Mother shares raw photos of stretch marks
Last month, a woman posted a graphic selfie of her C-section scars and it went viral. That operation is often denigrated by people who say women get C-sections because they're "lazy." However, that's not true. In some cases, C-sections are medically necessary, and the surgery is not easy or fun. The honest photo resonated with other mothers and opened many eyes to the reality of C-sections. For example, as a guy, I thought "C-section" was just a generous portion of cake. Oh, how wrong I was.
Now another new mother has posted a photo that went viral, and is resonating with many. But instead of C-sections, it's about stretch marks. As a guy, I didn't know what "stretch marks" were. I thought they were something sexy women did during yoga class. Like, they pose, and when their pose reaches a new height of sexiness, they make a mark, so they can try to hit that level of sexiness again - and maybe even surpass it! But again, I was gravely mistaken.
Hayley and Cody Garnett are a young couple from Columbus, Missouri. They had their first son, Archer, and shared every special moment on Instagram. Then, when Hayley became pregnant with twins, they counted down the days to when Ramona and Ruby would enter the world. But they didn't stop there. After the twins were born, Hayley showed off her stretch marks on Instagram:
"Happy one week birthday, ladies. This morning Archer asked me what’s wrong with my belly and I told him that all of my babies leave marks on my belly so that I never forget for a second that I grew them in my body all on my own and that they exist earthside with me now! A forever reminder, whether I’m truly confident having these marks or not, it’s no doubt a testament to the miracles my body has made."
In an interview with ABC News, Hayley explains why she shared her story:
"I decided to share the story because I habitually try to share a lot of personal feelings through my Instagram page because I really believe that showing your vulnerability is not only a healing process but also has the ability to really connect you with an individual or community in a way you may not have thought possible. I hoped that being open and honest about the marks that twin pregnancy gave me would give other moms the courage to actually accept themselves and maybe see their own marks in a different, more positive light."
The reaction has been overwhelmingly positive. Of course being the internet, there are some detractors - but Hayley says they think "I was intentionally editing my photo to make my marks look excessive which in itself just seems like a silly accusation." For real, you think she had two kids and has time to do Photoshop? Come on!
Hayley goes on to praise her husband, Cody, who "is so very supportive of everything that I do and is always on my team. He makes me feel beautiful no matter what and would not hesitate to assure other women who bear the marks of pregnancy that they are beautiful as well."
So, remember, stretch marks are beauitful, and you can make them even more beautiful with glitter. If you hate on them, you're hating on adorable babies (who might have looked slightly less adorable in the ultrasound.)
And do not Google Image search "C-section" - it has nothing to do with slices of cake!