in

25 Moms Share What Postpartum Bodies Really Look Like With Stunning Photos

Many women feel insecure and ashamed of their bodies after giving birth. While they have put their bodies through a lot to create an actual human being, they are so hard on themselves once they have given birth. They try so hard to lose weight and look picture-perfect, but, in reality, not all moms are like that.

Instagram account @takebackpostpartum is changing the way that women view themselves and their bodies after giving birth by sharing real women and real photos and stories.

1.

View this post on Instagram

“I used to weigh myself every morning. I would always make sure to go to the bathroom first. There would be a rush of anxiety as the scale blinked while I stared down in anticipation. It was the moment that would depict how I approached my day. Would I be positive and embrace the day happily because the number was a whole .1 lower than yesterday morning? Or would I angrily start brushing my teeth and threaten myself to only eat a salad for today because the number was a whole .1 higher than yesterday? This was how I lived. It was destroying me. And I was completely convinced that this was the only way to be happy. This was the only way I would get to where I was supposed to be in order to become a mother. I repeated to myself that the only way to be happy was to be skinny. So I lost weight. And it never felt like it was enough. I worked out only to lose weight, rather than the way I do now where I focus more on how it makes me feel. But then I had Maci. For the first time, I felt thankful for my body. There was a moment after she was born that I stood in the hospital bathroom just before I took my first postpartum shower. I was only in my robe as I stared into the mirror. I almost remember it in slow motion because I had avoided a mirror for years, even throughout most of my pregnancy. Locking eyes with myself, I tugged the string and the robe separated a few inches. I froze for a few seconds before I let the robe fall down to the ground. And there I was. I saw me for what felt like the very first time, but after another few seconds, I closed my eyes. I turned around and walked towards the shower. This moment was just the beginning of my self-love journey. It doesn’t happen quickly. But it never would have happened had I not tried.” 💗 Image & Caption by @meg.boggs. ✨ #this_is_postpartum #takebackpostpartum

A post shared by @ takebackpostpartum on

2.

3.

View this post on Instagram

“This is #postpartum and this is A-OK by me. 🦋 I think the biggest thing moms can offer each other is to lovingly and honestly share our stories. The days after giving #birth have been largely hidden away from public sharing until recently, and I think that may be because there’s an implication that the image of my still pregnant-looking stomach and gauze undies and medical pads might be too much to handle or not pleasing to see. I want to change that narrative. The stretch marks that cascade across my lower stomach are truly one of my favorite parts about my body now. And my mom bod – exactly as it is – serves as a constant reminder of a moment in time when I vulnerably grew. When I lovingly expanded. When I courageously allowed. And when I easily softened. I find my current size and shape to be utterly beautiful. I find it worthy of every ounce of love this world has to offer. I probably find it more attractive and incredible and sexy and awesome than any other human being will. Which is the goal, mamas. My deepest hope for every single mom – and woman – is to feel as much joy, peace of mind, and admiration for their own bodies as I do for mine. It’s taken over two years of hard work to get to this mental and emotional place. And it has been every bit worth it. New moms, seasoned veterans, and every single mother in between – let’s all continue telling a different version of the story society likes to dictate to us about the postpartum experience. Let’s rise up in our narrative of how we feel about the physical homes that have made miracles happen. Let’s fight back with full acceptance and adoration for ourselves. Because we are amazing.” 🎉 Words and image by @thelindsaywolf . . . . . . . . #effyourbeautystandards #thisispostpartum #ihaveembraced #plussize #plussizepregnancy #motherhood #stretchmarks #givingbirth #youareworthy #selflove #bodypositive #postpartumbody #mombod #love #allbodiesaregoodbodies #loveyourself #this_is_postpartum

A post shared by @ takebackpostpartum on

4.

View this post on Instagram

“A note to the new mama. 🤱🏻 You may not recognise your own body anymore, but you need to give it time. _ It’s possible you’ll still look pregnant weeks after birth, this is normal. _ Your belly button will look the way it used to, eventually. _ Your body may have made some permanent physical changes, embrace them. _ You may lose a lot of hair in the first few months, don’t panic it’s a normal phase. _ Your hormones are adjusting themselves, there will be high, lows and probably tears. _ You may get the baby blues or postpartum depression, know that this is okay and ask for help and support, you’re not alone. _ Your breastfeeding journey (if you do) may not be as easy as you expected, don’t beat yourself up and it will take time. _ You may bleed for weeks after giving birth, like a big pain in the ass period. _ You need to increase you fiber intake… just trust us on this one! _ You may sweat a lot and feel like you’re in a constant heat wave in the first few days, thank you hormones. _ You may have permanent scars on your body, these are simply reminders of how strong our amazing bodies are, learn to love them. _ Motherhood changes us, physically, mentally and emotionally. Some of these changes permanent, most temporary, remember you’re not alone. _ Welcome to the club mama, we got you. ❤️ . Fellow mama’s – if I haven’t listed it here, let a new mama know something.” 😘 Caption and image by @katie_newnham. #postpartum #takebackpostpartum

A post shared by @ takebackpostpartum on

5.

View this post on Instagram

“How is this considered ugly? This is #Motherhood. My story, marked (literally) all over my abdomen. This is what two healthy babies and two miscarriages in 11 years looks like for me. _ Each mark represents the #Strength my body used to create #Life. For every #StretchMark I encountered on my body was for every breath, every blink, every yawn, every smile. 🐯 I longed for these scars. _ I'm five months #postpartum. I'm surprised by how visible my #LineaNigra (#PregnancyLine) still is and my stomach that was stretched past its limits is about 10 shades darker than the rest of my body. _ I may not have a flat tummy ever. But I'm not afraid to wear that old bikini to the beach this Summer. My lower baby fat and loose skin is hanging around. I've learned to love my #PostpartumBody and its journey.” @nazzhie_xo (via @expectful) #takebackpostpartum

A post shared by @ takebackpostpartum on

6.

View this post on Instagram

{Postpartum} “Living in the newborn haze of sleep deprivation, unmade beds, pjs all day, too much tv, millions of nappies and breastfeeding.all.day. 🤱⠀ _ I’ve been so honest with you all through my pregnancy journey, and I wanted to continue to be honest after. I don’t want people to think I’ve just bounced back (😂lol) or suddenly to hide myself away – why should I share photos of my big bump and be proud of it, then suddenly become ashamed as soon as the baby is out? 🤷‍♀️⠀ _ As a society, we are so conditioned to hide our postpartum bodies, to be ashamed of loose skin and stretch marks and saggy bellies and breasts. Theres so much pressure to bounce back, suck it in, cover it up… But the stupidest part is that most of us have it, to some degree or another!! 🤷‍♀️ _ So why the hell are we all hiding away – fear of judgement? We should be proud of our bodies that grew, nourished and birthed our precious babies, and continue to feed them once they’re out. ⠀ _ I would be lying if I said I loved the way my body looks now, but I’m ok with it. Carrying two very large babies, gaining and losing 33kg then gaining another 25kg and having 2 c cections (which by the way – I had no idea about the C-section tum until I got it 😬) has left me with lots of loose skin, more stretch marks than I’d ever imagined and a bellybutton that is unrecognizable. _ But I’m not out to try and “get my body back”… why? Because it never bloody went anywhere!! It was here the whole time, growing humans – I’m pretty sure I should be giving it a damn break not punishing it when it’s done so much for me.💕⠀ _ Plus, right now I just want to eat when I’m hungry (which is ALL the time) take it slow and enjoy this precious time, because it will be over in the blink of an eye!”💙💜@sarahbaughen ⠀ Words and image credit: @sarahbaughen. #fourthtrimester #postpartum #momlife #instsmom #this_is_postpartum #motheringwithoutfear #love #loveyourdamnself #birthwithoutfear #inspirepregnancy #motherhood #celebrating_my_postpartum #takebackpostpartum ⠀

A post shared by @ takebackpostpartum on

7.

View this post on Instagram

“When I was pregnant with Paisley, there was always one thing that I would obsess about that scared me more than giving birth for the first time, #postpartum #depression. I would lay awake at night in fear of what emotions I would have after having her. Would I love her? Would I hate her? Would I feel resentment for what my body just went through? These are all very real thoughts that I had and I couldn’t get them out of my head. After dealing with depression and #anxiety my entire life, I was certain that going through it postpartum was inevitable. Then I had her and I felt….fine. In fact, I felt better than I had in my entire life. I felt happy and strong and powerful like I had just done something no other human ever could. Maybe it was just the #oxytocin talking but it was a feeling like I was floating on a cloud. Then days and weeks and months went by and the exhaustion finally set in. Around 6 months postpartum I started feeling defeated. Like if I didn’t get some kind of break soon then I would end up breaking myself. I remember sitting in my truck, tears streaming down my face because Paisley did a number of things that day that made me question whether or not I was a good mom. I felt this way for a couple weeks and then I finally was able to pull myself out of it. I’m not a doctor so I’m not sure if it was #PPD or not, but what I do know is that whatever you’re going through be it exhaustion, PPD, #PPA or even just feeling tired—you are GOING to get through this. Ask someone for help. Tell them you need their support. Take some time to practice self love and self care. You can’t pour from an empty glass. I know it’s hard, but you aren’t alone and you should never feel like you aren’t worthy enough to get the help you need. You are beyond worthy. You are the warrior goddess Mama that birthed that beautiful baby and you deserve every ounce of support and love that you can get. Don’t give up.” 🦋 @chloeandpaisley . . . Image belongs to the person tagged. Do not alter or use without their permission. #postpartum #birthwithoutfear #takebackpostpartum #motherhood #selflove #selfcare

A post shared by @ takebackpostpartum on

8.

View this post on Instagram

"NOT anorexia, it’s a thyroid issue. I don’t know what it says about me that I got this thin and didn’t think there was anything wrong. Last Friday, I had a bulge in my neck that finally got me to the doctor. I’m STILL waiting on blood work but my doc thinks it’s Graves. If you just had a baby and have lost an inordinate amount of weight, feel like you are on cocaine, are suddenly heat intolerant, and can’t stop losing hair, and feel like your husband is being a dick it might just be your thyroid!! Get checked ASAP." @jennyandteets2 . . . . Image belongs to the person tagged. Do not alter or use without their permission. #thyroid #postpartum #reallife #momlife #birthwithoutfear #takebackpostpartum

A post shared by @ takebackpostpartum on

9.

10.

View this post on Instagram

"Well, I know a lot of you guys are probably thinking 'why would she post this picture', but, it took me 18 months to get here, 18 months to not cry when I look in the mirror, 18 months to finally feel beautiful in my own skin again! No one warns you about the dark sides of motherhood and pregnancy.. no one gives you a heads up on how much you change physically and mentally after you become a mother. It's been a long and hard postpartum ride for me.. 18 months after my first son and 5 months after my second son I feel like I can finally see the light ✨ and it genuinely feels amazing. 💖 Cheers to you mamas who are battling postpartum depression and still getting up everyday for your children! Cheers to you mamas who still cry about the marks on your skin from birthing your perfect babies! Cheer to motherhood, cheers to knowing that this too shall pass! And things will get better." 💗 @alexandrabrea_ ©2017 by Alexandra Kilmurray All rights reserved _ #motherhood #postpartum #postpartumdepression #babies #takebackpostpartum

A post shared by @ takebackpostpartum on