He’s going to rock that belly!!

It has begun. Otter is now big enough to rock that belly!! Yes indeed, last night Lee and I were talking when Lee stopped and stared hard at my tummy.

“That was wierd, your whole stomach moved.”

Yes it did! He is rolling and kicking and moving around so much that I look like the first stages of alien release!! We sat back and enjoyed the show together for a bit as Otter was quite willing to put in a major performance.

At Ellen’s suggestion yesterday I checked of Shape of a Mother and submitted some of my pictures. It is an amazing site to go to. I am so angry that our image of what women should look like is impossible to acheive.

I mean, I was a thin and muscular teenager, I had an excellent body, and I remember scouring my image in the mirror for fat and “consoling” myself with the knowledge that Cindy Crawford had the same measurements as I did, so I didn’t have to be heroine thin to be cute. Come on!! How sick is it that our healthiest fit women in our culture still have to convince themselves that they are okay looking because they are not anorexic? Ugh!

My mother helped me a lot when I was younger. She told me she had always been unhappy with her appearance and then was looking back on photographs of her younger self and really felt angry that she had never enjoyed her looks then. That really stuck with me and I was able to work at being really happy with the way I looked. But it took work. I was probably 20 before I really felt that I was hot stuff, and that only lasted until I was 25 and got pregnant with Marlena. I wasted years of concern worrying about imaginary fat or a few zits, or the fact that I couldn’t wear empire waist shirts without looking pregnant. It’s sickening.

So, here I am, 31, and heading towards a true jiggly belly as soon as this baby emerges. I had better get my crap together and start learning how to be okay with my body, actually no…. I want to learn to be proud of it! I am really strong! I don’t really want to look like a model! They have teeny arms and legs lacking in muscle. They can’t lift my 5 year old and tromp around the house blowing zurberts!!! They can’t swing her around “swing kids” style until she giggles breathlessly! They can’t hoist baby, diaper bag, briefcase, and groceries into the house all at once! Or move thier own living room furniture when they want to redecorate without the immediate opinion of their spouse! (Sorry honey, sometimes a woman’s gotta do it on her own. But I am always willing to put it back if you hate it.)

So, here is another foray into the land of artistic expression and unself-concious body acceptance.

Granted, the true irony about pregnancy is that once you accept your body as is, it changes again. And again. And again. However, it is an amazing thing, this ever changing body of mine. After all, it has grown two people. One of whom is running around in Kindergarten and the other who is still waiting to pop out and say hello. I don’t really know of any other thing as amazing. It is so unreal that what starts as a little nausea and tiredness becomes another person. A whole other human, who will eventually go to college and change the world… somehow.

Anyway, check out Shape of a Mother, if you haven’t already. Then take up the banner with me and agree to try to stop longing for a shapeless American Stick Insect body. Who wants to resemble a clothing hanger? It’s Mayan Fertility Goddess for me all the way!

6 thoughts on “He’s going to rock that belly!!”

  1. I love it!

    Nice picture work, too! You’ll have to tell me what you did…just in case I get the guts up to do something similar!

  2. It was really simple. All I did was take the photo into photoshop, go to filter, gradient map, copper. It is supposed to look like a copper plate image.

    The trick is finding images that use enough contrast lighting to look right. I have a few, but the others involve some nipples, so they are not being posted here.

    I do have a Flickr account where I will post them, but they are restricted to friends. Do you have a flickr account?

  3. Gorgeous Mayan Goddess Daughter! You’ve always been beautiful and you contiue to be so in many fabulous ways. I’m delighted that you’re reveling in your pregnancy pulchritude.
    Love you,

  4. Misty, you look beautiful pregnant!

    I can relate to your struggles with body image. It really helped me to realize that men like curves because they want women who look like women (not women who look like 12 year old boys).

    It’s really eye-opening to compare the models in women’s magazines like Cosmo and Glamour to the models in men’s magazines like Maxim. Maxim definitely had curvier models than Cosmo or Glamour.

    I truly believe that the beauty myth is the last hold that patriarchy has on the female race.

  5. Thanks Katie! I agree that the beauty concept is at the very least one of the most damaging aspects of our culture. However, it is intricately tied to objectification of women, which in turn leads to the cultural rape phenomenon.

    While I don’t think all pornography leads to rape for example, I do think a culture wherein women are used hourly in the popular media as objects has a tendancy to increase violence towards women.

    We always objectify and dehumanize our enemies when we go to war, and we objectify and dehumanize our women too.

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