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27 True 'Post-Delivery Body' Photos Of Courageous Mothers

Human bodies are very amazing and wonderful anatomical units that perform amazing tasks throughout our lives. One of the most significant operations of the human body all through human history is the process of giving birth. It is not a mere biological process, but the creation of human life itself.

This is the sole process that made the human species evolve and be present on this planet all along. Every invention, technological advancement, and literally everything is impossible if there was no life created. This process is done in the female body until the moment the offspring is delivered into this world as a separate being. 

Most of the time women get worried about their bodies, the trauma it has to go through in the creation of a baby. But they always get through the process like a real-life superhero. Even though the conventional norms in the society calls the women to be a perfect person who should be candid every single moment in life, it differs in life. Pregnancy and delivery cost a lot of physical effort from the mother and it is a natural process to have stretch marks, a stretched belly until the body recovers, stress, and everything that comes with childbirth.

That is the reason the Take Back Postpartum Instagram account was created. This account posts, discuss and share stories of strong women who are proud of themselves and their bodies post-childbirth. Normalizing the natural process the body goes through with the toll it takes during the whole process. A lot of women worry about childbirth because of what society expects them to be during and after childbirth.

But it’s okay to be yourself and accept your body being beautiful as it is. Here are some of the photos of beautiful and strong women sharing their stories. It is high time that society normalized childbirth and women’s bodies. Scroll down to check out the posts we have listed for you. Please share your thoughts about this in the comments sections.

More info & Photo courtesy: Take Back Postpartum

#1

This is postpartum. At first glance, my negative self talk thinks this is probably the most unflattering picture ever taken of me. I see double chins, a belly that looks like it still houses a baby, stretch marks, cellulite, and a whole lot of extra weight. Push that self deprecating talk aside, and this photo captured by my adoring husband, seriously gives me all the feels. _ I have never felt more like a fierce and strong warrior mama princess than in these first few postpartum minutes and hours (yep, even with the giant adult diaper) Growing and birthing a tiny human is such a raw, transforming, utterly miraculous act, and I can hardly believe how strong and amazing my body is. And this little human we created, oh my! The overwhelming love! Utterly mind blowing! _ Women are truly amazing (men, are pretty great too), and we should never doubt our strength and power or let negative self talk make us feel like any less of the goddesses we are!

#3

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.

#4

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.

#5

When we only see certain types of post natal bodies it makes only one type of body feel acceptable to society. Which means the vast majority of us slump off in our PJS and baggy clothes when we still look 7 months pregnant after baby.

_

My body worked bloody hard to grow a baby for 9months and it’s going to continue working hard to look after a newborn. No pressure over here to fit back into my pre pregnancy jeans and I’m going to celebrate that with this photo of me rocking my best bod.

_

Tena pants, a wobbly belly and all that’s in between, women’s bodies are pretty amazing!”

#6

Postpartum bellies are one of my favorite things... The physical remnants of the life it was just growing. Still enlarged, yet vacant.

_

Organs that made room for baby finding their way back to their original positions, creating the feeling of phantom kicks as if little feet were still inhabiting that space.

_

They are miraculous, yet forgotten as the being they housed has since moved out and become the center of attention.

#7

"I would like to share my photo on your page of me breastfeeding my son on my wedding day. This picture is very important to me because at the age of 22 so many people doubted me and said I would give up on breastfeeding and here I am 4 months later and still going strong. I enjoy nursing my son and I made sure when I chose my wedding dress I would be able to nurse throughout my entire night. And I was able to. So I just want to share with women that no matter who doubts you or who turns their noses up to breastfeeding that it can be done. No one should make them feel embarrassed about feeding their child in the most natural way."

#8

Exercise and eat healthy during pregnancy they say. That way your body will bounce back. Yeah right! ⠀ ⠀

First of all, I hate that this is focused towards the way we look. Exercising and being healthy during pregnancy are important for our baby’s and our health. Not just to have a certain body⠀ ⠀

Second, it’s not a guarantee that our bodies won’t be affected. This was me at 38 weeks pregnant. I followed all the guidelines for a healthy pregnancy and still was left with a forever changed body ⠀

But if I could go back and tell something to my 25-year-old pregnant self would be this: ⠀ ⠀

“Make it a priority to find good prenatal physical training. You may think is not necessary but it is. From teaching you how to move with a heavy belly without putting so much pressure on your muscles, to teaching you how to breathe and push when the time comes. IT’S WORTH IT⠀ ⠀

Ask questions, and don’t take your OB/GYN answer as the last word. Unfortunately most are not trained to help you. At least the two I’ve had weren’t. ⠀ ⠀

A few stretch marks are normal, but if you get to a point where you can’t count them anymore, be prepared for a hard postpartum time. That’s a big sign that you are likely to have a severe diastasis and need help to have a strong body again I know you’re beyond excited to be a mom, but don’t forget about you. It’s ok to not buy one more unnecessary thing for your baby so you can pay someone to help you figure all this out Always remember to take care of yourself first so you can take the best care of your baby Last, you’re gorgeous and your body is amazing doesn’t matter how it looks”⠀ ⠀

This is part of my story and as you can see I focused so much on my baby that I though it was selfish/ unnecessary to do something for me. The lack of information didn’t help either. ⠀ ⠀

What would you say to your pregnant self about taking care of her body?

#9

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.

#10

Every new mom needs loving care, but a new mom recovering from a c-section needs extra help. For the first few days and weeks, the pain at the incision site can range from moderate to severe. It is recommended that new moms not hesitate to take pain medication when they need it for recovery.

_

Pain at the incision site can be especially sharp when coughing or laughing, or when using the abdominal muscles to sit or stand. It’s important to minimize recruitment of abdominal muscles. Partners can help by taking over diaper changing for the first few weeks and by helping mom sit up in the middle of the night to nurse and arranging pillows for her to help elevate the baby to breast level. Pillows placed on the lower abdomen can also help ease pain in the incision site. A breastfeeding support pillow can help.

_

New parents should have #breastfeeding resources ready- books, support groups, lactation consultant referrals - in case of breastfeeding difficulties. Nursing after a c-section can be initially more challenging, but there is no reason that mom and baby can’t overcome initial challenges to form a mutually rewarding nursing relationship.

_

Gas pains and constipation are normal after the operation.

_

Gentle, slow walks around the apartment or house are useful for helping the passage of gas, but remember to take it easy. New #mothers recovering from a #cesarean section need all the help they can get.

#11

Well, if this isn’t post-partum in a nutshell... Actually, this is just #motherhood. Welcome to eating your meals wherever you can get them. ⁣ ⁣

Just wanna give a shout out to the moms eating their meals on the go while driving kids to and from ALL the activities⁣ ⁣

The moms like me hovered over the kitchen counter eating cold leftovers while nursing a hungry, fussy baby.⁣ ⁣

The #teacher moms eating in a classroom while simultaneously helping a student.⁣ ⁣

The health care worker #moms eating hospital peanut butter and graham crackers for yet another meal.⁣ ⁣

The moms too busy too find time to eat at all.⁣ ⁣

And all the other moms in between.⁣ ⁣ Wherever you’re eating or not eating today, I see you and you’re doing a good job.⁣ ⁣ As I was shoveling cold pasta down my gullet, I was reminded that everyday we prioritize the needs of others over our own. That’s wonderful and just what we do as moms often without any thought. The least we can do for ourselves at the end of the day is to take a minute, look in the mirror and say “I’m a good mom.” No ifs, ands or buts, just “I’m a good mom, period

#12

5 weeks Postpartum! No snap back here ladies. Just stretch marks, 5 finger diastasis, and a heart full of love. After 5 weeks, I still look 4 months pregnant and I’m still a bit sore from 2 ecv's and an emergency c-section. I have been eating well and will be starting physio soon once I get the all clear from the GP. Women are amazing and everyone recovers differrently from their unique delivery experience, what matters most is that cute little face that we get to call our own.

#13

“I spent Mothers Day blissfully disconnected with all my boys. Instead of posting a done up photo depicting the highlight reel version of motherhood, I wanted to share this picture... because THIS is motherhood. This picture was taken hours after Cash arrived & it shows the reality of how much your mind, body & soul change after bringing life into the world. Stretch marks, saggy skin, exhaustion, a body that will never be the same... but 1000% worth it for the reward I received. To all you beautiful mamas out there rocking the body motherhood gave you!”

#14

"Time will push you to your limits, faster than you want it to, aging you in ways that make you ache, slow down, grow tired and weak. Laugh. Walk. Eat. Drink. Dance. Garden. Skip. Make an effort and stop time. Stand beneath a rainshower, let yourself become completely drenched. Nap under a tree, when the rest of the world goes to work. Get on a bicycle and go for a cruise. Drink that wine or milkshake slower than you ever thought you could... savour each drop.

_

Babies will suck your energy up. Children will treat your body like a jungle gym, bruising your skin, and pulling your muscles. Jobs will have you sitting indoors for too long. Partners may take you for granted. Friends will be under the illusion that they are too busy for simpler times spent together. Musical instruments will sit in their cases, forgotten. Hair will go unwashed. First dates will be boring and waste your time. Lovers will rip your heart out and put you through emotional hell and back, leaving you gutted, insecure and distrusting. Labor and birth and early motherhood will be painful, hard and depleting; leaving you with a body you may not know so well, or feel so good about.

_

The path of adulthood is textured and often, uphill. But.

_

You are incredible. You are soft, and precious. Giving, and nurturing. Beautiful and sensual.

#15

“I was a brand new mama. I had a beautiful birth, a healthy daughter, a supportive husband, family and friends. People brought meals and gifts for weeks. Everything was perfect.

And I got postpartum depression.

Those days and weeks were dark. I smiled when people came over, but I was sad, distant, and apathetic. I held Birdie because I had to. I cried all the time. We would spend evenings in silence while I stared off into nothing. I had horrible anxiety, and could hardly leave the house or get off the couch. I would apologize to Birdie because she got me for her mama. I thought she deserved a better one. Had she ever seen me smile? Did she feel loved? I felt guilt and shame, because shouldn’t this be the best time in my life? I would look at her perfect little face, and beg God not to let me miss it all. (I snapped the first picture on a particularly tough night. I knew I would want to remember this truth.) One sad night, Eddie called my midwife, and together, they pulled me out. I started (and am still taking) an antidepressant, and it was the best decision I could have made. I slowly started feeling like myself again. Life got lighter and brighter, and I finally fell in love with my girl.

I share this because it needs to be heard. So many new moms are living this painful story, but they think they’re the only ones, and too full of shame to reach out. It’s a lonely place to be. WE NEED TO BE TALKING ABOUT THIS!! So this is my story and my truth. I can’t believe I could have missed this magic. I’m so grateful for Eddie (for loving me well, letting me shower and nap every day during that time, and for taking the first step in getting me better when I couldn’t), for Zoloft, and for my Birdie, who waited patiently for her mama to come back.

And if you are living this story, you are not alone! Talk about it, reach out, take the medicine, accept the help, and leave guilt and shame behind. PPD does not make you a bad mom. Know that even on your worst days, you are the best mama for your baby. The bright days will come again. And I am here for you.”

#16

“And...so... I guess this is postpartum too. Fever/chills/almost passing out last night lead to a diagnosis of mastitis. When I called back this morning a different doctor told me to go in to the ER for further testing. They don’t really know why my WBCs are at 28,000, so they’re treating me for sepsis, uterine infection AND mastitis. And, I had to take my 10 day old nursling. Today has been stressful AF.”

#17

“This is me one day after giving birth. Belly still swollen from extra fluid, stretched skin and muscles, and a uterus that had grown to the max. I was prepared for that.

_

One week later, I left Cubby with my mother. I needed to get out of the house and he was sleeping, so it was better for him to stay. My first solo trip. And just as I was about to enter the Target, I had this overwhelming wave of emotion that I was so very much not prepared for.

_

I was totally alone.

I started crying.

For ten months, I’d carried this soul inside me. Felt my baby kick, laughed and talked and sung to him. We ate together, we slept together, we were completely and utterly one.

_

And now I was walking into the Target all by myself with my round postpartum belly but with no baby in it. .

I felt empty.

_

I would reach down absentmindedly to touch my belly, to have that connection I’d once felt but that squishy belly was far from the one I’d had just a week prior that was bursting with life.

_

The belly never bothered me.

The loneliness did.

_

Some people will say that having a baby is like having a piece of your heart outside your body.

_

Not for me. I never really notice my heart.

For me it felt more like a limb was missing, like I had forgotten to put on clothes, or that feeling when you can’t find your wallet. I was exposed and vulnerable.

_

Watching that belly fade was like losing a memory.

_

Maybe that’s why nature wants us to keep our young close, why they so perfectly curve into us when we hold them, why we feel like something is off when they aren’t around.

_

Just maybe it’s so that at least a little bit of that memory remains.”

#18

“This is a rare picture of me, doing my thang, trying to get ready #momlife #pumplife. How many of you mamas are pros at juggling multiple tasks? Cause I’m not hence why my bathroom is messy, closet is unorganized, but this is real life. Real life is messy and not social media perfection and THATS OKAT. _ Also, can we talk about how cute my 6 week postpartum tummy is? There was a baby in there and I’m squishy and I love it.”

#19

Get your body back after the baby is born”, they say. I wasn’t aware that my body ever left. If anything, each pregnancy brings me closer to my body. I mean, sure there’s some extra pounds. But that’s the beauty of the postpartum body. Weight might fluctuate, or it might plateau. You might “snap back”, or you might discover a new version of your body. Alena is 4 months old and I’m still holding on to about 20lbs of baby weight. I’m focused on being healthy not because I “want my body back”, because I’d never want to be without the extra stretch marks and squishiness I’d acquired during my pregnancy with my sweet girl. But because it makes me feel good! You can get healthy to embrace your new body, instead of being concerned about what used to be. As far as I’m concerned, we just get more beautiful after we’ve carried life. Why worry about going back, when we’ve just gotten better.

#20

I tried to find a perfectly posed photo of me breastfeeding Charlie with my hair all nice and face done, but I quickly realized that it didn't exist. No makeup and unshowered, sweaty from sporadic hot flashes, and so frickin hungry ALL THE TIME. That's my truth. Breastfeeding has been my favorite part of mommyhood so far. So happy I get to experience this with my daughter and so blessed for the support I've gotten along this journey. 

#21

Three days after Naia was born @gavinhicks took this photo of me in adult diapers, baby bump still present, greasy hair, and took the camera away from his face to tell me I’m beautiful. Find a partner who does that because you deserve it and you need to hear it especially when you don’t feel yourself. This time in your life is however more you and more raw and real than you’ll ever be. It’s messy and sometimes scary but my goodness it’s beautiful and magical. Looking at all of you Mamas in awe. We’re in this crazy s**t together.

#22

{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. There's 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 judgment? 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 sections (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!”

#24

This is postpartum. Swollen breasts, swollen, empty stomach, peri-bottles, bloody underwear and pads. I’m tired, my body hurts and I’m not doing great at the week of strict bedrest I told myself I needed. But my heart is so full of love and appreciation and awe. Growing children, in and out of the womb, is dirty and tiring work but it is also the most gratifying and amazing job in the world. I would live in this body 1000x over to reap that reward.

#26

Double tap if you know this scene all too well.

My body language says it all, looking down at the scale (the stupid scale!) and being disappointed in the number I see.

The moment I brought it home I cursed myself. Why did it even matter? What had motivated me to tie my worth to some arbitrary number on a scale? _ As a former athlete and someone who always had a size 6/8 body, learning to love my new curvy, size 12 self isn't always easy. I'm beyond proud of my body and what its done yet I still can't always fully embrace the figure staring back at me in the mirror. _ The truth is, it's not always easy accepting and embracing our bodies after having children. Things have shifted and changed and for many, may never be the same again. But maybe that's ok, maybe we're not supposed to be the same as we were before. I've said it before and I'll keep saying it again and again, especially on my low days. _ We.are.more.than.a.number.on.a.scale. We are beautiful. We are powerful. We are mothers.

#27

This photo is one that I knew I absolutely needed to take of myself, for myself, after I gave birth to my son. Once I could no longer fit in my jeans, I got rid of them. I didn’t want my changing body to determine how I felt about myself (especially during pregnancy), so I did what I thought would help, and it did. And now that my baby boy is out of my belly and in the world, I know I’m going to go through some rough thoughts about my new body again. I wanted this photo to remind me how strong and brave and beautiful I am. And it’s absolutely okay for me to not feel 1000% beautiful and strong and brave every single day.”

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Written by Alex Bradley

Reading, creative writing, poetry writing, language learning and grappling with literature have been my passions since I was young. Keen interest in cinematography and music feilds. Completed my Ordinary and Advanced levels in languages stream successfully. I have taken part in European Union missions in Sri Lanka. I have also completed my certificate courses in programming. And also a student and working in Tourism and Hotelling. Apart from writing, i am a vocalist and environmentalist.

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