Post Pregnancy: Bye bye belly button

By xgirl | May 11 2011 | 53 Comments


When we consider the changes that are going to take place in our bodies during pregnancy and afterwards, most women fear things like weight gain, stretchmarks, boobs not bouncing back or even shoe size increasing and not decreasing again. Me? I worried about my belly button.

It sounds weirdly random, but I rather liked mine pre-pregnancy. It was an “innie” and it had a nice shape. It’s not like it was sitting on a rock-hard six-pack or anything and I’ve never been a bikini person, so it wasn’t even as though I cared about showing it off in public. I just… liked it.

As my belly grew, I started to worry about my belly button “popping” and becoming an outie. What if it felt weird, all out in the open after so many years of being on the inside? What if I had to stick a plaster over it like some people do to keep it down? And worst of all, what if it never went back in?

The bump expanded and my belly button got smaller and smaller, but to my relief it never did pop out. It stretched and flattened out until there was only the tiniest little slit visible and there it stayed, until the baby vacated the premises.

Now a post-pregnancy tummy is a sad-looking thing for most of us (those who aren’t Victoria’s Secret models, anyway). But while my slowly deflating bump wasn’t exactly a pleasure to behold, it was my poor belly button that really got to me. All of a sudden I could see all the way to the bottom of it! Yes, it was technically still an innie, but a sadly stretched-out one to be sure.

Over the months, my stomach went back to some semblance of its previous self, but my belly button was gone forever. I swear the baby even laughed at it as she poked her finger into it playing in bed with me the other morning (lying down it looks more shriveled up and sad than when standing up).

I did discover one thing that helped a bit - the wonder-oil that is Trilogy rosehip oil. Applying a few drops to the area every day after showering helped to tone the skin up a little bit – reducing the crepiness and improving the appearance enough for me to be able to accept the new shape.

And while I’d never be bothered to actually consider cosmetic surgery, an idle search brought me to a page detailing “umbilicoplasty” and the confirmation that yes, if I ever change my mind, the option to have my belly button “sculpted” to regain its former shape does exist. The accompanying pictures of ancient greek-style sculpted figures were an interesting way to illustrate the possibilities, but for the moment, I think I’ll stick to the oil…

Beauty , , ,

53 Replies to "Post Pregnancy: Bye bye belly button"

  • kittyKat says:

    X girl I totally understand. My son is 21 and my poor belly button never recovered. Its a bit shrivelled looking as well with tiny stretch marks still around it. Never considered having surgery though :-)

  • Anita says:

    God the bellybutton is low on the list of my body issues! After 2 babies, and breastfeeding no.2 until he turned 2 ( january ) my boobs are my no 1 low self esteem body bit! Some days I think they’re ok and other days I could cry – I was 34DD prior to first pregnancy, now I’m about a 32B. And don’t get me started on crepy skin

  • Reidy says:

    I am 6.5 pregnant and I am constantly freaked about my bellybutton!! I has not popped (and I am not sure it will) but it has spread!!! Its like an old mans… I look like I have a beer belly not a baby belly. Its a hole. You could putt a golf ball into it :(

  • dublinista says:

    God I must try the rosehip on my crepy stomach. The skin on my torso got dark after my babas. And my belly button is kind of cavernous!

  • Lisa says:

    You realize you have just made me run to the loo at work to remind myself what my belly button looks like?

    I too had the fear of getting an outie, though never did. And yeah, it’s not as, er, defined as it used to be. Otherwise I think I did ok on the postpartum body front – I didn’t get stretch marks, and have not yet weaned DS and so am still benefiting from the poor woman’s boob job: went from a B to a DD. Hopefully they distract the eye from the squidgy tummy and won’t deflate too badly….

  • Baglady says:

    My belly button looked so odd when I was heavily pregnant! It was an innie too but by the end it stretched so much it was like a crater sized hole. It’s fine now though but my poor tummy is awful, like Anita though my boobs get me down the most. They’re not down to my knees or anything, they’re just a bit deflated looking.

  • ~Thalia~ says:

    I thought I was going to be one of the very lucky ones without stretchmarks but sure enough at about 7.5 months they appeared, they are really not that bad though and hopefully will fade. 5 wks from 40 wks at this stage and bellybutton still an innie but stretched to it’s limit! :lol: Won’t be b/feeding so also hoping to avoid the spaniels ears boobies :lol: We live in hope! :lol:

  • ciara says:

    I have an innie too but didn’t give it a second thought when pregnant strechmarks were more my concern as I have dry skin. It has remained a innie even through pregnancy but it is now alot bigger then it was before, like you, but I couldn’t really care as I have a darling LO to look after and she is my number one concern now not my looks. I will give that oil a go. Not sure there is much point as we are planning another baby as soon as we can aford another one.

  • RiRi says:

    Oh my god, wasnt there enough to worry about already, now I will have to worry about my belly button as well. I might just give up on giving birth all together.

  • kittyKat says:

    Riri, ur bellybutton will be the least of ur worries – you’ll be too busy blowing up the rubber ring to sit on after the birth ! lol

  • cara says:

    OMG my shoe size could go up?! That is now my biggest body worry for when I start reproducing!

  • RiRi says:

    KK, not helping!! Scaring me more though.

    Okay peeps I am not pregnant currently I am doing research on pregnancy and child birth (LOL). So that when I am pregnant and giving birth I should know what to expect. I have everything noted down in my lil diary which I carry with me everywhere.

  • Lisa says:

    Yup, your feet can get bigger (though they don’t always stay bigger).

    Thalia, I’m afraid not breastfeeding doesn’t mean you’ll get the same boobs back you had before pregnancy – a lot of the changes are from pregnancy, not just BFing. (and as a pro for BFing, it does mean your tummy shrinks faster, also in my case meant I could subsist on vast quantities of biscuits/chocs and still lose weight)

  • Feefur says:

    I had an innie before pregnancy, had lovely navel piercing and jewellery which had to go at around 5 months pg. My innie did pop out and Oh lord it really was sore. I remember I had to put a plaster on it as I couldn’t even bear my clothes rubbing off it when it became an ‘outtie’. Couldn’t bear to go near it or even touch it. Its now back to an innie but not the same lovely shape it was pre-pregnancy.
    Got no tummy stretch marks but did on boobs.
    Boobs shrunk back to even smaller than I orginally had…How unfair is that?!

  • RiRi says:

    Thalia, I also dont want to breast feed but my SIL was saying that all the doctors and nurses just pounce on you when you mention it to them. Have you experienced this when going for check ups??

  • Twinkletoes says:

    So many pregnancy posts lately…will be useful reading when the time (hopefully) comes :)

  • Aifs says:

    RiRi – my sis has had 3 babies. For her first, the doctor asked was she going to breast feed. She said she would try it but that she didn’t mind one way or the other. The doctor said he was delighted to hear she didn’t have her heart set on it because some women are and are so disappointed if they can’t do it. It turns out anyway that she wasn’t successful with it and went for bottles.

  • Anita says:

    Can I just ask why you would choose not to breastfeed? I’m not attacking anyone, just can’t understand why you would choose not to against all the advice

  • Shanna says:

    My belly button didn’t change at all, the poppy-out ones scare me a little bit – actually I’m not gone on belly buttons in general, weird little things.

    RiRi I didn’t breast feed – I had a c-section when I had my son, the nurse asked me once about three days after and by that point he’d already been started off on bottles by the nurses so I just said no and nothing was said. It’s an individual choice, don’t let anyone force you to do anything you’re not comfortable with, there’s enough to do when you have a new baby without worrying about what is said by hospital staff – you’re probably never going to see the majority of them again anyway so do what YOU want to do.

  • Aifs says:

    Twinkletoes – :) I have a good feeling about this time round for you. I think you’re possibly with your hubs 400 weeks on the 20th. ;) Such a loser, but that’s one of our things we’ve kept up since we started going out. :lol:

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