Monday, May 23, 2011

pieces of forever

I always thought to myself that I'd follow right in my mom's footsteps as far as all things pregnancy go.  Primarily, that I would be blessed with the genes that don't allow for stretchmarks.

I was in for a rude awakening. I remember the day I found my first one, at 28 weeks pregnant, with Ruby.  I was horrified, thinking to myself that I still had a possibility of twelve or thirteen more weeks to stretch and grow. They continued to multiply by the day, and a handful appeared after I had given birth.

I struggled with my bare-bellied appearance for the remainder of my pregnancy and months beyond birth.

The stretch marks and scars go as deep as my soul; etched in my skin like a piece of forever.  I can't tell where some end and others begin.  My skin covering my belly is like a rubber band, stretched beyond capabilities and never returning to normal.  I have referred to it as elephant skin on numerous occasions - you know the wrinkled, worn, and rough skin.  I will likely never sport a bikini again; I feel like crying when I see the celebrities on various magazines and runways weeks after giving birth.  But I'm content with who I am, and the marks I have been left with.

I have carried and sustained life within my body, right beneath the surface of the now mangled skin.  The marks that were left as permanent reminders serve me amazing memories and the knowledge that my body did what it was designed to - something I feared it incapable of when I lost our baby.

These marks were made by growth, by life.  Marks as reminders of the most beautiful journey of life.  A mark for the kicks and the rolls, a mark for every hiccup, a mark for the perfectly developed tiny human being, from the toes to the eyelashes and everything in between.  One for the practice breaths, little swallows, the tiny baby yawns, and the punches.

I wear my scars proudly; they are another part of who I am.  A reminder of the most beautiful path I have walked.


Sheena said...

I love this entry!

Unknown said...

It's great knowing I'm not the only one with a belly that looks like that! :) I wouldn't trade mine for the world! What a wonderful blog post! Thanks for reminding us what true beauty is!

fit2bmom said...

What a touching article. We must remember that ALL aspects of pregnancy are beautiful.

Hannah said...

I loved this :-) Yay for beautiful non-hollywood bellies! Palmer's Cocoa Butter I say, "You lie!!!" but I'm with you and Steph - I wouldn't trade my tummy! It's pretty awesome!

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