This is My Belly

my belly

Before you cringe and think you have clicked on a page that is about to advertise the transformation provided by the latest and greatest dieting trend, realize that this picture – is MY BELLY. (And NO, I am NOT pregnant!)

This is my belly. (Ignore my mismatched pajamas)

This is my belly after having 4 kids and 3 C-sections. 

This is my belly after passing the 40-year mark and spending plenty of time in gyms doing cardio and walking in the great outdoors as well as enduring sit-ups and crunches in copious amounts. This is my belly, despite the fact that I try to avoid high carbohydrate foods, and have been able to maintain what my doctor considers to be a healthy weight for the last 5 years.   

This is MY belly. 

It hasn’t seen the light of day in many, many years as I gave up on bikinis after my twins were born. It has several stretch marks near my belly button, which I adore because they are so silky and soft – my personal version of tattoos. This is my belly, with the little patches of cellulite, and the flabby roll that no amount of sit-ups will ever make go away. You can look away if you wish – but the truth is that my belly looks a lot more like most of the bellies of middle-aged moms than the ones that we see on television, that are all photo-shopped and spray tanned and perfect.   

This is MY belly, that jiggles, and that is completely opposed to wearing jeans that are low cut lest I be a victim of muffin top. This is the belly that my children lay their heads on when they are sad, that my 6-year-old falls asleep on every night as I rub her hair till her eyelids flutter off to sleep, that my husband puts his arms around when he gives me one of his amazing hugs that steer away all my troubles. 

It has taken me many years to be okay with my belly. Five years ago, I would not have posted this picture on the internet for you to see if someone offered me 6 million dollars. (Okay, maybe for 6 million dollars). But today, I am okay with it. I accept that my belly is part of me, and although it is not perfect, nor fits in with what ‘society’ says is sexy or attractive – it is mine. It has endured a lot in the last 15 years, and I am proud of it, despite what others may see as flaws. 

One thing this life has taught me is the most important thing is to love yourself. And that means ALL of YOU! Even your belly. 

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This is My Belly

Stef Daniel is the 40ish year old, experienced (meaning crazy already) mother of count ‘em…4 daughters (yes, she takes prayers) who have taught her nearly E.V.E.R.Y.T.H.I.N.G she needs to know about raising kids and staying sane. She hails from a small town in Georgia where she lives with her family in a red tin roofed house (with just ONE bathroom mind you) on a farm - with tons of animals of course. One day, due to her sheer aversion to shoes and her immense lov ... More

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4 comments

  1. melissa says:

    Stef, I applaud you. I had my first baby boy 14 years ago and my body jumped back to its original shape within the first 60 days. I now have a 6-month old son. Needless to say, my body has not bounced back quite like it did… My first son was a vaginal birth, and this one was an emergency C-Section after 3.5 hours of pushing. He just wouldn’t pass the pelvic bone…so even though we know we want more babies – one or two – I am worried because my OB/GYN does not practice VBACs (vaginal birth after C-Section) due to the 1% chance of maternal or fetal death. I don’t like this scar on my lower belly that feels like it has hardened skin all around it, but I know it is worth it to have a healthy baby! So my questions are these: 1) Did your doctor use the same incision for your 3 secions? Or are there now several? 2) Was your first C-Section optioned or medically necessary? 3) Were the subsequent ones recommended by your doctor or absolutely required? 4) Did you have mixed emotions going into them? How did you prepare for them? I had no time to mentally prepare for mine…just about 20 minutes prior, and it was a scary thing since the epidural didn’t fully "block" the site of incision.

  2. After one child, I’m still looking pretty decent.

  3. ajharco says:

    I’m in the same boat, I have had 2 c-sections and a set of twins, my belly will never look like it did before I had kids. You are braver than I, I wouldn’t post a picture of my belly.

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