HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY, you perfect supermoms, you!


A couple of weeks ago, SOAM had our #redefiningsupermom gathering here in San Diego. My friend Heidi came and took some awesome photos of us, showing our bellies, wearing our capes, being just generally super. (By, the way, PLEASE take a look at Heidi’s incredible Homeless Humans of San Diego Facebook page, she does a lot of good work helping people down here. If you feel so inclined, as a thank you for having her help by shooting SOAM’s event for FREE, buy her book. Half the sales go to supporting the people she works with. And if you are local, maybe book her for your own family photos.)


I love events like this, where we all get together and just allow ourselves to be imperfect. We find empowerment in our vulnerability together, in our community together. We all showed off our bellies, none of which are perfect (according to society’s too-narrow standards), but we were together. And here’s the thing: these bellies have stories to tell. Lately, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking and writing (which I’ll share soon) about how the body tells us its story by inscribing it onto our skin. How beautiful is that? Your body is poetry, it is a piece of art. No matter what it looks like, and whether it fits society’s standards of beauty or not, it is your poem, your story. It’s perfect just as it is.


Remember today that a real supermom is one who has had a homebirth or a planned cesarean, she’s one who homeschools or doesn’t, she’s one who is thin or curvy or none of those things, she’s one who breastfed or didn’t, she’s one who gave birth or adopted. Today we are #redefiningsupermom and recognizing that the only requirement to be a supermom is to love your kids.


Happy Mother’s Day, mamas!


Shape of a Mother of 6 (Emily)

Age: 31

I had my first son at 19 years old. I was very tiny only weighing 95 lbs before him and 145 when I had him!! I got huge in my belly!! I lived with my parents and my then boyfriend moved in. I then got married to my bf and we had a baby about every year to two year! I wanted it that way and I wanted to be a young Mom! I was adopted so I always feared maybe I wouldn’t be able to have kids either. That wasn’t the case obviously! I decided to get my tubes tied after my last #6. All 6 kids were 8 pounds and something ounces. My stomach stretched over and over and didn’t get much rest in between! I was either nursing and pregnant for 10 years straight!! My youngest is a little handful and we actually had my husbands cousins babies for a while so I’m glad I didn’t have anymore of my own!
After my 6th baby I noticed I had a lot of skin and also fat to lose. I started lifting weights and doing cardio when she was almost a year old. She’s now 2 1/2 and I still am improving my body and self. Working out has helped me with energy, self esteem, and is my me time. I know many women may think They can’t go to the gym but anyone can! Before children I was literally 95 pounds! After children I was around 125 but lots and lots of fluffiness and cellulite! I still have cellulite as you see in my recent pic but it’s helping! I had zero muscles especially in my stomach And had diastasis recti and still do actually!!! Now I’m not sure how much I weigh because I’m not worrried about weight! When I do weigh myself at the ymca because I don’t own a scales I’m anywhere from 132-138 I fluctuate a lot!

Keeping up with kids is hard and being out of shape can make it even harder! Doing something for yourself is not only good for you but good for your kids too!! Showing your children an active healthy lifestyle will help them stay in shape and want to be healthy too! We do have pizza and McDonald’s on occasion and my kids do love their Xbox! But, I feel like as long as we stay busy and I buy a lot of fruit and vegetables that they will have a good balance.

This isn’t meant to shame out of shape moms but hopefully inspire you! There are so many people who are stronger than me but I try my hardest, I swear, I pant, and I feel like I can keep up with my 6 kids, most of the time unless they all going in different directions….

Pregnancies, surgeries and depression- oh my! (Anonymous)

Age: 31
Number of pregnancies: 4
Number of births: 3
Ages of children: 4 years, 19 months, 8 weeks

I had my first child at 27 years old. It was the most traumatic event of my life due to scary complications and a 3rd degree tear/episiotomy. I suffered post partum depression and thought I’d never feel human again.

After 2 years I was finally ready to try to conceive again and ended up having a missed miscarriage at 8 weeks that required a D&C. Again, complications, trauma, depression followed.

After having my second child I developed a 10cm dermoid cyst on my ovary that needed to be surgically removed. So at 5 months post partum I underwent another surgery. I also suffered severe post partum anxiety this time and ended up in the hospital due to a panic attack that was thought to be a heart attack.

At 8 months post partum I learned I was pregnant again and was dreading the back to back pregnancies.

Now, here I am 8 weeks after having baby #3 (our last!!!!) and all I’m hoping for is no more surgeries, no more babies, no more depression and anxiety. The toll that babies take is not only on our bodies- but our minds too.


My Body: 3 Years Postpartum (Anonymous)

I am a mother of 3, my last one was in July of 2013. I was obese at the time, and my son was a 10-pound baby, so my canvas was not the cleanest when I set myself to lose weight.

I went from an unknown weight (probably 180, 5ft2in) down to an average of 130lbs. I’m very athletic, run, cycle, and a good amount of strength training. My diet is dang-near impeccable, with occasional slips on date night, taco Tuesday, or a glass of wine after a long day.

What I’m getting at is: I am doing everything right…as best as I can! But my mommy belly will not go away. It’s like I have a thick shield of fat on top on my abdomen that doesn’t match the rest of me.
I’ve made peace with saggy, stretchy, stripey skin…but the belly fat is pretty unwelcome.
I have read all kinds of health columns, and have been patient, but it seems like there is no use.
Is there anything I need to know that the columns aren’t telling me about the realistic expectations I should have about my fat? Am I truely an exception to all of the advice out there on the WWW?
Please help give me hope or at least peace of mind. I’m tired of feeling like a failure.

Thank you for your time!

~Age: 30
~Number of pregnancies and births: 3
~The age of my children, and how far postpartum I am: 6, 4, and 3. Three years postpartum.

“Mommy I Love Your Squishy Tummy” (Anonymous)

I am 30 years old and I have two children, ages 8 and 6.

The story of how I learned to be ok with my body again after kids is a long one. Similar to many on this site. When I became a single woman with children I thought, “No one will ever love or want me because I am hideous.” What I have learned in the last two years of being single is that is a bunch of hogwash!

I stopped focusing on achieving perfection and instead began to focus on my overall health. I’m 5’7 and I went from 210 lbs with 37% body fat to 150 lbs with 24% body fat. I have maintained this weight for a year. I have fitness goals I am continuing to work towards.

My body is healthy. It isn’t perfect and it never will be. Sometimes I still struggle with knowing this, but I remind myself that there are more important things in life than having a perfect body. I remind myself to be kind and when needed I remind myself that it’s ok to cry over what I have lost. I remind myself how far I have come and ultimately I remember what my children have told me over the years:

“You’re beautiful Mommy!”

“I want to look like you when I’m older Mom.”

“Mommy, I love your tummy so much. It’s soft and squishy and ahhhh… I just love it!”

The ways their eyes light up when people tell them they look like miniature versions of me.

I see them watching me and I am proud that even in my darkest days I have never once exposed them to the emotional turmoil I felt inside. I have not talked down about my body nor have I hidden it in shame. They know we eat well because it’s good for our bodies. They know we are active because we want to be strong and healthy. And I know that they are always watching. I never want them to go through what I have gone through and so that is what motivates me to keep working towards loving myself as I am. Am I 100% there yet? No, I am not, but I am getting there.

It is What it is (Anonymous)

3 years Post partum. 2 c sections, 32 years old.

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.

Just make what you have sexy!! (Deflated mom of 4)

I have been really depressed over the years about my body. I have always been small chested, not even a full A cup. I have had four children. Breast fed the youngest past a year old. My cup size ranged from a before pregnant to probably a DD. Then back down to a 30B (technically a typical A cup) after weaning. I always thought there was something wrong with my breasts because bras never fit right. Wait! it was the bras that were the wrong size. Nobody ever taught me that! Finally realized I was a 30 band size and that changed everything.(american eagle bras fit me great!) I still dont like how they hang and are deflated. Sometimes I get really depressed about it. I dont feel like a woman a lot of the time. But then I have to realize that I shouldn’t base my self esteem on what i think others view me as. I started working out hard. It helped lift the breasts a little. Why can’t deflated be sexy too?

~Age: 37
~Number of pregnancies and births: 4
~The age of your children, or how far postpartum you are: youngest is two oldest is an adult.

Postpartum 5 Years Later (Melissa O)

I’m always struggling with accepting my new body. I know we should not dwell on the negative of child birth when the positive is two beautiful girls now 6 and 5. I’m 30 now but still struggling with insecurities. I would love to be this fit mom but with a full time job getting out late and then coming home to spend time with my girls before bed, I find it hard to go to the gym. Even though my husband tells me he doesn’t care what I look like, It’s hard to accept that this is how my body will look from now on, I just wish I could have the same confidence as all the amazing moms out there, I will get there eventually it’s just taking me a bit longer!

It Happened (Chrissy)

I was enjoying a rare empty house! No kids no spouse. So I decided on a load of laundry and a nice long hot shower. My clothes were not dry yet so I just laid in my comfy bed and surfed the net…with just a shirt on,while I waited for my clothes.

The warm bright morning sun peeping through the cracks in curtains caught my eye, but something else did to and it was beautiful, it was pretty, it was sexy, it was everything I have thought beauty to be and it was MY BODY! O M G it was MY body! The same body I have thought ugly my whole life! The same body I have filled my head with negative thoughts about, The same body that after 2 kids and a zillion stretch marks I thought was disgusting was now, in a one second moment …BEAUTIFUL!!

I snapped the picture with my cell and sat there a long time wondering how this happened? It was very confusing! How did I just go from years of feeling the negative thoughts about my plus sizeness or my wrinkled belly to thinking – wow look at me, look at my body! My body is not damaged like I have been thinking, it’s a fucking master piece!

I don’t know why or how this thought happened but it happened and that one moment opened the flood gates of positive self-talk about the loveliness that is ME!

I will always keep this picture close to me now, just so I can remember that feeling of self love, it’s a strange feeling and feeling it for the first time at 32 years old was crazy and Enlightening!

I was glad I found your site and I feel happy just sharing this moment!
Thank you so much