As women, we have heard and likely felt the pressures of maintaining a certain “body” even before becoming mothers. The pressure is ten-fold after giving birth to “get our body back” or “lose the baby weight.” People seem to feel they have a right to comment on women’s bodies and these comments, good and bad, escalate during and after pregnancy.
It is not easy, at any stage of the female’s evolution, to love and appreciate our bodies, especially in a society where women’s bodies are continually objectified and challenged. Certainly, after giving birth, amid demands of motherhood, and with current events requiring increased intensity of mothering, learning to truly love our bodies is excruciatingly difficult.
With this, I challenge you, Mama: find the love for what your body can do rather than what it looks like. By acknowledging our own body’s capabilities, the skill of loving our bodies will come. Moving through this with you, I have written what I love and appreciate about my own body, at age 40, after birthing a son and after working diligently on re-evaluating my worth as a mother, a woman, and a person beyond appearances.
- I have always been an athlete; movement for me is essential. I love my body for its resilience and its ability to be a home for a soul that is “me,” no matter the changes it goes through as I age.
- After a 48-hour childbirth, I am confident in my body’s ability to endure. My physical, measurable strength has exceeded my pre-pregnancy body’s ability by significant margins. I love how strong my body is and I trust it to do hard things.
- I recently switched from strength and power-based movements to the development of a constitution I wish to reflect in my reality: flexibility, balance and allowing for grace. My body shows pliancy and an eagerness to learn new movement patterns.
- My body grew its own individual organ to nourish, develop and bring to life an independent human being. Two lungs to breath, a brain to solve problems, ten fingers and toes to run and play, and a pumping heart to love. This is an achievement even if I carry a composition that may not always meet a standard of current society.
Let us all remember, we are contenders, and our bodies are more than something to serve the needs of others, whether that is a standard set by a society or someone else’s desires. We are Mothers and that means our bodies are strong and beautiful, resilient, and evolving.