mini said this as she watched me shove my stomach into my jeans. yes, after having two babies, i now “shove” my stomach into things.

this wasn’t what she wanted to say and i could tell by the look she gave me that her thoughts of mommy’s body were a little less than the beauty that she spoke of but my little miniature self has been working on her tact and what she came up with was beautiful. i initially wanted to be hurt. i’m dealing with some of my own issues having to do with seeing my body as being beautiful after the birth of my second daughter. things just aren’t quite the same. i’m a work in progress though.

instead of being hurt and showing my little sponge the self-conscious nature that little girls are taught to have about their bodies, i said “yes, mommy’s body is beautiful. i have birthed two of the most beautiful little girls and have managed to sustain them with my body as well. it is beautiful.” and this is the truth. my body, though not what it was last year or last decade, is beautiful nonetheless.

in a world where body shaming women is sport, it’s really hard to look in the mirror and see my body for it’s worth. i have curves, though some of my curves have curves. and in all honesty, i love my shape. i just wish i could do some fine tuning on it. suck some fat out here, there, well….everywhere. but it’s not a bad body. it’s not one that shows my battles with a pretty hush hush eating disorder when i was 12. it’s survived being abused twice. the evidence of heartbreak isn’t there. nor does it show my chronic injuries because i’m the second clumsiest person i know (mini being the first… she gets it from her mama).

but it does have a road map of life on it. i have marks that show the parts of me that spread during puberty at 11. my stomach shows the evidence that i created life within my womb. my boobs aren’t nearly as perky since this is the first thing that your babies don’t put back in place after nurturing them. and i’m soft. i’ve snuggled many babies to sleep–two of them my own. my arms are jiggly but strong. they’ve picked me up when i’ve fallen, hugged my mini so tight she’s forgotten the pain, and held on to others so they’re reminded they are never alone. my “thunder thighs” could use some firming up but they have a strength of their own. they’ve kept me moving when all i wanted to do is sit still and mourn.

my body is not that of a super model but i’m learning to see it as beautiful.