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The Shape that Love Built (Amanda)

March 14, 2011

Age: 23
Number of births: 2, soon to be 3
Ages of children: 5 years old, 18 months old, and yet to be born

It started with a comment on a photo I posted on facebook. For the record, I am not nude in the picture, nor am I anywhere NEAR naked. I simply have my belly exposed. She deleted me while I was in the hospital, waiting for a room to be induced.

Conny ***** Girl, you should keep that covered.
Conny ***** Don’t look … it’s kind of hard not to and say all you want about pregnant women being beautiful, to me they are butt ugly. Arrogant too, with their ‘don’t l ike it, don’t look’. IGYGWYD These days people put anything on FB.
Conny ***** Delete me if you want, I don’t care. You all need glasses Pregnant women beautiful … LOL
Conny ***** Delete me if you want if you don’t like what I have to say. I say highly pregnant women exposing their naked bodies is uncalled for. Call it beautiful all you want, you need glasses. I think pregnancy is ugly. Just my personal opinion, but it is MY opinon and I’m entitled to it.
Conny ***** You have been deleted. Any more messages from you and you will be reported for harrasment.

I’m sitting here crying because I am sad. I’m actually not sad about my body, or the way it looks.. not because its a Hollywood post-baby body.. but because I appreciate it. I’m sad because someone called pregnancy “ugly”.. and said that she thought that pregnant women were “butt ugly”.. the words themselves did not hurt me. Well… maybe a little.. but not in the way you’d think. It hurt to know that there are women out there who really are ashamed of their bodies. That they’re ashamed that they arent “perfect” anymore.. that they think of themselves as “flawed”.

I am 23 years old, I have 2 children, and am 38 weeks pregnant with my 3rd baby. My body is not Hollywood material anymore.. my body is quite “flawed” by those standards.

However.. its the body that love built. Every ounce of extra fat, every stretch mark, every sag is physical proof that I brought fourth not one, but THREE perfect miracles.

I am sad for her. I’m sad that she feels that pregnancy, birth, and post-baby bodies are not beautiful.

I am not ashamed of my body. I love it to pieces.. afterall, if I cant love myself, how can I expect someone else to?

My belly sags when I’m not pregnant, as do my breasts. Right now my belly is swollen and large, as are my breasts which are full of milk.

My bum has cellulite, I have stretch marks, and I have thighs that applaud me whenever I walk anywhere.
I do not care that some dont like it. I may not be “sexy” by most peoples standards…

but that does not mean I am not beautiful, and it does NOT mean that I am ugly.

I then wrote this…

Amanda *******
My sons show off my baby belly to the world because they know a little secret that not everyone appreciates… my body’s “beauty” was destroyed in order to bring perfection into this world.. not once, but twice, and I am prepared to do it a third time. I have brought miracles to life.. and I’ll be damned if I hide the body that did it. I love the “beauty” within the “uglyness” that are my battle scars of motherhood.

Amanda ******* I am not ashamed of having the shape of a mother. I am not ashamed of my scars. I am not ashamed of anything that my wonderful children have left on my body. This is the body that love built. I am however ashamed to breathe the same air as someone who can call me “butt ugly” simply because I am not flat-bellied, toned, or trim at this moment.

Updated here.

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54 Responses to “The Shape that Love Built (Amanda)”

  1. kit Says:
    March 14th, 2011 at 7:54 am

    I feel sad for her too – imagine what her body image must be like for her to imagine that pregnancy is “ugly” and must be hidden. She must have such poor self esteem and such a poor body image.

    You? You look beautiful. Honestly – you’ve got a lovely shaped bump and your skin tone is great. Beyond that, it’s the peace on your face. You look like a 15th century painting – all serene and radiant from within.

    It’s a shame your friend can’t see any of this but it’s truly her loss. Known you are beautiful and enjoy your body and your babies.

  2. Corinne Says:
    March 14th, 2011 at 7:55 am

    You have a beautiful bump and I cannot believe anyone could be so rude and cruel about something so lovely. I’m glad you reached for the delete button, that person was certainly no friend.

  3. Megan Says:
    March 14th, 2011 at 8:48 am

    YOU GO GIRL!!! Unfortunately there are always people out that that are going to hate and have their opinion opposite of ours but oh well! Being able to find beauty in what other people can’t is very freeing.

  4. tuesy Says:
    March 14th, 2011 at 8:58 am

    You have a beautiful baby belly! You write so eloquently, and I am sorry for you that your “friend” could be so short-sighted and shallow towards both you and all pregnant women. She is the one who will lose in life by her attitude, not any of us.

    I love the sentiment “this is the body that love built.” It’s true, and it’s always good to be reminded! Best of luck with your new baby!

  5. Crystal Says:
    March 14th, 2011 at 10:01 am

    I repeat, You Go Girl!

  6. renee Says:
    March 14th, 2011 at 11:24 am

    I am disgusted that someone, particularly a woman can be so harsh to a fellow female! It’s no wonder that us mothers (not all, but some) feel so ashamed when you have narrow minded twirps like her making and passing jusdgement on others because of a persons stomach.

    She is a loser. You however, are not. Congrats. You look gorg by the way!

  7. lisa Says:
    March 14th, 2011 at 12:17 pm

    you look beautiful and i wouldn’t waste your breath trying to explain it to your friend. she doesn’t understand and probably doesn’t want to understand. your post wsa beautiful and i am so glad that you love your body because that is what is important. this website is like lessons to women on how to love their body after bab, and you have already aced the lesson!

  8. Rebekah Says:
    March 14th, 2011 at 12:56 pm

    Wow. You are gorgeous!

  9. Liz Lich Says:
    March 14th, 2011 at 2:44 pm

    I want to start by saying that you are beautiful and God bless you for having such a wonderful attitude. You should feel proud of your body and the beautiful children you created and brought into this world. But reading those comments by this ‘Conny’ made my blood boil. She really needs to re-examine her life and herself if she is saying things like that. I mean…who SAYS things like that?!

    I sincerely hope you aren’t friends with her anymore, you don’t need people like that in your life. You need people that stand by you, take care of you,and make you feel good about yourself in all aspects of your life. What this ‘friend’ of yours said was mean, spiteful and hurtful. I don’t even know you and I was hurt for you.

    I wish you the greatest of joy with your new baby. Take care and God Bless you and your family.

    I’m glad that this website exists, it really gave my self esteem the boost.

  10. Liz Lich Says:
    March 14th, 2011 at 2:45 pm

    *edit* I’m glad that this website exists, it really gave my self esteem the boost it needed. :)

  11. scs Says:
    March 14th, 2011 at 3:59 pm

    congrats to u. no preggo woman is ugly. clearly she has issues

  12. Rush and Journey's mama Says:
    March 14th, 2011 at 4:32 pm

    Pregnancy is as much of a gift as the day the child is born and held in moms or dads arms! We moms are beautiful before during and after. Bare it and share it.

  13. steph Says:
    March 14th, 2011 at 4:44 pm

    Dear me what a cow your ‘friend’ is. Well no matter I

    wonder how she will sleep at night if and when she has children. But thats her problem. You look stunning. We should all be proud. Our bodies have done what not many can. And that is something to be proud of. Hold your head up high!

  14. Grace Says:
    March 14th, 2011 at 6:50 pm

    I have to say that I think that a pregnant belly is one of the most beautiful sights on earth. So incredibly beautiful. Love it!

  15. Gwen Says:
    March 14th, 2011 at 7:16 pm

    I wish you lived next door to me. You look so beautiful! “The Shape that Love Built” wonderful title- so true! I have two little miracles. Your post really inspired me:)

  16. rosie Says:
    March 14th, 2011 at 8:25 pm

    you’re looking and acting beautiful, mama.

  17. DL Says:
    March 16th, 2011 at 8:03 am

    I used to be shallow like that kind of, she was very harsh though, anyway when I was younger I did not think it was “pretty”. But I did not know anything about it, Now that I have had a child and another on the way this May, I understand what it’s about. Now when I see a prgnant woman I can’t help but stare in a good way, like what a strong beautiful woman, an I love seeing the round belly b/c I know it is full of love and it takes alot of hard work, I am still hard on myself tho sadly. This world has brainwashed ppl so much and this sight is amazing, really, I love Bonnie for this thank you so much for taking your time to create an amazing site. I want my daughter to love herself, and I want to love everything about myself but it is a working progress. You look great btw! Congrats on your babies : )

  18. Ashley Says:
    March 18th, 2011 at 11:45 am

    WOW! Maybe she was jealous because she’s been ttc and can’t? Who knows, uncalled for no matter the reason, but definitely sounds like it was coming from a jealous insecure person. If someone feels that way (which I don’t get) they should keep it to themselves, no reason to say the things she did at all! You look GREAT in the pic! That girl is crazy! And like you said, not any where near naked lol… not that there aren’t a lot of very tasteful nude pregnancy pics out there though so who cares if you did post one!

  19. Naji Says:
    March 22nd, 2011 at 11:12 am

    you are gorgeous. Every inch of you. It thoroughly saddens me when I read of women who don’t want to have their own children because of the way their bodies will look. When I see the look in my husband’s eyes after he’s been gone for 6 months and he sees me naked, after birthing 4 children, a thyroid disorder, and very much obese and scarred, and I still see the love and attraction in his eyes, I really feel badly for these women who appear to have never felt that true love.

  20. Laura Says:
    March 22nd, 2011 at 11:14 am

    I wish I had more lovely pics of my pregnancy belly! I loved every minute, bigger and bigger, waiting for my little one to enter the world. We can do the world’s best magic trick, making an actual person :) The pick is lovely BTW, you’re radiant!

  21. Amanda Says:
    March 22nd, 2011 at 11:17 am

    I love what you had to say about yourself. It makes me change my thoughts toward myself a little each time someone says things like that about themselves. I find it easy to appreciate women’s bodies and to think they are magnificent. I just find a hard time accepting my own.
    It’s mostly because of the people that raised me and have commented on my weight and such since I gave birth. But I am distancing myself from those people more and more so I can be at peace.

  22. Sarah P. Says:
    March 22nd, 2011 at 11:21 am

    You stay strong, mama! I love your words of confidence. This Conny woman obviously has a lot of hurt inside and instead of dealing with it maturely, she’s viciously throwing it at others in hopes that they will hurt, too. It’s a sad thing for sure.

    I think you are beautiful, beautiful, BEAUTIFUL! :)

  23. shlee Says:
    March 22nd, 2011 at 11:22 am

    You look beautiful!!!!!

  24. Missie Sue Says:
    March 22nd, 2011 at 11:39 am

    I think this is absurd. You go, mama; you ARE beautiful! THAT is the pic she was so appalled by? You are glowing. Pregnancy is beautiful; it makes you appreciate your body in a way someone that hasn’t gone through it never will be able to understand. I would assume by her position that she has never been pregnant then?

  25. Andrea Says:
    March 22nd, 2011 at 11:42 am

    eloquent words, beautiful picture and woman!
    I applaud your attitude and think many could learn much from you, and I think that you are far better off not having such a narrow minded person around you!!

  26. Serena Walter-Steiner Says:
    March 22nd, 2011 at 11:55 am

    You are absolutely gorgeous!! I think that showing off your belly is a thing of beauty. Not something to be ashamed of. As to the woman who said those horrible things, karma will get to her in time!! It always does!! Enjoy your children and the body that created them!!

  27. Tarrin Says:
    March 22nd, 2011 at 12:19 pm

    You have a BEAUTIFUL belly!

  28. Miyo Says:
    March 22nd, 2011 at 12:40 pm

    I am saddened that so many people seem to think that finding a certain state of body automatically means that the person making the comments is ‘flawed’ in some way.
    While I agree that the woman making the ‘anti-pregnancy’ comments shouldn’t have said anything in the first place (everyone has to look at people that they find unattractive pretty much everyday, and we’re not allowed to say anything to them – so why should this be different?), I disagree that her finding pregnancy unattractive suddenly means that she must have low-self esteem, or poor body image issues, or be jealous. It might just be that she simply doesn’t find pregnancy attractive, which is less uncommon than most people think.
    I feel that the real issue here is not that she finds pregnancy unattractive to begin with (something everyone seems to be insinuating), but that she told someone that she thought that they were unattractive. This is less about pregnancy than I think everyone is making it out to be.
    Amanda, I am happy that you didn’t let these comments get to you, and that you are happy with your body, and I would encourage you to post as many pictures as you like.

  29. Deanna Says:
    March 22nd, 2011 at 12:42 pm

    I think you are a beautiful person inside and out. Blessings!

  30. Bonnie (SOAM) Says:
    March 22nd, 2011 at 12:53 pm

    I agree, Miyo, that her opinion isn’t the issue here. I’d have to say, though, that her vitriol is probably pretty indicative of her own inner turmoil, regardless the subject she’s speaking badly of.

  31. Ann Says:
    March 22nd, 2011 at 12:57 pm

    You do look serene and beautiful in that picture and you’re so wise beyond your years. And that is a GORGEOUS bump! :) Your children are all so lucky to have you as their mother. Brightest blessings to you!

  32. Natalie T Says:
    March 22nd, 2011 at 1:11 pm

    Girl, you look AMAZING! :) I’ve had two babies, our first was stillborn at 20 weeks and our 2nd was born at 32 weeks (he is now a very happy, healthy and cheeky 1 year old) My hubby and I are starting to prepare for number 3, I’m scared and excited and would give anything to experience a baby belly as beautiful as yours! :) I’d only just started to show when our 2nd was born and I would LOVE to have a big, round baby belly :) you are extremely blessed and beautiful, I feel sorry for anyone who.thinks otherwise. I wish you and you family all the very best and hope this pregnancy and birth is wonderful and amazing for u all :)

  33. Marla Says:
    March 22nd, 2011 at 1:41 pm

    Oh my! Of all the things that people post on Facebook your precious bump is the least of the “ugly” things on there. Be proud woman! Forget the haters. You are beautiful and so is my worn out post baby body. If I had to give up a flat tummy and celulite free ass I’m glad I did it for my babies and I’d do it all over again in a heartbeat.

  34. jenn Says:
    March 22nd, 2011 at 1:47 pm

    When I read this I got mad, until I realized how sad this woman is. Ussually people who say things like this are insecure about themselves. Maybe she can’t have kids or shes worried she won’t look as radiant or confident as you do when she does have some! Maybe she just cannot wrap her head around the miracle that is pregnancy. Whatever the reason, you are beautiful, the picture is beautiful, your baby will be beautiful and that makes life beautiful! Don’t let anyone spoil it, even for a moment!

  35. Jen Z Says:
    March 22nd, 2011 at 2:38 pm

    You are amazing and beautiful!

  36. darcy Says:
    March 22nd, 2011 at 3:17 pm

    Yes, I do think something is wrong with that woman. No one in their right mind would think that ANYONE would want to hear that they are ugly. especially on their own photo (pregnant or not). And I highly doubt she would have had the balls to say that to her face. It’s really unfortunate. Who gave her the right? She was and is wrong. Again, WOW! Whatever happened to “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.” Regardless, pregnancy bellies are BEAUTIFUL! If it weren’t for our bodies, there would be no future generations! And seriously, who forgot to teach her to respect others? This makes me both mad and sad that she thought it was perfectly acceptable to write those things. There’s enough hate in this world. “(

  37. Claire Says:
    March 22nd, 2011 at 3:57 pm

    Truth is that some people find pregnancy hard on the eyes (nicest way I could think to put it)
    I’m 24 and have 3 kids aged 7, 3 and 10months. I paraded many photo’s on facebook of my naked pregnant belly – not my full naked body just belly exposed. No one complained and if they did I’m pretty sure I would have deleted them too. Some women who have never been pregnant before seem to have a low tolerance of anything pregnancy and child related, they just don’t seem to ‘get’ it. Personaly I think pregnancy is amazing. Look through the stretch marks, love handles, larger thighs and whatever else pops up with a baby belly and see the precious little life floating around. being nourished and loved and beginning their journey into existence.

  38. dietra Says:
    March 22nd, 2011 at 4:15 pm

    I think u look amazing. I also think that u had the power and courage to not only bring one but soon to be three amazing babies to this world. I wish all the luck, good vibes, and best wishs to u and ur babies. i may not be a mother but i do know that with babies comes marks, may they be physical, mental or both and women should be proud of what they have done to bring life to this world because if we dont do it who would. (i dont think men would.)and anyone who doesnt agree think about this there would not be a yoou if ur mother had not gotten pregant and there for ur calling not only all mothers ugly but ur own mother butt ugly.

  39. The Trophy Wife Says:
    March 22nd, 2011 at 4:22 pm

    What a wonderful way to look at it. It is so sad that others can be so negative and think that they have a right to voice their negativity. I’m of the mindset that my Great Grandmother taught me….if you don’t have something nice to say, don’t say it at all.

    Personally, I don’t think that there is anything more beautiful in the world than a pregnant woman. They glow and they are round and they are providing the world with love and miracles. There is nothing ugly about that.

  40. Gillian Says:
    March 22nd, 2011 at 6:48 pm

    I absolutely love the way you talk about yourself with such confidence! :) You’re a beautiful woman. My favourite line was “I have thighs that applaud me whenever I walk anywhere”. That put such a smile on my face. It’s a very happy, optimistic way of looking at it. Now every time I feel my chubby thighs smacking together I will remember this and think that my thighs are applauding me for having such a beautiful child. Thank yo so much for sharing.

  41. miz Says:
    March 22nd, 2011 at 7:14 pm

    urgh makes me so cranky when women have these warped views about anything pregnancy related. I have a ‘friend’ who said she wont breastfeed because she finds it gross and it will make her boobs saggy, honey, gravity will do that for you. its our perfection driven society that tells women (and men now) that only one ‘type’ of body is sexy (girls of the playboy mansion etc). as women our bodies biological function is to grow babies and feed them. not be sex objects for men to ogle. so happy for you to have the sense to delete this woman as a friend, she obviously has insecurities about her own body and finds other beautiful women like you who cherish their bodies threatening.

  42. Tapanga Says:
    March 23rd, 2011 at 8:57 am

    Very well written! Thanks for contributing to the world in such a lovely way! You look wonderful! Congrats on your third!!

  43. Ember Says:
    March 23rd, 2011 at 3:57 pm

    The body of a mother is as beautiful as home and hope and love and life itself.

  44. maria Says:
    March 23rd, 2011 at 9:03 pm

    EVERY PREGNANT WOMEN IS BEAUTIFUL.:)

  45. JC Says:
    March 24th, 2011 at 5:02 am

    Wow – I can’t even believe someone would say such things about a pregnant belly! YOU LOOK WONDERFUL :D The view we get of life before its born is amazing: amazing to see it grow, amazing to feel it move and truly amazing to see our body’s go ‘back’ when it’s all done, even if it’s not exactly they way it was before.

    Pregnant women look beautiful and those who say otherwise clearly have no true appreciation for life to begin with!

  46. Nicholle Says:
    April 2nd, 2011 at 6:09 am

    you gave me chills you are beautiful we all are!!

  47. leah Says:
    April 3rd, 2011 at 10:34 am

    Im 23 and pregnant with my third aswell and I think its a miracle for women to carry a life in them.Alot of women can’t enjoy that and I’m thankful that I can. I have a 18 month daughter, 8 month daughter and hopefully a boy on the way. I feel sorry for the women who calls pregnancy arrogants I pray for them because thier probably lonely and miserable.Love to all the mothers out there and God bless you all.

  48. Jill Says:
    April 4th, 2011 at 8:05 pm

    I feel bad for her that she hasnt experienced a baby being formed inside her body. I hope she sees this and knows how absolutely ridiculous she sounds. Your beautiful.

  49. Jessi E. Says:
    April 4th, 2011 at 8:27 pm

    You are beautiful, momma. I can’t imagine someone saying those horrible things. I can’t imagine that even if one truly felt that way that they would say it out loud. That woman should be ashamed of herself-and you know, I bet she is. Especially if she had the opportunity to read this.
    Thank you so much for writing this. Like a previous commenter said, reading this has given me a much needed self esteem boost. I may not be the beautiful young woman that I once was, but I am still beautiful. Just in a different way-at least on the outside. On the inside, I am much more beautiful because I have given birth to three wonderful human beings (one of whom I gave up for adoption because I was only the tender age of 16).
    I wish the whole world could read this. I’m posting it on my FB page right now.
    Best wishes to you, gorgeous.

  50. katy Says:
    May 12th, 2011 at 11:13 am

    That is so sad that another woman can think like that. I am now pregnant with my third child and am very proud of my very early showing baby bump. After each kid I am able to get down to a good size. I may have a road map on my body from birthing my babies, but I do not need to show my skin and were a bikini to feel beautiful. You are a MILF. It is great that you were strong enough to put this on the web. I pity that girl who was rude to you and hope she gets pregnant five hundred times. she will change her tune then!

  51. Anne Says:
    September 2nd, 2011 at 1:47 am

    I’m sorry that it made you sad. I’m sorry she said anything to you like that, but being pregnant for the second time myself, I have to admit, I find the whole thing hideous too. I’m so sorry to admit it because it seems like we are all supposed to pretend that this is some wonderful experience. I just don’t see it. I have never been more miserable in my life. I love, love, love being a mother. I adore my daughter and am terribly excited about my new baby that is coming, but I would do anything to not have to live this distorted prison sentence for nine months. It is the most uncomfortable thing to happen ever! I’m really sorry. She shouldn’t have made you sad. My best girlfriend is always pointing out big pregnant women and saying how beautiful they are, how she is jealous (she has one son so far), but I look and see bags under the eyes, swollen hands and feet, I see someone who hasn’t had a good nights sleep in months, can’t breath well and looks like they have been through hell. I guess we can’t help what we see or feel. I’m glad not everyone feels the way I do or the human race would have died out long ago! Good luck to you – enjoy pregnancy (I guess!) if that’s your thing. I’m going to keep pretending to the world that I am in a state of pure bliss since that seems to be the only acceptable thing (inside I am crying and wishing this was over already!).

  52. Anne Says:
    September 2nd, 2011 at 1:51 am

    PS – this is not about vanity, it is just overall discomfort at every level. I didn’t sleep well again last night (like every night for the last couple of months). I get back into shape easily and have few marks to show that I’ve even been pregnant, but I’m clumsy, tired, bored, anxious, hungry but can’t eat well, the list is long babe! People are mean. I’m certainly not trying to be mean. I’m just letting you know that while I think motherhood is the bomb – seriously the best thing in the world – the road to motherhood is like going through war, harsh and horrible (for me – maybe I’m the only one!).

  53. Amanda S Says:
    November 8th, 2011 at 9:00 pm

    Hello everyone. I wrote this :)

    I wanted to update… my son is beautiful. Eli… he was 9lbs when he was born, 2 long days after I wrote this sumbission. I am still having trouble with the recovery and will be writing a submission for TIAW…

    ? Thank you all for the kind words and encouragement.
    -Amanda

  54. marge Says:
    December 20th, 2011 at 3:04 pm

    I am currently pregnant with my fourth miracle and hopefully my third delivery.

    You have empoured me to stand up to those that constantly put me down for my size, weight and my tummy (i have a six month old)

    I recieve my cruelest comments from my family who reming me daily that i am not their ideal weight and size.

    Thank you for your words that have given me the strengh to smile and ask them to leave because of their ignorance.

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