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Five Years Old

July 5, 2011

The last few days have been a strange whirlwind of PMS hormones and the resulting emotions, insomnia and the resulting exhaustion, and some strange allergic reaction and the resulting Benedryl (And, FYI, watching Twin Peaks after taking a Benedryl is, well, exactly how you’d think it is). Under normal circumstances I’d be more prepared to celebrate SOAM’s fifth birthday (this may be wishful thinking) but this entire year has been just about as strange as the last few days and I’m just trying to keep swimming. But five years is a big deal and I want to mark it somehow.

Day 95 Learned Love

Five years and some months ago, I had that moment in the restaurant in Anaheim that sparked this thought that maybe I wasn’t the only one. The idea took hold and grew as I talked with people about it. And then, one warm July day, as my four year old was taking a nap, I snapped a picture of myself holding the baby, and uploaded it to a new blog. And here we are.

stretchmarks

Five years ago I was a different person, at a different place in my journey to self-love. Five years ago, the world was a little different, too. The internet changes things, makes the world smaller. Today it’s so much easier to connect with people who are going through the same things you are going through. Today it’s so much easier to find the information you need for your journey. Five years ago SOAM was just born and now it’s a staple for moms online.

Mama

I think right now we are at a sort of crossroads in this fight against society’s idea of what a woman should look like. Over the last five years I have witnessed a massive shift away from that idea. Unfortunately, I have also felt society grip that idea even stronger as it feels us pulling away. So we still have a lot of work to do before women are totally free from it, until we are free to love ourselves as we are, at every step along our own roads. But you mamas have shown me that we can do it.

belly line up

So, let’s celebrate! Leave a comment here and you’ll be entered to win a copy of Fifty Nude Women which, as I’ve said before, is one of the best short films ever made. I’m also running a contest over on TIAW, so check that out and you can double your chances of winning (although I will make sure the same person doesn’t win both contests). I’ll run both contests until this Friday at midnight and I’ll announce the winners on Saturday Monday. The winners will have until midnight on Monday Wednesday to get me their addresses, or I’ll choose another winner.

UPDATE: Contest is now closed and winners announced! Thanks for participating!

And Diego met the Pacific Ocean

Thank you, all of you. You are beautiful!

(Photos from the SOAM Flickr Pool, all submitted within the last year.)

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101 Responses to “Five Years Old”

  1. Lily Says:
    July 5th, 2011 at 10:01 am

    I love SOAM, as it shows us that every woman is different! :)

  2. Julie Williams Says:
    July 5th, 2011 at 10:02 am

    happy 5th Birthday! such an inspirational website for this mother of 3!

  3. Tessa Says:
    July 5th, 2011 at 10:03 am

    wonderful photos of BEAUTIFUL women in this blog!! aall shape and sizes!

  4. Valerie M. Says:
    July 5th, 2011 at 10:05 am

    Happy birthday!

  5. GM Says:
    July 5th, 2011 at 10:08 am

    I love what this blog is about. I’m a mom and I sometimes struggle with my appearance. Oddly enough though I feel more comfortable with my body and who I am now then I did before. I have plenty of days where I look in the mirror and miss the “glory days” of my breasts and tummy. I feel much less sexually attractive now but I’ve also started to wonder why that matters so much in the first place. Reading this blog helps reaffirm my own beliefs of what beauty really means. Thank you.

  6. Traci Says:
    July 5th, 2011 at 10:09 am

    Happy Birthday, SOAM! My 4th daughter should be here any minute, maybe she’ll share her birthday with you!

  7. S. Says:
    July 5th, 2011 at 10:09 am

    I don’t have children myself, but this site is no less valuable to me.

  8. E.J. Says:
    July 5th, 2011 at 10:14 am

    I’m a woman who has always had issues with her body, and I’m now the mother of a little girl. When I visit a site like this and see that it is popular and thriving, it makes me feel better about my daughter’s future, knowing that she has a better chance of escaping the self esteem problems and body image issues that I had. So thank you, so much, and HAPPY HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!

  9. kira Says:
    July 5th, 2011 at 10:15 am

    my youngest is 13 & my stretchmarks were so damaging to my body that I still look like a burn victim to this day. I’ve always said I was ok with them, but the “sting” of feeling like (one of)the only one was real, especially while trying to date… while i’ve long come to grips with the idea that THIS is my body, seeing all the beautiful brave women on this site has been a wonderful & empowering experience.
    Keep up the good work & a very happy birthday to SOAM!

  10. Melanie G Says:
    July 5th, 2011 at 10:24 am

    SOAM helped me so much during my confusing postpartum experience. Thanks so much to everyone for sharing their stories!
    Happy 5th Birthday!

  11. Maril green Says:
    July 5th, 2011 at 10:28 am

    Happy birthday!

  12. Astrid Says:
    July 5th, 2011 at 10:33 am

    Happy Birthday to a wonderfully inspiring site!! :-)

  13. Anna V Ilkka Says:
    July 5th, 2011 at 10:35 am

    Congratulations!

    The pictures of these brave women helps me to realize what a blessing it is to have the body I have after hating it from ages 15-39. Giving birth forced me to let go of the hatred for the sake of my daughter’s healthy body image development, but, the body dysmorphia remains. I now have something compare to, and, some days, I can look in the mirror and see reality rather than ugly because of SOAM.

    Thank you.

  14. Selene Says:
    July 5th, 2011 at 10:42 am

    SOAM and TIAW have powerful messages. I’ve been meaning to try to get to see Fifty Nude Women for a while now!

  15. Susan Says:
    July 5th, 2011 at 11:17 am

    Happy Birthday! Thank you ever so much for SOAM. I have shared it with so many women. It has definitely changed the way I raise my children in regard to social and media messages. MWAH! Thanks!

  16. Corinne Says:
    July 5th, 2011 at 11:33 am

    Sorry to hear you’ve been ill, happy birthday to soam and thank you for making a difference x

  17. Jennifer Krog Says:
    July 5th, 2011 at 11:38 am

    Thank you SOAM for helping women to see beyond the flesh. Mothers give life. The shape of a mother is the shape of life, love and hopefully laughter. Obsession with body image is a plague, one that with time, truth, trials and tribulations will hopefully one day be abolished, if not for all, for some (perhaps a lucky few). So Moms, women, girls and their support groups (male gender included) be sure to tell the women you love how beautiful they are inside and out. Pass it on, pay it forward, karma, whatever you want to call it. What goes around comes around and compliments are as contagious as smiles.

  18. shanen Says:
    July 5th, 2011 at 11:47 am

    Thanks for the site and congrats

  19. Amber Says:
    July 5th, 2011 at 12:28 pm

    I found this site 3 yrs ago when I was pregnant and visit it everyday. I have yet to submit anything but someday I hope to. Thanks so much for creating SOAM!

  20. Dee Says:
    July 5th, 2011 at 12:52 pm

    SOAM is so amazing and has helped me so much. Every morning since I found the site I check to see the new post with my coffee. I love to start out my day in such a positive way. I feel better now than I ever did before I had my daughter partially thanks to this site. Excited to post my update soon. :) .

    HAPPY BIRTHDAY SOAM!

  21. Izzy Says:
    July 5th, 2011 at 12:53 pm

    Happy Birthday to SOAM !! I can’t thank all you beautiful mamas enough for sharing your experiences through the most amazing, but topsy turby ride of mother hood. We are all mothers and we are all BEAUTIFUL! :)

  22. Bryana Says:
    July 5th, 2011 at 1:01 pm

    Thank you for giving us a place that makes us feel “normal”. It’s hard to find a group of women all feeling the same things and all admitting to it.
    We are at a crossroads with the way society and the media portray beauty, but I feel we are making an impact.
    Again, thank you for such a beautiful thing!

  23. Terressa Says:
    July 5th, 2011 at 2:35 pm

    Happy fifth birthday SOAM! You’ve changed the world in just 5 short years. Thank you for showing the world true beauty.

  24. Marz Says:
    July 5th, 2011 at 2:49 pm

    Yay! Five years!

  25. K Says:
    July 5th, 2011 at 3:18 pm

    Happy Birthday SOAM! Love this site. It has helped me realize that I am beautiful and should celebrate my mommy body.

  26. Liz Lich Says:
    July 5th, 2011 at 3:28 pm

    Happy Birthday SOAM!! Thank you so much for everything you do! Thanks to this site I have been able to accept myself and my body for what it is and what it’s capable of. Thank you, thank you, thank you. :)

  27. Karla Says:
    July 5th, 2011 at 4:15 pm

    Thanks SOAM!! this blog has been with me throughout my own journey to self love…

  28. Kirstin Says:
    July 5th, 2011 at 6:55 pm

    Happy 5th Birthday SOAM!! I love this site and all the stories. It has helped so much connecting with other mothers :)

  29. SB Says:
    July 5th, 2011 at 9:46 pm

    I can not believe this site is only 5 yrs old. My daughter is 1 now – and i am expecting my second, and I found this site by typing in “stretch marks after pregnancy” in my google search bar. I stupidly thought in two weeks I could get my body back and that some miracle lotion would wipe away the scars. Ive come to accept the ridges in my belly and my saggy boobies, but not without the help of this empowering website. Here’s to many many many more birthdays of SOAM, and one day, when my little girl is crying over stretch marks her unborn baby may leave her, I hope this site is still up and running so we can read the posts together.

  30. Mina Says:
    July 6th, 2011 at 12:46 am

    Happy 5th birthday SOAM. I come here some days to offer encouragement to others, and some days I come to get it myself. I’ve really appreciated feeling normal here…normal in that I’d sacrifice anything for my children (like all the moms on this site), but still normal in struggling with my mommy body.

  31. Celeste Says:
    July 6th, 2011 at 6:49 am

    I am a mother of 4 and new to your site, it is beautiful and encouraging, just like all of the women involved. thank you.

  32. Amanda Summers Says:
    July 6th, 2011 at 8:20 am

    Thank you for helping other women open up about their insecurities. This is an amazing blog.. Thank you, and happy birthday!!

  33. Julie Says:
    July 6th, 2011 at 9:08 am

    Wow congrats on 5 years! I remember you coming on the scene 5 years ago =)

  34. alexis Says:
    July 6th, 2011 at 6:04 pm

    I found this before I was even planning to get pregnant. It took away so much of the shock and fear that my friends have gone through. Reading other women’s stories helped me put into perspective my experience and be grateful for what I have. It also helped me gather the strength to do things my own way, and to develop an informed way. I feel a lot of sympathy for women who say they wish they had done things differently, eaten better, found more time to relax, appreciated their families, bodies, and circumstance before things got really hard. I try to implement those lessons and pass on to other women wisdom of my time as a mother. We have lost that kind of communication in our culture and SOAM brings it back.

  35. Tabitha Says:
    July 6th, 2011 at 6:17 pm

    :D

  36. Ashley Says:
    July 6th, 2011 at 9:11 pm

    Congrats on five years! Thank you for running this! It has helped me to see that I am not alone in the way I feel, and has brought me acceptance. Maybe I don’t love my body yet, but I’m on my way :)

  37. Maya Says:
    July 7th, 2011 at 4:44 am

    There must be some days when it’s hard to keep going with this website because of negativity from some of the readers and the media. I think SOAM provides an important voice about women’s bodies and motherhood. It’s refreshing to see something different out there

  38. Gina taylor Says:
    July 7th, 2011 at 10:29 am

    Love all the pictures! Wonderful blog!

  39. Cynthia Payne Says:
    July 7th, 2011 at 10:31 am

    Thank yoou for five years of love!!

  40. Meghan Says:
    July 7th, 2011 at 10:33 am

    SOAM has helped me more than my words could ever describe. I have a greater appreciation for myself and my body after reading the entries on here. I hope that SOAM can start a movement to change our nation. As my husband said, the rest of the world appreciates women and their natural venus shapes. Only in America are we led to believe that true beauty comes with fake boobs. I hope that through SOAM we can reach out to American culture and movies and show the “realness” of our human forms :) Thank you and I’d love to win this contest especially for my little girl and my two sons. I want to educate them the right way :)

  41. Jessica GIbbons Says:
    July 7th, 2011 at 10:36 am

    Congratulations on 5 years!!! I have been so impressed with the photos over the years. I am a mom to 7 kids. I have PCOS and insulin resistance, so I have a lot of extra body fat around my middle section. People assume that I am fat because of my babies, but in reality, I gained so very little weight with the pregnancy! It is very hard to love your body when you feel like it fails you…like there is no hope. But it is wonderful to see the pictures and stories and know that I am not alone. thank you.

  42. Maida Says:
    July 7th, 2011 at 10:37 am

    Happy birthday to a wonderful website :)

  43. Raeanne Madison Says:
    July 7th, 2011 at 10:38 am

    Congratulations, and happy birthday to this wonderful site! So glad to have found this. Solidarity.

  44. Alissa Says:
    July 7th, 2011 at 10:41 am

    happy birthday soam!! i love the site. it makes me feel better on my very off days. :)

  45. Jo Brown Says:
    July 7th, 2011 at 10:42 am

    Thank you. I can’t express more than just that. Thank you.

  46. Chelsea Says:
    July 7th, 2011 at 10:43 am

    I found SOAM while I was pregnant and I am so thankful I did. The change in my body that took place while pregnant and post partum was not easy for me. I hated the way I looked but knew there were others that felt that way and that this change was normal and natural and now beautiful.

  47. Jen McLellan Says:
    July 7th, 2011 at 10:49 am

    Huge congratulations on 5 years! SOAM helped me so much when I got pregnant. As a plus size woman I wasn’t sure how I’d look pregnant and I wanted so desperately to see pictures of women I could identify with. SOAM provided me with that and so much more. Thank you from the bottom of my heart!

  48. Michelle Bryant Says:
    July 7th, 2011 at 10:51 am

    i can look at these pictures and read these stories of woman just like me. i see beautiful flesh altered by pregnancy and motherhood. i can look at my own body without the self hate. i can appreciate my own body as a ves-soul of love and life. thank you for facilitating our journey to accept ourselves.<3

    Happy Five Years SOAM!!!

  49. Violet Says:
    July 7th, 2011 at 10:51 am

    Thank you SOAM!!!! Thank you from the bottom of my heart. For enabling the memory that we are all beautiful. For the understanding that we we are creating is more important than the a perceived notion of what beauty is…and the understanding that we are more than what we appear to be.

    The boundaries that you are stretching are worth more than you probably imagine.

  50. sarah Says:
    July 7th, 2011 at 10:52 am

    Happy 5th Birthday! I love this website! It has given me confidence and changed how I feel about my body!

  51. Beth Says:
    July 7th, 2011 at 10:53 am

    SOAM makes me feel like I am not alone! Having children changes your body forever and to be able to relate to other mothers is a good feeling.

  52. jackie Says:
    July 7th, 2011 at 10:55 am

    wow…5 years already. i LOVE this site. When i wa pregant with my youngest, my oldest daughter (11) sid ‘mommy, what are you going to do to get your belly small again?’ i said ‘well baby, my stomach will neverbe the way it was before had your brother. pregnancy has a way of changing your body from what i used to be to what it is supposed to be now.’ she got disappointed and said ‘but i want kids some day and i still want to be beautiful.’ i marched her right over to the computer and showed her this site. I have ALWAYS said that ‘i love my stretch marks becuse they are like service stripes of motherhood. each scar reminds me of how hey got there, with out them- i wouldnt know the love of being a mom.’ after she poured over the website for about an hour, she decided that i dint need to do a thing to be beautiful. i already was. she is ok with the changes that growing up brings, and now understands that just because society says one thing does not mean that they are right. she called her step mom and told her that she just wanted to let her know that she was beautifl just the way she is.

  53. Heidi Says:
    July 7th, 2011 at 11:12 am

    I have shared your site with so many women. Thank you for reminding us that motherhood is beautiful and our bodies are too.

  54. Erica Says:
    July 7th, 2011 at 12:20 pm

    I just found your site through Plus Size Mommy Memoirs. Just this blog alone has brought me to tears. I’m anxious to explore your fb page and blog some more. Congrats on 5 years, and I hope through reading more here I can grow to love my body.

  55. jessie Says:
    July 7th, 2011 at 12:51 pm

    This site is the best loved by my multiples club! I’ll be posting soon :)

  56. Jennie Says:
    July 7th, 2011 at 12:54 pm

    15 years for me. 15, 13, 10 and now 11 months post baby body. I love my body for allowing me to carry 4 healthy, beautiful babies. I might never have the washboard abs I had before children, but I am a soft place to land, a place where my children rest their sweet heads and sleep. I am so proud of each and every beautiful woman who share herself on this site and I am thankful for the creators of such an amazing story.

  57. Deborah Says:
    July 7th, 2011 at 1:43 pm

    I love your site! Happy 5th birthday!

  58. Natasha Says:
    July 7th, 2011 at 1:59 pm

    Dear SOAM, thank you for coming to being! As a mother of 4 children, my first being born in my teens, I have never had a body that “fit” society. I have often loathed my skin, felt ashamed, and wished for what ever plastic surgery that is out there. Your website has helped me realize that I, like most women, are beautiful for what we are, what we have done, and what we can do. No matter the stretch marks ;) You are also a source of comfort as I raise 3 daughters into accepting themselves, and my 1 son into understanding women are more then barbies.
    Happy 5th birthday! I look forward to many more!!

  59. Elise Says:
    July 7th, 2011 at 3:17 pm

    Happy birthday, SOAM! I am so, so grateful to have found your site. Here’s to many more years of beautiful images of gorgeous, powerful mamas!

  60. Summer Says:
    July 7th, 2011 at 4:21 pm

    I love, love, LOVE this site! Thanks for being here and Happy Birthday!!

  61. Bree downes Says:
    July 7th, 2011 at 4:30 pm

    Happy Birthday! Thanks for helping me feel better about my verandah! Xxx

  62. Beth Says:
    July 7th, 2011 at 8:43 pm

    This is my first time visiting your site (it was linked on another site I frequent) and I can’t tell you how fitting this was for me. Right here. In this moment. Right now.
    I took a few hours to myself tonight to go into town (we live in the country), have a solo supper, runs some errands, find a dress for a wedding where I will meet for the first time many of my husband’s lifelong friends, and have a nice cup of coffee. Sounds nice, right? Except the whole time I was gone there was an overwhelming sense of dread surrounding the whole shopping for a dress part. I have an almost two year old little fella, and though I am average weight and build, I still have my post-birth shape – and like many, I constantly have anxiety over it. I am thankful to have landed here tonight… and will likely be back again soon.
    Thank you for your vulnerability…

  63. bethany actually Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 11:28 am

    Happy birthday, SOAM! I’m so proud of you, Bon. <3

  64. Sarah P. Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 3:09 pm

    Happy fifth birthday, TSOAM! Thanks for a great site. :)

  65. Jeannie Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 5:37 pm

    Happy Birthday SOAM! What a gift your site is to so many beautiful women. In my teens I was anorexic and bulimic. I hated my body! Then I became pregnant at 16 with my first son. I couldn’t starve him, so I ate healthy for the first time in my life. He was a beautiful 7pound 14oz. dream of a baby. My body was better after him. I had 2 more boys and many miscarriages. My body shows the journey. I have extra skin and stretch marks, but I also have 3 beautiful sons who have grown into wonderful young men. This site has helped me to see myself through the eyes of a mother, so to speak, and now I can teach my first granddaughter to love herself fully no matter what! Thank you!!!!

  66. Angele Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 6:57 pm

    Thank you SOAM for helping make me feel beautiful every day! Happy 5th Birthhday!

  67. Lynzee Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 6:59 pm

    I love Shape of a Mother. I’m really looking forward to submitting my story and photos. :)

  68. Tanya D Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 7:00 pm

    Shape of A Mother is a valuable asset in todays society of perfection and photoshop. The truth is the real perfection is loving our bodies as they are. Thank you.

  69. kristin Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 7:01 pm

    Happy Birthday!!

  70. Kara Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 7:02 pm

    Thank you for starting this site. I carried twins one day shy of 42 weeks, birthed them 3 years ago, and I was not prepared to have my body change so much – gosh, I was still in my twenties! Nobody tells women what to expect with so much when it comes to having children – pregnancy, birth, parenthood. And especially not about what may happened to your body’s original shape after a job well done with pregnancy and breastfeeding. Thank you for 5 years of being a voice and an image of real women and true beauty.

  71. Christina Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 7:02 pm

    Happy Birthday SOAM!! Your site has changed so many lives and made so many of us feel NORMAL and BEAUTIFUL! So thank you!!

  72. Jen Smith Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 7:03 pm

    Happy 5th Birthday!!! I love to embrace my stretch marks & rolls, I am Mommy, hear me roar!! ;)

  73. Jasmene Waalwijk Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 7:04 pm

    I love this website, As a mum of 6 (1 miscarriage) i dont have the body of a perfest model :P this place reminds me that i am not alone xx

  74. Melanie Owens Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 7:05 pm

    I love this site it prepared me before I had my baby and made me feel better after, my body will never be the same but I am learning to love the new me.

  75. sarah ericson Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 7:05 pm

    Thank you for showing how beautiful women are after they have carried babies!

  76. K G Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 7:06 pm

    Happy, happy birthday. Love and thanks for such inspiration.

  77. Lynn Marie Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 7:08 pm

    Happy 5th Birthday! I love this site so much. Really helps on those days when…well…I’m having “one of those days.” Thanks so much!! :)

  78. Sarah Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 7:08 pm

    Here’s to the next five year! (And the five after that).

    And… here’s to our daughters and our sons growing up with confidence in their bodies, that we give them through our examples of self-love.

    Happy birthday SOAM!

  79. Cat Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 7:08 pm

    Thank you so much for providing such a safe and welcoming space for women to explore our bodies, our fears, our victories of self, and most importantly to support one another along our journeys of womanhood and motherhood. TSOAM has been a cool drink of water in a societal desert of photoshop’d bodies, disjointed female community and media induced self (and other) scrutiny. Thank you.

  80. Shannon Young Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 7:14 pm

    This site has helped improve my self image already (I only just found it today). Thank you for being bold enough to be yourself, stretch marks and all…and giving the rest of us the strength to do so, as well. <3

  81. Carrie Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 7:20 pm

    I love SOAM! Ever since my first baby 14 years ago I have had body love issues. Now after my 5th baby I am finally understanding that it all starts with me. Thank you for this blog!

  82. Beth Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 7:20 pm

    Congrats on 5 years! I love SOAM!

  83. angela Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 7:23 pm

    Happy Birthday! Thanks for all of your work with this site. It is so encouraging.

  84. Amber Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 7:25 pm

    Happy 5th Birthday, SOAM!! I LOVE this site. You have brought peace of mind and acceptance to so many women. Women who have felt embarrassed and alone. Women just like me :) I hope you have many many birthdays to come!! Thank you <3

  85. Rachel Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 7:27 pm

    Happy 5th Birthday! So glad you are here. Learning on accepting my body too

  86. Bryony Gluch Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 7:29 pm

    Thank you so much for the inspirations and self acceptance!.. I’m still trying but a lot closer now! Physical change is very emotional – relinquishing beauty to make perfection!
    Lots of love,
    Bri!
    xxxxxxx

  87. Karli D Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 7:32 pm

    Yay! I remember finding this when my daughter was two and I was/am having a hard time accepting my stretch marks from under my boobs down to my pubic area and my hideous c-section scar. But after seeing so many beautiful shapes of mothers :) it is helping me on a path to find peace with my motherly shape. Thank you and Happy Birthday!

  88. Marilyn Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 7:52 pm

    I am so greatful for this site. I was so depressed, I felt so isolated, and at war with myself. This site has made me laugh, cry, even pump my fist in happiness, saying “Yes!! That’s exactly it!!”
    Thank you.

  89. Shelli Cummings Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 7:53 pm

    I have five daughters and I love this blog, both for me and for them. Thank you.

  90. Michelle Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 7:56 pm

    Thank you so much for this site. I can’t tell you how many times I have come to visit, just to reassure myself, that my belly, my butt and my thighs are not a one in a million. That I am not alone in accepting and understanding and appreciating the change my children did to my body. I have 3 kids, ages 5 and younger, and I had a C section for each….With 2 of the 3 over 9lbs, you can imagine the accomidation my body must have had to do to make room for them! Anyways, I love and have shared your site with all of my mom friends and others. Keep it going. You’re keeping me sane!

  91. kay Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 8:16 pm

    Happy birthday! SOAM helped me sooo much! Thanks.

  92. shay Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 8:23 pm

    Happy birthday, SOAM! Your website holds a special place in my heart and I have shared it with all the women in my life. Your site has made me feel like a part of a sisterhood of real, beautiful mommy goddesses. Thanks for all that you do!

  93. Shelly Naumovich Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 8:24 pm

    I’m somewhat new to your site, but whenever I’m frustrated or feeling like I “should” be something different than what I am… I’m so grateful to be able to come here and feel better. I’m a mom to 3 boys. My oldest is 6 1/2 and I have identical twin boys who just turned 3. I carried my first pregnancy to his due date at exactly 40 weeks and delivered “naturally” and my twins were born at 35 weeks via c-section. I keep thinking, “someday, I’ll be able to get back to my old self”… but I guess it’s not someday yet. Thanks for all you do! And congratulations on 5 years!

  94. Hannah Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 8:29 pm

    I have really enjoyed reading and sharing your site with other women! Very powerful!

  95. Kristina Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 9:04 pm

    I’m on my phone so this won’t be long cause it’s harder to type. Lol.

    But I just had to say that while I don’t always comment or check everyday here, I love it here. It’s good to know that I’m not the only mother out there that feels her body has been ruined by baby. I have stretch marks piety much everywhere from my pregnancy. Through this site, my supportive fiancee and my own self reflection, I’m slowly starting to get my confidence back. This site has helped me learn that I’m not alone and it’s okay to feel the way I do but I don’t have to and that I look NORMAL, truly normal. My fiance has helped in the fact that he is still attracted to me. He still find me sexy even with the stretch marks, the muffin top and the day rolls. He stol loves me and find me sexier than ever. To him, I’m not only beautiful inside and out, but I’m even more beautiful because I’m an awesome mom to or daughter (so he says :p). Through my own self reflection because I force myself to lok in the mirror now without cringing. My body is the shape of a mother and it’s something to be proud of. Thank you, soam. :)

  96. crystal Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 9:12 pm

    I am 22and have three beautiful children. I was sexually abused as a child and thought the only way out was to be unattractive, I ate and ate to make myself “ugly” when I had gained pearl 100lbs and was free of my attacker I was left broken mentally and physically. My little body had stretch marks everywhere.

    Then I said F^ck it! I am me, I will be loved and respected and take nothing else. I married my highschool sweetheart all the while waiting for him to judge my “destroyed body” and let loose on him lol he never did.

    I am a powerful woman and finding this site brought tears to my eyes that I was not alone on realizing we are all beautiful just the way we are. And I desperately want the women around me to get the revelation I had and just tell others to kiss it, or to come to this site and see that they are not alone either

  97. Kendy Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 9:13 pm

    I’m so glad I found this web site.
    I was 18 when I had my son and VERY tiny. I started out at 85 lbs. when I got pregnant with him and was 140 lbs when he was born.
    My stretch marks are horrible. Not only is my stomach stretched down over my jeans, but as my son was crowning, he came with such force that my thighs ripped open fresh stretch marks as he was born. I love my 3 children dearly, but I’ve always been ashamed of how I looked after my first was born.
    Thank you so much SOAM for helping me know that there are other women out there like me and that I don’t have to be ashamed anymore.

  98. Christine M. Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 9:22 pm

    This was great, thank you!

  99. Tati Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 9:32 pm

    I struggle daily with my mom body. I’m no where close to loving it. However, this site has been wonderful in that it’s made me feel less alone. I hope I can become like some of the women on here who have found their beauty even with a new body.

    Happy 5th Birthday! :)

  100. Becky Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 10:45 pm

    I absolutely love SOAM!!! It something I often find myself turning to when I feel like I can not live up to what society deems as the perfect shape. Its because of SOAM that I am comfortable in my own skin again and proud of my battle wounds :) Keep up the great work

  101. Stacey Says:
    July 8th, 2011 at 11:54 pm

    Happy Birthday from this Mom to five son’s. I love your site and the “sisterhood” I feel to the women within. Thank you for being such a blessing to so many Mom’s out there. No matter if your a “first timer” or an “old hand” at Motherhood, we are all “kin” here. Here’s to five more!!


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