What’s my body supposed to look like after giving birth?

Here’s a picture of Kendra (You know, Hugh Hefner’s Kendra) after giving birth, in a bikini, holding her baby:

Taken from OK magazine

Taken from OK magazine

Her body after baby. She exercised and dieted and lost all her extra weight! 

But the truth is, even though I admire most women who do have this will, let’s face it: Being a new mom is definitely not the time to be thinking about yourself, or even having some spare time to exercise. I know I was mostly tired, having the baby blues and worrying about you know, my twins.

 

I never cared about what my body looks like. I’ve been both chubby and thin and none bothered me. But I did ask myself about my post-birth body when random stuff started happening to my skin during pregnancy. Now that the summer/beach season is here, I realized I had to get a one-piece bathing suit since my stretch marks are very visible. I never had a one-piece. It made me think about older women who do wear them to « hide » stuff. I felt a bit weird.

Then came a wonderful thing. A very dear friend of mine got me a wonderful gift: a book about mothers’ bodies. It’s a photography book by Jade Beall. 

The bodies of women's cover

The bodies of women’s cover

This book shows different bodies of women, mothers, and their stories. It makes me realize what a woman’s body really is and that the answer to my question is: It doesn’t matter, because your body made a wonderful thing. It created a human being. Or two.

No matter what it looks like, each stretch mark is a reminder of your wonderful baby. He/she/they did this. « This » should not be ashamed of, quite the contrary.

It made me think about what a woman’s body mean. A body should be celebrated, as it is beautiful the way it is.

I know it’s cliché, but we can’t live our lives feeling weird and uncomfortable because of what society sets as standards. Especially not when we gave birth. I’m not judging celebrities, and yes, we should take care of our well-being, but I’d prefer playing with my babies for two hours instead of going to the gym. They’re more fun anyway.

I think women kick ass. We should not forget that mothers are also awesome women.

PS: In case you’re interested in the book, here’s a random example from it:

Here’s Rebekah’s story:

edphotoAnd here’s Rebekah:

Rebekah

Source: The Bodies of mothers, A beautiful project, by Jade Beall.

Cheers to you, awesome moms and women!

 

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