Sunday, May 15, 2011

Honoring Our Bellies: Pregnant Belly Diversity

May is Honoring Our Bellies Month at Well-Rounded Mama.  We had a Belly Blog Carnival where we shared blog entries from various moms of size, talking about their feelings about their bellies during and after pregnancy.  We've shown pictures of Belly Henna and how it can be used to honor your belly during pregnancy.  Now it's time for some more pictures!

One frequent anxiety about fatness and pregnancy for many women of size is wondering what their pregnant bellies will look like. 

And the truth varies.  Fat bodies do not all look alike, so fat pregnant bodies won't all look alike either.  Some women just get much more apple-shaped, some look pear-shaped with a small bump, some get a really big belly, some hardly look pregnant at all, some get a double-roll belly, some look like the classic basketball just never know what your body will look like until you actually ARE pregnant. 

Here are some pictures sent into me for the Belly Blog Carnival.  They represent some of the diversity possible among pregnant women of size.  I've re-used a couple of pictures, but most are new.  For the sake of privacy, I identified some of them only with an initial (and even that may have been changed). Others contain first names. All were used with permission.

Please note that the copyright of these pictures belongs to the mothers and this post; do NOT copy them and use them elsewhere.

I've included here the ones submitted to me that identified exactly how far along they were.  All pictures are of women of size, but of varying sizes of large. I've put them in order by gestational dates. Since most people take more pictures at the end of pregnancy than the beginning, late baby bumps are far more represented than early baby bumps.  Finally, I ended with a couple of pictures of labor, newborns, and nursing, just for a sense of closure.


This is "L" at 6 months pregnant.

This is "Sh" at 28 weeks pregnant (about 7 months).

This is "J" at almost 8 months pregnant.

This is Arwen at 8 months.

This is Issa at 33 weeks.

This is "T" at 35 weeks.

This is Angela at 37 weeks.

This is "A" at 37-38 weeks.

This is Cassandra at 38 weeks.

This is Lexi, at approximately 38 weeks.

This is "A" at 40 weeks, 1 day.

"E" at 41 weeks, 3 days.

"Ch" during pushing phase in labor.

"M" pushing during labor, baby starting to crown.

"E", skin-to-skin, after birth.

"J" nursing, 8 months post-partum.

Thank you to all the moms of size who so generously shared their pictures.  You rock!  You totally look beautiful, and you have done a real service for future moms of size who wonder if fat women really do get pregnant, and oh-my-goodness-what-am-I-going-to-look-like-if-I-do?

Yes, Virginia, fat women really do get pregnant, we do have baby bellies, our baby bellies vary as much as our pre-pregnancy bodies do, but whatever unique shape and size we end up having, we are beautiful. 

*This is the second publishing of this post.  Blogger went down shortly after it posted originally and all recent posts were deleted.  So we're putting it back up to make sure everyone has the opportunity to see it, and so that it stays in our archives.  Apologies if you are seeing it a second time on a feed or newsreader. 


Zayna said...

This is great! Thanks for doing this : ) I hope one day to add my picture : )

Plus Size Mommy Memoirs said...

You’re incredible and have helped so many women!!! I love this blog post! I just posted a blog yesterday about waiting for my bump to show-up and I mention how your website helped me. I wanted to share it with you - THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Thank you also for your comments you’ve left on some of my posts – you’re like a celebrity to me and your support is priceless!

Anonymous said...

They are all so gorgeous and happy! Thanks for sharing, everyone, and congratulations!

Tina said...

Great page! Thank you for including one of my belly casts. It's much appreciated!!

Amanda said...

Thank you for this. I have been feeling so alienated since getting pregnant, what with a horrifying search for a doctor who would actually see me through my pregnancy and being made to feel like a horrible mother for choosing to get pregnant at a size 22.

Now that my baby boy and I have made it to week 22, I'm about ready to take some personal photos of our belly, regardless of what anyone else thinks. This is a special time for my husband and I, and I DESERVE to have it documented as happily as someone who is a size 8.

Amy@Fiancé Meeting You Here said...

Thank you so much for this. I've googled "plus size baby bump" trying to find pics to see what bigger girls look like pregnant. I've been so sad that I don't have a "bump" yet at 20 weeks. No one can tell I'm preggers because i have my own belly already. It's so good to see other real women and how different everyone looks pregnant.

I've finally taken some pics of myself...I can't believe I waited so long, but I just felt like I was taking pics of my fat, since I couldn't see that perfect "bump" so many skinny women get to have.

Madie said...

I came across this blog at 6 weeks pregnant scared because of the stigma associated with being "obese" and pregnant and looking for more information to ease my worries and this website had done this. Thank You so much!

Anonymous said...

Soo happy to see this pictures and how our body's change :)

Amy said...

This page has helped alot I'm 5 weeks and 6 days pregnant my husband and i have been trying for 3 years and a girl I use to be friends with said it wouldnt happen because I was fat and even if it did I would never look pregnant and wouldnt have the joy like she did cause she was a size 0 and I'm a size 26. Needless to say I'm no longer friends with her but i did call her just to say she was wrong.

Anonymous said...

Where or how do I send my pics? Can someone email me thanks.