Kate Ferdinand felt “really abnormal” and “overwhelmed” after giving birth.
The 29-year-old former reality star welcomed her son Cree with her husband Rio Ferdinand in December, and has said she struggled to come to terms with her post-baby body because she didn’t “recognise” herself in the mirror.
She said: “There are so many things about motherhood that no one tells you. I’d had the baby and I was in this whirlwind of emotion.
“My body was not the body I recognised. I felt really overwhelmed. I was feeling really abnormal and I started panicking. ‘Am I meant to be feeling like this?’ ”
Kate shared a picture of herself on social media just 11 days after Cree was born via C-section, and won praise from her fans with the honest post.
And Kate has now said she felt she needed to share her thoughts online so that other people can see how “normal” it is to feel the same way.
She added: “I was so happy but very emotional. And I was looking through social media and thinking, ‘Is this normal? Because no one ever says this’.
“I thought, ‘If I put up a photo of me with my hair and make-up done perfect, that is not real and it is not how I feel’.
“I felt like I had to share it. And then it was crazy the amount of people who told me they felt the same. I think that’s why it is right to not share the perfect pictures all the time.
“When you are going through post-pregnancy, you can’t see out of the bubble. You think, ‘I am never going to go back to normal or feel the same again’.
“But you do come out of the other side and you will feel OK.”
Since welcoming Cree, Kate – who is stepmother to Rio’s three children from his marriage to his late wife Rebecca Ellison – isn’t putting pressure on herself to get her body back to the way it was before she gave birth.
Speaking to The Sun newspaper’s Bizarre column, she said: “There is a lot of pressure to bounce back but I don’t feel it is realistic with a newborn baby and three other children.
“I would love to look how I looked before Cree but I am not putting a load of pressure on myself because things don’t always go to plan when you have a baby.
“You might plan to eat healthily and go to the gym. But then something happens and you still haven’t cooked dinner, so you end up snacking.
“I just thought, ‘I need to enjoy this moment with my family rather than freaking out about whether I do or don’t feel good, or whether I don’t look like how I used to look’.
“Obviously I love the gym and I love exercising. But I might not make my session every day because the baby might not have slept and I am really tired.
"I am not putting that pressure on myself. I try to move when I can, I will try and exercise more and I will try and eat more healthily.”