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Celebrating Postpartum Bodies

Website Lil Loves: The Shape of a Mother

For most new moms, the thought of walking the red carpet just eight days after giving birth is more of a nightmare than a dream. Victoria's Secret model moms may strut their postpartum bodies down the catwalk – in sexy lingerie no less – just a month after delivery, but most of us prefer to keep our bodies under wraps in the weeks and months after childbirth. Though the supermarket checkout lane is filled with magazines showing off yet another bikini-baring, celebrity mom's rapid baby weight diet plan, the true reality is that the physical aftermath of birth leaves us with many postpartum surprises – sagging boobs and stretch marks anyone?

Heidi and Gisele may have bodacious bods, but it is the real woman's post-baby body that should be celebrated. The Shape of a Mother does just that. Founded by a woman who was tired of women hiding their not airbrushed and non-surgery-enhanced bodies under baggy clothing, the site invites moms to upload photos of their post-pregnancy body parts (nude or clothed, anonymously or bylined) for the world to see. The resulting collection of self-portraits, and the stories behind them are both empowering and inspiring.

Join The Conversation
GregS GregS 7 years
Oh, you can see your feet, Girl Jen. you just need to stick your legs out - you may need to sit first though. ;) As an old fart male I can appreciate almost any body shape. It takes some positive attitude to pull it off sometimes, but a softer body is kinder on the bones of your partner than an 18 yo hard body. you just went through 9 months of carrying around a lot of extra weight to nurture another life. The extra padding isn't going to go away in a week. The extra breast size won't, either, but is that really a problem? Give yourselves a break! Every body is unique, and it's reactions to the stresses of pregnancy are singular from person to person.
Girl-Jen Girl-Jen 7 years
@ang1885, awesome outlook! :D By the way, you'll be so happy to see your feet again. I see a few comments about women comparing themselves to the women on the site, and I can see how thinking "It could be so much worse" could be comforting.
ang1885 ang1885 7 years
I'm 7 months pregnant and would KILL to have a flabby tummy or small boobs or any non-pregnant body. I have no problem being pregnant but I can't wait to join most of the human race again and not have a gigantic baby belly. Honestly, these women need to remember how they felt at 9 months and give themselves a high five and some cake!!
Girl-Jen Girl-Jen 7 years
I love that website. I wish I could have seen it when I was just a few weeks postpartum. Seeing things like stretched-out moles and lumps of fat and bright pink c-section scars on other women would have reassured me that these things happen to everyone, and that they're something to be proud of. Now I see the lingering stretch marks and the scar as reminders of my daughter and the wonderful things my body did by growing and carrying her.
jenni5 jenni5 7 years
That website is just depressing! It definitely looks like they post a lot of worst case scenario pics too.
starbucks2 starbucks2 7 years
Okay, if you are pregnant, especially with your first, DO NOT even consider looking at that website! It will give you nightmares, I am not even kidding... However, it is a great site, reading all those stories and seeing the pictures of real women is great. Makes me feel better about myself, because I look better than most women on there 9 months post-partum...I know that's kinda mean, but I'm just being honest...
depeche3 depeche3 7 years
Wow that website was awesome... I really felt that I was alone in how I looked after close to 6 months post-prengnancy, but now I feel a lot better.
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