Learning About Body Image From Pregnancy & Childbirth

I’ve been getting some excellent responses to my Too Sexy For Your Nursing Bra? Really?! rant — and while I will be getting back to you with the more practical points I promised, I didn’t want to overlook these statements!

Tracey Montford, founder and designer of maternity and nursing lingerie brand Cake, sent in the photo in this post saying this:

One of the comments you refer to in your post talks about body shapes — how it changes after birth. Coincidence or not, we recently launched the 7th leg of our global ‘Real Moms, Real Fit’ campaign in Canada. One of the moms chosen to represent our brand isn’t a stick thin model, but a ‘real mom’ with curves and bares the marks of childbirth. What we loved about her (when picking the winners – it was a model search open to the public for any pregnant/nursing moms) is how confident she was in her skin. We didn’t even cast her seeing her body. We just loved her personality and her strength when it came to her self image and being a mom. It was truly empowering.

One maternity sector professional, who wishes to remain anonymous, emailed me to say:

I’m just happy to know that you actually get it! I’ve read a lot of bloggers try and pick up on this story but they really didn’t get the essence of this whole sexy vs beautiful / pregnancy and empowering emotion that comes with being a mom and breastfeeding and not actually overly sexualizing yourself in order to feel good with yourself.

I love these comments!

And I just have to wonder how this battle of the pregnancy bulges (bellies, breasts, etc.) might just impact our definitions of beauty and body image in general…

Wouldn’t it just be wonderful if we could not only accept and adore the women and bodies who carry and bear children, but also the realities of female forms in general?

We should not feel the need or pressure to overly sexualize ourselves in order to feel good about ourselves.

We should see and cherish the beauty in the the shapes of and marks on our bodies, for those are the signs of our personality, our strength — our lives. Those are our beauty marks.

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