Fun fact: I had my maternity shoot the day before my water broke, great timing, right? This was my second pregnancy, and I honestly was not excited at all about a maternity shoot, I even considered not having one. But one thing led to the other and I did it. Being pregnant is a beautiful thing. Women have the blessing of bringing children of God into this world, and that is the most beautiful and valuable thing God has trust us with. As part of all the beauty that pregnancy entails, there are so many things that make it difficult and challenging.

            With my first pregnancy I lost a lot of weight due to the morning sickness, but I didn’t miss the pounds of course. I really loved how I physically looked with my first pregnancy. It doesn’t matter if people don’t like to say it straightforward, we associate being skinny with a superior kind of beauty. I’m not saying it’s right, but it happens. It is built in into society. So, being skinny made me feel very confident, and I noticed the difference when my second pregnancy came along. I didn’t gain a lot of weight, if you ask anyone around me, they will say I looked beautiful, and that pregnancies suit me well, and I’m not saying it was the opposite. But at the end of the day, it’s not about how we look on the outside but how we feel on the inside and I felt humongous. I started feeling swollen… My underwear didn’t fit, my bras were too little and my previous stretch marks were growing by the minute.  You might be reading and thinking, “but she was pregnant, what did she expect?” and you’re right. It’s expected but the things you expect feel a whole lot different once they arrive.  My first pregnancy had other challenges but this one brought with it things I hadn’t faced before.

            On the day of the shoot we talked about my stretch marks and whether I wanted them to be visible or if I wanted them deleted. I had already thought about it, possibly every single time I looked at them in the mirror and even though I highly disliked them I knew they were a part of my pregnancy and that if I deleted them, 20 years from now I would look at a belly that wasn’t really mine. So, I look at these pictures and see the stretch marks but more than that I see how they’re just a reflection of all of things pregnancy change within a woman. As beautiful as pregnancy is, the beauty of it does not invalidate the process. Pregnancy is so powerful, so life changing that it leaves traces not only in our souls but our bodies, so every time we see ourselves in the mirror, we remember God made our bodies capable of miracles.

            It is important to understand yourself in order to grow and acquire the necessary tools. Being pregnant not only opened the path for me to be a mom, being pregnant taught me to value myself, to appreciate my body, and to be a better woman for me and my husband. Between tears and pain my body stretched so I could also grow.  Not only did I give birth to a son, but to areas of myself that had not seen light yet. Before I am a mother, I am a woman, because I can’t give to my children things I can’t give to myself. To discover oneself always hurts, growth always hurts but it is worth the effort. If you are a man, go thank your mom for everything. And dear woman that reads me, thank God for the blessing it is to be a woman. And if someone, at any given moment, has called you infertile today I want to declare life upon your womb according to the will of our God. The truth is that there are so many things to talk about in regard to motherhood… It’s not only biological… But it will be in another occasion…

See you in the letters…

With love,

Bianca Paola  

P.S. Go follow my amazing photographer and wedding godparents, JC Photolog. Look them up on IG and FB!

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