Age when I gave birth 21
This was my only pregnancy & I had to have a csection.
My son is 11 months old now
I went into labor on my own at 330am and was going in for a no epidural natural birth. Things quickly changed and I got the epidural only for the guy to mess it up and have to take it out to restart. The epidural didn’t even work and I was having back labor like no other. I was also bleeding but the nurses just thought it was from checking me. I made it all the way to a 9 before my cervix swelled shut. Later they found out the bleeding was from me bleeding internally, I had to be taken to have an emergency c section. Everything went good, and I got to meet my beautiful baby boy.
Two months later I had to be cut open again to have my gallbladder removed. I didn’t get to fully heal from my c section before the surgery so I had to heal from two surgery’s while caring for my newborn and my 3 year old step son who lives with us full time. (My husband traveled work at the time, so for most part I didn’t have help) My little boy refused a bottle and was breastfed so you could imagine the pain I was in trying to feed him. But he is definitely worth it all.
Images: purple bra black pants 3 weeks postpartum
C section scar with baby I was 1 month postpartum
White bra grey pants scars I was 2 months post baby and 4 days post gallbladder surgery
Nude breastfeeding baby I was 5 months postpartum
Character pajama bottoms with stomach tattoo is today 11 months postpartum
I was 23 when I got pregnant. Being a very short and active young adult, I’ve always been a wild one at heart. My favorite joy is dancing. I love to just turn the music on and have fun! That was me before pregnancy.
Now I’m 24. I’ve had my first baby. I’m 3 months postpartum and I still don’t feel like that girl again yet. Somehow she’s me – but somehow she’s somebody else. Anyone feel that way? I know many have, but I have never in my life struggled to feel myself. I’ve always felt confident in my own skin. Sometimes I felt too skinny or non-curvy but… when I had my son… I suddenly felt foreign. I feel my tummy and it’s foreign. I feel my boobs – they feel foreign.
It’s okay to sometimes feel like things are different. They are different. We can’t hold ourselves to the old us because all through life we will change and morph into new women. I realized that this must be what it feels like to look in the mirror at 60, or try to run or when your metabolism just wasn’t like it once was and now you eat one piece of pizza and blow up. It all hit me. Is this real life? It may sound so silly and vain but seriously some people simply haven’t gotten there yet. Instead of me feeling like I need to catch up with others or feel sad that I’m not the same and other women get to feel hot … I just need to give myself a firm swat on the buns and say “listen up lady – you are a boss babe, the woman you were is still there but she has grown, she is strong, she understands life in a new way, she went through tough labor, she stayed in the hospital 5 days, she woke up all night and she cried, she wanted to be her old self but she also wanted to snuggle her baby with all her love, she birthed a new life, she is a mother, she is loved, she is valued and she is special beyond belief. Don’t you dare discount that. You are learning big things, and your mind and experience have went through something many women have not had the privilege of, and the challenge of.” Life is an experience and a gift. May we always remember that motherhood is nitty gritty, deep and emotional but ever so rewarding and we mature in massive ways.
To be honest… I still don’t feel like me. In some ways it’s coming around but in some ways I feel as though some parts of me will always stay. I will always feel my stretch marks and go “whoaaa that’s intense”. I will also think “hehe omg it’s so soft and cuddly”!
Let us give ourselves time, relax, live healthy and stay strong. ? You can do it ladies. We are the mama family.
Hello my name is Emily, I am 25 years old, and this is my 3 month old son Ethan Jai. Before my pregnancy I was 104. During I was 167. And now I am 130. I love my mommy marks because I wouldn’t have my baby boy without them
This is four months postpartum. I cannot lose the weight no matter how hard I try. The shame I feel is sickening. I want to vomit whenever I see myself in the mirror. It’s so hard to leave the house and be around people. I am so so so ashamed. I can’t even be in the front yard unless it’s dark. Everything sags and my waistline is gone. I didn’t even get boobs from this mess. They’re still small but now they sag and are deflated. So I’m horrible looking, fat without breasts. My husband always liked the little gap between my thighs and now it’s gone and I can’t get it back. I try to eat healthy but sometimes I just feel so terrible that I go for something good because at least I feel a little happy when I can eat good food, even though I hate myself for eating it afterwards.
I hate myself so much for letting this happen to me. I love my son but I was left with nothing but a disgusting mess. Sometimes I cut and punch myself and they say to use a marker instead so that’s what I did.
I used to be the girl who could wear whatever and it’d be okay. More importantly I used to be the girl who could carry thirty pounds of gear into the mountains and hike myself out with an injury (dislocated kneecap). Now I can’t even hike seven miles without my body giving up. I can’t even talk about what happened to my mind or I will really break down.
I failed at everything. I failed at breastfeeding so I have these disgusting boobs and I can’t even breastfeed my son. I labored for thirty hours with back to back contractions and still had to have a c-section. My hips and back gave out during my pregnancy and I had to be on crutches and I couldn’t exercise although I did what I could. I have really intense postpartum depression and anxiety. I’m on four medications and have tried so many different kinds of treatment. Electroconvulsive therapy might be the next step.
I can sense my friends and family getting frustrated with me so I’m starting to pull away from them too. I have no damn idea why my husband even still has sex with me. I think it’s because I’m there and he’s a very loyal person but I’m convinced he’s imagining he’s with someone else. How could this wreck of a body ever appeal to him? He didn’t give me a single compliment after I gave birth but he used to say I was beautiful every day before. He started again when I broke down about it but now I can’t believe him because I had to cry and beg for him to see me as beautiful so I know it’s him lying to make me feel better. I don’t blame him for forgetting because the first month is so hard and if it’s not genuine why would he even think to do it?
I hate myself so much I cry every day and some days I can’t leave the house no matter how hard I try. I would have surgery in a heartbeat if I could afford it. I just want to hide forever but I can’t because I need to find a way to endure for my son. I just don’t know how. I give up on being attractive. I just want to not care.
When I was pregnant with my son I absolutely adored it. I guess I was channeling some fertility goddess vibes because I was at complete peace with everything — with my appearance, with however things would turn out, things I couldn’t control, etc. It was awesome to finally have a break from the insecure voice in my head telling me things were never good enough! I rubbed on my belly constantly and marveled at what my body was capable of doing.
I am now 6 months postpartum and love being a mom… but my first pregnancy led to gaining 70lbs. I went from a size 6/8 to a size 12. I already have a tall, muscular build, so the fat on top of the muscle just makes me look so bulky — particularly my arms! I was JUST NOW starting to slim down in my legs (I’ve never been one to carry a lot of weight in my thighs until pregnancy… wow, they were jiggly!) and not pooch out in my belly as much… I was feeling good (not great) about how I looked. I could feel sexy and hit on my hubby; I refused to let insecurity keep me from seeing friends or feeling confident in public. I grimaced while I bought XL or XXL tops and size 12 bottoms, but once they were in my regular wardrobe it felt better to wear those than try to stuff myself into a medium and feel ashamed. I know y’all know what I’m talking about with muffin top shame.
Anyway, I haven’t yet verified with a test, but I think I am once again pregnant — and I’d be elated if I am! Except for the idea of gaining more weight on top of this weight. The swelling! The cravings! The health scares of being in an overweight BMI from the get-go! The granny panties!!! Am I just going to keep going up and up in sizes? Will I really have to wait a year and a half until I am once again even this size? I figured some of you have dealt with this anxiety, come through it or had some words of encouragement. I don’t want vanity and weight-worry to get in the way of what should be just another beautiful pregnancy.
~Height: 5’10 Weight: 205lbs
~Number of pregnancies and births: 1 pregnancy, 1 birth, potentially pregnant for the second time by mere days
~The age of your children, or how far postpartum you are: 1 sweet 6mo. old boy
I had severe undiagnosed perinatal depression with my first child, leading to me demanding a c section or I was going to throw myself off of a ledge. I was terrified and didn’t want to ever be left alone for fear of what might happen. Thankfully treated Post partum depression with my 2nd, so much more manageable.
I will never look the same again, and it has severely impacted how and when I work out or hike or rock climb or anything. My sense of self has been so contorted since being pregnant I am just now grasping at who I used to be.
I loved my body before children. It was the body that was reliable, and would push me to my limits, create expression through movement or strength. I could feel alive in my body and what I was capable of. Pregnancy changed my entire existence. Would I trade my body back?? Of course I would. Right now though, I’m dedicated to reading to my children in the evening even if it means I can’t get my run in. Sometimes I’m depressed about it, most times, however I am now realizing that permanence has no place in my life. Everything is temporary and there is a peace that comes with experiencing and living this.
That’s how it goes. Some days I’m lost, some days I’m found. But it is what it is.
-My age: 18
-Number of pregnancies/births: 1
-Age of children: 5 months
Last year, I was very depressed and had recently gone through a break up. In an attempt to “numb” myself and my feelings, I began drinking and hanging out with the wrong crowd. One thing led to another and I slept with a boy I barely knew. I ended up getting pregnant on June 2015. I am 5’5 and before my pregnancy, I weighed 130 pounds. By the end of my pregnancy I weighed 190! I gave birth to my beautiful baby girl Jade on March 27, 2016 weighing in at 9 lbs 10 oz. I was so happy and still am, she is the light of my life. Everything in my life would be perfect right now if it weren’t for my body and my insecurities. I got lots of stretch marks and because of the excess weight I gained, I now have a belly pouch. At 5 months PP I weigh 160 so I still want to lose at least 20 pounds. My stretch marks were so dark and ugly that I would cry myself to sleep. I started doing derma rolling and dry brushing and it has helped them immensely. I am still quite young so looking at other 18 year old bodies makes me very sad because I look nothing like that. I am also terrified that no one will want me, but I am slowly trying to accept myself. I keep reminding myself that my body is this way because I carried the love of my life in there for 10 months and I would do it all over again for her. She is so worth it
-1st picture: me at 40 weeks pregnant
-2nd picture: 1 month PP
-3rd picture: 5 months PP
We have all heard the phrases beauty comes from with in and beauty is in the eye of the beholder but such phrases come up short and feel shallow when we are talking about ourselves, our body image. I have struggled with certain aspects of my body like most of the women on this site, but I have been blessed with the opportunities to overcome/look past/accept the parts of me that aren’t perfect. Not to drag on here but in high school my friends were all much smaller and prettier than me, which I was well aware of and so were all the boys who would befriend me in hopes of me putting in a good word for them. But to be honest I loved that I had so many guy friends that I could go to for advice or to talk to for an honest opinion. I loved that my friends were so pretty and I admired them. Sometimes I would get down on myself that I had crooked teeth or that at 16 my thighs had dark thick stretch marks, but luckily I had these guy friends that I could talk to about it and you know they always would tell me the same thing …that it doesn’t matter that I was an awesome person and fun and if someone was so superficial as to not want to be with me because of what I saw as flaws then it was their loss and to not worry about. And you know I took this to heart and I found ways to love myself. Before I got pregnant I was working out 2 hours a day 4-5 days a week, I was in no way ripped but I loved my body and had so much energy. When we didn’t get pregnant right away I thought it might be due to the stress I was putting on my body by exercising so I decided to stop until I got pregnant with the intention that I would go back to light exercises once it happened. That never happened I slept through my first trimester, second trimester was amazing and I started doing occasional hikes and walks but nothing crazy and I had gained 10 maybe 15 pounds by this point didn’t look pregnant and had no stretch marks. Then the third trimester hit and I gained 40-45 pound!(that’s 40 pounds in 3 months my Dr was shocked) My stomach erupted in stretch marks (they didn’t hit until I was 8 months along) and my whole body felt swollen and sluggish. My heart was always beating very hard and I had a hard time catching my breath if I did too much. So I became obsessed with looking for pictures of women in a similar situation, I saved every possible exercise regime, I drooled over post pregnancy flat bellys, and I researched every possible remedy for stretch mark reduction. Then I had my beautiful boy via c section (planned) he was 9lbs 1oz and then in the first month I had dropped 30lbs. I felt great about the prospect of getting my body back. But that went out the window with the struggles of breastfeeding. It was very important to me to breastfeed and I put all of my time and energy into making sure we developed a good breastfeeding relationship. Which led to my now exclusively left side breastfed body. There are times that I’m embarrassed at the fact that one breast is at least 2 times the size of the other. I sometimes try to hide it when we are going out with our friends. But for the most part when I see it I’m proud. I’m proud that I am able to sustain a healthy happy boy only needing one breast to do the job. I’m proud because it shows my dedication as a mom and that I’m not superficial I can go out in public with my body the way it is. I have stretch marks, a slightly saggy stomach, lopsided breasts, and my hair is falling out faster than its growing back in but I’m a devoted mother, a caring wife, a fun loving friend, an understanding sister and a forgiving daughter. I do love myself and though my old clothes don’t look as good on me, when I see myself naked in the mirror I think I’m beautiful. We go through many stages in life and some are better than others but we will continue to change throughout our lives and our mindset is what’s going to affect whether those future changes are positive or not.
I know my body will continue to change and that there are others out there who have gone through more dramatic changes than I have but I challenge you to be proactive and to find at least one thing you love about yourself and one thing you love about your body (I have great shoulders that I think are very sensual). Look at your new body as a reflection of the past you’ve lived and embrace the changes as they continue to appear. I’m posting my pre, pregnant, and post body because I researched like crazy when I was pregnant trying to find people with a similar body type. I don’t do any special diet and as for exercise I walk about a mile at least once a week (this only started happening a couple weeks ago).
My beautiful daughter was born almost 7 years ago. I loved every moment of my pregnancy. I did my best to savor each moment and I loved feeling every flutter, kick, and hiccup. A few weeks before my baby girl was born, I had a visit with my midwife and she marveled at my smooth, stretch mark free belly. When I visited her the next week, I remember her saying “oh no! you have stretch marks!” I remember feeling let down…as if I had almost made it through with my tummy in tact. What I didn’t realize at the time was that the stretch marks would not end up being the source of this frustrating struggle.
It took me quite a bit of time to get back to my pre-pregnancy weight and once I did, I was devastated by what I saw in the mirror. Who cares about the stretch marks? look at that saggy, wrinkled tummy! I was not prepared for the way my body had changed. Prior to this, I had prided myself on the fact that I was a woman who would NEVER consider cosmetic surgery…yet, as I looked in the mirror at this hanging skin…thoughts started to creep in about a tummy tuck. That made me feel low as well. How could I be so vain to consider something like that???
Now, all these years have passed and I am ashamed to say that when I look at my belly in the mirror…when I look at the body that grew and birthed the most precious little being…I still fantasize about the tummy tuck. I don’t care about the stretch marks. I’m even rather proud of them. The saggy, wrinkled skin that doesn’t improve no matter what I do is the source of the embarrassment and frustration I feel. I don’t want to seem petty. I don’t want to seem vain. I am just speaking my truth and it is a truth I never thought would be coming from me. I have been thinking about submitting my story to this website for YEARS and I am just now finally following through. It is my hope that I can find my confidence once again.
~Number of pregnancies and births:
~The age of your children, or how far postpartum you are:
My son will be 10 weeks old in a couple days and I’m at a loss for words because I can’t believe it has flown by so fast. I feel like it was just yesterday he was born. It was my first pregnancy so I was eager to follow all the guidelines to being pregnant including eating healthier than I normally would, taking my vitamins every day and taking care of myself as best I could. The one thing I had no control over was the rapidly increasing amount of stretch marks that started to cover my body slowly taking it over. I was never really in love with my body to begin with. I’ve been self conscious about myself and my weight since I was in middle school. My weight always fluctuated throughout the years and it seems like I was always on a diet trying to lose weight. I loved being pregnant and being able to feel my baby move around inside me. Knowing that he was depending on me to grow him, care for him, and protect him made me feel important. But the way my body was changing and getting bigger made me hate myself even more. I hated the way my stomach was covered in stretch marks. I would never take a belly picture without a shirt on. I tried everything to prevent them- from Palmers cocoa butter, Palmers tummy butter, Palmers oil, organic coconut oil, and exfoliating consistently and nothing worked. And I never thought back then that it could get any worse, until now. The loose, saggy, wrinkly skin that hangs down from my stomach makes me feel so depressed. I know it was worth it because I get to be the mom to a beautiful little boy that loves me so much. At the same time though, I don’t feel happy with myself. I can’t imagine ever feeling beautiful again. I’m jealous of the girls that think they’re fat but take for granted their flawless skin. I would love to be that girl again. You can always lose weight if you you aren’t happy with your size, but you can never get rid of the deep marks scattered over your skin. If there was a clean unmarked area of skin on my body it is now tagged with the marks of having a child. They’re literally everywhere. I wouldn’t be caught dead in a bikini, or any bathing suit for that matter. I am just trying to accept the fact that this comes with having my son and there is nothing I can do about it now so why waste my energy focusing on it? I wish I could be truly happy with myself and finally love myself, stretch marks and all.
# of pregnancies: 1
Age of child: 10 weeks