It seems our society cares so much about artificial beauty, and it becomes difficult to see the beauty within ourselves because of the outward influences.
But pregnancy has made me feel beautiful.
After years and years of distorted body image and eating disorders, I never really felt worthy of positive attention or comfortable in my own body. Once those physical issues were in my past, I did a lot of soul-searching and reflection. Yoga was a HUGE part of this healing. Eventually, I began to feel “okay” with how I looked and how my body is always changing. Pregnancy has been a different story.
I love my big belly. Rubbing my 36+ week pregnant belly and feeling the baby respond is truly wonderful. My body is serving a purpose– giving life to a precious baby. And in addition to that, I finally feel that “glow” people talk about. Not that my skin is shiny and extra smooth, but I am so happy on the inside, it seeps out of my body. My hair has grown quickly and is healthy. My diet has cleaned up because the baby gets everything I do so I am much more conscious of what I eat. Of course I have some random cravings, and I let myself indulge a little. There is nothing that is off-limits because I want the baby to be healthy and see themselves positively like Mommy does/will.
Standing in front of the mirror is not a nightmare. I will see myself naked as I slather my body in oils and lotion and feel strong in my body. Before, I would quickly get dressed or cover up in a towel. Now, I will stay in my birthday suit as long as I can while allowing the moisturizer to dry.
I have known people to say that pregnant ladies should not wear tight clothing or bikinis. As a woman, I think pregnant women should DO WHATEVER and WEAR WHATEVER THEY WANT. And I now see the appeal of wearing tighter clothes. Sometimes they are more comfortable, yes, but pregnancy can really make a lady feel powerful, feminine, and goddess-like. I wear tight shirts now to yoga that I never would have dreamed of putting on just last year. And last year, I was very toned and slim.
It’s so funny that I am 25+ pounds bigger and FEEL better about myself than I did while teaching and practicing hot yoga multiple times a week.