My daughter loves my belly. She hugs it, pokes it, pats it, zerberts it, cuddles it, pinches it, and checks-in with it throughout the day and at night. She likes to have as much contact with it as possible. It has become her teddy bear, her blankie, her lovie, if you will.
My daughter has also recently discovered and learned to identify her own belly. Now her own belly brings her joy. It is a tender sweetness that fills my heart as I watch the sheer thrill on her face as she lifts up her shirt, points to and rubs her beautiful toddler belly. How I long to preserve this love for her knowing that, in our culture, the odds are stacked against that preservation.
I know that the cultural change for my daughter starts with me. As she kneads my pizza dough belly and then rests her cheek there, I wonder if she remembers her first home. I wonder if it feels or sounds familiar to her. Those wonderings remind me of the fact that she grew in my body. My body fed her, kept her safe, and soothed her for many months. And after she was born, my body continued to feed her, keep her safe, and soothe her. Those are powerful thoughts that bring powerful feelings of awe and respect for my body that I had not experienced prior to having children. I have written about postpartum body image in the past; I suspect this topic will surface again in some other form in the future. What a gift of self-appreciation my children have given to me. I am glad my daughter continues to remind me.
Be Nourished has an upcoming workshop on pregnancy and postpartum body image. I know it will be a fabulous workshop because I know Hilary (one of the co-facilitators), and she is a fabulous person. If you know her, you know what I am talking about.
Belly, Body, Baby and Beyond: A Body Image Workshop for Pregnant or
Postpartum Women (1 day) This workshop is designed specifically for the changes women experience during pregnancy, childbirth, and postpartum. It is in this delicate time that we connect with the power of nature to create new life. We watch our body change, prepare ourselves for what is needed, and as our identity shifts, it can impact our ability to care for and know ourselves. Discuss how we can use this time to create a healthy, lasting image of ourselves. This workshop will be co-facilitated by Dana and Hilary (who is expecting her first baby April 20th). Cost: $125.00 Sunday, March 15, 10:00am- 4:00pm Zenana Spa and Wellness Center 2024 SE Clinton Street Portland, OR 97202 To register please click here.