My Age: 31
Number of Pregnancies and Births: 1
Age of child: 6 months
Pics I attached: The henna belly picture is at 38 weeks, the two naked ones and one of my daughter are 6 months post-partum.
I started lurking here before my husband and I were even trying to have kids. I have to admit; at first some of the photos were a bit shocking. I’m a victim of this culture just like anyone else, and it was sometimes uncomfortable to see exactly what women look like through pregnancy and motherhood. I started checking for new posts daily, and it didn’t take long for me to find the beauty in every single photograph. It’s amazing how social norms work – for or against us sometimes – and it took some exposure and familiarity – and soon I realized how inspiring each mother really is. Thank you for teaching me what it looks like to become a mother. It changes each of us inside and out – and there is something stunning about the power and strength of what our bodies can do. For me, visiting this site helped me prepare just as much as any book I was told to read when I got pregnant. I am in awe of every woman who posts here. We all go through pregnancy and birth on our own journey, and each of us struggles in some way or another with whatever changes come with that path. My husband, bless his heart, said he thought I would make people jealous if I posted on SOAM. (God, I love that man!) I had to explain to him that I struggle with the changes in my body just like all the other women who post here, and he really missed the point of what it means to share images here. I am part of this club, even if I didn’t get stretch marks. We are all “normal” – whatever that word means – with whatever degree of change or level of comfort we have in our own skin. The point is to do our damn best to celebrate each other as women and shed light on the beauty that comes with so many shapes and sizes of motherhood. My body is just a vessel for what is really inside of me, and I’m proud it served me well to grow and nourish a healthy little girl. I’m still working on truly accepting some of the changes, but I wouldn’t trade being a mama for anything – and it’s so worth it.