Before I got pregnant I was a very petite person. I used to worry about whether I’d manage to “stay pretty” during pregnancy, keep my weight gain reasonable, avoid stretch marks, etc. But the first time I became pregnant, unfortunately, it was an ectopic and the diagnosis was missed. The pregnancy in my left fallopian tube ruptured, I lost my tube and very nearly my life. After that reality check, I didn’t care so much about having a beautiful pregnancy – I just wanted to have a healthy one, that I could carry to completion without dying. I conceived again only months after the surgery but had an early miscarriage. We started to think it just wasn’t going to happen. I have a vivid memory of lying on a hospital gurney holding my husband’s hand, sobbing, apologizing for my apparent inability to give him the thing I know he has always wanted so very much…a child. The first photo below was taken at 6 weeks pregnant, when it was confirmed that the third time’s a charm…we had an embryo in the uterus where it belonged. It was a miracle! The egg had come from my left ovary, where we could see the corpus luteum on ultrasound, and navigated all the way across and through the remaining right-side fallopian tube into the uterus. I took the picture to document my pre-pregnancy body, hoping that this time instead of suffering a loss I would actually get as big and round as a healthy pregnant woman should. The second photo was at 36.5 weeks, just barely before my boy arrived. I love the round fullness of every curve, even though it’s never going back the way it was before…the new softness of my body is proof that it can do what it’s supposed to. No matter whether it ever becomes firm or lean again, or whether my boobs droop halfway to my knees when we stop breastfeeding, my husband and I are both grateful for the gift of a son. I love what my body has finally achieved, and will wear its new colors and shapes with happiness.