Fact: I’ve given birth to two children in less than two years.
Fact: I love those two kids so much that it hurts sometimes.
Fact: They freaking ravaged my body.

I’m under no illusions: I wasn’t even close to being a supermodel before I was a mom. I’ve always been pudgy or portly or downright fat. I’m not going to get into the hows and whys of it, but there you go. But now? Lets just say I feel downright disgusting.

Pre-babies: My stomach, while not thin or cut by any means, was at least pretty flat. I had hips. I had shape and knew how to dress so I could at least pull off a polished look.

Post-babies: My stomach is paunchy. I have a paunch. I constantly look bloated. My stomach itself is puckered by surgery scars. Stretch marks streak down from my rib cage to panty line like lightning bolts. Lightning bolts on a beach ball. Or a zebra. Take your pick. (I’ll never, ever, wear a bikini.) My hips are nonexistent. My hair is falling out around the temples (standard for me after birth/surgery. It’ll take at least a year to look normal again.). My skin is freaking out and can’t decide if its going to be oily or scaly like a lizard. The bags under my eyes are so dark they look like bruises.

People, I am the definition of a hot mess. And I’m not going to take it anymore.

I joined Weight Watchers about a month ago, and I’ve almost lost 10 pounds. I’m doing the online only program, because the thought of finding the time to squeeze in a meeting every week made me break out into hives. Plus, I don’t like meetings. I don’t like stepping onto a scale in front of anyone else. And I don’t like sitting in a room full of strangers talking about swimsuit season. I don’t do group therapy. At least not that way.

I’ve told my parents, and my dad has been super-duper supportive in his wonderful, non-annoying way. He told me that was great and that he knew I could do it and then he shut up about it. (Lovely man!) He’ll listen to my updates when I want to give them, but never pries. He did, however, tell me I looked really good the last time I saw him, which gave me the warm fuzzies.

Also supportive? The Hubbs. As in “we’re in this together” supportive. The Weight Watchers food tracker bugs the crap out of him, so he’s kinda piggy backing off me, but we’ve got solidarity going on, which totally helps.

I don’t have a magic number as a goal. I’m going more for “being less than XXX lbs” and “feeling good about myself.” But: I also have another goal: The Dress.

I ordered this last week and got it Saturday afternoon. (Because who has time to go to a store and try clothes on? Not me! At least not until the yard monkeys are asleep.) Anyway, when I saw this dress I saw sophistication. Glamour. Elegance. Someone who is put together. Something I would LOVE to be able to pull off. Something I could wear to a wedding and for a special night out with the Hubbs.

I bought it in my pre-pregnancy size. And technically it fit. Which is to say, it zipped without busting the seams or the zipper. (Also: If not for the nearly 10 pounds lost already, I would have had no hope of fitting into this, so progress!) From the bust up, it was gorgeous. My skin looked luminous in it. Length-wise? Slamming. But the stomach-area … I looked five months pregnant. If I invested in a good pair of Spanx I could probably knock that down to three or four months pregnant.

I do not want to look that way anymore. I loved being pregnant and I loved my belly when my children were in there because it wasn’t me. It was the child. That little life. But now I look like I’ve got a deflated basketball attached to my torso. Its not flattering to say the least.

So my short-term goal is this: Fit — and look good — in this dress by October, when the Hubbs and I are leaving the kiddos with their grandparents (and uncle) so we can go to a wedding.

Don’t wish me luck — wish me perseverance.