Jennifer Mancuso (38), Parker (4), Piper (3), Aria and Asher (Twins - 20 months). Jennifer is also bonus mom to three more.
How has parenthood impacted your body image?
My body has changed into almost exactly what I was afraid of: floppy belly, abnormal looking belly button, saggy boobs, multi-directional stretch marks, cellulite, etc. However, I see my body now and am more confident and proud of my physical self than I ever was before. I look at the aforementioned aspects of my body and see it as representation of the 4 tiny humans that I created, grew, and have sustained over the last 5 years.
Feel free to share your postpartum journey.
I have evolved so much with each of my three pregnancies and births experiences. With my first I was very ignorant and trusting of the medical doctors. I trusted that they were my expert advisors and if that's what they suggest, they know best and to do what they say. I learned very quickly that was not the case.
After a hugely medically intervened first delivery, my second was completely medicine-free. The vast difference between the two experiences and my resulted PP journey, it made me do a ton of research for my twin pregnancy and knowing how much I had to advocate for myself. I refused what the doctors were advising and insisted on a breech baby A birth while baby B was presenting transverse. I had to sign refusal documents in order to be admitted to the maternity ward because I rejected a voluntary cesarean. Baby A was born frank breech vaginally followed by baby B turning head down after baby A was out.
My postpartum journey for my last three was so much better than my first because I did not have nearly the medical interventions as I did with my first. Also, as a mother, with each child, I found more and more confidence and my voice saying that I know what is best for my child.
What is your truth?
Knowledge is power. Use that knowledge to advocate and do not be afraid to stand up for yourself, because God knows we have to!
Why did you choose to participate in this movement and share your story?
I'm very excited about the postpartum body positivity movement happening and have loved the project as I've followed on Instagram for a while. I find strength and courage in reading others journeys and I'm so thankful to be able to contribute to this project.