I hear a lot of mothers and even fathers, talk about how having babies has destroyed their or their spouse's bodies. Before I became pregnant someone told me, "Don't have a baby, babies ruin your body!"
It has been over a year since my son came into the world and began his life, and my body still carries proof of his existence. I have dark pools under my eyes. A valley where my belly button once was. Good with a new amplitude that my 20-year-old self wouldn't recognize. Lines mapped across the mountains of skin, proving I once was too small to contain all of the love that filled me. Do you realize the significance in that? Every limb, finger, toe... his heart even developed near the very place my own heart beats inside my chest. Those lines on my skin are all I have left to prove that we were once one and not two. How can I be ashamed of that?
I have so much to say about seeing his eyes under the brows of my own. I see my ancestors and myself as a child every time he looks up at me. Not much makes me feel more beautiful than seeing tiny renditions of my features on my son and realizing how special they are. My body grew that. Not everyone has that privilege. Sure my belly is a bit softer nowadays, but the way it moves when I jump up and down sends my son into fits of laughter. And yeah, my hips are hardly as narrow as they used to be, but they know the perfect figure 8 motion to sway him to sleep. My hair is starting to gray, but not much makes him giggle like the tickle of it on his face.
I'm not something flawless in the eyes of society, or even close to what I once was physically, but my perfect boy sees me for who I am. To him I hang the moon. He knows my heart. He knew it long before we met. And he loves me. I cannot tell you how much worth and validation I feel because of that truth. My body is only a vessel for my spirit. An incredible vessel that allowed me an incredible gift, my son. My body is full of life. My body is powerful. My body made me a mother. If anything, I was ruined by the world before I knew him, and he made me whole again.