Initially after giving birth to our precious daughter, I was so overjoyed, that my body was not even a consideration for days – I simply didn’t care what I looked like. However after a few weeks I started to feel like me again; my tunnel vision widened so that Anna stopped being the one and only thing that I could think or care about and, among other things, my interests broadened to encompass considerations such as what my husband thought about my new naked body, and whether I’d feel sexy, or attractive, or beautiful ever again. I was still completely happy with my baby daughter, and the changes to my body still seemed a minuscule price to pay, yet I couldn’t help but wonder these things about whether I’d ever look the way I used to, or what my sex life would be like from now on….. And for a while it got me down – I believed that I would never tone up my jelly-belly, and that my stretchmarks would never fade, and that I would never be the young, slim and attractive woman that I was pre-pregnancy. Now, though, I have reached a place where I feel a kind of calm acceptance, compassionate understanding and unconditional love towards my body, and this is why: Looking at my body materialistically, my breasts are now large and loose, I have gained a lot of weight, a couple of stretchmarks and some bagging and sagging here or there. However, looking at it from a level penetrating skin-depth, my body has done a terrific and wondrous job; from nothing more than the merging of two cells, it has created, nurtured, protected and delivered a complete human being! And I feel so proud to be the woman I am right now, because from me has come something so perfect, and pure, that I can barely believe she is real! I look at my stretchmarks, and my remaining ‘pouch’, and my leaking, sagging breasts with their sore, chapped nipples, and I am proud. I look at my body, and I see evidence of my fertility, and I am reminded of the miracle that it has partaken in… I truly am in awe, and cannot believe the utterly amazing process, which I have been a part of. At the moment, all I can feel for my body is love, respect and pride – This is truly all I feel; there is no negativity even in the tiniest quantity, despite the fact that my body is now far less ‘attractive’ or ‘acceptable’ than it has ever been before, and it is overwhelming. Every mother should be proud of their body, because no matter what it looks like – indeed WHATEVER it does look like – it was the incubator that created and nurtured their baby until it was ready to expel it into the outside world, and every wrinkle, stretchmark or bit of saggy skin is proof of that fact. So here it is, my body, and I’ve never been more proud.