In today’s constantly connected society, women are under a lot of pressure to look picture-perfect all the time, even after giving birth! While the “dad bod” is enjoying something of an Internet renaissance, the “mom bod” has not gotten quite the same level of love and respect that it deserves. After all, who did all the work in carrying that baby around for nine months? One mom is bravely looking to change all that one body-positive selfie at a time.
Amelia Olson-Hendrickson of New Mexico, mother to a 15-month-old girl, showed off a cute new vintage crop top on her Instagram account. Her caption dares women everywhere to cut loose and do the same:
Weight. After having birdie I didn’t recognize myself. I didn’t recognize my body or my identity or my arms or my brain or my words. I had changed in an impossible to trace way. 15 months later, I feel like myself. Not who I was before her. Not because I treat my body like some fucked up work in progress. Not going backwards, not obsessed with forwards. Just here. Right now. 184 IBS and still trying to find ways to honor my body and heart. Ways to find gratitude for all the things my body has and does allow me to do. And when your pal @choloclown gives you an amazing, super thin vintage Las Vegas showgirls crop top you wear tf out of it even if it’s scary and you worry it doesn’t look good on your mom bod. So, today, I feel thankful. For my body, my cellulite, my scars, my stretch marks my periodic adult acne. All of it. Because this is me, and I haven’t anything smarter than to love myself and feel absolutely beautiful no matter WHAT. And I’m tellin you right now, baby- you’re perfect. You’re beautiful. Exactly right now. Look in the mirror and find one thing to admire. Now do it everyday. You deserve to be your biggest admirer. <3
Now, Olson-Hendricks’ message is going viral. She spoke with the Huffington Post about the intention behind her words and the reaction she’s received so far. “The point of the post was to proudly boast about how I am feeling about my body and share the struggles I’ve encountered in trying to get to a genuine place of admiration and respect for all the things my body has and continues to allow me to do,” she said.
The Internet, as we all know, can be a scary place full of trolls ready to pounce on anyone who’s not perfect. But Olson-Hendricks insisted that the responses she’s received about the post have been almost all positive and encouraging. She hopes that her example will inspire more women to do the same and feel more comfortable in their own skin.
“Our society is so uncomfortable with wildly confident women,” she said. “My body and my confidence belong to me, and I get to decide how I want to exhibit my beauty and confidence regardless of if anyone agrees with me.” The bottom line, she says, is, “Wear whatever the hell you want, if someone doesn’t like it they can turn around. I think you’re perfect!”