or putting up your Christmas decorations for the last few days, you may have missed her photo and the nice (and not-so-nice) little flurry of opinion it has generated across the big wide interwebby land. 

As you may well expect, journalists and bloggers across the globe have taken up their various corners and started the great debate, firing off posts ranging right across the spectrum from condemnation to congratulations. 

If you have come across it while Procrastabooking or browsing entertainment sites, and stumbled through it's growing online shit storm, then you may well have already decided which corner you stand in, or even decided that you don't really care enough to stand in any corner at all. 

I'm definitely in the last category on this one: I don't give two hoots about how Berg Eriksen's body looks, or the underlying motivations behind the snap, or what the photo contributes or detracts from the global post-pregnancy body image debate, or even the fact that Berg Eriksen appears to have a chandelier in her room (although that does border on being quite cool). 

Perhaps I've reached 'celebrity postpartum selfie shot' overload and tuned out, or maybe I am just too obsessed with my own rather floppy and flabby post-pregnancy body and how it looks in front of the mirror to really care about anyone else's photographed reflection.  

What does interest me about the picture, though, is the fact that a four-day young mother - who endured labour and birth and the first few days of life with a newborn - actually had the time, mental capacity and emotional stability to remember she had pretty underwear.

Not only that, she also had the physical strength to put it on and take a photo with her phone AND remember her Instagram account details, use a filter and operate the interwebby to upload it to boot. She has also managed to write a blog post complete with pictures of the birthing process and upload that too. 

All this underwear donning, writing and uploading within just a few short days of giving birth to a baby. This is astounding - she had a baby, and remembered she had lacy undies, all within the first week! 

Four days after I gave birth, I could barely even remember my own name and actually did forget my daughter's on more than one occasion. My brain felt like it was imploding, and my boobs felt like they were exploding.

Four days after I gave birth, I was camped in my lounge room wearing nothing but a fluffy mandarin coloured dressing gown, purple ankle socks and soothing gel breast pads, alternating holding my baby with bouts of crying and potato chip demolition.

Four days after I gave birth, I was in the throes of attempting to breastfeed, complete with nipple shields and breast pumps and lanolin and complementary expressed milk bottle feeds and daily home visits from midwives.

Four days after I gave birth, I was feeling the hormones crashing down around my ears, snapping at the people around me and hiding in the shower trying to feel even somewhere close to a normal functioning human again.

Four days after I gave birth, I was reeling with exhaustion, with had a baby who wouldn't sleep a wink at night time and only five broken hours sleep logged on the clock during the past ninety-six. 

Four days after I gave birth, I was thinking about buying larger maternity bras and trying to summon up the courage to try and squeeze my post-partum body into a scarily tight pair of recovery shorts so that one day, I might hopefully be able to wear some normal pants again.

Four days after I gave birth, I was marveling at the tiny little squirmy baby lying on my chest, wondering how she ever grew inside me - and more to the point, how on earth she ever actually came out.

Four days after I gave birth, I was looking down at my puffy belly and
plentiful generous expansions and somewhat judging myself for eating my way through my final trimester and dissing pregnancy yoga as boring.

Four days after I have birth, I would not have been able to remember I owned a pair of nice knickers, let alone remember where I had put them or even think to put them on.

Some new mums bounce back at an incredible pace, heading out to the grocery store and running errands with their new bundle snuggled into a carrier; other new mums (like me) take a little longer to adjust their eyes to the new daylight glare of the parenting world.

Caroline Berg Eriksen has a fab and toned physique, that she clearly worked hard for before and during her pregnancy - but it's her apparent bounce back and her ability to remember she has pretty undies so soon after birth that has me impressed.

How quickly did you bounce back after giving birth?

M x

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Photo credits: Fotballfrue via Instagram/Chiot's Run via photopin cc


  1. I totally missed this in the 'news'. But yes, I just couldn't have been arsed to take the photo 4 days in, and I wouldn't have had the wits to find the small pants. In fact, due to technical reasons, I am sure I felt pretty limited to ginormous black M&S undergarments that I effectively used as disposable knickers.
    Fair play to her I guess!

    1. Oh yes, there were ginormous black undies aplenty round here!