As I looked in the mirror, tears streamed down my face at the sight of my reflection; I no longer felt comfortable in my old two piece bikinis. Between pregnancy and breastfeeding, my body just wasn’t what it used to be. While I am amazed at what my body was able to do, and love my mom bod, my bikinis just made me feel uncomfortable and embarrassed.
I expressed my uneasiness to my fellow OKCMB contributors and realized that I was not alone in my feelings. We all have insecurities, but as we look at one another, all we see is the beauty, strength, and confidence that radiates from each woman. It made me realize that those insecurities that were making me want to hide my mom bod, were all in my head.
Our amazing team photographer, Cassie, and I wanted to show you some of the beautiful, strong women who make up the Oklahoma City Moms Blog in an untraditional way. Our hope, with this post, is that it will encourage you to embrace your mom bod this summer!
Special thanks to Pelican Bay for allowing us to use their beautiful facilities for these photos.
Where did you get your swimsuit? Target
What do you love about yourself? Physically, I love my hair and smile! Non-physically, I love my positive attitude, determination, and honesty.
What do you hope people see when they look at you? A good mom who somewhat has it together. I may be makeup-free and in sweatpants 90% of the time, but at least my kid always looks cute!
What advice do you have for other moms who might be struggling to love their mom bod? You carried your baby(ies) in your body, under your heart, for 9 months and that doesn’t happen without leaving a mark on you–mentally and physically! You may have lingering stretch marks; excess skin; saggy boobs; or even some extra weight, but you should wear them as a badge of honor! You earned those marks/pounds! Always remember that you are absolutely beautiful on the inside and the out!
Where did you get your swimsuit? Top: Target Bottom: Fred Meyer
What do you love about yourself? I love my ability to see the good in all things (and people). I also love my fierce dedication to see things through to completion.
What do you hope people see when they look at you? I hope people would see a woman who has overcome and is stronger as a result. From two unmedicated births; a preemie; postpartum depression and anxiety TWICE; running a half marathon; to the daily challenges of military life, I have been forced to find inner strength, even when it felt like I couldn’t.
What advice do you have for other moms who might be struggling to love their mom bod? As a fitness person, I will promise you that no amount of exercise will make you love your body more, because you will never be “thin enough” or weigh the “perfect amount.” But if you find a way to truly love yourself, for who you are deep at your core, you will end up loving ALL of yourself. And, if after that, you have a fitness goal you want to achieve, you will find that you will love your body THROUGH the process and not just in the end result.
Where did you get your swimsuit? I got the top from a maternity store two years ago; I believe it was Destination Maternity. I got the boy short bottoms from Target.
What do you love about yourself? I’m an optimist when it comes to people. I believe there’s beauty and something to love in even the hardest to love individuals. And, of course, I love being a mommy and wife.
What do you hope people see when they look at you? Someone who genuinely loves and appreciates the life around her.
What advice do you have for other moms who might be struggling to love their mom bod? Many women struggling to love their body are often focusing on the body as simply a physical form, and compare themselves to culture’s standard of that form. We forget that our bodies are SO MUCH more than simply a “form;” our body helps us dance and run and sing! Our bodies create and sustain life, hug and kiss little ones, and run to their rescue! Our body helps us feel the sun on our skin, smell cookies baking, see our baby’s first smile, and hear their sweet laugh. There’s SO MUCH to love about our bodies!
Where did you get your swimsuit? Amazon, of course! Ain’t nobody got time to go into Target with 3 kids and try on bathing suits!
What do you love about yourself? My feet. I know it’s weird but I’m a chronic nail biter so I only get to paint my toes and I love it. Also, I wear a size 5 shoe so I can still wear kids sizes and it saves me a bunch of money, which pleases me immensely! Non-physically, I guess I would have to say my resilience. I have faced, like most people, some very trying times, but I really do try to make a point to have an optimistic outlook and try to always find the beauty out of any situation. It’s not always easy, but I do try!
What do you hope people see when they look at you? A mommy who is doing her very best while trying to add some humor to this crazy small kid chaos I am constantly surrounded by.
What advice do you have for other moms who might be struggling to love their mom bod? Find a suit that YOU feel comfortable in! Every scar, stretch mark, cellulite, varicose, etc… mark you have on you is a sign of your strength–embrace it, Mommas!
Where did you get your swimsuit? Old Navy
What do you love about yourself? I love that my body is strong and able to take care of my family and play with my kids! I also love that I am always wanting to try and learn new things and help others.
What do you hope people see when they look at you? I hope they see a regular mom who is just trying to do her best, the same as them.
What advice do you have for other moms who might be struggling to love their mom bod? Don’t let perceived imperfections hold you back from living your life. When you feel uncomfortable, take a deep breath, jump in with both feet, fake it ’til you make it, and you won’t regret it!
Where did you get your swimsuit? Target, this year. We went to Great Wolf Lodge this spring and Target was the only place I found with suits out that early. I was very happy with my find though!
What do you love about yourself? Physically, I love my collarbone area! Non-physically, I love that I’m pretty low maintenance in most aspects of my life; it keeps my days, for the most part, less stressful and more enjoyable.
What do you hope people see when they look at you? Honestly, I’m walking around tired most of the time. So I like when I can pull off not looking as tired as I feel. Besides that, I guess I’d like people to see a mom who is age appropriate but still fun when they look at me.
What advice do you have for other moms who might be struggling to love their mom bod? Two things help or have helped me: 1) After working out and eating well after my last pregnancy, I saw next to no improvement. I found a doctor who really listened to me–she found and treated some underlying health issues. I’ve since lost about 20 pounds! 2) I had a daughter. I never want her to feel the way I have about my body at different points in my life. Knowing that and wanting that has made me ease up on myself so I can be a better example for her.
Where did you get your swimsuit? Walmart
What do you love about yourself? I love my ability to befriend people from/in all walks of life!
What do you hope people see when they look at you? I hope people see a good Christian, mom, and wife. I’m a hot mess 95% of the time, but I really try to do it all for my family and God’s glory!
What advice do you have for other moms who might be struggling to love their mom bod? Just remember that even the most “confident” woman you see is struggling with something she dislikes about her body or looks, whether she’s a mom or not. We’ve done a beautiful thing, making and birthing babies! Never be ashamed of your cellulite, saggy areas, or stretch marks. Embrace the areas you love and dress however makes YOU feel beautiful! If all else fails–rock those black leggings, a baggy T, messy bun, and red lipstick!
Thanks to our amazing contributors who were willing to pose for this post!
We hope all of you will be proud to rock your mom bods this summer!