This is more of a rant and personal post than some probably want to see, but I know in my heart it will make a difference to someone and I sure as heck know some people that will appreciate it.

I’ve had my own struggles with weight issues, more than I wish to reveal at this time. Mike knows how hard it was for me and what I went through being 90 lbs and being almost 130 (I’m only 5 feet a little perspective, that’s really low and really high for a small person). All of it was WAY rooted back to something that really didn’t have to do with looks. It started with severe alcoholism in the house I grew up in, having to step up and take better care of my siblings than I should have been responsible for while just a middle and high schooler and then in a very ironic twist being compared to all of my friends getting into big universities and being told constantly what a failure I was in relation to their academic successes by the very person who couldn’t even go a night without slurring their words. Because, academic successes are clearly THE most important thing in life, not the well being emotionally and physically of a child. NOT.

It was hard, but it shaped a lot of who I am as a parent today. I know who I DON’T want to be. I know that I will never, ever, ever, ever, push college on my children. I went to ODU and consequently dropped out after ALMOST finishing because I couldn’t afford to stay in. I rode the public bus in Norfolk for four years, was robbed, had bikes stolen and ended up in a very dark world after some bad things happened to me during those times. Not gonna go there, but it’s part of the point I’m making. I will never compare them to people in COMPLETELY different situations and households. Am I gonna let them slide and never lift a finger to accomplish anything to benefit themselves? No! But I’ll never put this pressure on them and I’ll be damned if they ever see me so drunk I can’t speak. EVER.

So this is a little of a background for you about someone who used to be VERY sensitive about weight. There is a LOT behind it and it’s heavy stuff. On this note– let’s all STOP thinking it’s CUTE to write ridiculous things like “fat girl status!” while eating cupcakes, junk food, etc. Your friends, family, clients that are “bigger” than you…are they “fat girls” because they eat junk all day long? Is that accurate? Let’s STOP whining and whining about not being “bikini ready” because I will tell you from someone who truly appreciates the sand, the ocean, the other WORLD that the beach is made of..nobody cares about your bikini body and if they do? Guess what happens? GUESS what happens if you go out and you are not in perfect shape?

NOTHING. You just continue to live. So do the people around you. And we all keep breathing past that point. And then your career or your family life and nothing is effected by it. Like– nothing happens and the beach doesn’t care what you look like. If you’re so insecure about yourself in a bikini, maybe you should look inside of yourself and see that it’s not about looks..this world is REALLY not about looks. I used to care so much when we lived in Virginia Beach..yes..a month ago, about my clothes, my hair, did NOT wanna be caught out of the house looking crazy in case I ran into someone I knew. But what if I did? If they liked me less after seeing me in my own honest element..then that’s not someone I want to be associated with.

I look okay in a bikini but mama has got plenty of cellulite. I don’t care, anyone who has been with me to the beach can see it. I had it when I was 90 lbs too!!! Now– I’m not saying I don’t care so much to where I wouldn’t ever maybe consider a lift after having breastfed all my kids, etc..if something would make me personally happy and I really saw fit, I would consider it..but for ME, not for anyone else.

But the point is…don’t complain about society being this and that toward women, models being too skinny, etc when you’re feeding into it. Some women are NATURALLY very very thin too and I know that some of those women get tortured for their naturally thin frame being called all kinds of things. Calling yourself fat when you know you are not is definitely shaming women out there who are truly struggling and don’t deserve to feel that way. I know a lot of girls do it because they think it’s cool…but cool is SO out and being a true, genuine and fun nerd..that’s in 😉 There are some things we are all getting too sensitive about these days, I know..and you may think I’m acting that way right now and going overboard on the politically correct etiquette but really girls we have to be so mindful when it comes to stuff like this because our daughters don’t deserve to go through it. I don’t want to EVER hear Cammy or Ellie tell me they are too fat. I just want them happy and healthy and enjoying life 🙂

I know what it’s like to stand on a scale over ten times a day desperate for the already low number to go down.
I know what it’s like to find fat to pinch anywhere just to be critical of my body.
I know what it’s like to feel like the only thing in life I can control is my weight but to have such an unrealistic goal in mind when it comes to the “final” number I want to reach.
I know what it’s like to eat a “perfect” 100 calories a DAY. Yes..100.
It’s pretty heavy and sad stuff.

The new me is paler and a little bigger, but I wouldn’t trade the way I feel for anything. I believe in eating right and getting exercise, which I wish I could do more of..but keeping up with a 2 year old and 5 month old right now is definitely all the physical work I can handle! 🙂 I was pretty tan and thin when Mikey and I were engaged but I wasn’t as happy then as I am now..and that’s priceless. I’m not naturally as thin as I am in this picture, so I was working too hard to be this way unhealthily.


After Cammy I ended up weighing less than when I became pregnant with her! Nursing is HARD work and burns lots of calories!! This image below, after she was born and around 6 months..that’s the first time I REALLY felt okay with my weight and happy..but not because I weighed less, it was because of that little adorable angel beside me. I also LOVED being pregnant with both of my girls and the extra weight never bothered me! Thanks Tara Liebeck Photography for the image 🙂 And the one below where I’m pregnant with Ellie!



This is me nown.less of a tan, a definite roll there on my bikini bottom and looser skin on my stomach. Definitely bigger hips and thighs, too. What you can’t physically see is a happier, healthier and more content person with two of the sweetest girls she could ever hope for.


Posted by:amandahedgepeth

<p>Hey there! We’re a husband and wife team who has the honor to document inspiring wedding days for the most cheerful couples around. We have three daughters lovingly referred to as the mermaid mafia and we love nothing more than salty beach days, laughing as much as possible and living the simple, good life.</p>

9 replies on “Weight | Personal

  1. Love the blog!!!! I too have always struggled with my weight and I have never weighed under 100 pounds. While going through my divorce over 20 years ago I weighed 105 pounds and thought I looked good but was very unhealthy. Would I love to loose 20-25 pounds absolutely but I have to make up my mind when I want to do this and when I want to start excessing. I am 54 years old and have 2 children by C-Section, therefore my flat stomach and 19″ waist my never come back. I am happy with life and business and as you said that is what is IMPORTANT.

  2. Great post! And you look fabulous! Don’t change a thing! Be who you are. That’s all any of us should do. I’ve been saying for years that I’m who I am, and at my age, if someone can’t deal with it, well…..too bad! (And wear that bikini if you want!)

  3. Oh Amanda! I so needed to hear this today! I just had my first child three months ago, and boy did he do some work on my body! He was almost 10lbs (big boy!) And I ended up having him via C Section. I gained almost 40lbs during my pregnancy and I’m still working to get it off. I haven’t been to the beach one time this summer because I have felt awful about my body. As someone who grew up less than two miles from the bay and who typically LIVES all summer on the beach and the boat, it’s been such a depressing time to not feel “cute enough” to put a bathing suit on…..after reading this, I may just have a beach day this weekend 🙂 Thank you for writing this….from one beach loving momma to another!

  4. amanda, i’m so proud that you’re my big sister and that whatever obstacles we’ve overcome as a family… we’ve grown and strengthened because of it. it’s hard that we’ve struggled with our feelings with our family because of the stuff we’ve been through but i think we’ve turned out pretty amazing 🙂 we are strong, opinionated, loving, and we know how to have a good time. i’ve learned everything, even the hard lessons in life, from watching you grow up and struggle and deal with some of the hardships we’ve faced. and as far as weight concerns… you and i have weirdly stayed with the same weight fluctuations our whole lives… from when we were both 0’s to 8’s to 6’s to whatever… it’s awesome to me that we can ALWAYS share clothes because we fluctuate together. and we’re beautiful. and i love you. <3 that's all!

  5. I wanted to take a min to tell you how much I respect you and love this post. I have struggled with my weight. I put so much importance on what my weight is. I was raised where my grandparents took me to see why I was overweight, where I was told I couldn’t have fried foods or soda. Where when I lost weight I was told it’s so nice to see less of you this year. When I got pregnant with Courtlynn at 19, my dad was embarrassed of me and told me to get an abortion. When my husband cheated on me I was told it was because I never lost my baby weight and I must not have been satisfying him- by my own dad. It really puts a lot of pressure on you. I wanted you to know you were not alone. I have since raised my daughter pretty much alone, I am in school, I work full time, I have bought my own house, I have a nice car, and we always have food on our table and she is never without need. I think I did pretty darn good for myself. Even if I am the only one who thinks so I’m proud of me and that’s what you are saying. You are happy with who you are and I love that about you. You are an amazing person inside and out!

  6. I recently read ‘your body is not your masterpiece, your life is’. Weight does not matter. Health and Happiness does. Good for you for being above it. It’s so important for our girls to hear words like, healthy and strong…not fat and skinny. Those thoughts are damaging and all consuming. They waste valuable time and energy…Do you think in 20 years we will look back and say I wish I ran more? No…we will say I wish I could go back and hold my baby or read her a book. I respect and appreciate your honesty. You should feel proud that this post probably helped someone out there who needed a bigger, better perspective.

  7. I absolutely love this post! As a young wife and mother of a newly 3-year old and almost 2-year old…I can DEFINITELY relate! Keep it up! We need more authentic writers

  8. Amanda, you are truly the sweetest person I’ve ever met, and boy, am I blessed to know you in person! Your honesty each and every day proves how genuine you are, and I LOVE THAT ABOUT YOU! Keep up the positivity always and never let anyone get you down (not that you do, anyway!!!)!!! You are beautiful, inside and out, and the message in this blog is one for the ages. Seriously. xoxoxoxo

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