I recently came across a nude pregnancy photo of Kourtney Kardashian, bronzed and smokey-eyed, draped in a Native-American inspired feather bra with her hand strategically placed over her vag and under her bulging stomach. Little Reign Disick was about 36 weeks old in the womb and the message of his celebrity (for no good reason) mother was actually a decent one.
“To me, nudity is not something to be ashamed of. I’m not embarrassed of my body. I’m at my best when I’m pregnant. It’s such an amazing feeling, the transformation that your body goes through. There’s something about that that’s so empowering and beautiful and I just really embrace it.”
Right on sister, but if you are gonna embrace the beauty of it, why don’t you try embracing the natural beauty of it? Minus the spray tan, the baby oil, Photoshop, Kardashian-famous contouring and the Last of the Mohicans teddy? All that stuff is setting up unrealistic expectations to the public for what most pregnant women actually look and feel like.
The truth is most women don’t start out pre-pregnancy looking like photos of Kourtney Kardashian. I don’t have a stylist, a make-up artist, a personal trainer, a nutritionist, and a lighting crew walking around with me all day every day.
So if I imagine my non-celebrity self with the added joys of pregnancy—an extra thirty pounds, difficulty sleeping, huge breasts, stretch marks, a nix on acne and wrinkle creams, hormonal fluctuations, extreme tiredness, and ridiculous water retention—I can guarantee that I will be nowhere near wanting to be photographed while being hosed down braless in a white T-shirt like a college co-ed making bad decisions on Spring Break (another photo op of Kourtney’s, which honestly is just awkward).
It’s easy for me to say this because I see pregnant women all day, all shapes and sizes. And I also see all of the struggles and vulnerabilities that these women go through during the forty weeks of pregnancy.
But for women who don’t see that, the ones who may be the first of their friend group to get pregnant, first in their family to have a baby, or just haven’t shared notes on their changing bodies with their mommy’s day out group, these types of sexy celebrity pregnancy photos can make a woman that is possibly already feeling insecure feel worse. Not only does it set a standard for her to compare herself to, but also she is also further shamed about why she doesn’t equally worship her pregnancy body enough to want to show it off to the world. It sets unrealistic expectations for our physiques and our minds.
The truth is, pregnancy is tough on both. During pregnancy, your body will transform in ways that it never has; some good, but also some not so good. And it’s okay if during that time you do not have a burning desire to strip down and make F-me eyes to a camera, because you are secretly feeling like a beluga whale.
What is important is to try and remember that you are not a beluga whale or a celebutante, you are just a normal woman who is about to be a mom.
And the whole point is pregnancy is actually not for you, even if you feel as amazing as Kourtney promises. It’s for your baby. It is when you start to practice the role of a mother. The most selfless role there is.
So don’t obsess over the changes, just try not to gain excessive weight. Calculate your starting BMI and ask your doctor what is the right amount of weight for you to gain.
Remember to keep a healthy balanced diet, avoid excessive sugar and fats, exercise five days a week for at least thirty minutes a day, take your pre-natal vitamins, get enough sleep and don’t google “celebrity pregnancy photos.” I’ve done it for you and most of them are pretty ridiculous anyways.
C’mon, that is so not normal.