Bailey Calvert (30) and Cole (7 weeks)
How has parenthood impacted your body image?
I have always felt comfortable in my body, parenthood has really stretched me to a new limit, literally, I've kept the fact in my head that this body has now created life, and so even when my tummy hangs lower and is squishier than it was before, I cherish it (Hummy : heavy-tummy, the loving way we refer to it in our household) I give it a little squeeze and cherish my baby boy that much more. Sometimes I shake it at my husband and make funny noises and we both have a good laugh.
What was your postpartum experience?
I feel I've been very lucky with my postpartum journey, I have a wonderful husband who has been my rock and my mother cared for me, my baby and my husband after my sons arrival. I've wanted a baby since I was probably 15 years old, I tried not to make it out to be a perfect fantasy but I felt I was completely ready now at the age of 30. My expectations of motherhood are pretty spot on with what I expected but the hardest part was the merging of our mixed family, my husband has 2 children from a previous marriage and they were not happy when we told then that we were having a baby. I did not expect they would be as upset as they were and that was painful for me to see that our choice to have a child was causing them so much anguish. Communication was strained and minimal up until Cole was born, it took almost a month before they came up to see their new brother but as hard as it was on them, before hand, they both fell instantly in love with him.
What is your truth?
You are doing the right thing, no matter what other opinions other parents, friends or relatives throw at you. You know yourself and you will know your baby, just trust in your ability and don’t hold onto guilt or regret about anything, the time with your baby is so precious and so short, don’t waste a single minute doubting yourself. Ever.
Why did you choose to participate in this movement and share your story?
I hadn't planned on being a part of the photoshoot, I really just wanted to meet some other moms and their kids and to build a network of support, but I was invited to participate and decided it was something I would love to share with my son once he was older, to show him that our bodies are something we should be proud of.